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State Farm is the largest auto insurance company in the U.S. Although initially specialized for farmers, the company now offers a broad array of insurance products. Its auto insurance coverage options, digital tools and positive customer satisfaction scores helped it earn our 2023 Bankrate Award for best car insurance company for high-risk drivers.
The American Automobile Association (AAA) also offers a variety of coverage options and discounts, but coverage availability may vary by region. AAA is perhaps most well known for its robust roadside assistance coverage.
Our 2023 Bankrate Score considers variables our insurance editorial team determined impacts policyholders’ experiences with an insurance company. These rating factors include a robust assessment of each company’s product availability, financial strength ratings, online capabilities and customer and claims support accessibility. Each factor was added to a category, and these categories were weighted in a tiered approach to analyze how companies perform in key customer-impacting categories.
Like our previous Bankrate Scores, each category was assigned a metric to determine performance, and the weighted sum adds up to a company’s total Bankrate Score — out of 5 points. This year, our 2023 scoring model provides a more comprehensive view, indicating when companies excel across several key areas and better highlighting where they fall short.
- Tier 1 (Cost & ratings): To determine how well auto and home insurance companies satisfy these priorities, 2023 quoted premiums from Quadrant Information Services (if available), as well as any of the latest third-party agency ratings from J.D. Power, AM Best and the NAIC, were analyzed.
- Tier 2 (Coverage & savings): We assessed companies’ coverage options and availability to help policyholders find a provider that balances cost with coverage. Additionally, we evaluated each company’s discount options listed on its website.
- Tier 3 (Support): To encompass the many ways an auto insurance company can support policyholders, we analyzed avenues of customer accessibility along with community support. This analysis incorporated additional financial strength ratings from S&P and Moody’s and factored a company’s corporate sustainability efforts.
Tier scores are unweighted to show the company’s true score in each category out of a possible five points.
AAA vs State Farm comparison
When comparing AAA vs. State Farm auto insurance, comparing pros and cons may help you decide which company could best meet your needs. Below we’ve compiled some of the potential perks and drawbacks of State Farm and AAA car insurance.
AAA pros and cons
|Local AAA clubs may have coverage options tailored for their region
Variety of coverage options and discounts available
Offers non-insurance services like notary services, DMV transactions and travel planning
|Average full and minimum coverage rates are higher than the national average
Membership may be required for many perks
J.D. Power claims satisfaction score is below average
NAIC Complaint Index may vary by region
State Farm pros and cons
|Receives high scores with J.D. Power for claims and customer satisfaction
AM Best financial rating of superior (A++)
Offers competitive average rates
Local agents are available for face-to-face service
|Customer service is not available 24/7
Gap insurance and accident forgiveness are not available
Coverage is not available nationwide
Is AAA cheaper than State Farm?
Average auto insurance rates may help drivers determine which company could offer them the most competitive rates for their situation. However, personal rates will vary widely based on personal rating factors like driving record, age (in most states), vehicle type and more. The rates listed below are national average rates provided by Quadrant Information Services.
|Car insurance company||Average annual premium for full coverage||Average annual premium for minimum coverage|
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2023 rates for ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Rates are weighted based on the population density in each geographic region. 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 coverage that meets each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2021 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.
State Farm is generally cheaper for drivers with poor credit
Your credit score may impact your auto insurance rates in most states. California, Hawaii, Michigan, and Massachusetts do not allow credit scores as rating factors. State Farm has cheaper rates on average than AAA for all credit score levels.
|Credit Score||AAA||State Farm|
Rates were calculated based on the following insurance credit tiers assigned to our drivers: “poor, average, good (base) and excellent.” Insurance credit tiers factor in your official credit scores but are not dependent on that variable alone. Four states prohibit or limit the use of credit as a rating factor in determining auto insurance rates: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts and Michigan.
State Farm is generally cheaper for young drivers
In most states, car insurance companies can consider your age or years of experience behind the wheel when determining your rates. In general, young drivers and seniors tend to have the highest premiums. Teens may see especially high rates due to their high accident rate and relative inexperience on the road. The following rates are for young drivers on their parents’ policy.
State Farm is generally cheaper for adult drivers
As drivers age, their rates typically decrease, until a certain age, as long as they maintain a clean driving record. As the table shows, State Farm is generally less expensive for adult drivers than AAA. The following rates are for drivers insured on their own policy.
