Best Cheap Car Insurance for New Drivers

Car insurance for new drivers is expensive since new drivers lack experience. Drivers who are young or are older but have never had a driver’s license are considered new drivers. In addition, immigrants to the U.S. can also be regarded as new drivers even if they have a driver’s license in another country. While new driver car insurance is expensive, save money by adding discounts to your policy and lowering coverage amounts.

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A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

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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. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP® Joel Ohman

UPDATED: Feb 16, 2022

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Here's what you need to know...

  • New drivers are considered to be young drivers, older drivers with no experience, and people who immigrate to the U.S.
  • Car insurance rates for new drivers are much higher due to the lack of experience behind the wheel
  • Get cheap car insurance for new drivers by adding discounts and lowering deductibles

Finding cheap car insurance for new drivers can be difficult. Although insurance companies want to see time behind the wheel, new drivers just don’t have the experience and are more likely to be in accidents.

However, you can find the best insurance for new drivers by shopping around. Lower rates by adding discounts, lowering coverage amounts, and increasing deductibles.

Being a new driver doesn’t have to come with scary car insurance rates. Keep reading to learn more about car insurance for new drivers and how to keep rates low.

Enter your ZIP code to compare free car insurance quotes for new drivers from companies in your area.

Who is considered a new driver?

New drivers typically fall into three distinct categories:

  • Young drivers
  • Older adults who have never had a driver’s license
  • Immigrants new to the U.S.

Perhaps the most common type of new driver is a teenager. Although each state has its own rules regarding driver’s licenses, they allow teens to begin the process.

Young drivers will pay the highest car insurance rates because they are much more likely to be in an accident. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that drivers between 16-19 years old are three times more likely to be in a fatal car crash.

A new driver can also be an older adult who hasn’t had a driver’s license. Since millions of people use public transit in large cities, some adults have never needed a driver’s license. However, a move to an area with less convenient public transit can cause an older adult to require a license for the first time.

In addition, a new driver can be an immigrant or foreign national that moves to the United States. Since car insurance companies in the U.S. don’t check driving records from other countries, drivers new to the U.S. can’t verify a clean record.

Car insurance companies have to treat them as new drivers since they can’t evaluate the risk involved.

No matter who the new driver is, they need auto insurance that at least meets the state requirements. There is no specific new driver insurance, and full coverage is recommended to ensure damages to your vehicle are covered.

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What car insurance rates can new drivers expect?

New drivers are very risky to insure, mainly because of limited time behind the wheel. Drivers who lack experience are much more likely to be in an accident, which costs car insurance companies money.

How much is car insurance for a new driver? Unfortunately, there is not a one size fits all answer. Besides your driving record, many other factors affect your rates. Each company weighs those factors differently.

One factor that can affect new driver rates is your age. Take a look at this table that shows average annual rates from top companies to understand how much your age affects your rates.

Average Annual Car Insurance Rates Based on Age, Gender, and Marital Status
CompanyAverage Annual Rates Single 17-Year-Old FemaleAverage Annual Rates Single 17-Year-Old MaleAverage Annual Rates Single 25-Year-Old FemaleAverage Annual Rates Single 25-Year-Old MaleAverage Annual Rates Single 35-Year-Old FemaleAverage Annual Rates Single 35-Year-Old MaleAverage Annual Rates Single 60-Year-Old FemaleAverage Annual Rates Single 60-Year-Old Male
Allstate$9,282.19$10,642.53$3,424.87$3,570.93$3,156.09$3,123.01$2,913.37$2,990.64
American Family$5,996.50$8,130.50$2,288.65$2,694.72$2,202.70$2,224.31$1,992.92$2,014.38
Farmers$8,521.97$9,144.04$2,946.80$3,041.44$2,556.98$2,557.75$2,336.80$2,448.39
GEICO$5,653.55$6,278.96$2,378.89$2,262.87$2,302.89$2,312.38$2,240.60$2,283.45
Liberty Mutual$11,621.01$13,718.69$3,959.67$4,503.13$3,802.77$3,856.84$3,445.00$3,680.53
Nationwide$5,756.37$7,175.31$2,686.48$2,889.04$2,360.49$2,387.43$2,130.26$2,214.62
Progressive$8,689.95$9,625.49$2,697.73$2,758.66$2,296.90$2,175.27$1,991.49$2,048.63
State Farm$5,953.88$7,324.34$2,335.96$2,554.56$2,081.72$2,081.72$1,873.89$1,873.89
Travelers$9,307.32$12,850.91$2,325.25$2,491.21$2,178.66$2,199.51$2,051.98$2,074.41
USAA$4,807.54$5,385.61$1,988.52$2,126.14$1,551.43$1,540.32$1,449.85$1,448.98
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USAA and GEICO offer the lowest rates to young drivers. However, USAA is only available to veterans, members of the military, and family members.

Remember that the best insurance companies for young drivers will vary because each company will offer different rates and discounts.

While young drivers undoubtedly pay the most for car insurance, a new driver who is older or just coming to the U.S. may see similar rates even if they are older.

For example, the best car insurance for new drivers under 25 should be slightly lower than insurance rates for new and younger drivers. However, new drivers won’t see the lower rates that more experienced drivers see, no matter the age.

What factors affect the cost of car insurance for new drivers?

Age isn’t the only factor that is looked at to calculate car insurance rates. In fact, there are many different factors looked at, and they can vary by company.

