Allstate Auto Insurance Review

Allstate Auto Insurance Review

Decent insurer for those looking for personalized insurance guidance but has expensive rates.

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Editor's Rating:

Allstate, while it offers many interesting discounts and features, should not be the first option for most drivers based on our analysis of several driver types. Rates from Allstate can cost more compared to other insurers, and claims handling and customer satisfaction tend to be average.

In this review we evaluate Allstate on its affordability, claims handling, coverage options, shopping experience and discount programs, and see how it compares to others.

Good for:

  • Drivers who want a good network of agents for personal service
  • Long list of available discounts on insurance premiums

Bad for:

  • Drivers searching for the lowest rates at the expense of personalized service
  • Drivers who don't need an agent

Allstate Review: Usually Expensive for Decent Service

Based on the profiles we studied, we would suggest most drivers explore other companies before checking out Allstate. While the company is the third largest auto insurer in the country, we've found that it is relatively more expensive for our profiled drivers, and has average customer satisfaction and claims handling.

You want the service you get from your auto insurer to exceed or equal the price you are paying for it, but at Allstate that balance can be challenging to find.

You can see how Allstate compares on quotes per year across four different profiles of driver below.

While the "In Good Hands" and "Mr. Mayhem" insurance company advertises several popular features like accident forgiveness, vanishing deductibles and other various discounts, the savings they bring usually will not make Allstate cheaper than other auto insurers like GEICO and Progressive on an absolute basis. Customer surveys report that Allstate typically provides better service, but it usually is not that significantly better than competitors like State Farm, especially for the price.

Allstate's best feature is its extensive agent network that lets people who want to buy insurance through an agent do so easily. We would say however, that drivers who want Allstate's agent network consider a State Farm policy first instead. State Farm is cheaper in most of the cases in our analyses, and while its service is not highly regarded either, at least you won't be breaking the bank for it.

Car insurance takeaway: If you're shopping for the cheapest rates around, we recommend getting quotes from more typically more affordable insurers like State Farm and GEICO.

Both of these carriers offer among the most competitive prices among large national insurers. And although Allstate has several car insurance discounts and decent customer service reviews, its expensive rates may make it ultimately a less appealing option for auto insurance.

Allstate car insurance

Whether you're a senior looking for best-in-class service or a young driver going off to college, Allstate provides a personalized touch, but rates can also be expensive. In this review, we review Allstate's car insurance coverage options and discounts, and compare its rates to other industry-leading competitors.

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Allstate Coverage Options

Allstate offers all the standard coverages you need from an auto insurer. It doesn't have as many bells and whistles as Progressive or GEICO, but Allstate offers rideshare insurance for Uber and Lyft drivers. Where Allstate distinguishes itself from its competitors is the Your Choice Auto program which adds several coverages to drivers that are uncommon at other insurers.

Coverages from Allstate

  • Liability
  • Physical Damage
  • Uninsured Motorist
  • Roadside Assistance
  • Rideshare
  • Rental Reimbursement
  • Gap Insurance

Allstate's Your Choice Auto®

Accidents can happen to anyone, and Allstate has an optional program called Your Choice Auto® in place that recognizes and rewards safe driving. We calculate that it costs about 12 - 18% on top of the standard policy premium, but can be a net 7 - 13% increase when factoring in the safe-driving bonus. Your Choice Auto allows qualified customers to save with the following features:

Safe Driving Bonus Check: receive a check of up to 5% of your previous 6-month premium cost for every 6 months of accident free driving nationally (except for policies in New York, where the Safe Driving Bonus is offered in the form of a discount).

Accident Forgiveness: Allstate waives the typical premium increase and accident surcharge when you get into an accident. The scope of forgiveness (major vs. minor accident) varies by the insured’s driving history and number of years as an Allstate customer. Depending on the level of the plan and the driver's accident-free record, this can mean one to several accidents forgiven over the course of three years without an increase in rates nor removal of the Good Driver Discount. However, for drivers insured in California, the Accident Forgiveness feature is limited, and you could still lose the Good Driver Discount.

Deductible Rewards: Allstate shaves $100 off your collision deductible when you sign up, and takes an additional $100 every year you're accident-free, up to $500 off in total.

