Car insurance premiums depend on individualized factors like age, driving record, credit score and location. Getting personalized quotes regularly is a great way to find the best car insurance in Pennsylvania. MoneyGeek’s rankings will help you find affordable quotes and suitable coverage options. Comparing car insurance rates from some of the top-rated companies in Pennsylvania could help you save up to $1,762.
The Best Cheap Car Insurance in Pennsylvania for 2021
The Cheapest and Best Car Insurance in Pennsylvania
Cheapest Minimum Liability Car Insurance Companies and Quotes in Pennsylvania
Getting a liability-only coverage policy, which only meets the state minimum car insurance requirements, is the most affordable car insurance option in Pennsylvania.
Based on MoneyGeek’s study, the most affordable car insurance rates in Pennsylvania for minimum coverage are from:
- USAA: $374 per year (only available to current and former military members)
- GEICO: $543 per year
Meanwhile, MetLife has the most expensive annual average rate at $1,715.
Average Cost for Minimun Liability Coverage
These prices are only estimates based on rates for an average Pennsylvania driver and should not be used to compare insurance prices.
Minimum coverage policies in Pennsylvania are generally cheaper but only cover bodily injury, property damage liability and medical benefits coverage. If you want to cover damages to your car or are thinking of increasing the liability protection costs, you should consider a full coverage policy.
Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania drivers who have a full coverage policy with higher liability limits and comprehensive and collision insurance have the assurance that they are protected against road and off-road accidents. While this policy costs more than minimum coverage, it provides protection against if your car gets damaged after an accident. The best way to find the most accurate policy is to compare personalized quotes.
Based on average rates for Pennsylvania drivers with full coverage, the cheapest car insurance companies are:
- USAA: $991 per year (only available to military members)
- Erie: $1,328 per year
MetLife has an average rate of $2,753 per year for a full coverage policy, making it the most expensive option.
Average Comprehensive and Collision Rates in Pennsylvania
Car insurance rates depend on individualized factors, so your premium will not be the same as any of the examples provided. These rates are based on a comprehensive and collision insurance policy that allows a driver to claim up to $100,000 for bodily injury per person, $300,000 for bodily injury per accident and $100,000 for property damage per accident.
The Best Car Insurance Companies in Pennsylvania for 2021
After calculating the final scores of car insurance companies in Pennsylvania, MoneyGeek found the best insurers for most drivers are:
- Best Overall: New Jersey Manufacturers
- Runner-up: GEICO
USAA received the highest score in Pennsylvania by MoneyGeek's rating system. However, because USAA is only available to military members, veterans and their families, it is not listed as best overall.
MoneyGeek considered a combination of factors, such as affordability, customer satisfaction, claims experience and financial strength, to find the best car insurance in Pennsylvania.
To calculate the final scores out of 100, MoneyGeek looked into J.D. Power’s U.S Auto Insurance Study and AM Best's financial strength ratings, as well as pricing data and industry standards for insurance company rating and review.
USAA is almost always the best overall car insurance company across the country, including Pennsylvania. However, only current and former members of the military are qualified to purchase USAA policies.
When it comes to affordability, USAA is consistently among the cheapest options in the country. That also applies in Pennsylvania. Additionally, the company rewards loyalty by offering different discounts. For example, you may be eligible for a discount if your parents also have USAA policies.Read MoneyGeek's USAA auto Insurance Review
Coming in second place is New Jersey Manufacturers. It has high ratings across multiple categories. It is also the best option for Pennsylvania drivers who do not qualify for USAA.
New Jersey Manufacturers will reimburse transportation costs for car rental, taxis, or ride-sharing up to $30 a day if you are in an accident. Additionally, Pennsylvania residents can also have limited coverage that includes expenses related to pet injuries caused by a car accident.
While USAA scores highly in many areas, this provider is only available to military members, veterans and their families.
List of the Largest Insurance Companies in Pennsylvania
The largest car insurance providers by market share in Pennsylvania are State Farm, Erie and Allstate. Market share is calculated by dividing the number of premiums written by an insurance company divided by the total number of premiums written in the state. Larger companies do not automatically have the best policies. However, some drivers consider market share since it can help determine financial stability and a company's ability to pay legitimate claims.
