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If you’ve ever seen an option for “full coverage” car insurance from an insurer, you may not have known what it meant. Simply put, in order to financially protect yourself, along with your car and passengers, you will need optional coverage — typically in the form of collision and comprehensive. These two types of insurance, plus liability, are what’s most commonly recognized as full coverage. While most states require you to have liability coverage, that only covers damages you cause to another driver, their car and their passengers.
Bankrate’s insurance editorial team analyzed top car insurance providers to find the best choices for individual circumstances. Below, we outline why USAA, Clearcover, State Farm, Geico and Travelers made our list.
Best full coverage auto insurance
The average cost of full coverage in the U.S. is $1,771 per year, according to data from Quadrant Information Services. Your own premium, however, may differ due to factors such as your driving history and the age of your car.
Based on Bankrate’s insurance editorial team’s analysis, the best full coverage auto insurers are USAA, Clearcover, State Farm, Geico and Travelers. These five companies were awarded the highest Bankrate Scores, a weighted rank of industry-standard ratings for financial strength and customer satisfaction scores, along with an analysis of quoted annual premiums. Bankrate also factors in an insurer’s availability as well as each company’s online and mobile resources to determine the Score.
|Car insurance company||Bankrate Score||Average annual premium for full coverage||J.D. Power score|
*Not officially ranked with J.D. Power due to eligibility restrictions
USAA shows up at the top of many ratings lists and is known for its inexpensive premium rates, as well as its robust online community. It offers a full range of standard coverages with a handful of optional add-ons, and is an excellent choice if you qualify. The only caveat is that USAA only provides insurance to members of the U.S. military, their eligible family members and veterans. If you fit that demographic, consider making USAA your first stop when shopping for insurance.
Learn more: USAA Insurance review
One of the newer players in the insurance industry, Clearcover is an AI-powered company founded in 2016 to provide inexpensive insurance and hassle-free claims management for policyholders. Clearcover sells insurance in 20 states, so you’ll need to go online to see if it’s available in your region. The provider aims to offer the lowest rates possible and thus doesn’t include a list of discounts, as most insurers do, although it does offer a discount for members of the military. In addition to basic coverage options such as liability and medpay, it has several endorsements available, including rideshare coverage and roadside assistance.
Learn more: Clearcover Insurance review
State Farm, as the largest auto insurer by market share, is well-known and trusted by many drivers. Although it doesn’t have as many policy add-ons as some other top companies, it does offer coverage options like rental car insurance and rideshare coverage. For policyholders under 25, State Farm offers a Steer Clear discount program that may reduce monthly premiums for completing a driving course, which can help to offset the often higher cost of insurance for younger drivers. The provider’s mobile app also allows you to submit claims, get new quotes and view your insurance profile.
Learn more: State Farm Insurance review
Geico has made a name for itself for affordability, even for drivers who have a less-than-perfect driving record. The company offers no-frills policies with only a small handful of endorsements, or add-ons: emergency roadside service, rental reimbursement and mechanical breakdown insurance, so you aren’t able to tailor your policy much. However, the insurer makes up for that with a long list of potential discounts that can drop your rate.
Learn more: Geico Insurance review
Travelers was the priciest option among our top five insurers, but it does offer some nice perks to policyholders. It has a good list of endorsements, for example, which allow you to personalize your policy to your circumstances. These include premier new car replacement and rideshare coverage. There’s also an extensive list of discounts, including three geared toward young drivers.
Learn more: Travelers Insurance review
What is full coverage car insurance?
Full coverage car insurance refers to a common set of coverage options that are included within a single policy. Generally speaking, all drivers (except those in New Hampshire and Virginia) must have some form of liability or state-required coverage, which can cover medical bills and car repairs for the other driver, their car and their passengers if you are in an at-fault accident. On the other hand, having full coverage means that your car’s repairs and any medical costs for you and your passengers would be covered to the extent of your policy, regardless of fault.
Full coverage policies will generally include collision coverage and comprehensive coverage in the policy. Collision coverage pays for damages to your car during a moving accident, and comprehensive coverage pays for damages to your car during other events, such as theft, vandalism and natural disasters. It’s worth noting that if you take out a car loan to purchase your vehicle, you will probably be required by your lender to have collision and comprehensive coverage.
Although full coverage can pay for damage to your car, a deductible amount will typically apply before the coverage kicks in to pay the rest. Also, all coverages in a policy still have a coverage limit, which is the maximum amount the policy will cover. Many insurers allow you to raise coverage limits for an additional fee.
Most personal car insurance policies do not cover commercial use, so if you use your car for a delivery business or a rideshare service, you may need to purchase additional coverage.
Is full coverage car insurance worth it?
When deciding if the extra cost of full coverage car insurance is worth it, it is often helpful to think about what would happen if your car is damaged or totaled. Could you pay for repairs or a replacement out of pocket? If your car is older and less valuable, you may find that your premium exceeds the payout you’d receive to fix the vehicle. A newer car, however, is likely to merit the cost of full coverage. In short, full coverage gives you more robust financial protection and may be worth the higher premium for many drivers due to the coverage for your personal vehicle. However, if you used a car loan to buy your car, full coverage may be required in the contract with the lender.