Your insurance requirements are unique and there isn’t a “one size fits all” solution to your needs. Consumers deserve flexible solutions for the right coverage at the lowest price that fits their lifestyles. This includes finding cheap car insurance.
Cheap Car Insurance Is Available
Before we describe the various types of car insurance, consider these tips for getting a cheap policy:
- Comparison shopping is essential – don’t buy into advertising hype
- Smaller local and regional insurers can save you money
- Some insurers provide numerous discounts to help you save money. The following discounts are popular:
- Members of AARP, AAA, NEA
- Multi-Line policy holders
- Good students
- Driver training
- Credit union members
- School payroll (where available)
All passenger vehicles must carry liability insurance. Liability insurance provides coverage when an accident occurs. It covers you or family members living in the same household who are driving either your car or someone else’s car with permission. This insurance also applies when another person is driving your car with your permission.
Policies set three limits on liability coverage. The first is the coverage limit per accident and per person for bodily injuries. The second limit is an overall cap on the amount paid out for all injuries by all people involved in the accident. The third limit is the maximum amount of property damage caused by an accident.
A complete policy provides liability compensation for the following:
- Property damages – covers the cost of replacement value or repair costs associated with property damage that’s your fault (subject to state regulations).
- Bodily injury – in the event of an at-fault accident, coverage for losses related to death or injuries sustained by other is provided. This includes medical expenses and loss of services.
Additional costs covered by liability insurance include first aid provided to others, bail bond costs and specified defense costs.
While liability insurance can protect you from catastrophic costs arising from a car accident, they can’t protect you from costly and time-consuming lawsuits. Some states have responded by adopting “no-fault” insurance laws in which each participant in a car accident is paid by her own insurance policy.
Costs covered include lost income, medical bills, household help and funeral expenses. However, no-fault insurance doesn’t pay for property damage or pain and suffering. Normally, you can’t sue others in no-fault states unless accident expenses exceed coverage.
Under Insured Motor Vehicle Coverage
Some cheap car insurances protect you from losses when an at-fault driver lacks adequate liability insurance. This coverage will pay the costs associated with death, injury and medical care. You and your (household) family members are covered by this insurance should an accident occur when you’re inside another vehicle at the time of the loss. Property damage, in certain states, can also be covered.
Uninsured Motor Vehicle Coverage
This provides coverage for you when you’re in a collision with at-fault driver without liability insurance or a hit and run driver. The insurance will cover costs associated with death, injury and medical care. As with the other types of insurance, same-resident family members are also covered if they’re in the car with you at the same time, or if you and your family members are in another car during the time of the loss.
Car insurance policies normally offer collision insurance, which pays for damages your car sustains in an accident. This coverage will offer protection should an insured vehicle collide with an inanimate object. It covers the cost to repair the insured vehicle up to its actual cost value minus the deductible.
While your state may not require you to own collision insurance, your bank or finance company will, if you’re financing or leasing your car. If your car’s damage exceeds a set amount, your policy will declare the car “totaled” and pay you a lump sum to replace the vehicle. If you rent a vehicle, you can purchase “collision damage waiver” which pays for collision damage not covered by your primary policy.
Your vehicle might sustain damages from incidents other than accidents. Comprehensive insurance covers vehicles for damages arising from fire, theft, natural disasters, falling objects and hitting animals. It’ll cover damages to the car body, glass and interior. Damage to the insured vehicle due to non-collision events (hail, falling rocks, vandalism, etc.) will be repaired up to the vehicle’s actual cash value, minus the deductible with this coverage. However, it doesn’t cover certain costs, including those arising from collisions, towing and replacement car rentals. Comprehensive insurance doesn’t cover the cost of roadside assistance, such as tire changes, battery services, delivery of fluids - water, oil or gas - and unlocking a car. States don’t require you to own comprehensive insurance.
Coverage for Medical Payments/Person Injury Protection
This insurance, indeterminate of fault, covers the cost of medical evaluations and procedures for injuries sustained by you and same-residence family member passengers. This coverage is also applicable should you be injured as a pedestrian.
Medical coverage includes:
- Ambulance charges
- Charges for surgical, medical and dental treatment
- Costs of hospital care and nursing
- Eyeglasses and contact lenses
- Funeral costs
- Additional coverage for income loss and/or loss of services
Emergency Road Service with Express Service
Cheap care insurance can include Emergency Road Service as well - if you experience an accident or breakdown, you won’t be stranded. A good roadside service program will provide:
- Lockout service
- Tire change
- Battery jump start
- Delivery of water, oil and gasoline
- Minor mechanical adjustments
Another item to look for in Emergency Road Service is 24/7 Express Service at no additional cost. Per the coverage limits of your Emergency Road Service Package, your policy should be billed directly.
During the period of time between a covered loss and repair, insurance will help cover the cost of a rental car so that you can continue to go about your daily activities. Read more about insurance options in our insurance guide.