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USAA or GEICO: Which company is best for you?

USAA and GEICO have overall positive reputations and are among the most popular insurance companies in the United States. USAA policies are only available to members of the armed forces and certain family members. Membership is also required before you can purchase a policy. GEICO is also a popular company with nationwide brand recognition and claims second place in market share for auto insurance.

Both companies have coverage options that will satisfy the needs of most customers, and prices that are — at least on average — quite affordable. Have a look at our in-depth comparison to see which company comes out on top.

USAA car insurance

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5 Rating from The Zebra Question mark icon

USAA is unique in that customers must be in the armed forces or be close family members. The company has many insurance options that can be paired with your auto policy. Membership also allows access to other benefits, like banking services. In terms of market share, USAA comes in fifth place.

In general, USAA receives stellar ratings from customers and third-party rating agencies alike, including the top score in The Zebra Customer Satisfaction Survey. If membership is an option for you, the company is definitely worth looking into.

Pros Cons
  • Affordable rates
  • Great customer satisfaction scores
  • Other membership perks
  • Eligibility limited to those in the armed forces
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GEICO car insurance

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5 Rating from The Zebra Question mark icon

GEICO is one of the most recognizable insurers in the country and, as of 2020, has the second-largest share of the auto insurance market. Among comparable major companies, GEICO generally receives positive customer satisfaction ratings. We also found that it offers some of the most affordable rates compared to other insurers.

Pros Cons
  • Affordable rates for most
  • Wide-ranging coverage options
  • Great customer satisfaction scores
  • Lack of local agents                                          
Learn more

Which company comes out on top?

USAA


While not all customers will be eligible for USAA's coverage, those who are can expect affordable rates and all-around great customer service. However, even those eligible may still find GEICO to be a good option with similarly budget-friendly premiums.


USAA vs. GEICO: car insurance rate comparison

Car insurance rates are determined by a number of factors, including where you live, your driving history and even your credit score (a factor in almost all states). Both USAA and GEICO weigh these factors differently, meaning that you are very likely to get a different quote from each company.

To give you a sense of how USAA and GEICO insurance rates compare rates, we've put together average rates based on a few different factors. Have a look at the figures below to get a sense of which company could be most affordable for you.

Cheapest average rates medal
Cheapest average rates

GEICO and USAA are both affordable options, coming in at $94 and $106 per month respectively.


USAA vs. GEICO: pricing by credit score

For drivers with very poor credit, GEICO could be the best option for you. Typically, GEICO offers more affordable premiums than USAA for drivers with credit scores of 579 or less. But for those with Fair to Exceptional credit, our data indicate that USAA would be a more affordable option. View common insurance costs by credit tier for GEICO and USAA:

 
RATES BY CREDIT LEVEL: GEICO VS. USAA
Credit level USAA avg. annual premium GEICO avg. annual premium
Very Poor (300-579) $2,682 $2,051
Fair (580-669) $1,247 $1,358
Good (670-739) $1,057 $1,485
Very Good (740-799) $910 $1,120
Exceptional (800-850) $840 $1,064

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 vs. GEICO: rates for high-risk drivers

If you have an at-fault accident, speeding violation, reckless driving violation or DUI on your driving record, USAA could be a better choice than GEICO. Every car insurance company prices policies differently after a violation, so don't be afraid to shop around to understand which insurer suits you.

 

RATES BY CITATION: GEICO VS. USAA
Violation USAA avg. annual premium GEICO avg. annual premium
At-fault accident (damage < $1,000) $1,304 $1,857
At-fault accident (damage > $1,000) $947 $1,580
DUI/DWI $1,952 $2,550
Reckless driving $1,472 $2,238
Speeding ticket $1,124 $1,395

USAA vs. GEICO: rates by age

Auto insurance companies use a driver's age as an indicator of potential risk and price policies accordingly. Car insurance is commonly priciest for young drivers — due to their relative inexperience compared to older drivers. Because every car insurance company rates age brackets in a different way, it's worth shopping around and finding the best rate for you.