- CompanyMarket Share
How to Compare Cheap Pennsylvania Car Insurance Quotes Online
Most car insurance companies in Pennsylvania provide access to reasonably accurate quotes through tools on their websites.
Always be consistent about coverage limits. If the basis for one quote is $300,000 in bodily liability insurance per accident, then you should use that same number with all insurers.
Entering your ZIP code below will allow you to compare quotes easily. You may also use the price data presented by MoneyGeek to help you figure out which company’s websites you will visit.
The cheapest companies in Pennsylvania are USAA, GEICO and Erie. You can start your search for the best auto insurance by asking for quotes from these insurers.
What Is the Average Cost of Car Insurance in Pennsylvania?
MoneyGeek calculated annual premium rates in Pennsylvania based on the cost for comprehensive and collision coverage for the average driver, a 40-year-old male driving a Toyota Camry with no record of accidents or speeding tickets. Various factors, such as age, driving history, coverage level and location, affect the actual cost and may make your car insurance premium higher or lower than the state averages.
- Average Driver: $1,818
- DUI: $3,204
- Speeding Ticket: $2,141
- Poor Credit Score: $3,301
- Seniors: $1,881
- Students: $4,374
Cheapest Car Insurance for Drivers With a DUI in Pennsylvania
Insurance providers in Pennsylvania charge higher rates for drivers who have violations like a DUI. In Pennsylvania, the average cost of auto insurance for a driver with a DUI is $3,204 per year. A driver with a clean record typically pays $1,818 per year.
The cheapest auto insurance companies in Pennsylvania for a driver with full coverage and a DUI are:
- USAA: $1,322 per year (offered to military members only)
- State Farm: $1,494 per year
While Erie has the second most affordable rate for drivers with a clean record and full coverage, State Farm offers lower rates than Erie to drivers with DUI.
Average Car Insurance Rates With a DUI
Driving under the influence (DUI) carries a dramatic risk for your life and fellow drivers on the road. In Pennsylvania, 1.8% of adults admitted to driving after drinking too much within the past 30 days in a survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 3,697 people in Pennsylvania were killed in alcohol-related crashes between 2009 and 2018.
The legal consequences of a DUI in Pennsylvania vary based on a driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC). It is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08% or higher. First-time offenders face six months of probation, a $300 fine, but get to keep their license. If your BAC is higher than .10%, the punishment is much more severe with jail time and your license will be suspended.
Check out the above table for estimates on what to expect if you get a DUI in Pennsylvania.
A DUI citation can have a significant impact on your finances. Along with legal and court fees, you can expect your car insurance cost to rise. In some cases, your insurance rates could double overnight after a DUI because insurers will immediately label your coverage as high-risk.
In Pennsylvania, a license suspension is a valid reason for an insurance company to cancel your policy. If that happens, you’ll need to look for coverage from a different company. Getting free quotes from multiple companies will help you find the cheapest car insurance with a DUI in Pennsylvania.
If you struggle to find coverage after a DUI, Pennsylvania offers an Assigned Risk Plan. This commonwealth-sponsored auto insurance ensures high-risk drivers have coverage and the risk is shared across multiple providers.
Cheapest Car Insurance for Drivers With Tickets in Pennsylvania
Even a minor driving violation, such as a ticket, can increase your car insurance rate in Pennsylvania. The average cost for drivers with a speeding ticket is $2,141 annually. That is $323 more than the average annual rate for drivers with a clean record, which is $1,818.
The cheapest car insurance companies in Pennsylvania for a driver with a speeding ticket and full coverage are:
- USAA: $1,104 per year (offered to military personnel only)
- Erie: $1,278 per year
USAA and Erie are also the cheapest options for people who have a clean driving record.
Average Car Insurance Rates With a Ticket
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Pennsylvania has one of the worst rates for distracted driving. In 2018, distracted driving accounted for 1,103 crashes in the state. Both distracted driving and speeding is considered risky driving behavior by auto insurance companies and may increase your rates. In Pennsylvania, the law prohibits drivers from interacting with any wireless device, including texting, emailing or browsing the internet.