Age: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the ages 18-60 (base: 40 years) applied. Depending on age, drivers may be a renter or homeowner. Age is not a contributing rating factor in Hawaii and Massachusetts due to state regulations.
Gender: The following states do not use gender as a determining factor in calculating premiums: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania.
Teens: Rates were determined by adding a 16- or 17-year-old teen to a 40-year-old married parents’ policy. The rates displayed reflect the total cost of a driver this age added to their parents’ policy.
State Farm is generally cheaper for high-risk drivers
Your driving record may be one of the most impact factors in determining your rates. Drivers with clean records generally see lower premiums than those with accidents or speeding tickets. Different carriers may weigh infractions differently, but DUIs are generally considered some of the most severe incidents. Some carriers may not extend coverage to drivers with a DUI on their record. Below you can see average rates from AAA and State Farm following potentially high-risk incidents. Rates for these offenses do not guarantee that the insurers will offer coverage to drivers with these violations on their records. The following rates are for full coverage policies.
|Clean driving record||$2,562||$1,480|
|Speeding ticket conviction||$3,131||$1,704|
Rates were calculated by evaluating our 2023 base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base), at-fault accident, single speeding ticket and single DUI conviction.
AAA vs State Farm: discounts
Most auto insurance companies offer at least a handful of potential discounts. Common discounts most providers offer include those for insuring multiple cars or for bundling home and auto policies. AAA and State Farm have these as well, plus a few more that are designed to assist new customers and to retain existing policyholders. Below are some of the more unique discounts each carrier offers.
AAA unique discounts
- Member discounts: AAA members may earn discounts and deals for more than just auto insurance. Members may save on gas, rental cars and much more.
- Advanced shopping discount: Drivers may be eligible for this discount if they purchase a policy more than seven days before the coverage begins on a vehicle that was previously covered by another policy for at least six continuous months.
- Loyalty discount: Policyholders may save if they have had a continuous AAA auto insurance policy for a set number of years.
State Farm unique discounts
- Accident-free discount: Insureds may receive a discount for remaining accident free for a set period of time. Savings may increase for every year without an accident.
- Steer clear program: This discount is linked to a telematics program and designed for drivers under the age of 25. Those who participate in the program complete driver education courses and use a telematics app to potentially reduce their rate.
- Defensive driving discount: Drivers who complete a designated driver safety course may earn a discount.
Usage-based insurance comparison: AAA vs State Farm
Telematics programs have become increasingly available from insurers in recent years. These usage-based programs may allow drivers to earn discounts based on their safe driving habits. Both AAA and State Farm offer telematics programs. We’ve highlighted State Farm’s Drive Safe & Save program, but it also offers its Steer Clear program for drivers under 25.
|AAADrive||State Farm Drive Safe & Save|
|Telematics device||App||App and eligible connected cars|
|Monitored driving factors||Start and end time, location, acceleration and mobile phone use||Acceleration, braking, cornering, speed and mobile phone use|
|Potential impact on rates||Decrease||Decrease|
|Potential discount||Up to 25%||Up to 30%|
|Availability||Select states||App is available in all states where coverage is offered except for California and North Carolina|
AAA vs State Farm: customer experience comparison
Customer service and satisfaction may be a key metric for many drivers choosing a car insurance company. Mobile app ratings may help drivers determine how easily they can access digital tools and file claims. We also analyzed the 2022 J.D. Power Auto Claims Satisfaction study to see how satisfied customers may be with each company’s service. For reference, the segment average in the J.D. Power study was 873/1,000.
|Apple store||4.5 out of 5||4.8 out of 5|
|Google play||4.4 out of 5||4.7 out of 5|
|J.D. Power||847 / 1,000||882 / 1,000|
Frequently asked questions
Whether State Farm or AAA is best for you will likely depend on your personal rating factors and auto insurance needs. Some drives may value pricing, coverage and discounts, while others may place a higher emphasis on a company’s financial strength and customer service. As such, it may be helpful to identify companies with the coverage options you’re looking for and compare quotes and customer satisfaction metrics to narrow down your options.
State Farm’s roadside assistance covers towing, fuel delivery, tire changes, locksmith services and battery jumpstarts. It may offer other related services depending on your location. As part of State Farm’s roadside assistance program, you may pay out of pocket for items like fuel or battery and tire replacements.
Both companies offer options for homeowners insurance as well as life insurance. If you’re looking for an auto insurance company that also offers some of the best home insurance, you may want to review average home insurance rates and home-specific customer satisfaction metrics.