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Drive Insurance Reviews

The Best Auto Insurance

A.M Best Financial Strength Rating A++

J.D Power Claims Satisfaction Score 851 /1000

Supplemental Coverage Options 14

Number of Discounts 16

A.M Best Financial Strength Rating A+

J.D Power Claims Satisfaction Score 853 /1000

Supplemental Coverage Options 10

Number of Discounts 12

A.M Best Financial Strength Rating A+

J.D Power Claims Satisfaction Score 864 /1000

Supplemental Coverage Options 12

Number of Discounts 11

A.M Best Financial Strength Rating A++

J.D Power Claims Satisfaction Score 865 /1000

Supplemental Coverage Options 8

Number of Discounts 10

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How We Found the Best Auto Insurance

36 Companies Considered

8 Experts Consulted

The Best Auto Insurance

We researched 36 of the best auto insurance providers based on their ability to serve customers and actually pay out claims; not just on premium cost. Of course, premiums matter, but since rates depend on many different factors — like your age, driving history, and even your ZIP code — the best way to find the most affordable price on the policy you want is to compare quotes. Use our quote tool above to get started.

How We Chose the Best Auto Insurance

Strong financial solvency

There are a million things to worry about when you’re involved in an accident. Whether or not your insurance company will be able to pay your claim shouldn’t be one of them. A strong financial rating is the best way to guarantee your provider can pay what you need, when you need it, so we made sure all of our picks had strong ratings based on the Insurance Information Institute’s (III) guidelines.

We first looked for companies that received an “A-” or better (“strong”) from A.M. Best, a rating agency specifically focused on the insurance industry. Then, because the III recommends getting ratings from more than one agency, the best needed to earn at least an “A (“low risk”) from Standard & Poor or an “Aa” (“very low risk”) from Moody’s.

Painless claims process

You probably won’t think much about your auto insurance until you need it, but claims processing is one of the most important factors to consider when shopping for auto insurance.

“You can buy cheap insurance anywhere, but if you find out that the provider isn’t able to adequately handle your claim, you might be disappointed in the settlement if and when you need to use your insurance.”

In a recent survey, we found that our readers’ biggest complaints about their current insurance company related to customer service and their final settlement amount. So, we used J.D. Power’s 2017 claims satisfaction study to find out which insurers had done the best job settling claims for their customers. Scores are assessed on a 1,000-point scale, and all of our final contenders ranked above 850.

Must-have coverage

The best auto insurance companies provide a wide range of coverage options so your plan fits you the way it should — tailored to your specific needs. We required our top insurers to host all the basic essentials for coverage. This includes bodily injury liability, collision, comprehensive, personal injury protection (PIP), property damage, and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. For a quick refresher on what those terms cover, check out our auto insurance guide below.

Supplemental coverage

Beyond the standard protections, supplemental (or “add-on”) coverage will keep you protected against the additional costs that often come with accidents. Features like car rental coverage may not seem essential when you view them as just another added cost, but the increase in your rate could still be lower than the cost of renting a replacement vehicle if your damaged car is in the shop for a while. The options offered by providers vary widely in both availability and cost. Our favorites offer supplemental coverage options that can build a policy for every profile.

Deep discounts

Discounts keep your premium down when other factors (like that pesky credit score) won’t. These fall into two main categories: driver and vehicle. We favored insurers with a wide array of discounts, since those providers will be able to offer costs savings for more customers.

Some, like deductions for paperless billing, are widely available and don’t have special eligibility requirements. Others will be determined based on conditions beyond your control, like the city you live in or the technology built into your vehicle. While not everyone will be eligible for every discount, the companies that offer more discounts give you more chances to save.

State Farm Insurance Review 2018: Complaints, Ratings and Coverage

State Farm insurance reviews and ratings

  • Places 8th out of 23 insurers for auto insurance in NerdWallet’s rankings
  • Had fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators in 2017 relative to its size for auto, home and life insurance
  • Offers rideshare insurance in most states

State Farm is the nation’s largest auto insurer, but it offers a wide variety of other insurance and financial products, sold exclusively by State Farm agents. If you’re looking for a well-known brand name with a generous selection of products and consumer-friendly pricing, State Farm might be right for you.

