USAA car insurance review Mar 2020
Enjoy stellar customer support plus coverage tailored for military members.
finder.com’s rating: 5.0 / 5.0
- Get a quote if you want the best rates and customer service.
- Pick something else if you’re not affiliated with the military.
- Veterans and military members can make the best use of perks.
New car protection
|States served||All 50 states|
|Pay schedule||12 months, 6 months, custom|
|New car protection||No|
- Save when you bundle your home and car insurance
- Driver & vehicle discounts
- 24/7 claims service through USAA’s free mobile app
- Membership savings
- Get dividends from company profits
- Flexible premium payments
- Limited to current and former members of the US military and their families only
- Online only support
|Anti-theft device discount||Yes|
|Defensive driving discount||Yes|
|Good student discount||Yes|
|Loyalty discount||Yes, up to 10%|
|Safety device discount||Yes|
|Special employment discount||Yes|
|Temporary & short term coverage||Yes|
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.
Military members and their families can get some of the lowest rates and best customer service in the industry. And you don’t have to be in the military, though you do have to be related to someone who has a connection. Customers praise its cheap rates and great claims support, and USAA consistently tops the charts for customer satisfaction.
However, the list of drivers who will qualify is small, and while online account management is great, the online quoting process is lengthy. If you do qualify, it could be worth the extra time to get a quote and potentially save hundreds of dollars a year.
Who qualifies for USAA car insurance?
You don’t need to be in the military to qualify for USAA car insurance, but you will need a connection with the military. Basically, you can qualify if you have ever been in the military or military training, or if your parent or spouse has ever had USAA car insurance. You can qualify if you meet one of these criteria.
- Current US military members. People who are currently serving in the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, National Guard, Navy or Reserves.
- Veterans. People who have retired or left the military with an honorable discharge.
- Spouses. People whose spouses had USAA car or property insurance while married. Also applies to former spouses who were widowed or divorced and not remarried.
- Family of military members. Current spouses and people whose parents have ever had USAA auto or property insurance.
- Military students. Cadets at US academies, students in advanced ROTC or on ROTC scholarship and officer candidates within 2 years of commissioning.
Where is USAA available?
USAA is available in all 50 states.
USAA car insurance quotes
|18 year old male||$1,089||$22,888||$1,176|
|18 year old female||$951||$20,186||$1,125|
|25 year old male||$489||$7,516||$784|
|25 year old female||$514||$6,499||$764|
|35 year old male||$347||$4,024||$460|
|35 year old female||$372||$4,024||$470|
|45 year old male||$344||$3,920||$448|
|45 year old female||$425||$3,920||$456|
|56 year old male||$403||$3,501||$400|
|56 year old female||$411||$3,501||$405|
What car insurance coverage does USAA offer?
Choosing the right car insurance provider also means finding a policy that works for your situation. USAA offers a range of coverage options to get you the protection you need.
- Bodily injury liability. This protects you if you injure someone with your car, but it doesn’t cover damage to you or your car.
- Collision coverage. Pays for damage to your car when your car hits or is hit by another car.
- Comprehensive coverage. Covers you for damages other than a collision, like vandalism, weather or theft.
- Emergency roadside service. Helps if you break down and you need roadside repairs.
- Personal injury protection coverage. Pays for the medical expenses of an injured driver and passengers in your car.
- Property damage liability. Protects you if your car damages someone else’s property.
- Rental reimbursement. Covers the cost of a rental car while yours is being repaired.
- SR-22. A certificate of insurance for users who’ve have DUI convictions or are caught driving uninsured.
- Temporary or nonowner insurance. Temporary liability coverage for rented or borrowed vehicles used stateside, including for personal leave or temporary military assignment.
- Uninsured motorist coverage. Covers you for damages and injuries caused by an uninsured driver.
What extra benefits and add-ons does USAA offer?
USAA offers additional programs and features to supplement its car insurance coverage:
- Car buying support. USAA’s Overseas Vehicle Purchase Program helps military members get a car if they’re stationed overseas for more than 30 days, with car purchase discounts and delivery to duty stations.
- Manage your account online. When you can’t get to an agent in person, USAA’s convenient online tool makes it easy to file an claim, pay bills, request ID cards and more.
- Member rewards. Once you become a USAA member, you can earn membership rewards and discounts, similar to a AAA membership. You don’t have to sign up for USAA car insurance to receive these rewards.
- Pay based on your schedule. If your paydays don’t fall on a typical schedule, which is common with military pay schedules, you can set up premium payments based on when you get paid.
