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The General car insurance review Mar 2020

Last updated:  

Affordable coverage for nearly any driver

finder.com’s rating: 3.5 / 5.0

★★★★★

  • Get a quote if you want cheap rates for a no-frills auto insurance policy.
  • Pick something else if you have a good driving record or want extra perks.
  • Drivers with a history of accidents or claims or who need an SR-22 can get coverage.

optional

Roadside assistance

New car protection

Accident forgiveness

Details

States served Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Roadside assistance Optional
Pay schedule 12 months, monthly
Claims methods phone
New car protection No
Accident forgiveness No

Pros

  • Affordable coverage
  • High risk drivers okay
  • Instant online access
  • Available in 46 states

Cons

  • No-frills policies
  • Claims handled only by phone
Anti-theft device discount Yes
Bundling discount Yes
Defensive driving discount No
Good student discount Yes
Loyalty discount No
Homeowner discount Yes
Military discount Yes
Safety device discount Yes
Special employment discount No
Usage-based discount No
Other discounts
Rideshare coverage No
SR-22 coverage Yes
Temporary & short term coverage No

Expert review

Jing Jun Ma

Review by


Jing Jun Ma is an innovations expert at Finder. With a decade of experience in digital marketing and programming, Jing is a tech and data guy. He wrangles data to make it useful for consumers facing a decision.

Expert review

The General prides itself on basic, affordable coverage for “nonstandard,” high-risk drivers. If you have a less-than-perfect record and live in a state that’s included in The General’s service area, it’s an ideal company to explore for low rates.

However, if you’re a low-risk driver or you’re looking for more comprehensive coverage, you may want to explore your options to find a provider that better suits your needs.

The General car insurance rates

Compare sample annual car insurance rates for The General customers across the US.

CANYTX
18 year old male$1,631$5,309$3,710
18 year old female$1,824$4,952$3,275
25 year old male$965$3,565$1,036
25 year old female$965$3,664$952
35 year old male$589$2,363$658
35 year old female$645$2,981$692
45 year old male$565$2,297$628
45 year old female$639$3,291$720
56 year old male$713$2,152$564
56 year old female$792$2,364$561

Where is The General car insurance available?

The General offers coverage in 46 states and claims to accept drivers with less-than-perfect credit or driving violations. The General’s auto insurance policies are issued through a network of independent agents and online. Its service area reaches from coast to coast, providing coverage in 46 states. However, if you live in one of the following states, you may need to look elsewhere:

  • Hawaii
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey

What car insurance coverage does The General offer?

  • Bodily injury liability. This protects you if you injure someone with your car, but it doesn’t cover damage to you or your car.
  • Medical payments. For an additional fee, this pays for medical bills if anyone is injured in your car.
  • No fault. With no-fault insurance, both parties of an incident are compensated by their own insurance companies, regardless of who was at fault.
  • Uninsured motorists’ coverage. Covers you for damages and injuries caused by an uninsured driver.
  • Collision coverage. Pays for damage to your car when your car hits or is hit by another car.
  • Property damage liability. Protects you if your car damages someone else’s property.
  • Emergency roadside service. For an additional fee, helps you if your car breaks down and you need help.
  • SR-22. An SR-22 certificate of insurance helps drivers with a history of driving infractions or suspended licenses get back on the road.

What discounts can I get with The General?

Although The General specializes in no-frills auto insurance for high-risk drivers, it does offer a few standard auto insurance discounts.

  • Lump sum payment. Get a discount for paying your policy premiums in a single, lump sum payment rather than in installments.
  • Deductible doubling discount. Get discounted rates when you double your deductible for the first 45 days of your policy.
  • Multi-vehicle discount. Get a discount for insuring multiple vehicles under the same policy.
  • Select driver discount. You may be able to get a discount if you only allow specific drivers to operate your vehicle. However, they must have at least five years of driving experience and a clean driving record.
  • Defensive driving discount. Drivers who complete an approved defensive driving course may be able to get discounted rates.
  • Airbag discount. You may be able to get a discount if your car is equipped with factory-installed airbags.
  • Anti-lock discount. Get a discount if your vehicle is equipped with anti-lock brakes.
  • Homeowner discount. Get a discount on your auto insurance policy just for owning a home.
  • Military discount. Active service members living in Louisiana may be able to get discounted rates.
  • Transfer discount. You may be able to get a discount when you switch to The General if you’ve had six months of continuous coverage from another provider.
Ready to get insured?
Basic, affordable coverage for almost any driver, including drivers with past claims or SR-22.

Need help? Talk to a customer specialist

X

Pros and cons of The General

It offers a variety of coverage options including basic liability, no-fault, uninsured motorist and more. While its policy offerings are more limited than some of its competitors, its parent company, American Family, might have something better suited for your needs.

