How does car insurance change when you turn 50?
The average 50-year-old paid $1,389 for car insurance in 2019. For a standard six-month policy, this will cost you $695 or $115 per month for auto insurance. Although this is 11% less than what the rest of the US pays for car insurance, it's still important to take a few minutes to compare quotes. Let's break down the cheapest insurance for drivers in their 50s as well as other cost-cutting solutions.
Table of contents — how much is car insurance for 50-year-olds?
Best car insurance companies for 50-year olds
Respondents in their 50s chose National General as the best overall auto carrier in The Zebra's Customer Satisfaction Survey.
The Zebra conducted a survey with the intention of understanding carriers from a customer's perspective. We asked how each major carrier held up in online experience, claims satisfaction, ease of use, customer service, trustworthiness, and willingness to recommend. National General came in first place for drivers in this age range for best overall auto carrier. Geico secured the first spot for ease, USAA for trust and Erie for online satisfaction.
|Rank||Company||Average Customer Satisfaction Rating (out of 5)|
|14th||Auto Club (AAA)||4.1|
Car insurance premiums at 50-years-old
In order to determine which car insurance company was the cheapest, we created a based profile and examined rates from some of the top auto insurance companies. While your insurance rates will not match exactly those generated via our methodology, you can use the data as a jumping-off point when shopping for car insurance.
Auto insurance data methodology
The auto insurance rates published in this guide are based on the results of The Zebra's State of Insurance car insurance pricing analysis. This analysis of more than 83 million insurance rates spans every U.S. ZIP code, using a sample user profile: a 30-year-old single male driver with a Honda Accord, good credit and full coverage at these levels:
- $50,000 per person/$100,000 per incident for bodily injury liability
- $50,000 per incident for property damage liability
- $500 deductibles for collision and comprehensive coverage
To generate pricing for particular rating factors, we adjusted the driving profile based on common pricing factors used by major car insurance companies. These factors include credit score, coverage level, driving record and others.
In some instances, average rates from Liberty Mutual were derived from internally sourced sales data.
USAA had the cheapest overall premiums for drivers in their 50s, with an average car insurance rate of just $82 a month. If you don't qualify for USAA coverage, the second-cheapest for 50-year-olds was Progressive, which costs $32 more per month than USAA.
Ready to start saving?
How your policy changes
In your fifties, you go through a lot of changes both in your personal life that reflects considerably on your insurance profile. Removing your kids from your insurance policy can have big implications as well as enable you to qualify for more discounts. Let's explore.
Removing your young drivers from your policy can be a huge money saver. Using the same methodology above, we also calculated what the difference would be if you were to remove a young driver from the policy: on average, removing a son or daughter from your policy will save you over $3,600 per year.
If, however, your child is still on your policy, we have some suggestions as well. Using a 17-year-old as our default profile, we examined which company was the cheapest for a family. USAA and Nationwide proved to be the most affordable options for family auto insurance. Here are our results.
AVERAGE 6-MONTH PREMIUMS FOR FAMILIES
|Company||Avg. 6 Mo. Premium||Avg. Monthly Premium|
Ways to save
Use your coverage conservatively
Keeping a good driving record is essential if you're looking to save. Most insurance experts advise policyholders to only file a claim if damages exceed your ability to pay out-of-pocket. Most companies and states will charge you for an at-fault claim for three to five years. Broken down below, you can see how much an at-fault accident will raise your rates over a three year period.
|Year after accident||Average annual premium|
|1 year later||$2,315|
|2 years later||$3,082|
|3 years later||$3,849|
As you can see, the surcharge for filing a claim increased the annual premium by over $2,300. If you've been in an accident and aren't sure of whether or not to file a claim, follow our guide below:
- Get an estimate for the repairs.
- Use our State of Insurance analysis to see how much an at-fault accident would raise your rate in your state. Consider that value over three years.
