How much is auto insurance for an 18-year-old?

Auto insurance for an 18-year-old is among the most expensive. Auto insurance quotes for an 18-year-old are on average $598 per month and can climb even higher if they have been in an accident or gotten a speeding ticket. To find the cheapest car insurance for 18-year-olds, you can shop around, ask about discounts, take a defensive driving class, and more. Learn more here.

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Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insurance...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Former Farmers Insurance CSR

UPDATED: Nov 24, 2020

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What You Should Know

  • Eighteen-year-old drivers may find their auto insurance rates are higher than older drivers because of their lack of driving experience
  • Average auto insurance rates for 18-year-old drivers are about $598 per month
  • Eighteen-year-old drivers can lower their rates by shopping for quotes, qualifying for discounts, staying on their parents’ insurance policy, and more

How much is auto insurance for an 18-year-old? How can you save money on affordable car insurance for an 18-year-old?

Teenagers are some of the riskiest drivers to insure. That’s why 18-year-old drivers pay some of the highest rates for car insurance in the United States.

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about affordable auto insurance for an 18-year-old as well as how to get instant auto insurance quotes, so you can compare rates and find the most affordable coverage as an 18-year-old driver.

Want to find the cheapest car insurance for 18-year-old males and females? Use your ZIP in our free tool to start comparing rates for 18-year-old drivers today.

Auto Insurance Rates for an 18-Year-Old

Car insurance is required to legally drive (which we’ll get into later), so if you’re an 18-year-old driver, how much can you expect to pay?

Read through the next few sections to find out more about average car insurance costs for an 18-year-old driver, factors that can affect those rates, and more.

What is the cheapest auto insurance for 18-year-olds?

As we noted earlier, the average 18-year-old driver in the United States will pay $7,179 per year for car insurance. We’ve collected average rates from some of the major insurance companies across the country to give you an idea of some of the most affordable options.

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates for 18-Year-Old Drivers by Company
Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Auto Insurance Rates
Erie $3,161
USAA $3,596
GEICO $4,651
Nationwide $5,735
State Farm $6,336
Progressive $7,073
Allstate $10,467
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Location can also have a significant effect on auto insurance quotes for 18-year-old drivers. Every state has its own car insurance system.

What are auto insurance rates for an 18-year-old female vs. an 18-year-old male?

Does gender affect auto insurance rates for 18-year-olds?

How much is auto insurance for an 18-year-old female per month? What about auto insurance for an 18-year-old male?

It is illegal to use gender as a factor in adjusting car insurance rates in California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Montana, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and parts of Michigan.

However, in most other states across the country, gender will affect insurance rates, and in most cases, this means auto insurance for women is typically more affordable than auto insurance for men.

As we noted, while in a few states it’s illegal for gender to be used when adjusting car insurance rates, overall there is a difference in rates:

  • Average car insurance cost for an 18-year-old female – $6,797/year
  • Average car insurance cost for an 18-year-old male – $7,561/year

This data indicates that 18-year-old males pay about 10% more for insurance coverage than 18-year-old females.

Why do 18-year-old males pay more for car insurance? Statistically, young males are some of the riskiest drivers to insure. They are more likely to get in an accident than females of the same age.

Based on decades of insurance data, an 18-year-old male driver is one of the costliest for an insurance company to cover, which is why they typically pay higher rates.

As you get older, prices drop considerably—especially if you maintain a clean driving record.

A 19-year-old female driver, for example, may pay an average of $5,732 per year for car insurance, while auto insurance for a 19-year-old male is closer to $6,311 per year.

This is a significant drop in cost (over $1,000 annually) in only one year. As you continue into your 20s, rates will drop every year.

What is the cost of auto insurance by state?

Does where you live affect your auto insurance rates?

Yes, the state you live in can really affect your car insurance rates. Some states require drivers to carry a lot of auto insurance coverage, while others only require a minimum amount of coverage.

Some states have notoriously expensive car insurance rates. Drivers in Louisiana pay significantly higher insurance rates than drivers in North Carolina, for example.

Take a look at this table for average insurance rates for 18-year-old drivers in some of the most densely populated states in the country, compared with the cheapest coverage in each state.

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates for 18-Year-Old Drivers in Select States
StateState Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates for 18-Year-Old DriversCheapest Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates for 18-Year-Old DriversInsurance Company of Cheapest Rates for 18-Year-Old Drivers
North Carolina$3,165$1,147Progressive
Ohio$5,079$3,033GEICO
Pennsylvania$4,809$3,042Erie
California$5,675$3,556State Farm
Illinois$5,548$3,447State Farm
Texas$4,743$4,145$3,447
New York$6,862$5,100NYCM
Georgia$8,028$3,127Georgia Farm Bureau
Florida$9,174$5,894State Farm
Michigan$18,704$8,240Auto-Owners
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As you can see, rates vary significantly by state and insurer.