New Car Replacement: if you bought your new car in or after 2012, and it got totaled within its first three model years, Allstate will send the main policyholder a check at the vehicle's purchase price – as opposed to the depreciated value which can be significantly lower.

Allstate Auto Insurance Quote Comparison

Of the four major auto insurers, Allstate is by far the least affordable for the driver profiles we explored. In the 2,150 cities we surveyed, we found Allstate mostly falls between the 6th and 10th most affordable insurer for our sample profile 30 year-old driver. Allstate was the cheapest insurance company in less than 3% of those 2,150 cities.

Graph shows how Allstate quotes for car insurance compare to other companies for drivers with and without accidents
Graph shows how Allstate quotes for car insurance compare to other companies for drivers with and without accidents

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You can see in further detail below, how Allstate prices were expensive for all four sample driver profiles we compared. Your own rates may vary depending on your driver profile, which is why its important to compare quotes from at least three insurers.

ProfileGEICOAllstateState FarmProgressive
30 Year Old Male, No Accident$1,112$1,570$1,327$1,260
20 Year Old Female, No accident$5,138$8,269$4,521$6,926
30 Year Old Married Couple, No Accident$1,109$1,641$1,313$1,386
30 Year Old Male w/ Accident$1,904$2,491$1,788$1,605

Allstate's Car Insurance Rate Hikes

While insurance premium hikes typically vary from state-to-state, since 2012 Allstate has cumulatively raised its rates by about 25.2% nationally. Premiums have been hiked for every major auto insurer across the country--even for drivers without claims--due to an uptick in accidents and inclement weather.

YearGEICOProgressiveState FarmAllstate
20122.2%4.5%1.1%2.7%
20132.6%0.7%2.4%1.6%
20142.9%2.0%2.8%2.8%
20155.2%0.4%2.3%3.9%
20163.0%2.3%5.1%5.9%
20178.8%2.1%8.1%4.8%
20184.8%0.2%-3.7%1.2%

Auto Insurance Discounts at Allstate

Another aspect we like about Allstate's offering is its plethora of discounts, which can range up to the higher end compared to other insurance companies we've reviewed.

In a comparison of 12 major national companies, we found that Allstate tended to offer the most number and different types of auto insurance discounts. The Drivewise Program from Allstate is also noteworthy, as it rewards low mileage drivers similar to Progressive's SnapShot program.

Be sure to ask your agent if you qualify for any of these discounts when getting your quote from Allstate, and how many of them you can stack together.

Discount Type

Discounted CoverageAmount

Anti-Lock Brakes Discount

BI, PD, PIP/Med, Coll10%

Safe Driver Bonus*

BI, PD, PIP5%

Good Payer Discount

All5%

Homeowner Discount

BI, PD, PIP, Coll, Comp5%

Multiple Policy Discount

All10%

Passive Restrain Discount

PIP/MED10%

Premier Discount

All22%

Premier Plus Discount

All35%

Drivewise

All10 - 40%**

Senior Adult Discount

PIP/MED10%

55 and Retired Discount

BI, PD10%

Resident Student Discount

BI, PD, PIP20%

The Good Hands People Discount

All10%

Defensive Driving Course Discount

All10%

Fullpay® Discount

All10%

Smart Student Discount

All5%

Allstate eSmart® Discount

All10%

Early Signing Discount All

10%

Allstate® Easy Pay Plan Discount

All5%

Anti-Theft Discount

Comp/Comp+Full Glass2 - 10%

New Car Discount

Coll, Comp8 - 10%

Daytime Running Lights

BI, PD, PIP/Med, Coll3%

Utility Car Discount BI, PD, PIP

15%

Economy Car Discount

BI, PD10%

Farm Vehicle Discount

BI, PD10%

Allstate Drivewise Program

Allstate’s version of a usage-based discount program, the Drivewise® program rewards policyholders based on their actual driving collected through Allstate's device. Allstate agents claim that drivers could receive premium reductions up to 40% by: A. Signing up with the program and getting a 10% policy discount and B. driving safely for six months (i.e., staying below 80mph and avoid driving late at night). Of course, how much you save with Drivewise® is subject to your driving behavior.

