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What Does 'Instant Car Insurance' Really Mean?

Published: January 2013

We live in an era when instant gratification takes far too long. We also live in an era when the word "instant" is a bit overused. In some cases, the definition matches—but in others, it doesn't quite fit. As a result, "instant car insurance" may not be exactly what you think it is. But that doesn't mean that it's not still pretty quick, especially when you consider that years ago it would take days to do what you can do now in a matter of minutes.

An older man points at his watch.

Car insurance quotes on the double. Shopping for car insurance online gives you the ability to get a personal quote within seconds of submitting your information. Of course, keying in all of the information necessary to get you that quote is only as fast as you allow it to be, and may be limited by your ability to type quickly (which isn't always recommended, if you aren't an accurate typist). It's also heavily reliant on having the required information at the ready when it's requested. Otherwise, the instant price quote you're seeking may be a little bit off with respect to accuracy. Some of the information that you should have on hand includes:

  • Your Social Security number
  • Your driver's license number
  • Your address
  • How many miles you drive per year (can be an average)
  • The make, model and year of the vehicle to be insured, as well as its approximate value and how much money you still owe on it
  • Detailed information on the safety features of your car, including seat belts, front- and side- impact airbags, anti-lock brakes and vehicle stability control
  • Details on your car's security features, including anti-theft devices that would make it less of a theft risk
  • Information on car insurance claims that you've filed in the past with other insurers
  • Details on all tickets, moving violations, accidents and other incidents of note that appear on your driving record for the past five years—be prepared to get specific. In most cases, you will be asked to provide specific dates and details. To be better prepared and to expedite the quote process, it's recommended that you order a copy of your driving record from your state's Department of Motor Vehicles.

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Multiple company insurance quote comparisons. When you think about the time and effort it would take for you to manually get individual price quotes from a handful of insurance companies and compare them side by side, the use of the word "instant" is well placed. By keying your specific coverage needs into a quote comparison tool, you can eliminate hours of research and discover which provider can give you the best bang for your buck. To make the most of your time, we recommend that you make a list of your desired coverage options in advance. To get the most accurate quote, be sure that you know what your specific state requirements are and also check on your lender's requirements in advance so that you can decide on the following options:

Today's technology makes it possible for you to get vast amounts of information in just seconds. The end result might not exactly qualify as instant insurance coverage, but you can't argue with the fact that it comes about as close as you can get.

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