Car Insurance Discount Secrets

Common car insurance discounts will save you money.

Insurance companies and their agents are not quick to disclose specific insurance discounts available to you. Why would they want to discount money out of their profit? So the old saying is true, “If you don’t ask, you don’t receive.”

As long as you know what to ask for, by law, an insurance agent must disclose if discounts are available to you.

Popular Car Insurance Discounts

Each insurance company has different discounts and different underwriting guidelines. It’s beneficial for you to comparison shop to ensure you receive the best rate.

  • Auto insurance should be a forethought and not an afterthought.  Knowing how much your monthly insurance payment will be upfront will help you budget what your overall monthly expense will be for your vehicle.

Car Insurance Discounts for Vehicle Equipment

Driving a safe car will benefit you by reducing your risk of getting into an accident or decreasing your chances of serious injury in case you’re involved in a collision. Most insurance companies will reward you with discounts for having specific safety equipment on your vehicle.

Check out your vehicle to see if you have any of the equipment below, and make sure you ask your insurance agent if you qualify for any of the discounts below.

  1. Front and side curtain airbags – Having airbags in your vehicle does not just decrease your chance of injury during a collision. You could save up to 25% or more for driver-side airbags and up to 40% or more for full-front and side curtain airbags. These discounts typically apply to your car insurance premium’s medical payments or personal injury section.
  2. Car alarms and anti-theft devices – You can get discounts of up to 25% or more on the comprehensive portion of your premium from most insurance companies for a factory-installed anti-theft system.
  3. Anti-lock brake system – If your vehicle has an anti-lock braking system, some insurance companies will provide you with a 5% or more discount on the collision part of your premium.
  4. Daytime running lights – You can earn as much as 3% or more discount off your car insurance coverage if daytime running lights are standard equipment on your vehicle.
  5. Restraint system (seat belts) – If your vehicle has factory-installed passive restraint systems, also known as motorized seat belts, insurance companies usually offer discounts that apply to your policy’s medical payment portion.
  6. GPS, LoJack, or other tracking devices – LoJack is similar to an anti-theft device but is much more advanced than a standard alarm system. LoJack is a tracking system hidden on the vehicle and allows law enforcement officers to track a vehicle’s location after it’s stolen. Some insurance companies may give you a discount of up to 10% or more on your comprehensive car insurance premiums with this kind of security system on your vehicle.
  7. Window etching – Glass is one of the most profitable items for thieves when stealing a car. Having your glass etched with the vehicle’s identification number installed on all the mirrors of your vehicle will deter a thief from stealing your vehicle. Car dealerships charge upwards of $250.00 or more for this service. You can order the kit online and do it yourself much cheaper.

Discounts for Students and College Drivers

Some respectable insurance companies still offer student driver discounts. 16 to 19-year-old drivers have the highest insurance premiums and are involved in more accidents than any other age group in the business.

This is a compelling argument to seek measures to lower the risk of deadly collisions and the cost of auto insurance.

When shopping for car insurance, the two main factors influencing your car insurance rate are the driver’s age and vehicle type. It only makes sense for a student or young adult to find as many discounts available to help decrease the total price of car insurance.

Check out our list of car insurance discounts for students below, and make sure you ask your insurance agent if you qualify for any of these discounts.

  1. Good student discount – Statistically, a student who makes good grades in school or college is less likely to be involved in a car accident, according to insurance companies. Most insurance companies will offer students who make good grades a “Good Student Discount” as long as they maintain a 3.0 GPA or “B” average or are on the Dean’s List.
  2. Low mileage driver – Insurance companies may offer low mileage student driver discounts if the student only needs to drive short distances to and from campus. The student primarily uses public transportation or carpooling to reduce the number of miles driven daily.
  3. Driver’s education – Completing a defensive driving course or Advanced Driver Training Course, as long as it’s not used to alleviate a tarnished driving record. Young drivers under 21 can receive discounts up to 20 percent deducted from their car insurance rates.
  4. Infrequent student driver – If the student only uses the family car when home on vacation or break, most insurance companies may not require the student to be covered. Because the student will seldom use the vehicle, they may be protected like any other relative who uses the family vehicle infrequently.
  5. Youthful driver discount – Single drivers under 21 years of age and living with their parents at home may be able to take advantage of car insurance discounts. If you’re considering adding another driver to your existing car insurance policy, it’s always best to speak with your policy agent first.
  6. Adding a student driver to an existing policy – Parents who add a driver to their existing car insurance policy may save on their current car insurance rates, especially if they already qualify for safe driver discounts.
  7. Remove a student temporarily when not driving – Many insurance companies will let you remove a student from your primary car insurance policy while they’re away and not driving the family cars. When the student returns home on vacation or winter break, you add them to the policy.

How to Shop for Car Insurance as a Student

Car insurance tends to be an afterthought for most car buyers. It’s comical how many people spend hours shopping to buy a new or used car, sign all the contracts, and not check how much car insurance will be until afterward. Some of these people were paying liability car insurance rates on their previous car, and unexpectedly they now have to start paying the higher full coverage rates.

Car dealers and salespeople know this; they prefer you didn’t shop for car insurance rates before buying a car. If you did, they would have less chance to bump you into a higher payment. Another of the many reasons a car dealer wants you to BUY NOW” or “BUY A CAR TODAY!

Checking insurance rates is a pretty simple step, but people seem to forget to do it before buying a new car. Not matching car insurance rates before purchasing a vehicle can be costly. If you have a lien on your car, you must have full coverage insurance by law.

Driving without car insurance is illegal. If you have a lien on
your car, by law, you must carry full coverage insurance.

It only takes a few minutes to check and compare shop car insurance rates online, and you can do it for free sitting at your computer. Even if you already own a car and have had an insurance policy for at least six months. You may want to see if you can qualify for a cheaper rate.

About the author
Carlton Wolf is the author and founder of Auto Cheat Sheet.My name is Carlton Wolf, and I’ve been in the car business since 1994, both retail and wholesale. I created the Auto Cheat Sheet to better educate buyers about the deceptive sales practices used by many dealerships throughout the country. Please understand that not all car dealers are dishonest. However, you never know who you’ll be dealing with, though. I’m willing to share my knowledge and experience with anyone who listens. Keep in mind that I’m a car guy, not a writer.