What discounts can I get with USAA?
USAA understands the unique needs of military members and their families and offers all the standard discounts plus several rare discounts you won’t find elsewhere.
- Accident forgiveness. After five years of no accidents, your premium won’t go up after one at-fault accident.
- Bundling. Get an auto insurance policy to save 10% off your USAA homeowners or renters insurance.
- Defensive driving. Improve your driving skills and reduce your premiums by taking an approved course.
- Driver training. Drivers under the age of 21 can get better rates upon completion of a basic driver training course.
- Family loyalty discount. If you’re under 25 and moving to your own policy with USAA after being on your parents for at least 3 years, you could save up to 10%.
- Good student. You can receive discounted rates for maintaining good grades as a student.
- Length of membership savings. Save more money on your policy based on how long you stay with this provider.
- Low mileage discount. If you’re deployed and don’t use your car much, you’ll save based on your annual mileage.
- Military installation discount. Save up to 15% on comprehensive coverage when you store your vehicle on a military base.
- Multivehicle. Receive a discount when you extend your coverage to two or more vehicles.
- New vehicle. Reduced premiums on vehicles that are less than three years old.
- Safe driver. Receive a discount for maintaining a clean driving record for three years.
- Vehicle storage. Save 60% on your insurance when you securely store your car for periods of nonuse.
Pros and cons of USAA car insurance
- Driver discounts. Get discounts for safe drivers, good students, driver training and defensive driving courses.
- Vehicle discounts. Get discounts for new vehicles, low mileage, coverage on multiple vehicles and vehicles that are in storage.
- 24/7 claims service. Report or check on your claim through USAA’s free mobile app.
- Membership savings. Savings are offered to military families and to those in military installations.
- Flexible payments. Pay premiums yearly, monthly or on your military pay schedule.
- Limited membership. USAA is only available to current and former members of the US military and their families.
How to apply for USAA car insurance
In order to enroll in USAA auto insurance, you’ll first need to be a member of the institution.
- Start by determining your eligibility for a USAA membership.
- Once you’ve joined USAA, log in and follow the steps to set up your online account.
- After you’ve logged in and set up online access, enter your details and get a free customized quote.
- Read through the full details of your quote and then sign up to get coverage that can start today.
What info do I need to apply?
You’ll enter basic contact information about yourself, and you’ll need some personal information about whichever member of your family was in the military, including their Social Security number.
- Your birthdate, contact info and Social Security number (SSN)
- Information about you or your family member’s military service, such as a military number or SSN
- Your passport or permanent resident card if you’re not a US citizen
USAA reviews and complaints
Of the many financial institutions that offer auto insurance and other financial services to members of the military, USAA is one of the highest rated. This company repeatedly gets high scores for customer service and online experience with its focus on quality customer support and an easy online process through its app and website.
USAA is one of the highest ranking auto insurance providers according to J.D. Power and a handful of other online resources. But not all of the reviews are positive.
Reviews on Trustpilot seem to be slightly more negative, but the majority of these complaints address concerns with mortgages and other financial products, not car insurance. USAA is also not accredited with the Better Business Bureau as of January 2020, and holds an NR rating for not responding to customer complaints.
Most USAA auto insurance customers seem very satisfied with the service. After browsing multiple forums for any downsides to this provider, the general consensus was that customers seem to be very happy with the prices, claims and customer service that this provider offers. Even comparison sites like NerdWallet and WalletHub agree that anyone who can qualify for USAA should get a quote because of its top notch customer service and cheap rates.
Case study: Adrienne’s experience
Head of Publishing
I’ve been a USAA member for more than 10 years, having held renters, personal property and auto insurance policies. USAA representatives are always friendly and available with little or no wait times when I call, though customer service is not open late.
I brought my policy to a friend who runs a local insurance agency to see if I could get a better deal. He told me, “Don’t bother — I won’t be able to get you this coverage for a better price.”
I’ve gotten two mortgage preapprovals through USAA, but didn’t end up using them because the rates weren’t as low as going through a broker.
At least as far as insurance goes, I fall into their tagline: It’s safe to say that I’ll be a USAA member for life.
How to contact USAA
Fortunately, USAA makes it very easy to get in touch. For general questions, you can visit the contact and support center, which offers answers to a handful of popular questions for each of its services. For more specific questions, you can use the find a phone number/address section to locate the relevant contact information.
To contact USAA, you can call member support at 800-292-8045.
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