Senior Car Insurance: How Rates Change and How You Can Save

Find the Cheapest Auto Insurance Quotes in Your Area

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Despite years of experience and safe driving, insurance companies tend to view senior drivers as riskier compared to middle-aged drivers, and raise their rates accordingly. However senior drivers can still get affordable rates by comparing quotes to find the cheapest insurer for them.

Our research showed that State Farm provided the cheapest rate for our senior profile driver — providing an average annual premium of $2,051. This is 37% cheaper than the average car insurance rate across the insurers we considered for our 65-year-old profile driver — of $3,333 per year. Below we explore what changes senior drivers can expect to see in their rates, and what steps they can take to lower and manage their costs.

Auto insurance for seniors

Seniors citizens shopping for car insurance should consider a variety of factors, including premiums, discounts and whether an insurer can offer a renewal guarantee. We found that GEICO is the best car insurance company for seniors, as the company offers both affordable rates and a Prime Time contract, which ensures that mature drivers can renew their policies — regardless of advanced age.

Insurance companyAverage annual rate for 65-year-old driverOffers guaranteed renewal policy
GEICO$2,109Yes
State Farm$2,051No
Progressive$4,432No
Allstate$4,742No

GEICO: The best auto insurance for senior drivers

GEICO's combination of low rates and guaranteed renewal policies, for qualifying individuals, make it the best choice for senior drivers. Choosing GEICO over the most expensive insurance company, Allstate, could mean an annual savings of more than $2,500.

Specifically designed for older drivers, GEICO offers drivers over the age of 50 what they call a Prime Time contract. Drivers with this type of policy are guaranteed to have the option to renew their policy with GEICO, regardless of driver age, claims or traffic violations. This option is particularly attractive to older drivers who are worried they might be dropped by their insurance companies as they get older and are considered high-risk drivers.

To qualify for GEICO's Prime Time contract you must meet the following criteria:

  • Have no drivers under 25 years old on the policy
  • Have no violations or accidents in the last three years
  • Have no vehicles on the policy that are used for business

State Farm: The cheapest rates

State Farm provided the cheapest quotes for our 65-year-old profile driver, quoting annual premiums 38% less than the average across the insurers we considered. State Farm's price was slightly less than offered by GEICO — with annual rates $58 less. This amounts to a monthly cost difference of about $5.

It's also worth noting that the cheapest insurer can vary based on location and your specific driver profile — which includes accidents, traffic violations and insurance claims. Because of this, the only way to ensure you are getting your best possible rates is to compare quotes from multiple companies.

Progressive: Good for low mileage drivers

Senior citizens that don't drive very often should consider Progressive's SnapShot telematics program, as they may be able to get lower rates and equivalent coverage to a standard policy. Using the mobile app or plug-in device, drivers that opt to join the SnapShot program will allow Progressive access to their driving data — which tracks vehicle usage and unsafe driving habits. Those that are able to prove over a six-month policy term that they don't often drive or are safe drivers could see savings on their insurance premiums.

Allstate: Best discounts for seniors

Allstate may not offer the cheapest base rates — as demonstrated by our survey of quotes for a 65-year-old Floridian — but they do feature a great discount for older people. Drivers that are over 55 years old are eligible to qualify for a 10% discount with Allstate. This company also features the other standard discounts that you would expect from an auto insurer, including reduced premiums for insuring multiple cars, having multiple policies (such as home and auto) or being accident free.

How does being a senior affect car insurance rates?

Auto insurance rates generally decrease as drivers grow older and gain more years of experience on the road. Between the ages of 30 and 65, rates actually decline. However, drivers over the age of 65 can expect to see their premiums increase as they age.

Graph shows how rates change for drivers as they age

How to keep costs low

If you are over the age of 65, the reality is your auto insurance rates will generally go up. That doesn’t mean though that you can’t keep costs low. Here are a few ways to do that:

Change your driver status

Sixty-five is a common age to retire, meaning you are less likely to be commuting to a job which is where the majority of miles are driven by people every week. Reducing the amount of miles you drive every year can save you significant money on your rates. Be sure to tell your insurance agent you only drive for 'pleasure' now, and not for a work commute. When you get a quote online, select 'leisure', and re-evaluate how many miles you'd be driving in your retirement. When we reduced the number of miles driven from the typical 12,000 to 7,500 in New York, rates decreased by 5% .

Take safety/accident prevention courses

Insurance companies offer accident prevention or safe driving courses that could end up saving you up to 10% on your premium. Online courses are a quick and simple way to save money from the comfort of a home, and in-person classes are also available. The actual amount depends on where you live. The discount is actually mandatory in a few states once you turn 55 years old. In California, Florida, Pennsylvania, Washington, Tennessee, Minnesota, or Nevada you can find the classes on the DMV page. In Pennsylvania you are entitled to a 5% discount while in Minnesota you get a 10% discount. Classes in California, for example, typically cost about $20 to $40, so on a $1,000 premium you would be saving $100 if the discount is worth 10%.

Senior discounts

They aren't just for movie tickets. At certain auto insurance companies, seniors can get discounts after they turn 55. Allstate offers a “55 and Retired” discount where seniors who are retired can save up to 10% on their rates. Farmers also has a similar discount. As with all car insurance discounts, though, you will have to check if they are available in your state.

If your insurer allows you to combine discounts, you could potentially accumulate 25% off your premiums. Considering the average jump between 60 and 70 year olds was 18%, you may actually be paying 7% less than what you were previously. As always, it is very important to shop around and find your best deal in your area.

Methodology

Our analysis drew on quotes from profile drivers living in Florida, who had a clean driving record, with no accidents or traffic violations, and drive a 2015 Honda Civic EX. ValuePenguin's analysis used insurance rate data from Quadrant Information Services. These rates were publicly sourced from insurer filings and should be used for comparative purposes only — your own quotes may be different.

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