Best car insurance for teens

Mom and daughter in a car with the daughter behind the wheelImage: Mom and daughter in a car with the daughter behind the wheel

In a Nutshell

Not all teen drivers need the same thing from their auto insurance. Our top car insurance picks for teens include choices that meet the needs of different kinds of teenage drivers.
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Teen drivers can face unique challenges when searching for auto insurance coverage, including affordability. Insurance companies in most states can consider age as a factor when setting insurance rates, which can translate into steep premiums for teenagers. That’s because teens can be seen as high-risk drivers. Fortunately, there are ways to make auto coverage for teens more budget friendly. 

Some insurers offer discounts for teen drivers or savings for adults who add a teen to their existing policy. It’s essential to know that some insurance products are better than others at meeting the needs of teen drivers.

Keep reading for our top picks for the best insurance for teenage drivers.

Best for teens overall: State Farm

Why State Farm stands out above the rest: State Farm provides a broad range of money-saving discounts and teen-friendly insurance products. Its Steer Clear® discount provides teens with driver-focused training and cuts premium costs for those without an at-fault accident or moving violation in the previous three years. 

What to know about State Farm

State Farm offers standard coverage options such as collision, comprehensive, liability and uninsured/underinsured motorist. Optional add-ons include car rental, travel expense and rideshare coverages.

State Farm offers teens the opportunity to save money while acquiring driver-focused training, and usage-based insurance may help young drivers save significantly on their policy. The company, which offers numerous discounts that teen drivers can take advantage of, has higher-than-average customer satisfaction rates in the 2021 J.D Power auto claims satisfaction study, earning 12 points above the industry average.

State Farm doesn’t offer gap insurance and is currently unavailable in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. 

Read reviews of State Farm Insurance.

Best for teen drivers seeking roadside assistance coverage: Progressive

Why Progressive could be a good choice: Roadside assistance coverage pays for towing expenses following a breakdown and may be valuable for teens who drive older cars. Progressive’s roadside assistance protection includes towing to the nearest qualified repair shop, as well as winching service to pull your vehicle out if it’s trapped in mud, snow, water or sand within 100 feet of a road or highway. 

The range of services includes flat-tire change, fuel delivery, battery jump-start, battery charge for all-electric cars, and up to an hour of on-scene labor if your car is disabled. 

What to know about Progressive

Progressive offers a plethora of discounts on auto insurance policies, including a discount for good grades and the Snapshot® program, which tracks driving habits and gives discounts for good drivers.

And on top of its standard collision, comprehensive, liability and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverages, Progressive offers additional coverage that could help a teen driver. The company provides rideshare driver insurance — so you’re covered if you drive for Uber, Lyft or another service — and optional roadside assistance.

Progressive’s extensive roadside assistance covers towing, fuel delivery, battery jump-starts, locksmith service and flat-tire changes. 

Progressive is available in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. The company ranked below the industry average in the 2021 J.D. Power auto claims satisfaction study, earning 18 points less than the industry average on a 1,000-point scale.
Read reviews of Progressive auto insurance.

Best for teen drivers with a military affiliation: USAA

Why USAA could be a good choice for teens with a military affiliation: USAA specializes in providing car insurance for military families. The company offers several discounts, including options for students with good grades and clean driving records. Those who live in eligible states can save significantly with the company’s safe-driving program, SafePilot. 

What to know about USAA

USAA offers a handful of teen-friendly discounts that may help limit insurance costs, such as a good student discount and a usage-based insurance option called SafePilot. While USAA isn’t technically eligible for J.D. Power’s 2021 auto claims satisfaction study, the company earned a top score of 909 on a 1,000-point scale, which is 29 points higher than the industry average.

The company offers standard coverage options as well as optional roadside assistance and rental reimbursement coverages. USAA is available in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., but only to those with a military affiliation. 

Read reviews of USAA auto insurance.

Best for low-mileage teen drivers: Nationwide

Why Nationwide could be a good choice for low-mileage teen drivers: Nationwide is an excellent choice for teen drivers who accrue relatively little mileage. This company offers SmartMiles, a pay-per-mile car insurance program with a flexible rate based on your mileage. The SmartMiles program can also give you up to a 10% discount for safe driving after the first renewal.

What to know about Nationwide

Nationwide has many auto insurance options in addition to its standard policies. Rental car expense, gap, vanishing deductible and accident forgiveness coverages can reward a teen for good driving and help if involved in an accident. Nationwide’s SmartMiles program might make sense for a teen driver that doesn’t log many miles.

Nationwide is unavailable in some states and ranked slightly below the industry average in the 2021 J.D. Power auto claims satisfaction study, earning four points less on a 1,000-point scale.

Read reviews of Nationwide auto insurance.

How we picked these insurers

To develop our top picks for teen auto insurance, we reviewed the websites of nearly a dozen insurance companies and J.D. Power’s 2021 Auto Insurance Study. We chose the insurers in this article based on factors we believe necessary to teenagers and their families, including …

  • Discounts
  • Special services or accommodations for teens
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Financial stability
  • Coverage options
  • Types of vehicles insured

FAQs about car insurance for teens

How much is teen car insurance?

The cost of teen car insurance varies. While age is a factor, there are other things that insurance companies consider when setting rates, including the coverage options, driving record, deductible, car value and ZIP code. 

How can I save money on car insurance for teens?

You may save money on your monthly premium by increasing your deductible – though if you do have to make a claim, you’ll pay more out of pocket. You also may be able to save money by dropping comprehensive and collision coverage if you’ve paid off your car and it’s worth less than your premium and deductible. 

Is it cost-effective for parents to add teen drivers to their insurance?

It may cost less for parents to add their teen driver to their current policy rather than buy separate coverage. Some insurance companies view teens as having a higher risk of getting into an accident. As a result, insurers may impose higher rates on separate policies for teens to offset increased risk.

About the author: Warren Clarke is a writer whose work has been published by and the New York Daily News. He enjoys providing readers with information that can make their lives happier and more expansive. Warren holds a Bac… Read more.