Geico, which stands for Government Employees Insurance Company, is owned by international holding company Berkshire Hathaway. Though it is more widely known, Geico has fallen out of the top 25 for national market share for private passenger car insurance. However, American Family – which provides Costco car insurance through CONNECT – is now the sixth largest insurer based on market share. Geico has slightly more affordable average annual rates for minimum coverage, but Costco’s average annual rates are much cheaper for full coverage.
Geico offers an impressive list of potential discounts, especially for military families. Though Costco’s discounts are more limited, there are still favorable discounts for teen drivers and those with clean driving records. Although both Geico and Costco focus on affordable home and auto coverage, Bankrate took a look at what each company has to offer when it comes to car insurance.
Geico vs Costco Insurance: car insurance rates comparison
The table below includes the third-party ratings and average annual 2021 premiums from Quadrant Information Services for Costco car insurance vs Geico. As you can see, Geico’s average annual rates for both minimum and full coverage car insurance are much cheaper than Costco’s.
As a part of the CONNECT division of American Family, the average Costco insurance rates below are based on average American Family rates. Although average rates for American Family may differ from the average rates a Costco member will receive through CONNECT, these rates can provide an initial point of comparison as you shop for insurance. It’s worth noting that, since car insurance rates are based on multiple personal factors, your actual rates from either company are likely to differ from the average rates.
In addition to third-party ratings, we also assigned each company a Bankrate Score, a score out of 0.0 to 5.0. To determine this score, Bankrate evaluated the company on different categories (average annual rates, third-party ratings, coverages offered, discounts offered) and utilized a uniform methodology to ensure that each company is rated using the same criteria.
|Car insurance company||Bankrate Score||AM Best||J.D. Power auto claims satisfaction scores||Average annual premium for minimum coverage||Average annual premium for full coverage|
*Costco offers insurance through CONNECT, a division of American Family, whose ratings are provided here
Rates by credit score
Geico and Costco will use your credit score to determine your premium, but it depends on where you live. It is currently illegal for insurance companies to use credit scores to calculate insurance rates in Hawaii, California, Massachusetts and Michigan. In the table below, you can see average 2021 rates provided by Quadrant Information Services for Geico, Costco and the national average based on credit score. As you can see, Geico’s average rates across credit score tiers are significantly lower than the average American Family rates we examined to give you a sense of Costco’s average pricing.
|Car insurance company||Poor||Average||Good||Excellent|
*Costco offers insurance through CONNECT, a division of American Family, whose rates are provided here.
Rates by age
Young drivers pay the highest rates for car insurance because they lack on-road experience, and are more likely to get into an accident. The table below highlights the average annual 2021 Quadrant Information Services rates for several age groups. As with credit score and overall average rates, Costco’s average rates tend to be higher than Geico’s for each age group.
|Car insurance company||Age 16*||Age 18||Age 25||Age 30||Age 40||Age 60|
*16 year old cost when added to parents’ policy, 18-year-old renter
**Costco offers insurance through CONNECT, a division of American Family, whose rates are provided here.
Rates by driving record
Drivers with a clean record pay the lowest rates for car insurance while drivers with a history of accidents, speeding tickets or DUI convictions pay much higher rates. The table below compares Geico’s average yearly 2021 Quadrant Information Services rates to Costco’s and the national average. As you can see, Geico has cheaper average rates for each driving record scenario, except a DUI conviction, where Costco’s average annual rate is about $700 cheaper.
|Car insurance company||Clean driving record||Speeding ticket||Accident||DUI conviction|
*Costco offers insurance through CONNECT, a division of American Family, whose rates are provided here.
Geico vs Costco Insurance: Discounts
Both Geico and Costco offer car insurance discounts that can help drivers save money on their auto policy. However, each provider offers unique discounts. Here are the discounts you can get through Costco auto insurance vs. Geico:
- Federal employee discount: Geico is one of the few insurance companies that offers a potential discount for federal government employees.
- Military discount: Geico customers who are active duty military service members may qualify for a reduced premium.
