Cheap Car Insurance for New Drivers

See If You Qualify for Lower Rates

In the car insurance world, premium payments are higher for new and inexperienced drivers. This is because insurance companies consider teens, young adults, and drivers with little to no driving experience more likely to get into an accident.

To find coverage that meets your budget and needs, complete TrySmartly’s free online request form. With TrySmartly, you can search for cheap car insurance quotes from top-rated providers.

Some of the cheapest rates for new drivers may be offered by the following top-rated providers:

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geico logo
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geico logo
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usaa logo
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How Much Is Insurance For a New Driver?

While new drivers can expect to pay more than experienced drivers, insurers use different criteria to assess risks and set premium rates. As a result, car insurance for new drivers can range from $1,500 to $3,000 per year.

These are some factors that influence car insurance quotes:



Marital status

Credit score

Driving history

Coverage limits

State and ZIP code

Vehicle make, model, and mileage

As a general rule, the more time you spend behind the wheel and maintain a clean driving record, the more likely your insurance premiums will decrease. This table summarizes the estimated average annual premium based on your age:

Age Average Annual Premium Percentage Change
16 $3,192 -
17 $2,647 -17%
18 $2,325 -12%
19 $1,623 -30%
20 $1,569 -3.3%
21 $1,217 -22%
22 $1,094 -10%
23 $1,013 -7.4%
24 $952 -6%
25 $815 -14%
35 $635 -22%
45 $671 +5.7%
55 $692 +3.1%
65 $680 -1.7%

Who Is Considered a New Driver?

Most new drivers are teens and young adults between 16 and 24. New teen drivers typically pay more than new motorists that are in their 20s. For instance, a 16-year-old with a new driver's license can expect to pay the highest rates. The rates for these drivers are approximately 100% higher than for an average 25-year-old driver.

The table below summarizes average rates for first-time drivers based on age and gender.

Age Average Annual Premium Percentage Change
16 $7,188 $6,408
20 $3,536 $3,100
25 $1,964 $1,870
35 $1,651 $1,651
40 $1,607 $1,614
45 $1,579 $1,586
50 $1,517 $1,512
55 $1,475 $1,465
60 $1,468 $1,454
65 $1,513 $1,489
70 $1,608 $1,573
75 $1,780 $1,712
80 $1,997 $1,880

However, insurers also consider motorists with no prior driving history new drivers. In addition, the following individuals are also referred to as new drivers:

Immigrants and foreign nationals

People with a significant gap in driving or insurance coverage

New drivers, especially new teen drivers, are considered the highest-risk individuals for insurance companies. Consequently, this reflects the rates that insurers charge these people. Sites like TrySmartly can help first-time drivers search for quotes to find a car insurance plan that fits their coverage and budget needs.

Factors That Influence New Driver Car Insurance Rates

Aside from age, the other top factors that influence auto insurance rates for new drivers include the following:

Gender – insurance companies consider young male drivers to drive more carelessly than females. New male drivers pay, on average, $400 more annually than females. Hawaii, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, California, and parts of Michigan do not take gender into account when determining rates.

Credit score – although California, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, and Michigan ban quoting drivers based on their credit history, most other states do not. As a result, low credit scores can increase your rates in these states.

Driving history – at-fault accidents and major traffic violations, such as DUIs, can increase your rates significantly.

State and ZIP code – each state sets its own minimum requirements for new driver car insurance. Some states may only require liability insurance, while others require more comprehensive coverage. Consequently, the rates in these states will typically be higher. Additionally, if you live in a state that is prone to natural disasters, your car insurance rates may be higher to cover damage associated with floods and fires.

Vehicle make, model, and mileage – typically, newer, foreign cars with added features like a sports package cost more to insure than domestic vehicles. Similarly, if you drive your vehicle often, it may cost more to insure.

With TrySmartly’s free online request form, you can search for cheap car insurance quotes online. Submit your information once, and you can receive on-screen results from top-rated providers in minutes.

Shop car insurance the smarter way. Compare rates for free online

Cheapest Car Insurance for New Drivers Under 21

Car insurance for drivers under 21 years old, especially teens, is the most expensive. These motorists typically pay more because they have very little to no driving experience. As a result, insurers view them as more likely to be involved in an accident and file a claim. Similarly, insurance companies also raise rates because they believe younger drivers have a tendency to engage in risky driving habits.

Some of the cheapest companies for drivers between 16 and 21 include the following:

Age Cheapest Company Average Annual Premium
16 Allstate $3,146
17 GEICO $2,823
18 GEICO $2,526
19 State Farm $2,462
20 Allstate $2,180

Cheapest Car Insurance for New Drivers Under 25

As young drivers gain more experience behind the wheel and maintain a clean driving record, they may see their rates drop minimally. Nevertheless, car insurance premiums for drivers under 25 will remain relatively high. However, regardless of age, your rates will typically be on the higher end if you are a new driver under 25 with no experience.