Pros

  • Coverage for high-risk drivers. If you’re a high-risk driver, many insurance companies won’t cover you. The General prides itself on covering high-risk drivers, although it could come with a higher premium.
  • Instant online access. Once you’ve paid for a policy, you can download and print your card immediately.
  • SR-22 filing assistance. This service is helpful for drivers who require this confirmation of liability coverage.

Cons

  • No-frills policies. The General keeps costs down by offering the basics. You’ll pay for add-ons like medical payments coverage and roadside assistance.
  • Claims handled only by phone. You won’t be able to file a claim online or through an app, which may be an issue if you prefer instant results.
  • Limited discounts. Although The General does offer a few standard auto insurance discounts, other providers offer many other ways to save.
  • Website lacks information. The General’s website lacks specific information about coverage options, discounts and features.

How to apply for The General

To get car insurance coverage with The General, start by getting a quote online, calling to speak with a representative or connecting with an agent.

Online

  1. Visit The General’s website and enter your zip code. Click Get quote.
  2. Enter general information about your location, credit and prior insurance. Click continue.
  3. Enter your driver information, date of birth, marital status, etc. Click continue.
  4. Enter your vehicle information, year, make, model. Then click continue.
  5. Review coverage options and policy details, then continue if you are satisfied.
  6. Create a password and enter your contact information, then continue.
  7. Enter your garaging or parking address, then continue.
  8. Answer the application questions, then continue.
  9. Enter driver details including license number, SSN and full name, then continue.
  10. Enter your vehicle details and VIN, then continue.
  11. Review all policy details, then continue.
  12. Enter your payment information and proceed to purchase your policy.

Phone. You can also purchase coverage by contacting The General by phone. Whether you need help finishing your quote or prefer to deal entirely by phone, start by calling 866-378-1042.

Agent. Use the agent locator tool on The General’s website to find out how to apply for coverage through an agent.

The General’s cancellation policy

The General reviews and complaints

The General has an official accreditation on the BBB website and boasts an impressive A+ rating to match. It also holds a composite score of 3.92 of a possible 5 stars, based on its letter grade and customer reviews. Despite its ratings, there are over 200 customer complaints on the BBB website, citing issues with billing, unauthorized payments, denied claims and more.

Other comparison sites like NerdWallet and ValuePenguin cite The General as a good option for drivers who can’t get coverage elsewhere, with the caveat that other insurers will probably be better and cheaper for low-risk drivers.

Keep in mind that online customer reviews don’t always tell the entire story. Most customers will only go online if they have an overwhelmingly negative experience, which is why you won’t see as many positive reviews. Take these customer reviews with a grain of salt, and try to speak with friends and family to learn about their experience with the company.

How to contact The General

You can contact The General by phone at 888-333-2331 or through its online form.

From The General’s site, you can also set an appointment time to have them call you directly.

Compare The General to competitors

Name Product Roadside assistance New car protection Accident forgiveness Safe driver discount Available states
Progressive
Optional
30%
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Get a quote online in minutes and find some of the lowest rates and wide coverage options for almost any driver.
The AARP Auto Insurance Program from The Hartford
Optional
Yes
All 50 states & DC
Enjoy exclusive savings and benefits designed for drivers over the age of 54.
Clearcover
Optional
Yes
AZ, CA, IL, TX, UT
Find basic coverage and low rates through its easy online or app-based experience.
Gabi
Optional
Optional
55%
All 50 states
Upload your current bill and get 20+ quotes from top brands for the same level of coverage.
Metromile
Optional
49%
AZ, CA, IL, NJ, OR, PA, VA, WA
Pay-as-you-go rates based on how much and how well you drive start at $29/month plus pennies per mile.
Assurance
Optional
Yes
All states except AK & HI
Your broker is your one-stop shop for comparing any coverage you need.

Compare up to 4 providers

Frequently asked questions about The General

Car insurance ratings

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★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

Our insurance team analyzes car insurance providers to help you choose the best car insurance for you.

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Learn the details of our methodology and scoring.

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2 Comments

  1. Default Gravatar
    Michelle
    October 11, 2018

    How much will it cost for an SR22 to reinstate my license? I do not own a car as of yet.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      Charisse
      October 11, 2018

      Hi Michelle,

      Thanks for reaching out to finder.

      The cost of SR-22 insurance varies by driver and by insurance company however you can expect it to be more expensive than usual since insurance companies will consider you a high-risk driver.

      Your auto insurance policy (SR22) price will depend on the reason why your license was revoked or suspended; whether it was a first, second or third offense; whether the accident that occurred resulted in bodily injury to other parties. You can find out the exact price if you request for an SR22 insurance quote online or through an agent.

      The filing fee for an SR22 though, is relatively low and will typically range anywhere from $15 to $25 but may also vary by state.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Charisse

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