In addition to age, factors used to determine car insurance rates include:

  • Driving record. Your driving record indicates if you are a safe or risky driver. Accidents, tickets, and DUIs will cause much higher insurance rates.
  • ZIP code. If you live in an area with a lot of traffic or theft, your rates will be higher because the insurance company is more likely to pay a claim.
  • Credit score. Although a few states don’t allow insurance companies to look at your credit score, most states do allow it. Insurance companies believe that drivers with a lower credit score are more likely to file a claim instead of paying for damages themselves.
  • Vehicle. New or expensive cars cost more to repair and will see higher car insurance rates.
  • Type of car insurance coverage. More coverage equals higher rates. While full coverage offers the most protection, it’s also the most expensive.

Each car insurance company determines what factors it looks at and how it weighs those factors. For example, while one company may be willing to overlook your speeding ticket, another company may charge you higher rates.

How can you save money on car insurance for new drivers?

The good news is that cheap car insurance for first-time drivers is possible. In addition, there are some practical ways to quickly lower rates for new drivers.

First, take advantage of car insurance discounts. Insurance companies offer various discounts based on the driver, policy, and vehicle. Even new drivers can take advantage of savings, such as a good student, safe driving, or defensive driving discount.

Car Insurance Discounts by Company
Car Insurance DiscountsAllstate (%)American Family (%)Farmers (%)GEICO (%)Liberty Mutual (%)Nationwide (%)Progressive (%)State Farm (%)Travelers (%)USAA (%)
Adaptive Cruise ControlN/AN/AN/AN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Adaptive HeadlightsN/AN/AxN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Anti-lock Brakesxxx555x5xx
Anti-Theftxxx252025x15xx
Claim Freexxx26x10x152312
Continuous CoveragexxxxN/AN/AxN/A15N/A
Daytime Running Lightsxxx155xN/Axx
Defensive Driverxxxx105105103
Distant StudentxxxxN/A10xx7x
Driver's Edxxxx10N/A101583
Driving Device/AppxxN/Ax30402050305
Early SigningxxxxN/A8xN/A1012
Electronic Stability ControlxxxN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Emergency DeploymentN/AN/AN/A25N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Engaged CoupleN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Family LegacyN/AxN/AxN/AN/AxN/AN/A10
Family PlanN/AxxN/AN/A25N/AN/AN/AN/A
Farm VehiclexN/AxxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Fast 5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Federal EmployeeN/AN/Ax810N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Forward Collision WarningN/AN/AN/AN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Full PaymentN/Axxx$5N/AxN/A7.5N/A
Further EducationN/AN/AN/Ax1015N/AN/AxN/A
Garaging/StoringN/AN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/Ax90
Good CreditxxN/AN/AN/AxxxN/AN/A
Good Studentxxx1522.510x2583
Green VehiclexN/A5N/A10N/AN/AN/A10N/A
HomeownerN/AN/Axxx5x35N/A
Lane Departure WarningN/AN/AN/AN/AxxxN/AN/AN/A
Life InsurancexN/AN/AN/AN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/A
Low Mileagexxxxxxx30xx
LoyaltyN/AxN/AxN/A5xN/AN/Ax
MarriedN/AN/AN/AN/AxxxxN/Ax
Membership/GroupN/AN/AN/Ax107N/AN/AxN/A
MilitaryxN/Ax154N/AN/AxN/Ax
Military GaragingN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A15
Multiple DriversN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Multiple Policies1029x102010121713x
Multiple Vehiclesxxx25102010208x
New AddressN/AN/AN/AN/A5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
New Customer/New PlanN/AN/AN/AN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
New GraduateN/AN/AN/AN/A5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Newer VehiclexN/AxxN/Axx401012
Newly LicensedN/AN/AN/AN/A5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
NewlywedsN/AN/AN/AN/A5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Non-Smoker/Non-DrinkerN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Occasional OperatorN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/Ax
OccupationxN/Axx1015N/AN/AxN/A
On-Time PaymentsxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A15N/A
Online ShopperN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A7N/AN/AN/A
Paperless DocumentsxxxN/AN/A5$50N/AN/AN/A
Paperless/Auto BillingxxxN/Ax$30x$233
Passive Restraintxxx40x20x40xx
Recent RetireesN/AN/AN/AN/A4N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
RenterN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Roadside AssistanceN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Safe DriverN/AN/Ax15N/A3531152312
Seat Belt UseN/AN/AN/A15N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Senior DriverxN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/Ax
Stable ResidenceN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AxxN/AN/AN/A
Students & AlumniN/AxN/Ax107N/AN/AN/AN/A
Switching ProviderN/AxxN/A10N/AxN/AN/AN/A
Utility VehiclexN/AxxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Vehicle Recoveryxxx153525x5xx
VIN EtchingN/AN/AxN/A5xxN/Axx
VolunteerN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Young DriverN/AN/AN/AN/AxN/AxN/AN/A$75
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New drivers can also save money by lowering coverages and raising deductibles. Although making these changes will lower your rates, you will have to pay more out of pocket for any damages to your car.

In addition, if someone in your home already has a car insurance policy, consider being added to that policy. Then, you’ll be able to take advantage of savings like a multi-policy discount.

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Car Insurance for New Drivers: The Bottom Line

Drivers who are young, older but never had a license, or immigrants can all be considered new drivers. While car insurance rates are much higher for new drivers, there are ways to save.

Cheap insurance for new drivers is possible if you shop around and take advantage of discounts. Because every car insurance company will look at you differently, compare multiple companies to find your best deal.

Enter your ZIP code now to compare car insurance quotes for new drivers from companies near you for free.

Free Car Insurance Comparison

Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap car insurance rates.

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