Our rating

State Farm ranked 8th out of 23 insurers in NerdWallet’s ranking of the best car insurance companies , earning 4 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s rating is a score based on:

  • J.D. Power ratings for customer service, claims satisfaction and shopping satisfaction
  • Consumer Reports customer satisfaction ratings
  • Consumer complaints against the insurer, based on data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners

Complaints

State Farm had fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators in 2017 relative to its size for auto, home and life insurance, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

Customer satisfaction

  • State Farm ranked “about average” for overall purchase experience for auto insurance in J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study.
  • It ranked “about average” for overall customer satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Auto Insurance Claims Satisfaction Study.
  • In J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Home Insurance Study, State Farm ranked “better than most” for overall customer satisfaction.
  • State Farm ranked “about average” for overall customer satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Property Claims Satisfaction Study.
  • State Farm ranked “the best” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Life Insurance Study, winning the top award.

Financial strength: A++ (“superior”)

State Farm’s financial strength is “superior,” according to ratings agency A.M. Best. An insurer’s financial strength indicates how well it can pay claims.

Our rating

State Farm ranked 8th out of 23 insurers in NerdWallet’s ranking of the best car insurance companies , earning 4 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s rating is a score based on:

  • J.D. Power ratings for customer service, claims satisfaction and shopping satisfaction
  • Consumer Reports customer satisfaction ratings
  • Consumer complaints against the insurer, based on data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners

Complaints

State Farm had fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators in 2017 relative to its size for auto, home and life insurance, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

Customer satisfaction

  • State Farm ranked “about average” for overall purchase experience for auto insurance in J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study.
  • It ranked “about average” for overall customer satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Auto Insurance Claims Satisfaction Study.
  • In J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Home Insurance Study, State Farm ranked “better than most” for overall customer satisfaction.
  • State Farm ranked “about average” for overall customer satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Property Claims Satisfaction Study.
  • State Farm ranked “the best” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Life Insurance Study, winning the top award.

Financial strength: A++ (“superior”)

State Farm’s financial strength is “superior,” according to ratings agency A.M. Best. An insurer’s financial strength indicates how well it can pay claims.

State Farm auto insurance

State Farm’s rental car and travel expenses coverage is superior to its competition’s. Not only does State Farm auto insurance pay for a rental car if yours is in the shop due to a covered collision, but it also pays for meals, lodging and transportation if you’re stranded more than 50 miles from home. Coverage limits apply and vary by state.

Drive Safe & Save: This usage-based program calculates discounts based on your mileage and “safe driving” measurements such as smooth acceleration and braking. It also considers risk factors such as speed and time of day. You’ll get up to a 50% discount once State Farm has analyzed your driving behavior. Availability and discounts may vary.

The Steer Clear Driver Program is a driver training refresher course available online, through an agent or via mobile app. State Farm offers savings for drivers under 25 who complete the course and have had no at-fault accidents or moving violations within the past three years.

Rideshare insurance: If you drive for a company such as Uber or Lyft, this option allows you to have one policy that covers both personal and ridesharing use. This option is available in 42 U.S. states and the District of Columbia .

State Farm homeowners insurance

State Farm’s homeowners insurance claims network is available 24 hours a day, online or by phone.

The Premier Service Program puts you in touch with qualified contractors who can remove water or make flooring repairs included in your policy. The service providers guarantee their work for up to five years. Premier Service is not available everywhere.

State Farm life insurance

Select Term Life Insurance: Policies are available for 10, 20 or 30 years, depending on your age, renewable up to age 95 . Coverage amounts start at $100,000.

Instant Answer Term Life: $50,000 of life insurance is available for people ages 16 to 45, lasting until age 50 or 10 years after the policy is issued, whichever is later. State Farm doesn’t require a medical exam, but you’ll have to fill out a health questionnaire, and your answers may disqualify you.

Mortgage Life policies can help pay off your mortgage if you die. You can buy $50,000 or more in coverage for a policy lasting 15 or 30 years, depending on your age, up to 60. Like your mortgage balance, the death benefit decreases over the life of the policy, but it will never fall below 20% of the original value, while premiums remain level.

State Farm also offers whole life, universal life and variable universal life, which are varieties of permanent life insurance.

More about State Farm

Website: State Farm’s website is intuitive, easy to navigate and loaded with useful information. You can get a quote and buy a policy online, find a nearby agent or manage a claim.

Pocket Agent mobile app: State Farm’s customer app lets you view your insurance card and policy information, get a quote, submit a claim online and view a claim status. It even has an ATM locator.

