Cheap Car Insurance for First-Time Drivers

Car insurance for first-time drivers has higher rates than policies for experienced drivers due to increased risk. To save on car insurance for first-time drivers, use our quote comparison tool.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses...

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Reviewed byJoel Ohman
Founder, CFP®

UPDATED: Jul 3, 2020

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It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We partner with top insurance providers. This doesn't influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

Here's what you need to know...
  • If you are a first-time driver, you can count on paying more for your car insurance than people who have been driving for years
  • There are a few discounts you may qualify for, so do your research
  • Keep your driving record clean to avoid paying even more for coverage

Are you new to driving and struggling to find cheap new driver car insurance rates?

Car insurance premiums do tend to be costly for new drivers. Despite this, there are many ways to find car insurance for first-time drivers that doesn’t break the bank.

The most important thing to remember when looking for car insurance is that it pays to shop around. You should obtain multiple quotes from several insurance companies before making a decision.

Also, examine the policies and see what discounts different companies may offer that you could take advantage of, including a discount for shopping online.

Most insurance companies offer discounts of between 10-20% for shopping and buying policies online versus over the phone or in person.

Online shoppers save companies money because it cuts down on the need for staff. Thus, the companies are able to offer potential customers cheaper rates.

Enter your zip code now to use our comparison tool and find cheap car insurance quotes from multiple companies!

Cheap Insurance Plans for New Drivers

Whether you decide to shop online for car insurance or still prefer to call or visit the car insurance companies directly, examining multiple plans will save you money in the long run.

Look at plans designed specifically for first-time drivers.

These often offer several features to help protect new drivers in the event of an accident, including:

  • Increased liability coverage – Frequently the 100/300/100 formula for liability coverage is recommended for first-time drivers; this means $100,000 bodily injury coverage, $300,000 coverage for injuries of all parties involved in an accident, and $100,000 damage coverage
  • Medical Payments Coverage – Covers any medical expenses of all parties involved
  • Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage – Pays for your damage and injuries in the event an accident is caused by an uninsured or underinsured individual

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Car Insurance Tips for First-Time Drivers

There are many discounts available for first-time drivers; you just have to know what to look for and what questions to ask when you are comparing insurance companies.

Frequently, there are discounts that are not openly advertised:

  • Make sure you are driving a car in a lower insurance cost group. This means a car that is well built with several safety features, but is not considered a sports car or luxury car as these vehicles cost more to insure.
  • If you are a student between the ages of 16 and 24 and you receive good grades, you may want to look into a good student discount. Good students are viewed as being more responsible and less of a liability by insurance companies. You can find cheap car insurance for young drivers.
  • You may want to consider having a higher deductible in exchange for a lower premium.
  • Many insurance companies offer lower premiums in exchange for license restrictions such as the requirement that the driver take an advanced driving course.
  • Teenage drivers should examine the difference in rates between having their own insurance and being added to their parents’ policy.
  • Paying annual premiums in one lump sum up front will lower your costs. When you opt to make payments monthly, insurance companies charge interest, often at a rate of 20% on the unpaid balance.
  • Adding an anti-theft device to your car can lower insurance costs.
  • If you are having difficulty finding insurance that you can afford on your income, consider getting liability coverage versus comprehensive or collision coverage.

Make Sure the Low Costs You Find Stay Low

The most important factor when looking to lower car insurance rates is that you always try to maintain a clean driving record.

Insurance premiums increase dramatically for new drivers, even for minor traffic infractions. When you first get your license, it is easy to get excited behind the wheel of a car and drive too fast or turn your attention away from the road for a second, but these can be very costly mistakes.

While it takes a little extra time to compare insurance quotes, discounts, and coverage options, it is worth taking that time to find the best coverage and lowest rates available.

Money is often tight for first-time drivers, but don’t let insurance costs scare you away from realizing the freedom that comes with having your driver’s license and your very own vehicle.

Get started searching for cheap car insurance now using our comparison tool! Just enter your zip code and compare car insurance quotes!

Car Insurance for First-Time Drivers

The average rates for coverage in the US are $79.58 per month, but car insurance for first-time drivers will be more expensive. Lower your bill by up to 20% by comparing quotes.

