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More ways to get cheap car insurance

Read the Spanish version: Más formas de obtener seguro de auto barato

In an effort to compete for your business, car insurance companies offer a variety of discounts that can seriously reduce your premium. Make certain you compare car insurance quotes from several companies to take advantage of all the discounts you qualify for.

cheap car insuranceAuto insurance companies typically give a discount if you:

  • Had no accidents or tickets in the last three to five years
  • Also buy a home insurance or renters insurance policy with them (multiline discount)
  • Insure more than one car on your auto insurance policy (multivehicle discount)
  • Own a car that is equipped with air bags.

But some companies will also reward you for your profession, your age and using the Internet to buy your policy.

Digging deeper for car insurance discounts

Progressive Insurance is known for advertising its numerous discounts. If you have more than one car, buy insurance on your home, boat, and other property, you qualify for discounts. You can also qualify for discounts based on the amount of miles you drive, if you’re a student, the type of coverage you choose and more.

For example, Progressive offers a unique program called MyRate, which bases your premium on your driving habits. MyRate customers agree to install a small tracking device inside their vehicles. It records your driving habits, such as how often you drive, when you drive and how you drive. This data is used to calculate your insurance rate. The program is designed to benefit people display low mileage throughout the year. But if you drive often, you could actually end up paying more. The program is not available in all states.

Many car insurance companies will also give you a discount if you pay your bill in one lump sum (versus monthly payments) and if you buy your policy online. Progressive offers a 10 percent discount on your bill if you pay at once. If you buy online, it offers a $50 discount off your first policy.

Teachers get good rates

Are you a teacher with a good driving record? Besides offering discounts on car insurance rates for teachers, Horace Mann Insurance also waives the deductible for covered vandalism losses on or near school property or at school-sponsored events (assuming they buy comprehensive coverage). These are just a few perks offered through the insurer’s Educator Advantage program.

Military car insurance discounts

GEICO offers up to a 15 percent discount to active and retired members of the military, including those in the National Guard or Reserves, depending upon the state in which you reside. GEICO has always taken pride in serving U.S. military personnel and their families.

If you’re serving overseas, you could qualify for the insurer’s Emergency Deployment Discount. It’s offered to military personnel who are deployed into imminent danger. If you store your vehicle under one of GEICO’s approved storage plans, you might qualify for steep discounts during your time serving our country overseas.

Auto insurance savings for safe drivers and safe cars

Many car insurance companies will also reward you for being a good driver and if you own a vehicle that it considers safe.

Allstate Insurance rewards its customers who have an accident-free driving record with discounts.  It offers a “safe driving bonus check,” which entitles its customers to a 5 percent discount on their premium for every six months of accident-free driving.

But even those that have an accident, Allstate will often “forgive” the first accident, without increasing car insurance rates.

In addition, the type of vehicle you drive can save you money as well. Vehicles with safety systems, such as air bags and passive restraints, anti-lock brakes, and anti-theft systems can drive your auto insurance policy cost even lower.

If you choose to take a defensive driving course — one that is not required by the courts — you can save even more. There are also special discounts based on the age of the driver, how the vehicle is used, the grade point average of student drivers, and more.

Drive toward the discounts in your golden years

Remember when a nickel was worth a dime? If so, you're probably eligible for some deep discounts on your auto insurance. The Hartford's AARP Auto Insurance Program offers AARP members the chance to chop their auto insurance bills by hundreds of dollars.   

Through its AARP Automobile Insurance Program, The Hartford offers AARP members up to a 25 percent discount for insuring multiple cars on one policy, and a 10 percent discount for holding both a homeowners and auto insurance policy with The Hartford.      

The Hartford also  assures drivers in most states who buy auto insurance through the AARP Automobile Insurance Program that they will not have their policies canceled except for nonpayment of premium, serious motor vehicle  violations (such as reckless driving or a DUI conviction), or loss of license.      

cheap car insuranceSafety training leads to discounts with MetLife

Eligible drivers can save up to 7 percent on MetLife Auto policies if they successfully complete certain driver safety courses, such as those offered by the National Safety Council (NSC).

You can purchase MetLife’s 90-minute NSC Driver Safety Course in two formats: DVD or online. The cost for either format is $19.95, plus shipping and handling.

Other eligible drivers in your household can also earn the discount by successfully completing the course.

Your occupation can lead to cheap car insurance

Farmers Insurance Group offers discounts to certain professional and occupational groups. If you are a nurse, firefighter, doctor, dentist, police officer, or teacher, you might be eligible for a more favorable auto insurance premium. Discounts for professions can vary by state.

Because of cutthroat competition in the auto insurance market, all you have to do is sniff around a little bit for good deals like these. And although you might not be a professor, teacher, engineer, or geologist, you can still save on your auto premiums by being a good driver, having good grades, or insuring more than one car.

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