There are over 4.2 million licensed drivers in Wisconsin. Like the majority of states, Wisconsin requires drivers to have car insurance before they can legally be on the roads. However, 2018 data from the Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicle (DoT found that over 68,000 people — almost 14% of the state’s population — received a citation for not having insurance. Failure to provide proof of insurance was the third most common violation, behind speeding tickets and driving with a suspended license.
Despite the high number of drivers without insurance, car insurance rates in Wisconsin are generally affordable compared to most other states. The average cost of car insurance in Wisconsin is $1,186 per year for full coverage, nearly $500 less than the national average. Still, when it comes to shopping for car insurance, finding the right provider for your needs can be challenging. To help simplify the process, Bankrate keeps tabs on the insurance market year-round and assesses each car insurance company’s average premiums, customer satisfaction and coverage. This year, five companies stood out in the Badger State.
Best car insurance in companies in Wisconsin
There are several providers that may have the best car insurance for Wisconsin drivers. Each company stands out for its coverage and discount options, customer satisfaction, affordable premiums or a mix of all three.
The below showcases each company along with its unique Bankrate Score, based on our methodology, as well as its current average quoted premium and J.D. Power score according to the 2020 Auto Claims Study.
|Provider||Bankrate Score||Average annual full coverage premium||J.D. Power customer satisfaction score|
*Due to membership eligibility restrictions, USAA is considered rank-ineligible by J.D. Power.
Allstate is a reliable car insurance company that offers a variety of online tools to help customers get quotes, improve their driving and save money on their premium. Its policies can even be expanded to cover your vehicle’s sound systems, which includes theft and damage to video and sound equipment. Although more expensive on the list, Allstate offers a list of discounts and bundling options that can help drivers save on premiums.
Auto-Owners is the third-highest ranking company in the J.D. Power Auto Claims Study and ties for second with two other top companies on our list, with a Bankrate Score of 4.6. Wisconsin policyholders are likely to find those competitive ranks translate to a positive customer service experience and reliable claims processing.
As shown in its name, the company is well experienced in providing auto insurance and has done so since 1916. Auto-Owners is known for its “No Problem” service motto, and even offers a “plus” package for drivers to include multiple important coverages in a single, competitively priced policy.
Geico is consistently ranked as one of the best insurance companies for affordable premiums for all demographics, regardless of credit score, driving history or location. Coverage is relatively basic, but has plentiful options for impactful savings. For example, Wisconsin drivers may save up to 23% on a portion of their premium for having air bags or an anti-theft system installed. Geico is also one of the few companies that includes discounts for military personnel.
Travelers is a great standard insurance provider with basic coverage options and a variety of discounts available to customers in Wisconsin. As an insurance company that offers one of the lowest average rates in the state, based on quoted premiums, below-average customer satisfaction scores may not be a concern for some Wisconsin drivers.
Policyholders may also gain additional confidence in knowing that Travelers is a leader in the insurance industry. For two consecutive years, Travelers has won a CIO 100 award, which recognizes organizations making valuable tech innovations to drive business. Travelers’ award in 2020 was extended for its work to make the underwriting process more efficient and accurate.
USAA may be the number one choice for military families in Wisconsin due to its low average premiums and dedicated coverage for military service members. The company consistently earns high customer satisfaction scores and even earns our highest Bankrate Score out of the providers mentioned. This is in no small part due to its reliable claims handling and strong reputation in the insurance industry.
Drivers can save even further on a USAA policy in multiple ways, including maintaining coverage through USAA for an extended amount of time storing their vehicle on a military base.
Average car insurance cost in Wisconsin
The average annual cost of car insurance in Wisconsin is $1,186 for full coverage, or about $99 monthly. This is almost $500 less than the national average of $1,674 for full coverage. Neighboring state, Minnesota, has rates much closer to the national average at $1,643 annually. This may in part be due to Minnesota’s rising number of traffic fatalities.