  • Car insurance rates for first-time drivers are bound to be higher than average
  • If you have an expensive car, you can expect your insurance rates to be higher
  • There are many discounts you can ask an agent about when purchasing insurance coverage

Driving is exhilarating. The world opens up with possibilities when you can drive, but it also comes with lots of responsibilities. Those responsibilities are not just for your own vehicle, but for other drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and the laws of your state. Don’t get caught off guard if you’re a first-time driver.

If you are looking for car insurance for first-time drivers, then you have come to the right place. Buying car insurance is just a matter of shopping around, choosing a policy that fits your needs, and carefully coming to a contractual agreement.

You can find car insurance rates for first-time drivers right now by using our comparison tool. Just enter your zip code to receive quotes from multiple companies today!

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The Thrill of a New Ride

Isn’t the feeling of getting behind the wheel for the first time invigorating?

When you drive for the first time you feel independent, in control, and perhaps even ambitious. You can now drive all over the city — perhaps even the entire country.

Well, that exhilarating new feeling wears off over time and before long, you’re grumbling about having to drive to the grocery store!

This may seem like a minor detail, but it’s actually a significant point in learning defensive driving.

Despite your boredom and your certainty that nothing is going to suddenly go wrong, you must always stay on the defensive.

The majority of car accidents happen when people  get too relaxed behind the wheel. This feeling of overconfidence is what causes first-time drivers like young, 16-year-old-drivers, to speed, take risks, make sudden movements on the freeway, and drink and drive.

Many first-time drivers make mistakes like this, which is why the car insurance industry is afraid of them.

Car insurance companies typically view younger drivers and those with bad credit, as risk takers and premiums will be higher.

No wonder many young drivers under the age of 25 choose to join their parents’ auto insurance policy for the family car, instead of seeking out a new policy under their own name.

Factors That Determine Car Insurance Costs

Almost every U.S. state requires some form of liability coverage, which protects other drivers from the damage you cause. Proof of insurance is usually required before you are legally permitted to own a driver’s license.

However, there are many ways to find cheap car insurance for young drivers.

  • In car insurance, the term shop around and compare is a rule. However, there are some factors that are concrete, and you have to work around them if you are a first-time driver.
  • Choose your car carefully. The more expensive the car you drive, the higher the insurance premiums will be. This is why many student drivers and first-timers research insurance quotes for the make and model car of their choice well in advance.
  • Other factors that determine insurance premiums include age, sex, your neighborhood, and what type of business the car will be used for.

Though looking for your first policy can be frustrating, rest assured you can find a policy out there.

There are companies that specialize in first-time driver policies.

Larger insurance providers may also be willing to work with you if you are added to your parents’ auto insurance policy.

Where to Find Car Insurance Discounts

Students are not powerless when it comes to finding auto insurance discounts:

  • Students under 25 years of age can show themselves to be responsible by keeping good grades and taking courses in defensive driving.
  • Dropping down to liability coverage only is also an effective way to ward off high premiums that accompany comprehensive and collision insurance.
  • Installing anti-theft devices is a smart move and can bring down your total premiums.
  • Even when you have a car and an insurance policy in place, you can receive discounts by avoiding unnecessary driving to get low mileage discounts. Carpool to work or school; drive less and take the bus or the train whenever possible.
  • Raise your deductible or lower your maximum coverage for liability. Understand car dealerships and banks insists upon full coverage when you lease; therefore, buying a cheaper and older model car for cash will allow you to drop all extra coverage.

Car insurance companies are very competitive and aware of the business that comes from online access.

Shop around until you find a company that you can work with. Ask for further discounts that may not be offered unless you speak to a representative. Google the insurance company you are considering and look for customer reviews.

Yes, you have a long road ahead of you, and many more miles to drive before you retire from the big race of life. Don’t get discouraged if rates seem high for the time being.

After a few years of careful driving behind you, you will start to see an improvement in the way the insurance company views your profile. It’s all about decreasing risk and improving as a driver.

Enter your zip code below to access car insurance rates from multiple companies today!

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Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

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How do you get car insurance for the first time?

  • Several different types of car insurance coverage
  • You should probably learn about the basics before you even consider looking at quotes
  • You should take the time to learn about the state requirements before you differentiate one coverage from another

If you just recently passed your licensing exam or you are in the process of buying your first car, it is time to educate yourself on the insurance buying process.

