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Progressive vs. AAA

Updated Apr 25, 2024

Exploring the differences between Progressive and AAA can help you identify which insurer may better suit your individual insurance needs and preferences.

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Established in 1937, Progressive insurance has distinguished itself as a pioneer in the industry by becoming the first to underwrite nonstandard auto insurance. It has since expanded its offerings to include motorcycle, homeowners and commercial insurance, serving over 18 million policyholders. As of the latest figures from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), Progressive holds the position as the nation's second-largest personal car insurance provider with 15.24 percent of the market share. Known for innovative tools like the "Name Your Price" feature and iconic advertising featuring its spokesperson Flo, Progressive offers comprehensive customer service options, accessible 24/7 across multiple platforms.

The American Automobile Association, better known as AAA, was founded in 1902 and previously comprised just nine local motor clubs focused on safe roads for motorists. Now, AAA has 32 individual clubs, ranking as the seventeenth biggest car insurance company in the nation with 0.71 percent of the auto insurance market share. AAA is one of the few insurance companies requiring a club membership before drivers can hold AAA insurance. AAA is almost synonymous with roadside assistance and, aside from its auto insurance policies, is also well-known for its trip planning, tourism discounts and international affiliate programs.

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Our verdict

Progressive may be preferable for those seeking affordable annual premiums, coverage options and available discounts. However, price is only one factor when looking for the best car insurance. Alternatively, AAA may be slightly better in terms of customer service and support. Both companies have strong financial stability ratings, which is a positive sign that Progressive and AAA have historically met their financial obligations in making claim payouts.

Progressive vs. AAA comparison

When deciding which car insurance carrier has the best rates and coverage, looking at each company’s positive and negative aspects can help you zero in on what matters to you the most. To take the stress out of the research, Bankrate’s insurance editorial team has broken down Progressive vs. AAA in the table below.

Badge 1 Featured

Progressive

Progressive
Rating: 4.4 stars out of 5
4.4
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Cost & ratings

Rating: 4.2 stars out of 5
4.2

Coverage

Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5.0

Support

Rating: 4.3 stars out of 5
4.3

AAA

AAA
Rating: 3.4 stars out of 5
3.4
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Cost & ratings

Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
3.5

Coverage

Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
2.5

Support

Rating: 4.3 stars out of 5
4.3
OVERVIEW
Info
AAA is a large insurance carrier offering affordable auto insurance options, as well as membership perks. Those who like convenience may also appreciate that some of AAA’s offices also offer services like DMV transactions, notary services and travel planning.
STANDOUT FEATURES
Info
Globe World
Geographic-focused coverage
Business
Local agents available
Dollar Coin
Access to additional AAA perks
AVG FULL COV. AUTO RATE
Info
$2,366
AVG MIN COV. AUTO RATE
Info
$616
J.D. POWER AUTO SCORE
Info
847/1000
AM BEST RATING
Info
A(Excellent)

Progressive pros and cons

Pros
  • 24/7 claims, customer service and roadside assistance

  • Multiple methods of communication via chat, email, phone and social media

  • Plentiful discount opportunities with lower annual average premiums than many other carriers

  • Offers coverage for high-risk drivers who need SR-22 forms

Cons
  • Online quotes and agency quotes may differ

  • Lower-than-average J.D. Power claim and customer service satisfaction scores

  • Policies purchased through an agent or broker may include commission fees

  • Rates may differ between online and agent quotes

AAA pros and cons

Pros
  • Regional offices may provide coverage and advice specific to your location

  • Discounts on shopping, dining, hotels and more

  • Gap insurance available

  • Offers additional products: home, life, motorcycle and travel insurance

Cons
  • Usually requires an AAA roadside assistance membership

  • Limited methods of communication and online tools

  • Third-party customer satisfaction varies by club location

  • May need to work with an agent to make policy changes

Is Progressive cheaper than AAA?

When considering if AAA is cheaper than Progressive, it generally appears that Progressive may offer lower average annual premiums across various driver profiles. The concept of insurance as a risk pool typically benefits bigger insurers. With Progressive having a significantly larger base of policyholders compared to AAA, this scale often allows them to offer more competitive premiums.

Driver profile Progressive avg. full coverage premium AAA avg. full coverage premium
Young driver (age 25) $2,573 $2,834
Senior driver (age 70) $1,953 $2,383
Good driver, good credit $2,021 $2,366
Good driver, poor credit $3,517 $5,599
Speeding ticket with good credit $2,610 $3,236
At-fault accident with good credit $3,088 $4,257
DUI conviction with good credit $2,498 $4,257
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Bankrate's take

Progressive typically offers more favorable rates across a variety of driver profiles. This trend may suggest that Progressive could generally be a more cost-effective choice for many drivers, particularly those looking for competitive premiums without sacrificing coverage quality.

While Progressive often appears to provide lower rates, it's important to consider that insurance costs can vary significantly based on individual circumstances such as location, vehicle type, driving history and selected coverage options. Therefore, it might be beneficial for potential policyholders to closely review their personal needs, and then gather quotes to compare from companies that meet their criteria. This approach helps ensure that while you might be drawn to lower rates, you're also considering the overall value and suitability of the coverage offered.

Progressive vs. AAA: discounts

Taking advantage of car insurance discounts can be a great way to save money on insurance without sacrificing coverage. Many companies offer similar discounts; others have uncommon offerings. The key to saving the most money is figuring out which discounts you’re eligible for. Below are some of the best car insurance discounts from Progressive and AAA.

