Cheap Tennessee Car Insurance

Compare the best rates from 14 car insurance companies in Tennessee.

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Here's what you need to know when driving in Tennessee

Across the Volunteer State, there are 194,755 miles of road just waiting to be driven. We’ll get you prepped, then you take the wheel.

 


 

Cheap Car Insurance

What's the cheapest car insurance in Tennessee?
RankCompany NameAvg. Annual Premium
1Penn National$805
2Utica National$981
3USAA$1,112
4State Farm$1,158
5Direct General Insurance$1,194
6Erie$1,223
7Nationwide$1,292
8Westfield$1,389
9Progressive$1,393
10Tennessee Farmers$1,543
11Allied$1,573
12GEICO$1,663
13Encompass$1,695
14State Auto$1,719
15Cincinnati Insurance$1,739
16Safe Auto$1,822
17Celina Insurance Group$1,923
18SAFECO$1,941
19Allstate$2,297
20Grange Mutual$2,423
21Metropolitan$2,957

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Cheap Insurance for Good Drivers in Tennessee

Drivers with good driving records typically enjoy lower car insurance costs than drivers with histories of speeding tickets, at-fault accidents, or DUI citations. Unfortunately, Tennessee state drivers without a recent at-fault accident save only 26% on their car insurance premiums, on average — well below the US average of 32%. In addition to earning a cheaper premium for driving incident-free, you may qualify for a safe-driving bonus through your car insurance company. The amount of these discounts may vary, but they typically run between 5 and 10%.

Rating Factor$ Savings% Savings
No Traffic Tickets$23815.49%
No Accidents$46426.30%
Good Credit$1,37951.48%

Cheap Insurance for Young Drivers in Tennessee

Young drivers — aged between 16 and 25 — pay very high car insurance rates, with those aged 16-19 paying the most expensive premiums of all. Because of the risk presented by inexperienced drivers, teen drivers pay more than three times the national average for car insurance. In Tennessee, teen drivers pay insurance rates in line with the national average: $4,741 per year.

AgeAnnual Rate with ParentsAnnual Rate Alone
16$4,454$7,926
17$4,153$5,945
18$3,832$4,948
19$3,457$3,215

Cheap Car Insurance for Bad Drivers in Tennessee

If you have a clean driving record — no at-fault accidents, speeding tickets, DUIs, or other recent citations — you'll probably enjoy relatively cheap car insurance rates. Conversely, a bad driving record will cause your costs to skyrocket: car insurance premiums typically increase by 31% after a DUI, 26% after an at-fault accident, and 15% after a speeding ticket in Tennessee. The post-citation penalties assessed by car insurance companies in Tennessee are slightly more forgiving than nationwide averages. If you have a clean driving history, be sure to inquire about your insurance company's safe driver discount.

Rating FactorAnnual Rate% Increase
At-Fault Accident$1,76426.30%
DUI$1,90331.71%
Speeding Violation$1,53815.49%
Bad Credit$2,67951.48%

What are the Best Car Insurance Companies in Tennessee?

Every auto insurer advertises its low premiums. But as with any product, the cheapest car insurance option isn't always the best choice. Considering what's at stake, it's worth doing your research to discover an auto insurance policy that insures your car completely after a collision. Find a great value, rather than settling for the most affordable auto insurance in your state.

Compare top insurance companies' financial strength and claims satisfaction ratings to better predict the level of service you'll receive. Claims satisfaction — measured by J.D. Power — is ranked on a scale of 2 to 5, with 5 being "among the best" and 2 being "the rest." Financial strength — calculated by A.M. Best and running from "Poor" to "Superior" — evaluates an insurer's financial strength and ability to meet its policy and contractual obligations.

Insurance CompanyClaims Satisfaction (J.D. Power)Financial Strength (A.M. Best)
Allstate3Superior
Celina InsuranceNot RatedExcellent
ChubbNot RatedSuperior
Cincinnati InsuranceNot RatedSuperior
Direct GeneralNot RatedExcellent
Erie5Superior
Farmers3Excellent
GEICO3Superior
Liberty Mutual3Excellent
MetLife3Superior
Nationwide4Superior
Progressive3Superior
State Farm3Superior
USAA5Superior
WestfieldNot RatedExcellent

 

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What is the Best Auto Insurance Coverage in Tennessee?

