Updated: October 2015
It is possible to get a good auto insurance plan if you're a college student. You just have to know how to look and what to look for. Far beyond simply signing up for the plan that is the cheapest, you may find and make the most out of specific discounts that you may not have even known about until now. Not only is it important to get car insurance at the right price, but it's also a good idea to find the right plan to meet your needs. Here are some tips for college students shopping for auto insurance:
College is a big life change, which means your car insurance needs may change, too. To help make sure your coverage fits your situation, consider these three questions.
If you're leaving your car at your parents' house — and they live at least 100 miles from your school — you may be eligible for a discount on your car insurance policy because you won't be driving as much.
But, if you're taking your car to school, think about where it will be parked. If it's most often parked outside, for example, consider comprehensive coverage. It may help pay to replace your car if it's stolen or repair it if it's damaged by things like hail or vandalism.
Collision coverage may be a good idea if you'll be driving to and from class, for example. It may help pay to repair your car if it's damaged in an accident with another vehicle or object.
If you're leasing or financing your vehicle, collision and comprehensive coverage are usually required by your lender. If your car is paid off, though, you may be able to drop one or both coverages from your car insurance policy to help save on premiums.
Many insurance companies offer good-grade benefits to students up to age 25.
Now that you know your options, talk to your agent. He or she can answer questions about your car insurance options and help you adjust your coverage.
Whether you're going away to college or commuting, you may want to either increase your coverage or decrease it. If you're leaving your car parked at Mom and Dad's while you live on campus, you may be able to save them a few extra dollars. According to the Insurance Information Institute, if your college is at least 100 miles away from home, your parents may qualify for the "resident student" discount. This discount could lower their car insurance bill by as much as 30 percent per month.
On the other hand, going to college may cause you to reconsider your coverage choices. If your daily commute is going to get longer, now may be the best time to revisit your coverage limits to make sure that you're well-insured in case of an accident.
It's always a good idea to research local crime statistics before taking up temporary residence. This gives you a good idea of what to expect, as well as how to prepare for life in your new surroundings. If you're going away to college and bringing your car to a location with a higher crime rate, talk to an auto insurance agent about protection that covers you in the event of theft. It may also be a good time to purchase an anti-theft device for your car. Doing so may not only cut back on the likelihood of your stuff being stolen, but it might also land you a discount.
Nevertheless, you don't have to attend college far away to revisit your need for better safety and increased insurance coverage. Always research the area where your car will spend most of its time and adjust your coverage accordingly.
Those who know about the savings offered to teenage drivers with good grades will be happy to find out that the discount doesn't stop when you graduate high school. Most insurance companies continue to offer good grade benefits to students up to age 25. If you continue to get good grades in your higher education studies, you could still see a discount on your car insurance bill.
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all car insurance recommendation for college students. Each student has his or her own individual needs, which in turn can affect the amount of coverage needed and the dollar amount of the premium. To find a plan, talk to an agent near you.