Discounts available from both carriers

Both Progressive and AAA offer a variety of discounts that can help policyholders save on their auto insurance premiums. These discounts are generally aimed at rewarding safe driving habits, promoting educational success among student drivers and encouraging responsible financial behavior. Here are some common discounts provided by both insurers:

  • Bundling discount: Policyholders may be able to reduce their overall insurance costs by bundling home and auto insurance policies with the same carrier.
  • Good student discount: Students who maintain a certain grade point average may be rewarded with lower premiums.
  • Pay in full discount: Potential reduction in overall premium costs when policyholders choose to pay their entire premium up front rather than in monthly installments.
  • Distant student discount: Available for students who attend school more than 100 miles away from home without a car, this discount recognizes the reduced risk of accidents during the school term.

Progressive discounts

  • Continuous insurance discount: If you switch to Progressive from another company, you could earn a discount based on how long you were insured with your previous provider. This discount is unavailable to California drivers.
  • Online quote discount: Drivers who start their quotes online may save up to 7 percent on their car insurance, but is unavailable to New York and California drivers.
  • Sign online discount: Anytime you sign up for a new car insurance policy, there are forms to complete. Progressive offers a discount of up to 9 percent for drivers who complete their forms online, except those in California.
  • Snapshot discount: Drivers who enroll in Progressive’s Snapshot safe driver reward program can save an average of $231 on their premium by demonstrating safe skills behind the wheel, which is monitored via the Snapshot mobile app.

AAA discounts

  • AAA member discount: Drivers who have an active AAA membership can get a discount on their car insurance policy.
  • TeenSmart: This discount is a three-step process that, once completed, can offer teen drivers up to a 24 percent discount on their car insurance. Discounts can vary depending on your state.
  • Education and occupation: With AAA, if you have a certain level of education or work in a qualifying field, you may be eligible for a discount.

Progressive and AAA telematics programs

Telematics programs or usage-based car insurance is becoming more common and could be a great way to improve your driving skills and save money on car insurance. Both Progressive and AAA now have their own telematics tool. Progressive offers two choices, a mobile app or a plug-in device, while AAA is solely app-based. Refer to the table below for a side-by-side comparison.

Progressive Snapshot AAA SMARTrek
Device Mobile app or plug-in device Mobile app
Can it raise your rate? Potentially No
Availability Not available in California Varies, check with local agent
Discount The average savings at signup is $94 and the average savings at program completion is $231. Not all states and drivers are eligible for all discounts related to Snapshot and savings can vary. Participation and safe driving discounts are available with SMARTrek, however not all drivers are eligible for both discounts.
What it monitors Hard brakes, fast accelerations, time of day, annual mileage and phone habits Speed, time of day, smooth driving, phone habits and trip duration

Progressive vs. AAA: customer experience comparison

Customer service and satisfaction are critical considerations for many drivers selecting a car insurance provider. Although AAA may not match Progressive in terms of online and mobile capabilities, it offers a personalized approach to customer service that could be appealing to those who prefer direct interactions for policy guidance and adjustments. This hands-on service can be particularly advantageous for managing complex changes to policies. Mobile app ratings and service channels like local offices provide insights into how effectively policyholders can access services and manage their accounts. Additionally, an analysis of the J.D. Power 2023 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study may help gauge overall customer satisfaction with each company's service, with the study's segment average standing at 878 out of 1,000.

Progressive AAA
Apple store 4.8 of 5 4.6 of 5
Google play 4.6 of 5 4.4 of 5
J.D. Power claims satisfaction 870/1,000 Auto Club of Southern California: 889/1,000
CSAA Insurance Group: 874/1,000
Automobile Club Group: 848/1,000

Customer complaints

Understanding how insurance companies handle customer complaints can be crucial when choosing a provider. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Complaint Index is a helpful tool for this analysis. It measures an insurer's complaint ratio relative to companies of its size in the market. An index score of 1.00 means the insurer's complaint ratio is average for the industry. A score higher than 1.00 suggests more complaints than average, while a score lower than that indicates fewer complaints. This metric can help potential policyholders gauge an insurer's reliability and customer service.

Progressive auto insurance customer complaints

Progressive's 2023 NAIC Complaint Index for private passenger auto insurance stands at 0.89, which is slightly below the industry average and indicates a reduction in customer complaints compared to previous years. This trend suggests an ongoing improvement in Progressive's customer service practices, which have been on a downward trend since 2021. This consistent decrease in the complaint index may imply that Progressive is becoming increasingly effective in addressing and resolving customer issues.

AAA auto insurance customer complaints

AAA auto insurance is different in that its policies are underwritten by multiple companies, which can affect the consistency of customer experiences and complaints. To provide a clearer picture, we examined the NAIC Complaint Indexes for three of the largest AAA insurers: Auto Club Property-Casualty Insurance Company, Automobile Club Group and CSAA General Insurance Company. Of these, CSAA General Insurance has shown the most consistently positive results in terms of fewer complaints. Overall, the complaint indexes for AAA insurers suggest a trend toward improvement in customer satisfaction.

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Auto Club Property Casualty Insurance Company NAIC Complaint Index

Automobile Club Group NAIC complaint Index

CSAA General Insurance Company

Frequently asked questions

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze May 2024 rates for all 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 single, 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 2022 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-based insurance scores: 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.

Incidents: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base), at-fault accident, single speeding ticket and single DUI conviction.

Age: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the ages 25-70 (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.

Bankrate Scores

Our 2024 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.

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. Our scoring model provides a comprehensive view, indicating when companies excel across several key areas and highlighting where they fall short.

5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
Overall Score
  • Cost & ratings 50%
  • Coverage & savings 30%
  • Support 20%
  • Tier 1 (Cost & ratings): To determine how well auto and home insurance companies satisfy these priorities, average 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, Demotech 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.