As a general rule, teen drivers should choose USAA before GEICO: USAA offers average yearly savings of $644, compared to GEICO. USAA was also cheapest for drivers of all ages.

 

RATES BY AGE: GEICO VS. USAA
Age bracket USAA avg. annual premium GEICO avg. annual premium
Teens $2,864 $3,508
20s $1,261 $1,438
30s $963 $1,438
40s $957 $1,189
50s $889 $1,160
60s $845 $1,065

 

Cost aside, USAA and GEICO each carry pros and cons, including discount programs, customer satisfaction ratings, add-ons and financial stability. Dive into the data before making your decision and be sure to shop around and compare rates before purchasing a policy.

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Ratings comparison: USAA vs. GEICO

Both USAA and GEICO are among the highest-rated car insurance companies and continue to be very popular options. Third-party ratings and customer satisfaction scores are often quite high for each company. Compare recent ratings from each company below, including scores for financial strength, customer complaints and overall customer satisfaction.

USAA VS. GEICO
Ratings comparison USAA GEICO
Financial strength (A.M. Best) Superior Superior
JD Power (claims satisfaction) Excellent Average
JD Power (customer satisfaction) Excellent Average
NAIC rating Excellent Average
The Zebra's editorial review score 5/5 5/5
The Zebra's Customer Satisfaction Survey 4.6 4.4/5

Which company scores best?

USAA


As one of the top-rated insurance companies in America, it's no surprise that USAA scores better than GEICO. However, GEICO still maintains a high level of customer satisfaction and could be worth looking into if you don't qualify for USAA.


The Zebra's Customer Satisfaction Survey

To get a better sense of how the overall customer experience, The Zebra conducted an independent survey taking a look at many different factors. Below you'll find each company's results.

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USAA

USAA topped the list as the best auto insurance carrier with an overall score of 4.6, winning in every category except Online Experience. Here are some other highlights:

  • Top-rated overall
  • Highly rated by both male and female respondents
  • Highly rated by drivers in all age groups
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GEICO

GEICO came in fourth place overall with a score of 4.4. Below are some highlights from the survey.

  • GEICO placed first for Online Satisfaction (website and apps)
  • Scored well for Customer Service and Willingness to Recommend
  • Viewed most favorably by drivers in the Boomer generation

The Zebra Customer Satisfaction Survey methodology

Findings are based on an online quantitative survey of 4,134 current U.S. auto and home insurance customers, with Census-balanced sampling by age, gender and region. Categories with n=<20 responses are considered insufficient sample size and are not reported. This survey was developed by The Zebra and executed by independent research firm Maru/Blue in 2021.


USAA vs. GEICO: discount comparison

Discounts can be a good way for eligible drivers to save money on their premiums. While most discounts are quite small, they can add up to sizable savings. See each company's available discount selections below.

USAA VS. GEICO: DISCOUNT COMPARISON
Discount comparison USAA GEICO
Good student
Multiple policies
Multiple vehicles
Anti-theft device(s)
Anti-lock brake system
Air bags
Good driver
Defensive driver
Student away at school
Driver training
Green vehicles
Affinity membership alum
Advanced purchase
Pay in full
Home owner
eSign or ePay
Telematics
New Vehicle
Annual Mileage
Military
Continuous coverage

In addition to the discounts listed above, GEICO also offers a senior citizen discount to qualifying drivers. USAA offers fewer discounts on car insurance but could still offer a lower rate despite this shortcoming. If unsure, ask a representative about which discounts for which you may qualify.


Telematics options: USAA vs. GEICO

Telematics programs utilize technology to help track your driving habits and set a rate appropriate for the amount of risk that you pose. For safe drivers, this can translate to savings. Both USAA and GEICO offer telematics options. Have a look at the options available from both carriers below.

USAA logo
USAA SafePilot

SafePilot offers customers the chance to have their driving habits monitored in exchange for cheaper car insurance rates. A discount of 10% is offered just for signing up, with up to 30% savings possible for safe drivers at policy renewal.