While drivers face a $50 fine in Pennsylvania for distracted driving, the violation does not appear on any driver records. However, there are now tougher penalties for crashes caused by texting while driving, including two years in jail.
Clearing your record of a distracted driving crash will take some time. In the meantime, your insurance rates will increase. Finding cheap car insurance rates with a ticket in Pennsylvania is possible with research. You should get multiple quotes and ask if there are ways you can lower your rate, like taking a driver’s education course.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Pennsylvania for Drivers With Bad Credit
Drivers with poor credit scores in Pennsylvania have higher rates than those with healthy credit scores. The average annual rate for drivers with bad credit is $3,301. The average cost for drivers with good scores is $1,818 per year.
MoneyGeek’s study shows that the cheapest car insurance companies in Pennsylvania for a full coverage policy if you have bad credit are:
- USAA: $1,529 per year (only available to military personnel)
- Nationwide: $1,906 per year
Nationwide has lower rates for drivers with bad credit than Erie, which is the second cheapest option for those with good credit scores.
Average Car Insurance Rates for Drivers With Bad Credit
How responsible you are with your finances is a factor car insurance companies use to determine your rates. If you have a high credit score, they believe you will have fewer claims and will offer you a lower rate. This effect is the opposite for people with low credit scores. Pennsylvania allows insurers to increase rates when writing new policies, but they cannot use your credit score to affect renewals. According to Experian, Pennsylvania has an average credit score of 713. That’s slightly above the national average of 703.
Check out the above table for estimates of what drivers in Pennsylvania will pay for auto insurance if they have bad credit.
If you have a lower credit score, your quotes will likely reflect that with higher rates. To lower your rates, double-check your credit report. If there are errors, work to fix them as soon as possible and then reevaluate with your insurance company. Work with a few insurance companies and ask if and how they use your credit report. Bad credit will impact your rates more with some insurers than with others, so get several personalized quotes to find affordable auto insurance with bad credit.
Cheapest Car Insurance in Pennsylvania for Seniors
Senior drivers in Pennsylvania tend to have slightly higher car insurance rates than young adults and middle-aged drivers. Typically, senior drivers in Pennsylvania pay an average of $1,881 per year. That is $63 more than the annual average rate of $1,818 for a 40-year-old driver.
The cheapest car insurance companies in Pennsylvania for senior drivers with full coverage are:
- USAA: $1,054 per year (only offered to military personnel)
- State Farm: $1,318 per year
In comparison, USAA and Erie offer the cheapest rates for young adult and middle-aged drivers.
Average Car Insurance Rates for Seniors
There are plenty of options for cheap car insurance for seniors in Pennsylvania. Senior drivers who have a clean driving record can find good deals based on their experience and knowledge on the road. However, as we age, we face new physical, visual and mental challenges. According to NHTSA, drivers over the age of 65 are responsible for 15.9% of the state's deadly crashes.
Pennsylvania begins retesting adults over the age of 45 to ensure their ability to drive safely. Drivers are randomly chosen prior to their driver’s license renewal and are required to undergo a vision and physical examination. Depending on the results, a driver’s examination and knowledge test may also be required.
When looking for the best rates, consider taking a driver’s education course. Under Pennsylvania state law, drivers 55 and older are eligible to receive a 5% discount on their vehicle insurance by completing the Mature Driver Improvement Course. Make sure your insurance company knows you have completed the course to ensure you get the discount.
Cheapest Car Insurance for Students in Pennsylvania
Car insurance companies in Pennsylvania consider young student drivers inexperienced and risky to insure. As a result, they charge them more than adult drivers. The annual average cost of car insurance for student drivers in the state is $4,374. The average adult driver pays roughly $1,818 annually.
The cheapest car insurance companies in Pennsylvania for student drivers with full coverage are:
- USAA: $1,104 per year (available only to members of the military)
- Erie: $1,378 per year
USAA and Erie have the cheapest average annual rates for student drivers and the average adult driver with full coverage.
Average Car Insurance Rates for Students
Auto insurance companies value experience and a history of safe driving. For teenagers, this takes time to build and maintain. That’s why insurance rates are higher for young drivers. However, there are ways to find the cheapest car insurance for students.