Minimum coverage in Wisconsin costs an average of $332 annually, which is also considerably less than the national average of $565 annually.
|Average annual premium for minimum coverage in Wisconsin||Average annual premium for full coverage in Wisconsin|
State minimum insurance requirements in Wisconsin
The state of Wisconsin requires all drivers to have a minimum amount of car insurance. Wisconsin’s mandatory policies include liability for bodily injury, property damage and uninsured motorist coverage. Wisconsin follows a typical 25/50/10 insurance requirement, which provides:
- $25,000 in bodily injury coverage per person
- $50,000 in bodily injury coverage per accident
- $10,000 for property damage
What exactly do these numbers mean? In the event of an accident, your policy would cover $25,000 in medical expenses for one passenger, or $50,000 for anyone else injured in the accident. The $10,000 in property damage liability would cover the cost of repairs for another vehicle or property such a fence, mailbox or storefront you might have hit.
While these amounts can make you legally eligible to drive, it may be wise to purchase collision and comprehensive coverage so that paying for damage to your vehicle does not become an individual responsibility. It is also likely that a more serious accident will outweigh Wisconsin’s minimum liability limits, causing additional financial strain. To financially protect your vehicle, a lender will typically require full coverage for these reasons.
How to get the best car insurance
Finding the best auto insurance in Wisconsin for you may take a little bit of time and research. Not all car insurance companies are alike when evaluating your insurance needs.
Evaluate your individual needs
Several factors can impact your decision of which insurance company is right for you, including your budget. This may be especially true for drivers with less-than-perfect driving records who might expect a higher average premium. In this case, you may choose to compare premiums from companies that offer a safe driving course and have multiple, applicable discounts. Other considerations could be in regards to your age, credit score or number of vehicles you plan to insure.
Consider state factors
Wisconsin is known for heavy snow falls and cold winters with Lake Michigan and Superior giving off colder climates. This could be a useful state factor to consider when deciding your coverage. Therefore, Wisconsin drivers may add on emergency roadside assistance, 24/7 assistance and engine protection coverage. Another relevant state factor may be Wisconsin’s relatively high number of uninsured drivers.
Car insurance discounts in Wisconsin
Most car insurance companies provide discounts to help their customers save money on their premiums. Some of the most common ways to save with Wisconsin insurers are:
- Pay in full: Some insurers will offer a discount when you pay your policy upfront, which also results in one less monthly bill.
- Drive safely: Most insurers have safe driving programs that policyholders can enroll in by allowing an app or telematics device to track your driving habits. By displaying a record of safe driving, you can usually save more on your premium.
- Bundle policies: Bundling home and auto policies is one of the easiest and most significant ways to save on your car insurance premium.
There are several great discounts available to drivers, but some insurers may offer more than others. Discounts for bundling are usually found with every major provider and could be a good first step in initiating premium savings.
Frequently asked questions
Is car insurance required in Wisconsin?
Yes, car insurance is legally required in Wisconsin. Residents must have coverage for bodily injury, property damage and uninsured motorists. Coverage for underinsured motorists, medical expense coverage, collision and comprehensive is optional.
What is the best car insurance in Wisconsin?
You may decide that the best car insurance provider for you is the one with the most useful types of coverage and competitive premium. However, every Wisconsin driver is likely to prioritize different factors. Experts recommend receiving quotes from multiple insurers to aid in the decision-making process.
What information is needed in order to get car insurance in Wisconsin?
To get a quote for Wisconsin car insurance, you will need to include your address, the type of vehicle you want to insure (make, model and year), your gender, marital status, your driving record and any information about the vehicle that could make you eligible for discounts, like safety features on your car.
How can I save money on car insurance in Wisconsin?
The car insurance providers we evaluated on this list all offer discounts for customers in Wisconsin. Drivers can often save money by bundling their policies, paying their policy in full, insuring a new car, having a clean driving record and owning their own home. Check out each provider’s discount page for a full list of the savings they offer.
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2021 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:
- $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $50,000 property damage liability per accident
- $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
- $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
- $500 collision deductible
- $500 comprehensive deductible
To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.
These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.
Bankrate scores primarily reflect a weighted rank of industry standard ratings for financial strength (AM Best, S&P, Moody’s) and customer experience (J.D. Power, NAIC), in addition to average quoted rates from Quadrant Information Services. The J.D. Power studies utilized include the 2020 Auto Insurance Study and the 2020 Auto Claims Study. Our Bankrate editorial team’s extensive research and analysis provided a secondary assessment of each insurer’s online and mobile resources and policy management options, which also contributed to overall ratings.