How to Save on Automobile Insurance

There are several easy ways to save money on automobile insurance. Your current insurance carrier may have pointed out some of the discounts that could benefit you, but in the end, it is up to you to be aware of your options and to ask what they have available and what you qualify for.

Insurance rates are based on several factors, but the number of ways to decrease your rates is also numerous. The programs are outlined below. Not all insurers offer these discounts or rebates, and some states’ laws prohibit them from being applied. Everything is mentioned because of 2 main reasons – knowledge is power, and it doesn’t hurt to ask the insurance provider.

Occupational Discount

Insurance companies pay attention to which occupations mean less driving and less risk-taking, translating into fewer accidents. The qualifying occupations are police officers, firefighters, doctors, dentists, registered nurses, teachers, engineers, and scientists. If you’re in one of those professions, you could enjoy savings.

If you are a current or former armed forces member or are a college student taking part in a commissioning program such as ROTC, you might be eligible for certain savings. For insurers catering to the military, additional factors may help lower premiums, such as your rank, whether or not your vehicle is parked in a base garage, and if your automobile is stored during deployment or while away from home.

Some employee car insurance discounts stem from your insurer’s business relationships with other companies. Being an employee of one of these companies could translate into savings for you.


Generally, it’s a good idea to check with all the organizations you belong to and find out what discounts (if any) they have arranged and with what companies.

Credit Score

Checked your credit score lately? The vast majority of insurance companies take credit scores into account these days. A high one could help cut your auto premiums by as much as half; the specific scores that trigger discounts are a closely kept secret. Still, industry sources say that someone with a score above 700 will be more eligible for lower premiums than someone in the 500s.


Insurance carriers sometimes offer discounts because of their sponsorship relationships. The relationship could be with a sorority or fraternity, a trade association, or a university, to name a few. Whether you are a student or an alumni, you may be eligible for a discount.

Going Green

It is common for companies to offer the option to go green by opting to reduce paper statements. What may not be commonly known is that your insurer may reward you with a rebate for choosing this option.


Most people know that reducing the miles you drive annually will result in savings on your insurance bill. Some companies also offer up to 10 percent discounts if you go green by driving a fuel-efficient hybrid vehicle. Insurance experts say hybrid cars are not safer; the people who go out of their way to buy and drive them are considered a better risk.

Safety and Protection

You may know that safety features such as airbags or anti-lock brakes can reduce your premiums. But you might not realize you can save money on the comprehensive portion of your insurance by installing anti-theft measures, including car alarms, fuel or ignition cutoff switches, stolen-car tracking systems such as LoJack and VIN etchings, or engravings of your vehicle identification number on your windshield and windows.

Taking defensive driving courses is another way to get a discount on your auto insurance rates. They can represent as much as ten percent off your premium. You may also learn some important defensive driving techniques to keep you and your passengers safe and save yourself some money.

The Good Driver Discount is a well-known benefit for those with no moving violations. If you qualify, you could save as much as 20%. The discount may also consider where you live and where you park.

Planning Ahead

Planning when it’s time to renew your policy can put money in your pocket. Some insurance companies give 5-10% discounts if you switch to them before your next premium is due. Look at least two weeks before your current auto policy is up to take advantage of these early shop-around savings. However, before jumping, ask your current provider if they will match the competitor’s early switcher discount with a renewal discount. Chances are they will consent if you are a good customer with a good driving record to keep you.


Some car insurance providers reward loyalty. Nationwide offers a 15 percent discount to customers who have been with the company for at least five years or 5 percent off if they have been with them for three years.

Good Grades

If you fit into the category your provider defines as qualifying for the “good student discount,” you can save money on your car insurance. This is based on the theory that good students are better drivers. Generally, the discount only applies to full-time students. The qualifications vary, but the discount applies to high school and college students. Savings can be 10-25%. Companies often provide discounts over ten percent.

Two’s Company

It may not make sense to you, but premiums can drop when you get married, as insurance company statistics show that drivers who are coupled up tend to be safer than those who are footloose and fancy-free. Some insurers will even extend the discount to unmarried same-sex couples.

Other unmarried couples might insure their vehicles together to receive a multicar discount, which almost all providers offer. Or, if the two of you own property together and have homeowners insurance, there’s usually a bundling discount to insure your car with the same company.

Whether you’re married or single, do some research before you renew an auto policy to make sure you’re getting all the discounts you can

Bundling Discount

You can often save money if you buy multiple types of insurance from the same provider. For example – if you get your life, auto, and homeowners insurance from the same company, they may give you discounts on everyone. With most companies, the more types of insurance you bundle, the more you save off the price of buying them all separately.

Payment Method Discount

Many insurance companies offer discounts if you set up an automated payment system. Most of these discounts are cumulative, so if you have many of them, you might be able to save.

Multiple Automobile Discount

Like bundling, insuring more than one car will qualify you for multiple car discounts. The vehicles’ make, model, year, number of cars, and other factors are considered, but the savings can be significant.

Saving Money with Pay-as-You Drive Insurance

This new and increasingly popular type of insurance can be based on specific mileage amounts you and the insurer agree to, the time you spend in your automobile, verified odometer readings, or installed technology, such as a GPS. Although considerable savings can be realized with this type of insurance, remaining within the agreed-upon mileage constrictions with the insurance company is important. Violations can be costly.


There are many ways to save money on automobile insurance. Your insurance representative may point some out to you, but in the end, it will be up to you to do your research and ask the questions. Don’t lose sight of the big picture when looking around for the cheapest insurance you can qualify for. I mean that Anrovider, often, may still not be more affordable than a company that offers few discounts.


Alcohol scholar. Bacon fan. Internetaholic. Beer geek. Thinker. Coffee advocate. Reader. Have a strong interest in consulting about teddy bears in Nigeria. Spent 2001-2004 promoting glue in Pensacola, FL. My current pet project is testing the market for salsa in Las Vegas, NV. In 2008 I was getting to know birdhouses worldwide. Spent 2002-2008 buying and selling easy-bake-ovens in Bethesda, MD. Spent 2002-2009 marketing country music in the financial sector.