How to Compare Car Insurance Quotes 2024
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LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

Cheapest Car Insurance for 18-Year-Olds

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Content was accurate at the time of publication.

Midsize companies such as Erie and Country Financial have the cheapest car insurance for 18-year-old drivers. If you’re a young driver, it’s usually cheaper to be added to your parent’s car insurance than it is to get your own policy.

Find the Cheapest Car Insurance Quotes in Your Area

Here are the most important things to know about cheap car insurance for 18-year-olds and other young drivers.

Erie has the cheapest minimum-coverage car insurance for 18-year-olds. Its rates average $1,282 a year, or $107 a month, but it is only available in 12 states and the District of Columbia.

Among companies available nationwide, State Farm has the cheapest minimum coverage for 18-year-olds. Its rates average $1,835 a year, or $153 a month.

USAA’s minimum-coverage auto insurance rates are the cheapest overall for 18-year-olds. However, USAA is only available to current and former members of the military and their families.

CompanyAnnual rate
Erie$1,282
Mercury$1,301
Country Financial$1,401
Farm Bureau$1,582
Auto-Owners$1,700
State Farm$1,835
Geico$2,050
USAA*$1,032

Rates are for an 18-year-old male with a clean driving record. Your rates may vary. *USAA is only available to military families.

Minimum coverage provides the basic coverage and limits you need to drive legally. The requirements vary by state.

Country Financial has the cheapest full-coverage car insurance for 18-year-olds. Its rates average $2,226 a year, or $186 a month.

The next-best rates are available from Erie, at $3,129 a year, and Mercury, at $3,821 a year.

CompanyAnnual rate
Country Financial$2,226
Erie$3,129
Mercury$3,821
State Farm$4,159
Auto-Owners$4,207
Farm Bureau$4,378
Geico$5,006
USAA*$2,805

Rates are for an 18-year-old male with a clean driving record. Your rates may vary. *USAA is only available to military families.

Full coverage includes collision and comprehensive (comp) coverage, which covers your car for theft and damage. Neither is required by law, but both typically are required for a car loan or lease.

The average cost of car insurance for an 18-year-old is $2,446 a year, or $203 a month, for minimum coverage.

Full coverage costs an average of $5,801 a year, or $483 a month, for 18-year-olds.

On average, an 18-year-old pays about three times as much for car insurance as a 30-year-old.

Driver ageMinimum-coverage rateFull-coverage rate
18$2,446$5,801
30$777$1,984

Annual rates are for male drivers with a clean driving record. Your rates may vary.

Why is car insurance so expensive for young drivers?

Young drivers have higher crash rates than other age groups. This is one of the main reasons they are charged so much for car insurance.

Accidents cost insurance companies money in the form of claims payments. Insurance companies offset these costs by charging more to those seen as more likely to have a claim.

Also, young drivers, by virtue of their age, have not yet had time to establish a safe driving record, good insurance history and/or good credit. These are among the factors that help you qualify for cheaper rates in your mid-20s.

The average cost of adding an 18-year-old to a parent’s car insurance is $4,245 a year, or $354 a month, for full coverage.

This amount is 27% cheaper than the cost of stand-alone full coverage for an 18-year-old.

A parent can typically keep a child of any age on their car insurance if the child lives at home.

Young drivers can usually also stay on a parent’s car insurance while away at school or if a parent is listed on their vehicle’s title. However, the policies on this vary by insurance company.

An 18-year-old female pays 12% less for minimum-coverage car insurance than an 18-year-old male and 16% less for full coverage.

The main reason young female drivers pay less for car insurance than young males is because female teens have lower crash rates than their male peers.

For example, the death rate for male teens in vehicle crashes is three times higher than it is for females, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Type of insuranceAnnual rate malesAnnual rate females
Minimum coverage$2,446$2,152
Full coverage$5,801$4,873

Average rates are for 18-year-old drivers with clean driving records. Your rates may vary.

Shopping around, looking for discounts and adjusting your coverage can help make car insurance cheaper for young drivers.

Your age is among the many factors insurance companies use to determine your rate. The others include:

  • Your driving record
  • The value and safety record of your vehicle
  • Any discounts you may be eligible to receive

Since each company weighs these factors differently, you may qualify for a much lower rate with one company than you do with others.

We recommend comparing quotes from at least three companies when you shop for car insurance.

Find the Cheapest Car Insurance Quotes in Your Area

Best car insurance discounts for young drivers

Here are key discounts that can also help make car insurance cheaper for young drivers.

Good student discount: Most car insurance companies offer a good-student discount to young drivers who maintain a B average or better in school. You don’t have to provide school transcripts to get quotes, but you may need them to confirm your eligibility with the company you choose.

Driver’s education discount: Several companies offer a discount to young drivers who complete an approved driver education program. Some companies, including State Farm and Allstate, offer programs that combine online learning with on-road driving exercises. Others offer a discount for completing any state-accredited driver education program.

Away at school discount: Many companies give parents a discount if the young driver on their car insurance is away at school. Some companies require the school to be more than 100 miles away from home.

Safe-vehicle discounts: Driving a safe vehicle may help a driver of any age get a discount on car insurance. For example, several companies offer a discount to those whose vehicles have antilock brakes and/or airbags.

Car insurance coverage adjustments for young drivers

Changing the coverages on your policy is another way to help a young driver get cheaper car insurance.

A minimum-coverage policy, which costs about half as much as full coverage, may be enough for a young driver with their own policy.

If you’re adding a young driver to your family’s car insurance policy, list the teen as the primary driver of the cheapest vehicle in your household. If the teen drives an older car with a low market value, consider removing collision and comp from the vehicle to save more.

Yes. In most states, 18-year-olds can enter into any legal contract, including car insurance. If you’re younger than 18, you can usually only get your own car insurance if a parent or guardian cosigns your application.

An 18-year-old with their own car insurance may only need minimum coverage. If you’re the parent of an 18-year-old, you shouldn’t lower your liability limits. Instead, consider dropping the collision and comprehensive coverage on the 18-year-old’s vehicle if it has a low value.

Young drivers often begin to see their car insurance rates level off when they reach their mid-20s – if they keep their driving record clean.

Methodology

LendingTree sources rate data from insurance company filings reported to Quadrant Information Services.

Insurance company rates shown in this article are based on an analysis of car insurance quotes for sample drivers in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

We analyzed quotes from every ZIP code in Georgia, South Carolina and Texas to calculate the cost of adding a young driver to a parent’s policy and price differences by gender.

Rates are provided for comparative purposes only. Yours may vary.