Furthermore – and this is why we called it double rewards – by downloading the Drivewise® mobile app, drivers will simultaneously earn “safe-driving” points and can redeem them for different merchandise, products, and gift cards through the Allstate Rewards program. Unfortunately for New Yorkers, we could not find Allstate Rewards available in the Empire State.

Allstate Drivewise is only available in 28 states at the moment, consisting of: Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Utah, and Washington.

To find out more, click on the previous link, or call the Allstate Drivewise Program Customer Service telephone number: 1-877-431-7670.

Allstate Milewise Pay-Per-Mile Program

Allstate's pay-per-mile service, which charges drivers a base rate plus a per-mile rate, is known as Allstate Milewise. The base rate will be charged similarly to traditional car insurance policies by taking into account your driver profile and driving record. The per-mile rate is usually a few cents per mile.

Allstate Milewise is currently only available in 13 states, including: Arizona, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia.

Allstate's Claim Satisfaction Guarantee

Another great feature from Allstate, though technically not a discount, is the claims satisfaction guarantee. If for any reason policyholders are unhappy with their claims payout or experience, Allstate aims to make good on their guarantee and grant a six-month credit towards the insured's premiums. The requirements include:

  • The auto insurance policy and the Claim Satisfaction Guarantee are active on the day of the covered loss
  • Allstate has made a payout to or on behalf of the policyholder, and
  • A written letter is mailed via First Class within 180 days of the accident explaining the dissatisfaction

There are some particulars in terms of which six months the credit gets applied to, and various states were phased in from 2011 - 2012, but otherwise the guarantee appears straightforward. Be sure to check with your agent to make sure this guarantee applies to your policy.

It is rare to not obtain a payout within the first six months. But even if, for example, the insured vehicle is parked at an auto repair shop waiting for extra parts past the six month period, customers can still submit letters. Allstate agents say that the guarantee is on the more flexible side when there is sound cause for dissatisfaction.

Buying an Allstate Auto Policy

Buying auto insurance through Allstate is most similar to buying insurance from State Farm. You can start a quote online and then finalize it with an agent, or you can call or go to an agent directly to get a policy. Allstate requires everything to go through an agent, which can be less desirable for people wanting a quick transaction and process.

If you want a total online experience, we'd suggest GEICO, Progressive or Esurance (which is actually a subsidiary of Allstate). All 15,000 Allstate agents only work for Allstate--they do not sell products from other insurance companies--and they are meant to give you a superior customer experience.

Allstate does have a "Bumper to Bumper Basics" tool which lets you fill in some information about yourself to determine how much coverage you should purchase. While the tool will be helpful for those new to auto insurance, because your quote ultimately will go through an agent, they will probably be better at assessing how much coverage you should have.

Where is Allstate Available?

Allstate is the third largest auto insurer in the country and is available in all 50 states. You are likely to be able to find an Allstate agent close to your town. Below are the five states with the most Allstate policyholders.

State# of Allstate Policies in 2017
California1,200,000
Texas1,088,000
Florida878,000
New York794,000
Pennsylvania558,000

Allstate Customer and Claims Satisfaction Reviews

Allstate, while the most expensive of the largest insurers, has average customer satisfaction reviews and below average claims handling ratings from J.D. Power's consumer surveys.

CompanyInsurance shoppingClaims Satisfaction

GEICO

865879
State Farm860878
Industry average860868
Allstate858853
Progressive848856

Complaints

According to National Association of Insurers complaint data, customers of Allstate complain less than the national average for complaints received by auto insurance companies. Allstate's "Claims Satisfaction Guarantee" may help in reducing the number of complaints lodged against the insurer. With the guarantee, the insurer gives customers a six month credit for their premium if they have a unsatisfactory claims experience.

In a ValuePenguin study of customer satisfaction, 47% of Allstate customers said it had excellent customer service overall. This was bested only by USAA, which is available only to its current and former service members and their families.

Methodology

Our score for Allstate was derived by our assessment of the company's affordability, claims handling, coverage, shopping experience and discounts. Affordability and claims handling were weighed out of 30 points, coverage out of 20 points, and shopping and discounts out of 10 points for a total of 100.

Mark is a Senior Research Analyst for ValuePenguin focusing on the insurance industry, primarily auto insurance. He previously worked in financial risk management at State Street Corporation.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.