The CarCapture mobile app allows you to take a photo of a car you’re interested in purchasing, tell you the make and model, then show you where you can buy one.

State Farm also has mobile apps for two of its auto insurance programs: The Steer Clear program for drivers under 25 and the Drive Safe & Save program that tracks driving behavior.

Allstate Drivewise Review: The Pros and Cons


It’s maddening when your insurance premiums go up for seemingly no reason. You haven’t gotten a speeding ticket. You haven’t been in any accidents. Why doesn’t your insurance company think you’re a safe driver?

Now, some insurance carriers are giving you the option to demonstrate your safe driving skills through telematics, where a tiny device is installed into your car that monitors your driving habits. One such program is through Allstate, with their Drivewise program. Allstate advertises that their program can potentially save users up to 30 percent on car insurance. Here’s our Allstate Drivewise review and a look at how the program works.

What is Allstate Drivewise?

The business of car insurance is built on calculating risk. Your car insurance premiums are based on how much of a risk an insurance company thinks you are when you’re behind the wheel.

Many of the risk factors insurers consider are things you can’t control, such as your gender and your age. Other factors include income and education level. One recent study by the Consumer Federation of America found that insurance premiums are significantly lower if a woman is married, owns a home, has a college degree and has a professional job. If a woman is single, a renter, has earned a high school diploma, and has a clerical job, then her premiums are higher.

Do these factors have anything to do with driving ability? No. Is that fair? No, many would say. In fact, California law prohibits or limits insurers from using non-driving factors to set premiums. Enter Allstate Drivewise, Progressive Snapshot, State Farm’s Drive Safe & Save and similar programs, which give insurance companies a way to measure how risky of a driver you are by directly observing your driving habits.

How does Allstate Drivewise work?

Drivewise tracks your driving habits via a mobile app or a small device installed in your car and then sends the data to Allstate. Here’s a comprehensive list of everything the Drivewise device records, including hard braking, high-speed driving and the hours you’re behind the wheel.

You can look at the data collected on Allstate’s website, so you can analyze your own driving habits to look for problem areas and see how much you’re saving.

Allstate says Drivewise will not increase your rates and could help you save up to 30 percent on your premiums.

Is Allstate Drivewise worth it?

Drivewise reviews agree that you shouldn’t expect to receive the full 30 percent discount unless you only use your car to drive to the grocery store in the morning. Most drivers use their cars during the “moderate risk” hours of 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and occasionally during the “high risk” hours of 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. Most drivers will also have “extreme braking events,” which are defined as slowing down 10 or more miles per hour over a one-second time interval.

One blogger’s review of Allstate Drivewise expressed irritation with the way her “extreme braking” incidents were recorded. “What if I slammed the brakes so I didn’t hit another car? Or, maybe a dog ran out in front of me,” she wrote. Snow and icy conditions may cause the device to record hard braking events when none occurred, some users report. Another user says Allstate was willing to remove some of his braking events when he complained.

Some drivers also say they’re reluctant to use Drivewise because they feel it violates their privacy. While it is not a GPS device (meaning it can’t track where you drive), Allstate’s Drivewise terms of use say “data from the device may be deemed discoverable by third parties and used in an accident investigation and⁄or litigation.”

However, you will save money using Drivewise, at least at first. Allstate offers a 10 percent discount for signing up. It could be worth a shot.

Erie Insurance Review 2018: Complaints, Ratings and Coverage

  • Customer satisfaction ratings are typically better than average
  • Has fewer customer complaints than the industry median, relative to its size
  • Erie locks in your auto insurance rate, so your premium won’t change unless you add or remove drivers or cars

Erie Insurance is a strong choice for auto insurance. The Erie, Pennsylvania, insurer operates in 12 states and Washington, D.C., and makes most customers happy: Erie gets generally high marks for satisfaction in J.D. Power ratings and few complaints. Here’s where Erie is available:

Auto insurance rating

Erie ranked 4th out of 23 insurers in NerdWallet’s ranking of the best car insurance companies , earning 4.5 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s rating is a score based on:

  • J.D. Power ratings for customer service, claims satisfaction and shopping satisfaction
  • Consumer Reports customer satisfaction ratings
  • Consumer complaints against the insurer, based on data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners

Complaints

Erie had fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators in 2017 relative to its size for auto, home and life insurance, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

Customer satisfaction

  • Erie ranked “among the best” for overall purchase experience for auto insurance in J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Auto Insurance Shopping Study, and won the top award
  • It ranked “better than most” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Auto Claims Satisfaction Study
  • Erie ranked “about average” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Property Claims Satisfaction Study
  • It ranked “better than most” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Home Insurance Study

Financial strength: A+ (“superior”)

Erie’s financial strength is “superior,” according to ratings agency A.M. Best. Financial strength is important because it indicates how well an insurer can pay claims.

