Cheap Car Insurance for New Drivers

Whether you're a teen or a late bloomer to the world of driving, we've got you covered.

How much is car insurance for a new driver?

New drivers are among the most expensive drivers to insure. Thanks to a lack of driving experience, they tend to file more claims and receive more citations. Since your insurance company uses your driving record to determine your premiums, being seen as a risky driver will lead to higher rates. Still, it's possible to get cheap car insurance as a new driver. Let’s break it down!

How to get cheap auto insurance without prior coverage

  1. What do we mean by “new” driver?
  2. How much do new drivers pay for car insurance?
  3. What are some ways to save on new driver auto insurance?
  4. Takeaways

For how long are you considered a new driver?

A "new driver" is defined as someone with no driving history or insurance record. This can include newly licensed teenagers, people who got their licenses later in life, or foreign drivers new to the US. Each of these drivers will face a similar challenge when it comes to finding cheap car insurance.

How much does new driver auto insurance cost?

If you're a new driver between the ages of 16 and 19, expect your premium to be three times more expensive than the national average. If, however, you're returning to the marketplace after a car insurance coverage lapse, your insurance history will help to determine your premium. All other characteristics constant, the longer you have car insurance — and the higher a level of insurance you carry — the cheaper your rates will be.

  • Average premium for a driver without an insurance record: $1,460
  • Average premium for drivers aged 16 to 19: $4,957

An incomplete or interrupted insurance history will cost you $137 per year, versus the staggering $3,274 penalty a new young driver would face.

How to save on car insurance as a new driver

Stay on your parents' auto insurance

If you’re a new teen driver, the best way to get cheaper car insurance is to stay on your parents' plan. Your parents' insurance background and driving history will probably earn lower rates than you'd find on your own. By staying on your parents' auto insurance policy as long as possible, you can save you thousands of dollars per year.

Look for discounts

Multi-policy discounts

You can become eligible for a multi-policy discount by carrying multiple policies with one insurance company. Common policy combinations are home-and-auto or renters-and-auto. These discounts may be applied to both policies. The discount you receive may vary depending on your coverage combination. For example, you'll receive more of a discount for bundling homeowners and auto policies than by adding a renters' insurance policy to your auto coverage. The logic is simple: a homeowners policy brings in much more revenue for an insurer than does renter's insurance.

Savings for RentersSavings for Homeowners

Multi-car discount

Similar to a multi-policy discount, a multi-car discount refers to insuring more than one car with a single company. The discount is automatically added either at policy inception — if two cars were insured from the start — or upon addition of a second vehicle to the policy.

Defensive driving discount

This discount entails taking a defensive driving course and presenting your insurance company with proof in the form of a receipt or transcript. The logic behind this discount is clear: defensive driving classes make you a safer driver, which makes you less risky, i.e., cheaper, to insure. Pretty straightforward!

Equipment discount

If your car comes with an anti-theft device — or if you utilize a service like Lojack — your insurance company may throw in a discount. The discount tends to be smaller than a multi-policy or defensive driver bonus, but every little bit helps. Anti-theft devices are commonly built into modern vehicles. Just be sure any security devices are taken into account when your quote is generated.

Safety/Anti-Theft DeviceAverage Annual PremiumDiscount
Passive Disabling Device$1,312$10
Tracking Device$1,314$9
Audible Alarm$1,317$6
Electronic Stability Control$1,318$5

Good driver discount

This discount is available if you have a clean driving record — meaning no accidents or citations. This valuable discount is often added to your policy when your Motor Vehicle Report is pulled at the inception of your policy. If you're convinced you have a clean driving record and are not receiving a discount, contact your insurance company and inquire about a good driver discount..

Preferred payment discount

This discount refers to the manner in which you make your insurance payments. If you pay your entire premium up front, you are often given a discount — usually the highest preferred payment discount. If you set up automatic payments from a bank account, you can often receive an “EFT discount.” EFT stands for electronic funds transfer. If you are able to pay up front or via automatic payments, this is a discount worth considering.


EFT paymentPay in Full payment

Profession/occupation discount

This discount goes by several names, but the idea is simple. Some insurance companies will give you a discount based on your occupation. Statistically, occupations such as teachers, physicians, or police officers are less likely to file a claim. An insurer will typically require proof of profession — a photocopy of your degree is a common request.

Good student discount

If you're still under 25 and have the grades (typically a 3.0 GPA or better), speak with your insurance company about a good student discount. Normally, they’ll ask for a transcript every 6 to 12 months as proof of your continued good standing.

Chose a moderately priced vehicle

The value and other characteristics of your vehicle contribute to your insurance premium. Picking a luxury vehicle comes with an additional cost — higher insurance premiums. This is especially true for new drivers. An inexperienced driver with a new pickup truck or a Mercedes-Benz is a major liability to an insurance company. If you're a new driver looking to save money, get your feet wet with an older vehicle.



Pick the best insurance company for new drivers

At the end of the day, all the discounts in the world won’t matter if you choose the wrong company. Some insurance companies will see your age and driving background as too great of a liability and apply exorbitant premiums. Shop around every six months to ensure you’re getting the best rate for your driving profile.

What to keep in mind as a new driver

Being a new driver isn't a death sentence when it comes to getting car insurance. It can be expensive, and you might struggle to find an insurance company that will cover you without charging an arm and a leg, but be sure to look for discounts. Most importantly, shop around for car insurance every six months to ensure you're getting the best rate.

If you're an experienced driver looking for affordable rates, don't be afraid to explore your options. Just be sure to find a new policy before your existing agreement expires: there's no car insurance lapse grace period.

Shop for car insurance today — compare rates!

Recent Questions:

Cheap Car Insurance for New Drivers

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Cheap Car Insurance for New Drivers

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