Compare the Cheapest Car Insurance Quotes in Charleston, SC

The average cost of car insurance in Charleston is $1,139 per year, which is equal to the statewide average for South Carolina. The most affordable insurance provider in the city is GEICO, at an average cost of $853 per year. MoneyGeek also analyzed the cheapest car insurance companies in Charleston across varying driver profiles and coverage levels to help you secure the best deal for quality service and affordability.

Compare Auto Insurance Rates

Insurance Rates

Ensure you're getting the best rate for your auto insurance. Compare quotes from the top insurance companies.

widget-location-pin
Advertising & Editorial Disclosure
Last Updated: 9/22/2022
Written By     |  

Finding affordable auto insurance depends on your coverage needs and driver profile. In Charleston, GEICO offers the most affordable insurance for full coverage, state-minimum policies, and the cheapest policy after a speeding ticket. For military families, USAA may be the cheapest option. Auto-Owners is MoneyGeek’s pick for the best auto insurance company in the city, balancing both cost and customer service.

iconribbonbestauto insuranceCharleston2022

The Cheapest and Best Car Insurance in Charleston

The Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Charleston

In Charleston, the most affordable auto insurance providers for full coverage policies are:

  • GEICO: $853 per year
  • State Farm: $1,055 per year

Current or former military members and their families may opt for coverage from USAA, the second cheapest auto insurance company in Charleston at $926 per year.

GEICO’s full coverage policies are the cheapest in Charleston, costing $527 less than the same policy from Progressive — the most expensive option in the city. Full coverage policies include comprehensive and collision insurance, though rates can vary depending on the liability limits you select.

Cheapest Car Insurance in Charleston
Full Coverage 100/300/100
  • Company
    100/300/100per year
  • 1.
    GEICO
    $853
  • 2.
    USAA
    $926
  • 3.
    State Farm
    $1,055
  • 4.
    Allstate
    $1,120
  • 5.
    Travelers
    $1,207
  • 6.
    Nationwide
    $1,217
  • 7.
    Progressive
    $1,380

Following MoneyGeek's methodology, average auto insurance rates collected were based on a sample profile of a 40-year-old male driver in Charleston with a full coverage policy.

Full coverage auto insurance includes comprehensive and collision coverage, which can be more costly than minimum coverage. However, full coverage policies give you more protection after an accident and help pay for damages to your vehicle.

  • Comprehensive Coverage: If your car gets damaged outside of an accident, this coverage pays for your repairs.
  • Collision Coverage: This coverage pays for the damage to your vehicle if you’re at fault in an accident.

Note that if you have an older vehicle, full coverage car insurance may cost more than the monetary value of your car. To get the cheapest rates possible, drivers with older cars may opt for liability-only insurance or a policy that follows state minimum requirements.

Compare Car Insurance Rates in Charleston

Ensure you're getting the best rate for your car insurance. Compare quotes from the top insurance companies.

widget-location-pin
Insurance Rates

Cheapest Car Insurance in Charleston for Minimum Coverage

In Charleston and other cities, the cost of car insurance is subject to the amount of coverage purchased. For example, a policy that only meets the state’s minimum requirements costs an average of $652 per year, while a full coverage policy that offers higher limits costs $1,139 per year. That’s a difference of about $487 annually.

Cheapest Minimum Liability Car Insurance in Charleston
State Minimum

South Carolina drivers are required to have auto insurance with 25/50/25 in liability limits and uninsured motorist coverage. This is the cheapest auto insurance option you can find in Charleston that makes your monthly bill cheaper, but you may have to pay more out of pocket after an accident.

For instance, if you’re at fault in an accident and the other party’s total medical bills reach $70,000, a minimum coverage policy would only cover up to $50,000, and you’d have to pay the remaining $20,000 yourself.

South Carolina Minimum Liability Requirements

  • Item
    Description
  • Bodily Injury and Property Damage
    $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident and $25,000 for property damage. A more protective level is 100/300/100.
  • Uninsured Motorist
    $25,000 per person and $50,000 per incident. The minimum coverage may not be enough if you're in a serious accident.

Cheapest Car Insurance in Charleston if You Have Driving Violations

Having a driving violation in Charleston, be it a speeding ticket or a DUI, can significantly affect the cost of auto insurance. Depending on your violation, the cheapest insurers in Charleston are as follows:

  • Cheapest after a ticket: GEICO, $853 per year
  • Cheapest after an at-fault accident: GEICO, $1,253 per year
  • Cheapest after a DUI: State Farm, $1,137 per year

Fortunately, driving violations in Charleston are removed after two years following the state’s point system, which can lower your premiums over time. In the meantime, however, drivers with poor driving records should try to shop around for auto insurance to get the cheapest rate.