These rates are just averages. What you pay may vary, given the number of factors that can affect your rates (as we discussed earlier), but these rates can be used as a baseline as you shop for coverage.

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Other Factors that Affect Auto Insurance Rates for 18-Year-Old Drivers

The average 18-year-old driver in the United States pays an average of $7,179 per year. However, many drivers will pay significantly more or less than these amounts based on several different factors.

  • The Age You Received Your License – Some teenage drivers have been driving safely since age 14 (under a learner’s permit). Other teenage drivers wait until they’re 18 before they receive their license. The more driving experience you have, the lower your insurance rates will be. An 18-year-old male who received his license the day he turned 16 may pay cheaper insurance rates than an 18-year-old driver who received his license last week.
  • Safe Driving History – Teenage drivers already pay the highest rates in America for car insurance. Rates can go even higher, however, if you get into an accident. Teenage drivers who cause an accident will see their rates skyrocket. Driving safely, on the other hand, can lower rates.
  • Speeding Tickets and Other Offenses – Statistics show that drivers who receive speeding tickets tend to be riskier to insure. If you receive a speeding ticket, a DUI, or another moving violation, you may face significantly higher insurance rates as an 18-year-old driver.
  • Driver’s Education – Did you take a driver’s education class before getting your license? Many of the largest and best auto insurance companies in the United States will give an 18-year-old driver a discount because they took a safe driving course.
  • Your Own Insurance Versus Your Parents’ Insurance – Many 18-year-old drivers continue to live at home. If you are still living at home, then you may be able to save hundreds by getting car insurance under your parents’ policy instead of having your own policy (we’ll discuss this more later).

These are just some of the factors that can affect your rates as an 18-year-old driver.

What is the minimum auto insurance coverage required for 18-year-old drivers?

Individual states set the minimum coverage required for drivers (including 18-year-olds). Most states have a minimum liability coverage amount that must be met to legally drive (this coverage amount applies to all drivers, regardless of age).

You can search this table (populated with information from the Insurance Information Institute) to find out what the minimum coverage requirements are where you live.

Minimum Liability Auto Insurance Requirements by State
StatesAuto Insurance RequirementsMinimum Auto Insurance Liability Limits
AlabamaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
AlaskaBI & PD Liab50/100/25
ArizonaBI & PD Liab15/30/10
ArkansasBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
CaliforniaBI & PD Liab15/30/5
ColoradoBI & PD Liab25/50/15
ConnecticutBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
DelawareBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/10
District of ColumbiaBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/10
FloridaPD Liab, PIP10/20/10
GeorgiaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
HawaiiBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
IdahoBI & PD Liab25/50/15
IllinoisBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
IndianaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
IowaBI & PD Liab20/40/15
KansasBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
KentuckyBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
LouisianaBI & PD Liab15/30/25
MaineBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM, Medpay50/100/25
MarylandBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/15
MassachusettsBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/5
MichiganBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
MinnesotaBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/10
MississipiBI & PD Liab25/50/25
MissouriBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/25
MontanaBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NebraskaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
NevadaBI & PD Liab25/50/20
New HampshireFR only25/50/25
New JerseyBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM15/30/5
New MexicoBI & PD Liab25/50/10
New YorkBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/10
North CarolinaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM30/60/25
North DakotaBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
OhioBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OklahomaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OregonBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/20
PennsylvaniaBI & PD Liab, PIP15/30/5
Rhode IslandBI & PD Liab25/50/25
South CarolinaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
South DakotaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
TennesseeBI & PD Liab25/50/15
TexasBI & PD Liab, PIP30/60/25
UtahBI & PD Liab, PIP25/65/15
VermontBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/10
VirginiaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
WashingtonBI & PD Liab25/50/10
West VirginiaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
WisconsinBI & PD Liab, UM, Medpay25/50/10
WyomingBI & PD Liab25/50/20
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We’ve summarized the abbreviations and acronyms from the table here.

Minimum Liability Auto Insurance Abbreviations
AbbreviationMeaning
BIBodily Injury
PDProperty Damage Liability
PIPPersonal Injury Protection
UMUninsured Motorist
UIMUnderinsured Motorist
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It is important that you at least meet your state’s minimum car insurance requirements. If you don’t, you could be subject to fines, a suspended driver’s license, and possible jail time.

While minimum coverage meets the legal requirements for driving, you should consider whether additional coverage is right for your needs.

What is the best auto insurance for an 18-year-old driver?

Although your state probably has a minimum amount of car insurance required for drivers, it probably isn’t enough.

