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Multiple-driver car insurance: basics and background

If you share vehicles in a multi-driver household, it's worth keeping in mind some best practices for car insurance for multiple drivers. Let's dive into the details to understand how additional drivers affect your policy, available discounts, and where to find the cheapest multiple-driver auto insurance options.


Can multiple drivers share car insurance?

Yes. As long as all drivers are listed on the policy and someone pays the bills, you shouldn’t have a problem sharing car insurance with multiple drivers. Your monthly premium will reflect the added risk of multiple drivers using one vehicle — so you'll most likely pay more than you would for a single-driver policy. However, a multiple-driver policy is usually cheaper than purchasing two individual auto insurance policies.

If one of the drivers using the vehicle doesn’t reside in the household, you can add them to the policy as a “non-resident driver.” This means someone on the policy doesn’t live in the listed residence but uses the vehicle frequently. While the exact definition of “frequently” may vary, it’s typically used to describe a driver who uses a car more than 12 times per year.


How does one driver’s ticket or claim affect shared car insurance rates?

If one driver on the policy gets into an accident or receives a ticket, the entire premium will increase. This isn't meant to punish the safe drivers on the policy, but to reflect the increased risk presented by the policy as a whole. Because an insurance company can’t discern between drivers on a shared policy, it applies a blanket rate increase.

If you decide to close the multi-driver policy and purchase car insurance on your own, your new premium should not reflect the accidents or citations caused by the other driver. Violations and insurance claims are connected to you via a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) — a granular report connected to your driving record and used to calculate your personal premium.

If you feel you are paying a penalty for violations not caused by you, look to your MVR If any claim or violation is being tied to you that you did not cause, look to your Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) or MVR for details.

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What are the cheapest insurance companies for multiple drivers

In order to find which is the cheapest company for multiple drivers, we created a user profile and compared rates across 5 zip codes in the US. Using a married couple with two vehicles, we discovered that Geico and Progressive were the cheapest companies for our user profile.

Average annual premiums for multiple drivers
Company Average Premium
State Farm $3,932
Allstate $2,274
Geico $1,302
Progressive $1,492
Liberty Mutual $2,156

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.

Use the above rates as a jumping-off point before comparing insurance companies to find the ideal policy for you. The easiest way to get free online car insurance quotes is to use The Zebra's auto insurance comparison app.

Comparing your car insurance options is quick, simple and hassle-free.

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Best practices

A car insurance policy for multiple drivers isn't much different than a single-driver policy. As long as each driver is added to the policy and someone pays the bills, you shouldn't run into issues with your insurance company. The only unique attribute of multi-driver auto insurance is how every driver’s history will affect the policy. Because insurance companies can’t compartmentalize risk distribution between individual drivers on a policy, your rates could rise if one driver exhibits reckless behavior. Rest assured, however, their driving record won’t follow you if you decide to split the policy up in the future.

Every driver's history will affect the policy; your rates will rise if one driver exhibits reckless behavior.

Listing multiple drivers on a single policy will generally be cheaper than maintaining two separate insurance policies. Many insurance companies provide a “multiple drivers” discount, rewarding you for adding an extra line of business to your policy. The same goes for insuring multiple cars, or adding a renters or homeowners policy.


Car insurance for multiple drivers FAQs

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What documents are required when adding a driver to a policy that already exists?

Depending on the insurance company you use, adding and dropping drivers can be done online or over the phone with your insurance agent. You will need to have certain information handy in order to officially add them as a driver:

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Gender
  • Driver’s license number
  • Occupation
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Is car insurance cheaper with multiple drivers?

It is cheaper to have multiple drivers and/or vehicles on one policy than it is to enroll in two separate insurance policies. With more than one driver or vehicle, your insurance company may reward you with a "multi-vehicle" or "multi-drivers" discount, a common discount opportunity available across insurance companies. 

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How many drivers can you have listed on your insurance?

This depends on your insurer. Most companies allow up to a specific amount of drivers or vehicles on one policy. Typically, this number is four each but can vary from one company to another. For more information, contact your insurance provider.

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Ava Lynch photo
Ava LynchSenior Analyst

Ava joined The Zebra as a writer and licensed insurance agent in 2016. She now works as a senior analyst, providing insights and data analysis as one of The Zebra's property and casualty insurance experts.

Ava’s insurance career began as an agent with Farmers Insurance. Over the years, she has become an authority in all things property and casualty insurance, helping her to write informative guides for shoppers.

Ava’s work has been cited in publications such as InvestopediaThe BalanceMoney.comLiberty Mutual, U.S. News & World Report, GasBuddy, Car and Driver and Yahoo! Finance.

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.