- Membership/employee discount: Drivers may get a discount on their Geico policy if they belong to certain membership groups or work for a participating employer.
- Premier safety discount: Drivers who have a perfect record, with no traffic violations, accidents or claims within the past four years may qualify for a discount.
- Garaging discount: If you keep your car in a garage when it is not in use, CONNECT may give you a lower premium.
- Education discount: CONNECT offers potential savings for students who complete a four-year degree program. This also applies to students who are insured on their parent’s policy.
Geico vs Costco Insurance: Online and mobile experience comparison
Geico and CONNECT by American Family both have a good online experience. Based on our comparison, we found that Geico’s website is slightly easier to navigate and has more information about the coverage options and discounts. It is also worth noting that Geico and CONNECT both have an online quote tool and support online claims.
In terms of mobile experience, Geico has one of the top-rated mobile apps that allows policyholders to manage their policy, file claims, make payments and more. If you have Costco insurance, you can only manage your policy online.
- App Store (4.8 stars): Geico’s free iOS app allows policyholders to file a claim, make a payment, request roadside assistance, view ID cards and get maintenance reminders. Overall, customers are satisfied with Geico’s app, with positive reviews of the user interface, ease-of-use and frequent updates
- Google Play Store (4.8 stars): Through Geico’s Android mobile app, users get access to all the same features that are included with the iOS app. Customers say the app is easy to navigate and convenient. However, some users have complained about issues logging in and making payments.
If you have Costco insurance through CONNECT by American Family, you can manage your policy through the online customer portal. You can pay your premium, request your declaration page or insurance binder and download your ID cards. To make changes to your policy, you will need to contact an agent.
Frequently asked questions
What is the best car insurance company?
The best car insurance company is different for every driver. Some car insurance carriers are known for low premiums, some are great for customer service and others stand out for their coverage options. The only way to find the best company for you is to shop around and compare providers using your own criteria.
How much does car insurance cost?
In the United States, the average cost of car insurance is $1,674 per year for a full coverage policy. However, auto insurance premiums are personalized based on factors like your age, state, credit score (in most states), driving history and the type of car you have.
Is car insurance legally required?
Yes, car insurance is legally required in almost every state. In New Hampshire, drivers can opt out of car insurance unless they need an SR-22 while Virginia drivers can pay an uninsured motorist fee in lieu of purchasing car insurance. In many states, you also have the ability to satisfy financial responsibility in other ways, like securing a bond. Still, you may want to consider purchasing car insurance to financially protect yourself if you have an accident.
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.
Credit: 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. The following states do not allow credit to be a factor in determining auto insurance rates: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, Washington.
Age: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the ages 18-60 (base: 40 years) applied. 16-year-old rates were factored as the added cost to their parents’ policy; 18-year-old rates were calculated as drivers who rent their primary residence. The following states do not allow age to be a factor in determining auto insurance rates: Hawaii
Incident: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base), at-fault accident, single speeding ticket, single DUI conviction (BAC of >= .08) and lapse in coverage.
Bankrate Scores primarily reflect a weighted rank of industry-standard ratings for financial strength and customer experience in addition to analysis of quoted annual premiums from Quadrant Information Services, spanning all 50 states and Washington, D.C. We know it is important for drivers to be confident their financial protection covers the likeliest risks, is priced competitively and is provided by a financially-sound company with a history of positive customer support.
To determine how well the best car insurance companies satisfy these priorities, third-party agency ratings from J.D. Power, AM Best, S&P, NAIC, and Moody’s had the most impact on the companies’ Bankrate Scores. As price is a common consideration for drivers, we analyzed quoted premiums based on 40-year-old male and female drivers with a 2019 Toyota Camry. This profile, assessed across more than 35,000 ZIP codes in the U.S., provided a basis on which drivers may compare each provider.
While coverage options, insurer availability, affordability and customer experience are often the top priorities, Bankrate also analyzed each insurer’s online and mobile resources for policy management and claims handling. Insurance is rapidly evolving to keep pace with our digital world, so these aspects also carried weight in determining Bankrate Scores.