Auto insurance rating

Erie ranked 4th out of 23 insurers in NerdWallet’s ranking of the best car insurance companies , earning 4.5 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s rating is a score based on:

  • J.D. Power ratings for customer service, claims satisfaction and shopping satisfaction
  • Consumer Reports customer satisfaction ratings
  • Consumer complaints against the insurer, based on data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners

Complaints

Erie had fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators in 2017 relative to its size for auto, home and life insurance, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

Customer satisfaction

  • Erie ranked “among the best” for overall purchase experience for auto insurance in J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Auto Insurance Shopping Study, and won the top award
  • It ranked “better than most” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Auto Claims Satisfaction Study
  • Erie ranked “about average” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Property Claims Satisfaction Study
  • It ranked “better than most” for overall satisfaction in J.D. Power’s 2017 Home Insurance Study

Financial strength: A+ (“superior”)

Erie’s financial strength is “superior,” according to ratings agency A.M. Best. Financial strength is important because it indicates how well an insurer can pay claims.

Erie auto insurance

Auto insurance policies from Erie Insurance include extras such as:

  • Rate lock, which lets you lock in your auto insurance rates until you add or remove drivers, add or remove vehicles, or move.
  • Accident forgiveness, which prevents you from facing a surcharge after your first at-fault accident once you’ve been an Erie customer for three years.
  • Diminishing deductible, which reduces your deductible by $100 for every consecutive year you don’t file a claim, up to $500.
  • Pet injury coverage: Up to $500 each for veterinary care for pets injured in your vehicle in an accident, up to $1,000.

Erie offers additional auto insurance options like:

  • New car protection: If you have a car up to 24 months old and it’s totaled, Erie will replace it with a new car of the current model year, but this isn’t available in every state.
  • Better car protection: If your car is at least 24 months old and is totaled, this coverage will pay for a car of the same make and model two years newer, or it will pay off the auto loan if there is one. This coverage isn’t available in every state.

Generous rental car coverage and options: Most auto insurers offer rental car coverage at an extra cost, so you have a way to get around if your car is in the shop for covered damage. Erie includes the basic coverage free in its comprehensive coverage, but you can pay up for upgraded rental options, such as a luxury car or SUV instead of a sedan.

Erie home insurance

Erie Insurance offers coverage for houses, condos and manufactured homes, plus coverage for renters and landlords. ErieSecure, the company’s base home policy, offers the usual features, plus some nice perks such as:

    • Guaranteed replacement cost so your home will be covered in full if it’s destroyed or damaged, with no “wear and tear” taken into account. This isn’t available in all states.
    • Animals are covered up to $500.
    • Mysterious disappearance, or simply losing your belongings, is covered with Erie’s base homeowner policy, unlike many competitors.

You can also add customized options to your policy, including:

  • Computer and electronic equipment coverage
  • Jewelry, art and high-end valuables coverage
  • Coverage for firearms
  • Identity theft recovery
  • Water backup and sump overflow coverage

Erie life insurance

Erie’s life insurance choices include term, whole and universal policies, though none is available in New York. Term life policies are available for terms of 5, 10, 15, 20 and 30 years. Up to $90,000 of coverage is available without a medical exam; you’ll get an answer within 15 minutes when you apply.

More about Erie

Website: Erie’s website is handy. You can get an auto quote, find an agent, pay your bill, access your account, file a claim and find a repair shop.

Erie doesn’t have a smartphone app.

Retirement planning and other insurance: Erie’s retirement planning products include annuities and traditional and Roth individual retirement accounts. (Annuities from Erie aren’t available in New York.) Erie customers can also buy:

  • Umbrella insurance
  • Insurance for classic cars, all-terrain vehicles and recreational vehicles
  • Flood insurance
  • Boat insurance
  • Identity theft recovery and fraud reimbursement

For business owners, Erie’s offerings include:

  • Business liability
  • Business auto
  • Worker’s compensation
  • Group life insurance

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