In Pennsylvania, teens must complete 65 hours of supervised practice driving after getting their learner’s permit and before they obtain a standard license. While it’s not state law, many insurance companies require teenagers to be added to coverage when they get their permit. Because teenagers are also required to have the same minimum liability insurance, the Pennsylvania Insurance Department suggests putting them on a less expensive used family car. It will be cheaper than a new car.
When students go off to college, update your insurance company with changes. If they will not be driving or will have their own vehicle, this changes your policy. The above table showcases estimates on what parents can expect to pay when covering a young driver in Pennsylvania.
Insurance Rate Information for Military Drivers and Veterans
For the 2,500 active-duty military personnel and 800,000 veterans in Pennsylvania, there are discounts available with auto insurance plans. Major insurance companies offer a discount to stay competitive with one another. Military-focused insurance companies work only with armed forces personnel and some insurance companies cater just to veterans.
The Pennsylvania Insurance Department offers tips on buying car insurance as well as the state's requirements for minimum coverage. A service member can maintain Pennsylvania vehicle registration or switch it over to the state where they're stationed. If registered in Pennsylvania, the annual renewal in most cases can be completed online. All the forms you need are here.
Average Rates for Pennsylvania service members
Car Insurance in Pennsylvania: What You Need to Know
All vehicle owners must provide proof of auto liability coverage to register a car or truck for legal road use in Pennsylvania. You need to carry proof with you on the road: either your insurance ID card, a digital version on a mobile device or a copy of your policy.
Minimum Liability Insurance Requirements in Pennsylvania
Drivers in Pennsylvania have two choices for auto insurance: full tort or limited tort. Limited tort, also known as no-fault insurance, pays up no matter who causes an accident. However, it also limits your rights to sue another driver for pain and suffering (except for catastrophic injuries). With full-tort insurance, you maintain your right to sue, but your premiums will be higher.
Either way, you'll have to buy liability coverage to cover the cost of injuries or damages in an accident. These are the state minimums:
- $15,000 per person
- $30,000 per accident
Uninsured and underinsured motorist insurance is not required in Pennsylvania but is offered by all insurers. You must decline in writing if desired.
Alternatives to Insurance in Pennsylvania
The one alternative option available is self-insuring. To do so, you need to first show proof of financial responsibility to the Department of Transportation and then submit a deposit. This can be in the form of cash, a bond, a letter of credit or an escrow deposit and the amount required will vary.
How Much Coverage Do You Need in Pennsylvania?
The coverage amount needed depends on the car you're driving and how much you can afford. If you get a new car loan or lease a vehicle, you will likely have to buy collision and comprehensive insurance to protect your car.
The state’s minimum requirements for liability insurance won't cover all of the damages in a catastrophic accident. The Insurance Information Institute recommends at least $100,000 liability coverage per injury and $300,000 per accident. Uninsured motorist insurance is also a smart purchase if you can afford it.
Average Insurance Rate by City in Pennsylvania
FAQs About Car Insurance in Pennsylvania
For many Pennsylvania drivers, the main concerns when it comes to auto insurance are the cost of premiums and the level of coverage.
Expert Advice on Finding Cheap Car Insurance in Pennsylvania
To help you find trustworthy and accurate insight on car insurance in Pennsylvania, MoneyGeek gathered expert advice from established professionals. The views and sentiments expressed are those of the individual contributor.
- What are the key factors drivers in Pennsylvania should look for when searching for the best auto insurance coverage?
- What steps can drivers in Pennsylvania take to find affordable car insurance?
- How do regulations and rules in Pennsylvania impact insurance pricing and how consumers might shop for coverage?
Professor of Business and Director of Graduate Programs at Point Park University
Assistant Professor of the F. W. Hirt Erie Insurance Risk Management Program at Mercyhurst University
About the Author
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- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. "Traffic Safety Facts." Accessed March 17, 2020.
- NOLO. "DUI Laws by State." Accessed March 16, 2020.
- PennDOT Driver & Vehicle Services. "Vehicle Self Insurance." Accessed March 17, 2020.
- Pennsylvania Insurance Department. "Auto Insurance." Accessed March 18, 2020.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. "Pennsylvania." Accessed March 17, 2020.