Age Cheapest Company Average Annual Premium
21 GEICO $1,695
22 GEICO $1,562
23 GEICO $1,369
24 GEICO $1,293
25 GEICO $1,207

Cheapest Car Insurance for New Drivers Over 25

If you’re an experienced driver with a clean record, you could see your car insurance rates drop significantly. Typically, insurance companies no longer consider drivers over 25 to be as risky. As a result, they reward them with lower rates. Nevertheless, if you are a brand-new driver with no experience, your rates will still be high even if you are over 25.

Here are the cheapest companies for new adult drivers based on average annual premiums:

Company Average Annual Premium
State Farm $1,747
Nationwide $1,900
Allstate $2,429
Progressive $2,684
GEICO $2,816
Travelers $3,513
Farmers $3,957

Common Types of Car Insurance Policies for New Drivers

Young and new drivers may be unsure which car insurance policy they need. At TrySmartly, we strive to provide you with all the information you need to make a more informed decision.

If you’re not sure what kind of coverage you need, first note that all states require drivers to obtain minimum coverage. However, some drivers may opt for additional coverage options for added protection. Let’s take a look at each coverage option in more detail.

Liability Coverage for New Drivers

Liability coverage refers to damages and injuries caused to the other party during an accident. There are three common types of liability coverage:

This coverage option pays for the medical bills of the other car’s passengers if you’re at fault in the accident. This coverage type will not cover your medical bills. Bodily injury liability usually has two numbers listed. One number may indicate the limit per person, and the other will be the limit per accident. For instance, if your per-person limit is $30,000, the insurance company will only cover up to $30,000 of the other driver’s medical bills. Similarly, if your per-accident limit is $100,000, the company will only cover up to $100,000 in bodily injury for the entire accident.

Property damage covers damages to the other driver’s vehicle if you are at fault for the accident. This coverage type will not cover the cost of repairing your vehicle. The insurance company will list one amount for property damage liability coverage. This amount will be the most the insurance company will pay. For instance, if your property damage liability amount is $50,000, the provider will only pay up to $50,000 to cover the damages to the other driver’s car.

Typically combined, these two coverage options pay for your bodily injuries and property damage when another driver hits you and doesn’t have enough liability coverage to pay for your expenses. These coverage options are optional in some states.

Vehicle Coverage for New Drivers

The following are optional coverages that you can obtain as a new driver for added protection:

This policy pays for the damage to your vehicle regardless of who is at fault in an accident. Collision coverage doesn’t have a written limit. In some cases, you may be required to pay a deductible, or portion of the cost, before your insurance company covers the rest.

This policy covers damage to your car caused by nature, such as hail, wind, fire, and floods. Additionally, it covers damage from vandalism, theft, and falling objects. Like collision, comprehensive coverage may have a deductible.

This option covers medical costs for you and your passengers regardless of who is at fault in the accident. The limit for this option typically ranges between $1,000 and $10,000.

How to Save Money on Auto Insurance for New Drivers

While there’s no foolproof way to get the best deal for new driver car insurance, you can use some tips to reduce the cost where applicable. Here are a few ways you can save on auto insurance for new drivers:

Join a Family Policy

Unlike health insurance, there is no age limit if you want to stay on your parent’s car insurance policy. However, you must remain under your parent’s coverage if you're under 18.

As long as your residence is the same as your parents, you can stay on their insurance as a listed driver. Based on your parents' driving record, credit score, and insurance background, you may get a cheaper deal than purchasing a separate plan on your own. College students can also stay with their parent’s plan if they live away from home but don't drive their own vehicle.

The average annual rate for a 16-year-old sharing a full coverage policy with two parents is $3,791. In fact, adding a new driver to an existing policy could amount to $2,000 in annual savings.

Compare Quotes From Different Insurance Companies

Before settling for one particular company, check quotes from as many providers as possible. Different insurance companies consider various factors when charging new drivers, such as age, location, driving record, vehicle model, and credit score. With TrySmartly’s online request form, you can search rates from top-rated providers for free.

Submit a free request to see if you could save on car insurance

Try Usage-Based Insurance

Also known as pay-per-mile insurance, usage-based car insurance lets you pay based on how much you actually drive. By measuring mileage and keeping track of driving behaviors, insurance companies use this data to set rates. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners reports that usage-based insurance, on average, costs less than traditional car insurance prices for new drivers. This coverage option may only be available in some states, but it can be a good choice if you plan to drive less than 10,000 miles annually and usually commute short distances.

Choose a High Deductible

Car insurance deductibles are the amount you are expected to pay before your provider pitches in. Every policy has a different deductible, and often policyholders can increase or lower their deductible as a way to save money on their monthly premiums.

Car insurance premiums and deductibles work inversely. This means that the higher your deductible, the lower your premium will likely be. As a result, to save on their monthly insurance bill, some drivers may opt to pay more out-of-pocket for their deductible.

While this option can amount to savings, it comes with potential risks. For instance, if you have a high deductible and are involved in a costly at-fault accident, you could pay thousands out-of-pocket before your insurance policy even kicks in. As a result, this could be financially detrimental to young and new drivers who may have less experience on the road and be prone to accidents.