The minimum insurance requirement in Tennessee is $25,000 Bodily Injury per person, $50,000 Bodily Injury per accident, and $15,000 Property Damage per accident.

If you opt for the minimum allowed coverage in Tennessee, you can expect to pay a mean of $500 annually. This is cheaper than the national average by 24%. If you choose better auto insurance coverage, you can choose a policy with comprehensive and collision coverage, protecting against damages caused by car-vs.-car collisions, theft, or weather incidents. Better coverage has a price: in Tennessee, a comprehensive policy with a $1,000 deductible costs $1,153, 131% more than basic coverage. For comprehensive insurance coverage with a $500 deductible, expect to pay 163% more than for liability-only coverage.

Compare average expenditures for liability-only and comprehensive auto insurance levels below.

LocationLiability-OnlyComprehensive — $1,000 DeductibleComprehensive — $500 Deductible
Tennessee$499.93$1,152.75$1,315.96
National Average$657.66$1,241.26$1,397.94

Car Insurance Laws

What are the state minimum insurance requirements in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, the minimum coverage requirement is liability with limits of:

  • Bodily Injury $25,000 per person
  • Bodily Injury $50,000 per accident
  • Property Damage $15,000 per accident

Optional coverage in Tennessee (which varies by carrier) includes:

  • Comprehensive
  • Collision
  • Loan/Lease Payoff
  • Medical Payments
  • Rental Car Reimbursement
  • Roadside Assistance
  • Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury
  • Uninsured Motorist Property Damage

Additional resources on coverage requirements in this state:

Tennessee Car Insurance FAQs

Is car insurance required in Tennessee?

Yes — car insurance is a legal requirement in the state of Tennessee.

When did car insurance become mandatory in Tennessee?

Auto insurance became compulsory in Tennessee in 1927. Tennessee started tracking uninsured drivers digitally in 2016.

What percentage of people in Tennessee don't have car insurance?

Approximately 20 percent of Tennesseean drivers don't have car insurance. This makes Tennessee one of the least-insured states in the US.

How much does car insurance cost in Tennessee cities?

Car insurance companies calculate your rate based on many factors, location of the vehicle being an important one. The cheapest car insurance is found in Johnson City, Tennessee, and the most expensive in Memphis, Tennessee.

RankCityAvg. Annual Premium
1Memphis$1,949
2Bartlett$1,804
3Germantown$1,775
4Collierville$1,731
5Jackson$1,615
6Nashville$1,597
7Oak Ridge$1,575
8Columbia$1,559
9Knoxville$1,547
10Clarksville$1,539
11La Vergne$1,534
12Spring Hill$1,526
13Brentwood$1,508
14Smyrna$1,503
15Maryville$1,499
16Murfreesboro$1,485
17Franklin$1,483
18Chattanooga$1,482
19Cookeville$1,474
20Hendersonville$1,471
21Gallatin$1,466
22Morristown$1,462
23Cleveland$1,408
24Kingsport$1,349
25Johnson City$1,313

Recent Tennessee Car Insurance Questions and Answers

Can an insurance company refuse payment for an accident claim by their client if I'm unable to pay their full set amount?

The full amount of damages is to be settled at the time of loss. The insurer giving you a payment option versus taking you to court is already a courtesy they are offering you.

If my car is determined a total loss in an accident, will my gap insurance cover the down payment used to secure my loan?

Gap insurance will only cover what is left on your loan after an insurance company pays out. Gap coverage is best purchased if you are going to have a difference between the loan amount and the value of the vehicle.

Will a non-owners policy cover medical for the person I hit after an accident?

A non-owner's policy will have a signed endorsement on it stating the insurer will not cover any claim that results from a vehicle the named insured owns or is registered to. Many will also state if it is part of the household, they will not cover it.

My step-daughter moved to Tennessee three months ago and is still on her mother's Florida auto policy. Is this legal?

You are correct to be concerned. Car insurance will not transfer from state to state.


Driving Laws

Tennessee Texting and Driving Laws

  1. Ban on all cell phones for school bus drivers
  2. Ban on all cell phones for drivers with Learner or Intermediate Licenses
  3. Ban on text messaging for all drivers

Tennessee DUI Laws

Tennessee has a 10-year DUI lookback period. Multiple DUI offenses within 10 years subjects violators to increased penalties and fines.