- Compare the out-of-pocket expenses to the rate increase plus your deductible. If it is cheaper overall to file a claim, do that.
Don't pay for insurance coverage you do not need
Unlike your home, a vehicle does not retain value. If your vehicle is worth less than $4,000, it's typically recommended to drop collision and comprehensive coverage. Both comprehensive and collision are only required if you're leasing or financing and are designed to protect the physical integrity of the vehicle. As such, they tend to be expensive coverages. Opting for liability-only can bring down your insurance costs significantly.
You can determine the value of your vehicle on Kelley Blue Book and NADA Online.
Usage-based insurance programs
Usage-based insurance programs are relatively new to the world of auto insurance. Simply put, usage-based insurance policies use in-car and mobile apps to monitor the way you drive in order to determine your premium. In theory, the safer of a driver you are, the less you will pay for auto insurance. Below are some estimates you can find from some top insurance providers in the US.
|Progressive Snapshot||Average of $130|
|Allsatte Drivewise||Average of 10-25%|
|State Farm Drive Safe & Save||Up to 15%|
|Nationwide SmartRide||Up to 40%|
|Liberty Mutual RightTrack||Average of 5-30%|
Outside of the above companies, consider additional providers such as Root and Metromile. Root only derives your car insurance premium based on your driving habits while Metromile is a pay-as-you-go form of auto insurance.
Distant student discount
If you want to keep your son or daughter on your policy while they are away for college, you can see some savings through a Distant Driver discount. This discount — also known as the "student away from home" discount — refers to students who live more than 100 miles away from home and have limited access to the insured vehicle. This discount, while it varies by company, could save you hundreds of dollars a year on your auto insurance premium. Learn more about student discounts on car insurance.
Mature driver training course discount
Those who are older than 55 years old are eligible for state-approved, senior driving courses that can earn you a discount depending on the insurance company. These courses include safe driving strategies, rules of the road, use of new technology, and the effects of health issues on driving ability. You can access these courses through AARP, AAA, and the National Safety Council but be sure to check with your insurance company prior to taking any courses, as some insurance companies might not recognize the discount.
If you’re starting your retirement early and are now driving less than you had before, speak with your insurance company about a possible low mileage driving discount. While the threshold for "low-mileage" varies by company, it can range between 7,500-15,000 per year.
You can find more information regarding low-mileage insurance options here.
Retired military discount
If you’re a retired military member, some insurance companies will offer you a discount. While it varies by company, GEICO and USAA are examples of providers that offer some cost-cutting discounts for retired military personnel.
Senior organization membership discount
Belonging to organizations like AARP can earn you a discount with some insurance companies.
If you’re over 50 years old, you can qualify for auto insurance through The Hartford Insurance Company. The Hartford offers a wide variety of perks to its members, including a discount if you’re already a member of AARP. Read our review of The Hartford.
Car insurance in your 50s: summarized
Once you enter your nifty fifties, key an eye out for extra savings. Look to take your college-aged children off your auto insurance policy and look into mature driving discounts. Although you're entering a time of insurance savings, you shouldn't be complacent with your company. Comparison shopping car insurance quotes every six months has continually proven to save money. Work with us to find out how much you could be saving on auto insurance.
Compare quotes from over 100 providers.
- Cheap Car Insurance for 17-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 19-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 20-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 21-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 23-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 24-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 25-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for 30-Year-Olds
- Cheap Car Insurance for Teen Drivers
- Cheap Car Insurance for Young Adult Drivers
About The Zebra
The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.
The Zebra’s insurance content is written and reviewed for accuracy by licensed insurance agents.
The Zebra’s insurance content is not subject to review or alteration by insurance companies or partners.
The Zebra’s editorial team operates independently of the company’s partnerships and commercialization interests, publishing unbiased information for consumer benefit.
The auto insurance rates published on The Zebra’s pages are based on a comprehensive analysis of car insurance pricing data, evaluating more than 83 million insurance rates from across the United States.