There are three ways to save on car insurance if you don’t drive a lot. You can take advantage of low mileage discounts, insurance per kilometer or usage-based insurance.
Keep in mind that we are talking about miles traveled over a period of time, not the total number of miles on your odometer. In other words, your car doesn’t need to have less than 8,000 miles on the odometer for you to qualify for low mileage insurance – you typically need to drive less than 8,000 miles each year.
#1 Discounts for low mileage
The easiest way to save with low mileage auto insurance is to get a discount from your provider. Not all companies offer discounts for low mileage. The ones that usually offer discounts if you drive less than 7,500 or 8,000 miles per year, or around 21-22 miles per day.
Here are some providers that offer low mileage car insurance discount:
- USAA: The low mileage auto insurance discount is based on annual mileage.
- Safeco Insurance: Low mileage discount conditions are not published.
- American family insurance: Receive a discount if you travel less than 7,500 miles.
- agricultural office: Receive a discount for driving less than 7,500 miles (state dependent).
- PEMCO: Get a discount if you travel less than 8,000 miles.
If your average mileage has changed since last year, it’s a good idea to contact your agent to see if the company offers a low mileage discount. Companies that do not advertise low mileage discounts may also consider your mileage when renewing your rate.
#2 Pay-per-mile insurance
Pay-per-mile programs have been created to provide drivers with specialized options for low-mileage auto insurance. With these programs, your rate is directly tied to your mileage. These programs usually include a base rate and a rate per kilometer each month. Programs track your mileage with a plug-in device or mobile app.
Pay-per-mile programs also set a maximum number of billable miles per day, which means you can take a road trip without worrying about a $1,000 insurance bill. Some major pay-per-mile providers are:
- Metromile: According to Metromile’s website, people who travel 2,500 miles a year save about $947 with its pay-per-mile program compared to standard insurance.
- Allstate Milewise®: According to Allstate’s Milewise website, people who drive 3,000 miles a year can save 61% with the program.
- Nationwide SmartMiles®: In an example on the Nationwide SmartMiles website, a driver went from $133 per month on a traditional car insurance policy to $95 per month to drive 500 miles per month.
#3 Usage-Based Insurance
Another way to save money with low mileage auto insurance is to try a usage-based program like Snapshot.® of Progressive. Usage-based programs track driving behaviors such as hard braking, night driving and rapid acceleration.
Most of these programs also consider mileage as a primary factor in determining your discount. Although usage-based options aren’t advertised as low-mileage car insurance programs, people who drive the least typically save the most. Safe driving programs that count distance or miles driven in your score include:
Keep in mind that these programs track things other than mileage, so you might not save money if you have bad driving habits. That said, it might be a good idea to look into usage-based programs if you want coverage from a particular provider that doesn’t offer low mileage discounts or a pay-per-mile program.