In addition, penalties are enhanced for any DUI leading to an injury or death or for a DUI in which a passenger is under 18 years old. Penalties are also enhanced for any DUI offense in which the driver has a BAC of 0.20% or higher.

First-time DUI offenses in Tennessee lead to:

  • 48 hours to 11 months and 29 days in jail
  • $350 to $1,500 in fines
  • License revocation for one year
  • Must install and use an ignition interlock device
  • Must participate in an alcohol and drug treatment program
  • Must pay restitution, if applicable

How Do Tickets Impact Tennessee Auto Insurance Rates?

If you receive a ticket or citation, your auto insurance costs will probably go up. By how much depends on the violation, your insurer's pricing standards, and differing local insurance regulations. That's why tickets may have a different impact on insurance in your state compared to the national average.

Below is a look at typical auto insurance rates in Tennessee after some common violations.

ViolationAvg. Annual Auto Insurance Rate% Insurance Rate Increase$ Insurance Rate Increase
Hit and Run$2,16051%$733
Refused Breathalyzer/Chemical Test$2,07545%$648
DUI$2,07545%$648
Racing$2,24757%$820
Reckless Driving$2,13550%$708
Driving with a Suspended License$2,21255%$785
At-Fault Accident$1,95237%$526
Driving with an Open Container$1,86331%$436
Operating a Vehicle Without Permission$1,74122%$315
Passing a School Bus$1,89833%$471
Improper Passing$1,73021%$303
Following Too Closely$1,73021%$303
Speeding$1,74422%$317
Failure to Stop at a Red Light$1,73021%$303
Illegal Turn$1,73021%$303
Driving Wrong Way/Wrong Lane$1,73021%$303
Failure to Yield$1,73021%$303
Speeding in a School Zone$1,72721%$300
Driving Too Slowly$1,72721%$300
Distracted Driving$1,70319%$276
Driving with Expired Registration$1,59612%$169
Failure to Show Documents$1,59612%$169
Not-at-Fault Accident$1,4612%$34
Failure to Use Child Safety Restraint$1,5589%$131
Failure to Wear a Seat Belt$1,5307%$103
Driving Without Lights$1,5307%$103

Tennessee Tour Guide Scholarship

At The Zebra, we know better than most just what a pain buying car insurance can be. We also know that students suffer from higher-than-average policy rates. Talk about a double-whammy. That’s why, this year, we’ve decided to continue The Zebra’s annual scholarship with the goal of helping to alleviate the financial pressures of college-bound students in the Tennessee area, while also getting an insider view of the Volunteer State.

Prompt

So, students, we want to see your favorite road trip destination(s) in your state— from your unique perspective. If it makes sense to hit the open road and be our virtual tour guide, that's great! But there are no limits to what we're looking for: a narrated animation, a slideshow of memorabilia, an illustrated map of the best roadside attractions on the way. This is a chance for you to showcase any place you love in as an original way as possible.

How do I choose a location?

The length of the road trip to your feature destination is inconsequential. So if you have an awesome spot in mind that's just two miles from home, we want to see it.

Qualifications

Applicants must be currently enrolled at or planning to attend a four-year university, graduate program, community college, or trade school located in the continental United States. Upon notification, winner(s) must supply a current proof of enrollment or letter of acceptance.

How to Apply
1. Create a video

Your original video should not exceed 2 minutes

2. Post online

The video must be hosted on YouTube or Vimeo

3. Submit by email

Email your submission to scholarships@thezebra.com

4. Please include...

your name, address, and phone number when you submit

Details
Award

Selected winner(s) will be awarded a check for $1,000

Deadline

Applications must be received by 11:59 p.m. CST on December 31st, 2020

Notification

Winner(s) will be selected and notified by email by January 31st, 2021

Judges: The Zebra

The winner will be selected based on creativity in the content and presentation

*Upon notification, winner(s) must also supply a current proof of enrollment at a four-year university, graduate program, community college, or trade school located in the continental United States.


Fine Print

By participating, entrants represent that the video submitted is their sole and original work and does not infringe the intellectual property rights of any other party. In other words, no copyrighted music or images may be used.

Employees of The Zebra and their immediate family members are not eligible to participate in the contest.

Written credits for any technical or talent positions (e.g., editor, director, actors) should be included with your submission, along with any sources used to create the video.