The idea of buying a product that may provide you with hundreds of thousands of dollars in benefits over the life of the policy can be intimidating when you are doing it for the first time.

With all of the information you need to learn, it might feel as if you need to take an Insurance 101 college-level course just to build yourself a policy that satisfies the law and does not compromise your protection.

Enrolling in a college course is not necessary when you know where to find valuable and informative sources. Read this first-time car insurance buying guide, and you will be prepared for all that the application process has to throw at you.

Start comparing car insurance rates now by using our FREE tool below!

Learn the Car Insurance Basics

You should probably learn the basics before you even consider looking at quotes. After all, you would like to know what you are buying before you go as far as to select a coverage option.

The last thing that you want is false assurance that you have protection when all you have is a basic plan.

If you do not have at least a general idea of how coverage options work, you might mistakenly assume you have the protection you need for a loss.

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First-Time Driver Car Insurance Coverage Options

There are several different types of coverage offered by all of the leading insurers. What is required will depend upon the state that you live in.

You should take the time to learn about the state requirements before you differentiate one coverage from another.

After you look into the laws that explicitly require the purchase of specific types of insurance, you can find out how the required cover and the supplemental cover will protect you and your family.

Here are the most common coverage options:

Bodily Injury

Bodily Injury Liability (BIL) is required in virtually all states. It is one of the two types of third-party coverage that is required by law.

BIL will pay for the expenses that arise when someone is injured or when someone is deceased because of a car accident that you are responsible for.

Property Damage

Property Damage Liability (PDL) is the second form of third-party coverage that is required by state officials. This form of liability coverage pays to repair or even to replace property that was damaged in a covered collision.

The property may not be owned by you or anyone in your household. The limit that you select applies to all unowned property damaged in a single incident.

Medical Payments or Personal Injury Protection

Some states, especially states that operate under a no-fault system, will require that you purchase medical coverage that will pay for your medical treatment or your lost wages.

Medical payments are available to drivers in a state with tort law as a form of optional protection that will pay for excess or immediate medical bills.

Personal Injury Protection is a bit more comprehensive and will pay for medical treatment, hospitalization, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and maybe even disability for a short period of time.

Uninsured Motorist Protection

There are several uninsured motorists in the nation. These drivers put you and your family at risk because they do not have the coverage that will pay for your bills.

Having Uninsured Motorist can help pay for your medical bills as if the party had Bodily Injury coverage.

This can also help you pay for your car repairs if you select Uninsured Motorist Property Damage


Comprehensive coverage will pay for physical damage to your covered vehicle that is a result of different losses that do not involve a collision. Some of the causes that are covered include:

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Explosion
  • Vandalism
  • Hail
  • Civil riot
  • Flood

The policy will only pay up to the cost of the market value and will subtract the deductible from the loss payout.


Collision coverage also pays for your vehicle repairs but will pay when you collide with an object.

The most common claims are for collisions with other vehicles. You must pay your deductible before the claims payout is made.

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Decide How Much Coverage You Need

Now that you know about the options, you must decide how much coverage you need. You will start at the state minimums and can then sift through the other options to price each thing individually.

Here are some considerations for you to look at as you build a policy with sufficient cover:

State Minimums Do Not Guarantee Protection

It is easy to jump to the conclusion that state minimums are all the cover that you need.

While you will be legal, you will definitely not be protected when you select a bare minimum policy.

Be sure to price higher limits of liability to protect your financial future.

Most agents suggest at least $300,000 per accident in bodily injury liability cover and $100,000 in property damage.

Physical Damage: Is it required?

State law may not require physical damage, but the titleholder of your car might. If you do not hold title to your car, a lender or lessor has interest in the car.

Check your contract to see if physical damage is required. Also, check to see if there is a maximum deductible that you can choose before you buy a high-deductible plan.

Now that you know the basics, you can comfortably shop for insurance. Gather your license information, your vehicle information, and get started.

If you are in the search of competitively priced plans, you may be shocked to learn that you can compare pricing on the Internet.

Start comparing car insurance rates now by entering your zip code in our FREE tool below!



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Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save!

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