GEICO logo
GEICO DriveEasy

GEICO Drive Easy Pro is an app that tracks your driving habits to better assess your level of risk. For safe drivers, this can sometimes result in cheaper rates. Currently, the app is rated on app stores at 3.5 out of 5 stars (both Google Play and the Apple Store).

Zebra Tip: Explore telematics offerings from each company if you are a safe driver


Both USAA's SafePilot and GEICO's DriveEasy Pro are good options overall. In fact, the two companies scored second and first place respectively for best online experience in The Zebra Customer Satisfaction Survey, indicating good app and website experiences from users.


Roadside assistance: USAA vs. GEICO

For those who find themselves on the side of the road after a breakdown, a roadside assistance program can be a blessing. It's a great safety net to have in case of emergencies. Below you can find a quick rundown of the roadside assistance options offered by both USAA and GEICO.

USAA

USAA offers the following roadside assistance services to policyholders:

  • Towing
  • Flat tire changing
  • Fuel delivery
  • Jump-starts
  • Lock-out service
  • Stuck vehicle assistance

Another perk of USAA membership is that these services are also available at reduced rates to policyholders without roadside assistance on their policy.

GEICO

GEICO's roadside assistance offers the following benefits:

  • Towing
  • Jump starts
  • Tire changes (when you have a spare)
  • Up to $100 for lockout services
  • Fuel delivery
  • Winching for stuck vehicles (depending on severity)
tow truck

USAA vs. GEICO: home insurance

As with auto coverage, both USAA and GEICO have home insurance options that are similarly popular. GEICO offers homeowners insurance through a number of partner companies instead of under its own banner. Below, we take a look at how the two companies compare.

USAA homeowners insurance review

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5 Rating from The Zebra Question mark icon

Similar to USAA's car insurance, customer eligibility is limited to those in the armed forces and their families. The company's coverage is highly rated and quite popular — in fact, it's the third most popular option for homeowners insurance in the U.S. Most customers will find the coverage satisfactory for their needs, and policies can be amended with a good number of add-ons and opportunities to save with discounts.

USAA topped every category in the homeowners portion of The Zebra Customer Satisfaction Survey, indicating a strong focus on the customer and affirming its esteemed standing in the home insurance market.

  • The Zebra Customer Satisfaction Survey — 4.6/5: USAA topped every category of our homeowners customer satisfaction survey.
  • J.D. Power Rating — Among the Best: J.D. Power rates USAA above average in claims and customer service satisfaction.
  • Financial strength — Superior: A "Superior" financial strength rating by A.M. Best shows USAA's ability to pay out claims is solid.
  • NAIC Rating — Excellent: Regarding USAA, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) received relatively few customer complaints when compared to the market median.
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GEICO homeowners review

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4 Rating from The Zebra Question mark icon

While not as large a portion of its business as auto insurance, homeowners coverage remains an important part of GEICO's product offerings. The company partners with many insurers throughout the nation to provide home insurance. Still, customer service scores and third-party ratings remain high, and home insurance policies can easily be bundled with auto insurance.

  • The Zebra Customer Satisfaction Survey – 4.4/5: GEICO's home insurance coverage earned a relatively high score in The Zebra's 2021 customer satisfaction survey.
  • Claims satisfaction (J.D. Power) – Not rated 
  • Customer satisfaction (J.D. Power) – Not rated 
  • Financial strength (AM Best) – Superior: GEICO received an 'A' rating from AM Best, underlining its solid financial standing. 
  • NAIC Rating – Excellent: The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) received fewer customer complaints than average regarding GEICO homeowners insurance in 2020.
Learn more

Which company comes out on top?

USAA


USAA has a strong reputation for taking care of its policyholders. Paired with affordable rates and a robust selection of coverage options, USAA is a great choice for homeowners insurance for eligible customers.


USAA vs. GEICO: home insurance rate comparison

USAA's average homeowners insurance rate is around $127 per month. Because GEICO does not underwrite its own homeowners policies, it's more difficult to provide accurate rate data.

Similar to auto insurance quotes, each company has its own underwriting methods for homeowners insurance. This means your rates are highly likely to vary from one company to another. Learn more about the factors insurers use to price your home insurance quote.

