Photo by Why Kei

By Elena White

Car insurance costs can vary based on several factors. Unfortunately, many people don’t understand all their options, or why costs go up or down when purchasing their car insurance. Because people feel like car insurance costs are so high, many opt to go uninsured – a risky and dangerous choice.

Driving without insurance can end up costing so much more than paying a premium, and it can result in a suspended license and a hefty fine. If a driver continues to drive with a suspended license, they can experience even more serious consequences.

Additionally, Florida is a no-fault state. This means that drivers must purchase personal injury protection (PIP) which helps to cover the driver and passengers’ medical expenses should they occur once the driver has paid the deductible. Anyone who has paid a medical bill recently knows how expensive treatment can be. When buying car insurance in Florida, these tips can help to stretch every dollar further.

Compare Several Quotes

Some people might have unhappy memories of homework, but in this case, doing the homework can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year. While most car insurance companies offer similar types of coverage, they often calculate costs in different ways. This means that in one area, Geico may have the best rates, but in another, Allstate could have the lowest rate. It’s important to call around and compare car insurance company quotes. Never settle with the first option without investigating other car insurance companies’ comparable quotes as well.

Add Up the Discounts

Once a person has compared quotes and found a car insurance policy, it’s a good idea to try to stay with the same insurance for the loyalty discount. Many companies offer a percentage savings off the total premium for customers who stay with them for a year or longer.

However, a loyalty discount is only one of many savings options that most companies offer. Other common discounts include:

  • Good student discounts
  • Multi-policy discounts
  • Safe driving discounts

Some companies like Allstate are more affordable than people think, and they also offer discounts for being environmentally friendly and going paperless. When shopping around for quotes, potential customers should ask about all the available discounts.

The Right Coverage

Sometimes paying for more coverage upfront can save big bucks down the road. Florida has the highest rate of uninsured motorists in the nation, and with as much as 27 percent of the driving population getting behind the wheel without insurance, getting into an accident can become very costly.

While comprehensive coverage may raise the cost of the premium, customers can save a lot of money and heartache down the road if they’re involved in an accident. If they’ve only purchased liability insurance and an accident totals their car, they will not receive any compensation for their loss. Comprehensive coverage would alleviate this concern.

Pay as You Drive

Many car insurance companies offer car insurance based on how much people drive. This is also known as pay-as-you-go insurance. This can be a great money-saving option for people who drive much less than others.

Some examples of this include Progressive’s Snapshot, USAA’s SafePilot, and Allstate’s Milewise programs. This is usually only a savings for low-mileage drivers who also practice safe driving techniques. An app monitors the driver automatically once a customer downloads it and enrolls.

Customer Satisfaction

Using a company that offers excellent customer service is so important. One company’s premium might be a few dollars lower. However, poor customer service makes filing claims much more difficult and could even result in missed work.

The more helpful customer service is, the quicker their customers can get back to work and get reimbursed for any expensive damages. Car insurance customers in Florida ranked Allstate as number one in customer service over other insurers. In car insurance reviews, Florida customers appreciated their local agents’ helpfulness and expertise.

The Takeaway

Don’t be fooled by the legal minimum requirements for car insurance in Florida. It can be very expensive to get car insurance, but a little due diligence and a willingness to shop around for quotes can save customers a bundle and ensure protection for them, their families, and other drivers.

Investing a little time upfront can help prevent a financial catastrophe later. Driving without insurance in Florida is very risky and could end up costing far more in fines and lost time than paying a premium cost. Explore all the available options to get peace of mind and the best rate possible.

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