Look for Discounts

Finally, multiple companies offer discounts for young drivers and students. For instance, you may find cheaper rates when you bundle renters’ insurance or have a high GPA in college.

Car Insurance Discounts for New Drivers

At TrySmartly, we believe that with more information, you can make better decisions that could save you money on new driver insurance. Multiple companies offer discounts to first-time drivers that can save them hundreds of dollars annually. Be sure to check what type of discounts each company provides to see how you can lower your new driver premium. Here are some common types of deals:

Good Student Discount

If you’re younger than 25 and have a B average (or 3.0 GPA) or higher, most insurance companies will offer you a discount. They may ask for your academic transcript every six or 12 months as proof of good standing. Students with good grades may receive up to a 25% discount on auto insurance for new drivers.

Multi-Policy Discount

You can save money by purchasing multiple policies from the same insurance provider. This is also known as bundling. New and young drivers often combine auto and renters’ insurance. The amount of savings will depend on your coverage combination, but you can expect to save on average 10% to 15% with a multi-policy discount.

Defensive Driving Discount

Some companies offer a discount for completing a defensive driving course. These classes give drivers more experience behind the wheel and help them learn safe driving habits. In most cases, insurance companies offer their own classes, but they may also have a preapproved list of defensive driving courses. You can typically qualify for an 8% to 10% discount for passing these courses.

Equipment Discount

You may get a discount if your vehicle has extra safety equipment installed, such as a blind spot warning system, rear-view camera, parking assistance, or lane departure warning system. Be sure to inform the insurance company of any security devices your vehicle might have.

Profession/Occupation Discount

Teachers, physicians, or police officers may sometimes get lower rates from some insurance companies. For example, teachers can qualify for a 15% to 35% annual discount on new driver car insurance. The provider may ask for proof of your profession to assess your quote, such as a photocopy of your degree.

Green/Hybrid Car Discount

If you own a hybrid or electric vehicle, you might get up to a 10% discount from certain providers.

Best Insurance for First-Time Drivers

To set the record straight, no single insurance company offers the best deal to all first-time drivers. As mentioned earlier, choosing the best insurance companies for new drivers is subjective and depends on your personal and financial situation. However, based on measures of affordability, customer satisfaction, financial stability, coverage options, and overall reputation, TrySmartly highlights the following three companies:

statefarm logo

State Farm tops the financial stability ranking by AM Best and the customer satisfaction ranking by J.D. Power. Some of the advantages of State Farm for first-time drivers include:

Discounts for students with at least a B average in school

Usage-based insurance discount

Savings for drivers under 25 who complete their Steer Clear driver-focused training course and have no at-fault accidents and violations on their record

12% to 19% lower rates for teens than the national average

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GEICO offers some of the best car insurance for new drivers under 25 at affordable prices. With the variety of discount offers, GEICO ranks high in customer satisfaction and has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Here are some of the highlights for young and new drivers:

Up to 15% discount for good students or membership in certain student associations

Savings of up to 25% for including multiple vehicles in one plan

Company-designed driver education and safety program

Discounts for drivers who complete Geico’s safe-driving program

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Concluding our list is Nationwide, which offers lower-than-average rates for teens and drivers with no insurance history. The benefits to new drivers include the following:

Up to 15% discount for drivers who maintain at least a B average in school

Accident forgiveness prevents the insurance rate from increasing after the young driver’s first at-fault accident

Roadside assistance if a driver is stranded or is experiencing other car trouble

SmartMiles mile-based savings if you drive under 12,000 annually

New Driver Insurance FAQ

If you still need to decide what first-time driver car insurance to acquire, TrySmartly can help by answering any additional questions you might have.

How Much Does New Driver Car Insurance Cost?

On average, new driver car insurance costs between $1,500 and $3,000 annually. The rate is determined by the driver's age, driving record, location, vehicle, and credit score. Insurers charge all new drivers higher rates, but the rates for inexperienced teen drivers are the highest. The rate may decline every year when you start driving, given that you maintain a good driving record.

Why Is the Cost of Insurance for New Drivers So High?

Part of why auto insurance for new drivers is significantly higher is because insurers consider them more likely to be in a car accident. In most cases, lack of driving experience, poor credit score, and living in a high-risk state also cause the rates to go up for young inexperienced drivers.

Is It Better for New Drivers to Get Their Own Insurance?

New drivers below 18 are legally required to share their car insurance with their parents. However, drivers over 18 can still remain with their parents' insurance if they live or depend on their parents. Typically, new drivers are able to find better rates by joining their family's policy instead of getting their own.

When Would My Rates Decrease?

Auto insurance rates usually decrease once you get older and gain more experience behind the wheel. Therefore, your rates could drop slightly as you reach your early and mid-twenties. However, you will likely see more significant savings as you approach 25 and over. Regardless, lower rates are contingent upon your driving record. Even if you reach 25, your rates could remain high if you have negative marks on your record.

Ready to start saving?