Things such as your claims history, crime rates in your area and your proximity to fire stations can have a big impact on how much you pay. As with car insurance shopping, we suggest getting quotes from many different companies when looking for home insurance policies.

Cheapest average rates
Cheapest average rates

Based on the data we have available, USAA has the cheapest home insurance rates at around $127 per month.

Homeowners insurance data methodology

The homeowners insurance rates published in this guide are based on The Zebra's analysis of the cost of home insurance in every U.S. ZIP code. These rates are based on a sample user profile: a 45-year-old married homeowner living in a 2,500-square-foot single-story home built in 2011 with these coverage levels:

  • $200,000 for the dwelling
  • $20,000 for other structures
  • $100,000 for personal property
  • $100,000 for personal liability
  • $1,000 deductible

To generate pricing for particular rating factors, we adjusted the homeowner profile based on common pricing factors used by major home insurance companies. These factors include location, coverage limits, claims record and others.


USAA vs. GEICO: homeowners discount comparison

Homeowners insurance discounts can be a good way to bring down your premiums. To be eligible for such discounts, policyholders must meet certain criteria. See how the homeowners discounts from USAA and GEICO stack up below.

USAA VS. GEICO: HOMEOWNERS DISCOUNT COMPARISON
Discount comparison USAA GEICO
Claims free
Recent home buyer
Multi-policy
Early signing
Newer/more durable roof
Protective devices (smoke/burglar alarms, etc.)
Paid in full
Early signing
Auto pay
Newer home
Renovated home
Senior citizen

It's important to note that there may be more options for discounts through GEICO's partner companies. Be sure to verify with each insurer that you're getting all of the discounts you qualify for before finalizing your policy.


Other insurance products and bundling options

USAA and GEICO both offer multiple lines of insurance. Oftentimes, these separate insurance lines can be bundled together, allowing you to streamline your insurance policies and potentially leading to savings. While shopping for auto or home coverage, you may want to check into coverages such as life, pet or small business insurance available from USAA and GEICO. Take a look at the additional coverage types available from each company below.

USAA VS. GEICO: OTHER INSURANCE PRODUCTS
Other products USAA GEICO
Boat insurance
Condo insurance
Life insurance
Homeowners insurance
Travel trailer insurance
Renters insurance
RV insurance
Motorcycle insurance
Mobile home insurance
Umbrella
ATV insurance
Pet insurance
Commercial insurance

Find the best insurance policy for your needs.

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RECENT QUESTIONS

Our son-in-law is a USAA member (Navy). Can we join also?

Parents are not eligible for USAA. USAA eligibility flows "downstream" — so descendants, i.e.
Sep 8, 2019 Greenville, CA

Insurance increase due to increased cost of parts and labor?

There's a couple of things to look at here. First, parts and labor for BMWs are typically higher than other vehicles and are considered more expensive in general to maintain.
Jan 28, 2018 Memphis, Tennessee

I have two not at-fault accidents

Because this is another driver's fault, you would be handling the claim through their claims department. I recommend getting an estimate from a shop you trust and have read reviews for in order to compare the estimates.
Mar 3, 2018 Summerfield, Florida

Can I avoid paying for insurance for my car while I am away for active duty military leave?

The reason banks require comprehensive and collision coverage on a vehicle in storage is because it could be damaged by a fire or a collapse of the building in which it is stored. In addition to the bank, Massachusetts requires any vehicle registered in the state to also be insured.
Aug 28, 2017 Dartmouth, MA

Ross Martin photo
Ross MartinManager, Content Quality

Ross joined The Zebra as a writer and researcher in 2019. As a licensed insurance agent, he specializes in writing insurance content to help shoppers make informed decisions.

Ross holds a master's degree from Royal Holloway, University of London and has a background in copywriting and education. As a former teacher, he applies his educational skills to explain insurance concepts in ways that consumers can understand.

Ross's work has been cited by The New York Times, AxiosInvestopedia, The Simple DollarThe BalanceCar and Driver and Fox Business. He has been quoted by CNET, I Drive Safely and Kin Insurance

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.