Cheapest Car Insurance in Charleston With a Violation
Speeding Ticket

Average Cost of Car Insurance in Charleston

Charleston$1,139
SC$1,139
U.S.$1,424

Average car insurance rates are much cheaper in Charleston than the national average. The average annual premium in this city is $1,139, which is the same as the South Carolina average but 20.1% less than the U.S. average.

Personalized Quotes to Get You the Cheapest Car Insurance in Charleston

To calculate car insurance rates in Charleston, providers use a variety of elements, including your gender, age, coverage level, miles driven per year and more. For instance, in Charleston, a typical GEICO policy for a 40-year-old driver is about one-third the cost of similar coverage for an 18-year-old driver. We advise you to get quotes at regular intervals to check if you are eligible for savings and discounts as your circumstances change.

Compare Car Insurance Rates in Charleston

Ensure you're getting the best rate for your car insurance. Compare quotes from the top insurance companies.

widget-location-pin
Insurance Rates

The Best Car Insurance Companies in Charleston

For Charleston drivers seeking affordable coverage and quality service, MoneyGeek analyzed the best providers in the city to help you easily find excellent options.

According to our analysis, the best car insurance carriers in Charleston for most drivers are:

  • Auto-Owners: MoneyGeek score of 90 out of 100
  • GEICO: MoneyGeek score of 85 out of 100

USAA received the highest score in Charleston by MoneyGeek's rating system. However, because USAA is only available to military members, veterans and their families, it’s not best overall.

MoneyGeek ranked these car insurance companies using several factors, including financial stability, user satisfaction and affordability.


1
GEICO
Score:96

3/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

3/5

User Satisfaction

A++

Financial Stability

2
USAA
Score:95

4/5

Affordability

5/5

Claims Ratings

4/5

User Satisfaction

A++

Financial Stability

3
Auto-Owners Insurance Co
Score:90

4/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

4/5

User Satisfaction

A++

Financial Stability

4
State Farm
Score:86

3/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

4/5

User Satisfaction

A

Financial Stability

5
MetLife
Score:80

3/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

2/5

User Satisfaction

A+

Financial Stability

6
Safeco
Score:78

3/5

Affordability

2/5

Claims Ratings

3/5

User Satisfaction

A

Financial Stability

7
Liberty Mutual
Score:75

2/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

2/5

User Satisfaction

A

Financial Stability

8
National General
Score:73

3/5

Affordability

2/5

Claims Ratings

2/5

User Satisfaction

A-

Financial Stability

9
Travelers
Score:56

2/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

2/5

User Satisfaction

A++

Financial Stability

10
Allstate
Score:51

2/5

Affordability

2/5

Claims Ratings

2/5

User Satisfaction

A+

Financial Stability

11
Nationwide
Score:47

2/5

Affordability

3/5

Claims Ratings

3/5

User Satisfaction

A+

Financial Stability

12
Progressive
Score:23

3/5

Affordability

2/5

Claims Ratings

2/5

User Satisfaction

A+

Financial Stability

Average Cost of Car Insurance by Postal Code

The safety record of your neighborhood is also considered by auto insurance providers while calculating premiums. Areas with more car thefts, accidents and uninsured motorists are considered riskier and therefore more expensive to insure. In Charleston, drivers in ZIP code 29412 pay about $58 less per year than drivers in ZIP code 29407.

  • Zip Code
    State Minimumper year
  • 29412
    $1,110
  • 29407
    $1,168

Factors That Impact Insurance Costs in Charleston

In addition to individual driver needs and history, location-specific factors like the rate of fatal accidents and the percentage of uninsured motorists also contribute to car insurance rates in Charleston. How Charleston ranks compared to the 300 most populous cities in the United States can have a significant impact on premium costs.

accident2 icon
Most Accidents With Fatalities31st/300
handcuffs2 icon
Most Car Thefts162nd/300
uninsured icon
Most Uninsured Motorists by State37th/50
insurance2 icon
Personal Injury Protection RequiredNo
rain icon
Most Annual Rainfall38th/300
umbrella icon
Most Rainy Days137th/300

About the Author


expert-profile

Mark Fitzpatrick is a senior content manager with MoneyGeek specializing in insurance. Mark has years of experience analyzing the insurance market and creating original research and content. He graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts and Johns Hopkins University with a Master of Arts.