A Primer on How To Get a Good Driver Discount

You don’t have to look very far to save money on car insurance. Insurance companies reward drivers who have not had recent traffic violations or recent accidents because these drivers are unlikely to file a claim. Good driver discounts help drivers save hundreds of dollars annually, 10 to 30% depending on the carrier you choose. See what else you need to know about scoring a discount for yourself or a young driver on your policy.

What Is a Good Driver Discount?

Good driver discounts go to low-risk drivers who have a clean driving record, meaning no accidents, traffic offenses or filed claims within the past three to five years. Your insurer will search your driving record and claims history to determine whether you qualify for a good driver discount. Good driver discounts help incentivize policyholders to drive more carefully and avoid traffic violations. Most carriers reward their policyholders with a good driver discount of 10% to 30%.

How Do Good Driver Discounts Work?

Many insurance companies offer a good driver discount if you meet their criteria. Depending on the insurer, you may be offered one or both of the following:

Accident-Free Discount - Insurance companies will give you a discount on your car insurance premium if you have been accident-free for three to five years.

Violation-Free Discount - Your insurance company will give you a discount on your insurance premium if you haven't had a traffic violation within the past three to five years.

Defensive Driving Discount - Many insurers offer a discount Many drivers can earn additional discounts by taking a defensive driving course. Typically, they only take a few hours and they go over techniques to avoid accidents along with your state's driving laws. Once complete, you are issued a certificate that you can share with your insurance company for a discount.

Most carriers reward their policyholders with a good driver discount of 10% to 30%.

Claims-Free Discount - Drivers are eligible for a claims-free discount if they have not filed a claim in the past three to five years.

Safe Driver Discount - Some carriers combine violation-free and accident-free records.

Telematics Insurance - A telematics program monitors drivers by tracking how they drive. Insurers offer good driver discounts based on driving performance.

Low Mileage - Drivers might be able to lower their monthly premiums if they drive their car infrequently. The average person drives between 10,000 to 12,000 each year. Drivers who drive under 7,500 miles could be eligible for certain discounts.

How Much Can You Save With a Good Driver Discount?

Savings from good driver discounts vary according to the insurer. Typically, good drivers who have not had an accident or traffic violation within a certain time frame can save anywhere from 10% to 30% on their car insurance premiums.

What Is Considered a Clean Driving Record?

A clean driving record is when a driver has had no traffic violations or at-fault accidents within a certain set of time. For most employers, trucking companies and insurers, a clean driving record have none of the following:

  • Accidents
  • Major traffic violations
  • Moving violations (speeding tickets)
  • Points on a driver’s license
  • DUI offenses

Criteria may vary among insurers and employers, so it’s worth double-checking with your agent.

Good driver discounts go to low-risk drivers who maintain a clean driving record for five years.

Which Insurance Companies Offer Safe and Good Driver Discounts?

Insurer

Discounts

What to Expect

Allstate

Safe Driving Bonus program

Good drivers earn a bonus every six months that they remain accident-free.

American Family

KnowYourDrive

This telematics program allows you to earn up to 20% off your car insurance premium.

Farmers

Safe Driving Program

Drivers who avoid certain kinds of points on their record can get a discount. This telematics program allows safe drivers to earn up to 15% off premiums.

Liberty Mutual

Accident- and violation-free discount

Drivers who avoid certain kinds of points on their record earn a discount. This telematics program allows safe drivers to earn up to 30% off premiums.

Nationwide

Nationwide SmartRide

Their telematics program allows safe drivers to earn up to 40% off their premiums.

State Farm

State Farm Drive Safe & Save

State Farm Steer Clear

Drivers who avoid certain kinds of points on their record earn a discount. This telematics program allows safe drivers to earn up to 30% off premiums.

Drivers under 25 can earn up to 20% with the State Farm Steer Clear program.

Travelers

Travelers IntelliDrive

This telematics program allows safe drivers to earn up to 30% off premiums.

Find Affordable Car Insurance for a Good Driver

How Can You Get a Good Driver Discount and Maintain It

Being a good driver is critical in order to maintain your good driver discount. Here are a few tips to follow:

Limit Your Driving

The less you drive, the less you put yourself in situations where you may be involved in an accident or receive a ticket. Any traffic violation could increase your insurance premiums and disqualify you as a safe driver. Plus, your insurance carrier might even reward you for being a low-mileage driver.

Don’t Be a Distracted Driver

Distracted driving is the #1 cause of car accidents and will disqualify you for a good driver discount. Texting and driving, eating while driving, trying to find something that has fallen behind your seat instead of pulling over, talking on the phone and other distracting activities should be avoided. Avoid the following:

  • Playing with the radio
  • Conversing with others
  • Looking at your map or phone
  • Driving when drowsy or after drinking
  • Multi-tasking (you should only focus on the road!)

Sign Up for a Defensive Driving Class

Defensive driving classes teach drivers how to avoid car accidents and more. Depending on which state you live in, classes can typically last four to eight hours. These courses not only make you a safer, better driver, but they also make you eligible for a defensive driving discount.

Get Accident Forgiveness Coverage

Accident forgiveness coverage can prevent your rates from going up if you get into a car accident, and it can keep you from losing your driver discount. Depending on your insurer, accident forgiveness can usually only be used once every three to five years.

The less you drive, the less you put yourself in situations where you may be involved in an accident or receive a ticket.

FAQs

Are there discounts for good drivers in California?

Drivers who meet the state's criteria of a good driver in California can enjoy up to 20% off their premiums.

All insurers must apply the discount for eligible drivers. To meet the state's criteria, California drivers must:

  • Have continuously held a license for the past three years.
  • Not have more than one driving record point.
  • Not have taken traffic school more than once due to a traffic violation within the last three years.
  • Not be at fault for car accidents that resulted in injury or death.
  • Not have a DUI conviction on their record.

Can you lose your good driver or safe driver discount?

You can lose your good driver or safe driver discount if you:

  • Get a ticket for a traffic violation
  • Are responsible for a car accident
  • Get points on your license
  • File a claim under your collision coverage

How many years before you’re considered a safe driver?

Most insurers offer discounts to drivers who have avoided causing an accident or getting a traffic violation within the past three to five years.

Key Takeaways

  • Insurance companies consider you a good driver if you've been accident-free and violation-free for three to five years.
  • Insurers may vary on how drivers can get a good driver discount or lose one. Most drivers can lose their hard-earned discount by getting a traffic ticket, causing a car accident, getting points on their license or filing a claim under collision coverage.
  • Many carriers offer significant discounts when you enroll in their telematics program, which collects information about your driving habits and mileage.

Enjoy Lower Premiums if You’ve Been a Good Driver

Good drivers can save even more money comparing insurance coverages and rates from multiple insurance companies. SmartFinancial could help you compare them all in one shot. Just enter your zip code below, for free car insurance quotes. We'll connect you with local agents that offer the lowest prices in your area.

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