Adding collision and comprehensive coverage to your 18-year-old’s auto insurance isn’t a bad idea. Statistically, teens will be in an accident at some point, and having extra coverage will be important.

Medical bills and property damage from a car accident can add up fast. Having additional coverage means you won’t have to pay out of pocket for medical bills or car repairs.

How to Get Cheap Auto Insurance as an 18-Year-Old Driver

As you’ve already seen, auto insurance for 18-year-old drivers can get expensive, especially if you live in states like Louisiana or Michigan. But fortunately, there are ways to save money on car insurance and lower your rates. Keep reading for tips.

What auto insurance discounts are available for 18-year-old drivers?

Another way to save money on your rates is to apply for discounts. Many of the major insurance companies offer discounts specifically targeting young drivers to help manage the high rates they face.

Good student discounts are one example, which can get you up to 25% off your rates if you qualify. Take a look at this table for some other examples of discounts available to young drivers.

Auto Insurance Discounts Available to 18-Year-Old Drivers
CompanyDistant StudentDriver's EdGood StudentClaim FreeDefensive Driver
21st CenturyNoYesYesYesYes
AAAYesYesYesYesYes
AllstateYesYesYesYesYes
American FamilyYesYesYesYesYes
AmeripriseYesNoYesYesYes
AmicaYesYesYesYesYes
Country FinancialNoYesYesYesYes
EsuranceNoYesYesYesYes
FarmersYesYesYesYesYes
GEICOYesYesYesYesYes
Liberty MutualNoYesYesYesYes
MetLifeNoYesYesYesYes
NationwideYesNoYesYesYes
ProgressiveYesYesYesYesYes
Safe AutoNoYesYesYesYes
SafecoYesYesYesYesYes
State FarmYesYesYesYesYes
The GeneralNoYesYesYesYes
The HanoverYesYesYesYesYes
The HartfordYesYesYesYesYes
TravelersYesYesYesYesYes
USAAYesYesYesYesYes
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These are just a few discounts offered by most insurance companies. Speak with your insurance agent to make sure you’re getting all the discounts for which you qualify.

What are the best cars for 18-year-old drivers?

One of the best ways to save money as an 18-year-old driver is to buy a cheap vehicle. A cheaper, older car with lots of miles is worth significantly less than a newer vehicle, which means it costs less to insure.

On an older vehicle, you may be able to save even more money by dropping comprehensive and collision coverage and only meeting the minimum liability coverage requirement.

Should 18-year-old drivers take a defensive driving course?

Many teens take a driver safety or defensive driving course. These courses will teach you to be a safer driver, but they can also decrease insurance rates by between 10 and 15 percent.

Can 18-year-old drivers carry their own auto insurance or should they be added to their parents’ policy?

An 18-year-old can purchase an individual auto insurance policy, but it will be pricey.

While it may make sense to purchase your own policy under certain circumstances, as an 18-year-old driver, your most affordable option is likely going to be covered under your parents’ auto insurance policy.

Keep reading for more.

What is the cost to add an 18-year-old driver to your auto insurance vs. purchasing their own policy?

Some teens buy their own insurance policies, which is fine. However, it’s generally cheaper to add yourself as a secondary driver under your parents’ car insurance policy. This makes sense, especially if you’re driving a family vehicle and not your own vehicle.

However, if you live on your own, you’ll need your own coverage. This is particularly important because location is a factor in adjusting insurance rates.

If you live and park in a different location than your parents, but your policy is attached to their address, you could be accused of committing insurance fraud.

Even if fraud isn’t an issue, insurance companies may refuse to pay out on claims because of the address discrepancy.

Should 18-year-old drivers compare auto insurance rates?

All car insurance companies in America offer car insurance for 18-year-old drivers. You can save money by comparing rates from multiple companies (we recommend comparing at least three quotes).

Compare quotes online today to find the best option for your unique needs. Enter your ZIP code to get started. Then, browse quotes for your area.

You can request a quote from any major insurance company long before you lock into a policy. Take advantage of these online tools to find the best car insurance as an 18-year-old driver.

By following the tips above, you can maximize car insurance savings as an 18-year-old driver anywhere in the United States.

Auto Insurance for an 18-Year-Old: The Bottom Line

If you’re looking for auto insurance for an 18-year-old boy or girl, be prepared to pay higher insurance rates than older drivers. Less experience on the road typically means higher rates because less experience means higher risk for auto insurance companies.

While these higher rates will cost 18-year-old drivers an average of $7,179 per year ($598/mo), you can lower your rates by qualifying for discounts, shopping for quotes, and more.

Are you ready to buy auto insurance for an 18-year-old? Use your ZIP in our free tool to start comparing rates so you can find the cheapest auto insurance for an 18-year-old. Which is the best auto insurance company for an 18-year-old? Find out now.

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