Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager Chris Harrigan

UPDATED: Apr 13, 2022

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Key takeaways...

  • Car insurance companies focus on how likely a driver will be to have a claim in the future, and young drivers are statistically more likely to be in an accident
  • The best way to get a teen driver more experience is through a graduated driver program
  • Another way to lower the costs of teen auto insurance is to find a safe car for the teen to drive
  • Getting many quotes for coverage from as many different providers as possible will allow any driver to get the lowest rates

Young drivers have some of the highest car insurance rates of any driving age group. There are ways to reduce teen auto insurance prices, however. The key is to address young driver’s higher risk of filing a claim.

Low car insurance rates await drivers, young and old, right here when you put your ZIP code in the FREE quote tool!

Reducing any driver’s car insurance is a multi-step process. It just about all goes back to reducing risk, whether through the driver, the vehicle, or the statistics that indicate risk.

Teen Drivers and Risk

It can certainly seem unfair that young drivers pay some of the highest car insurance rates, especially when a teen driver has done nothing other than having little to no experience on the road.

Other high-risk drivers have usually made a mistake, either by causing an accident or by driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

However, statistics are against young drivers. Car insurance companies focus on how likely a driver will be to have a claim in the future, and young drivers are statistically more likely to be in an accident.

Data reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that drivers in the 15-20-year-old age bracket have accidents three times more often than any other age bracket.

In fact, motor vehicle accidents are the leading single cause of death in that age group, so teen driving is a concern due to a teen’s safety as much as because of their high car insurance rates.

Young drivers are involved in so many accidents due to their inexperience and immaturity–plain and simple. Teen drivers don’t have enough experience to always be able to handle all of the situations that can be encountered on the road.

Yet, the only way to get experience is through driving: many mature drivers likely learned a great deal from their own mistakes in their youths.

Young drivers are also much more immature, meaning that they are more likely to follow unsafe driving practices, such as speeding, neglecting to wear a seatbelt, and texting while driving. Teens are not the only ones who are affected by high car insurance rates.

The Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance maintains that car insurance companies can take into account any licensed teens in a household when assessing car insurance rates, even if that teen isn’t driving the family vehicles.

Basically, the rates of everyone in the household can increase just because of a teen driver.

The keys to lowering car insurance rates due to a teen driver are essentially the same as lowering the rates of any driver, but with a few differences in the details. You need to focus on lowering the teen’s risk in the eyes of a car insurance company.

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Increase Experience

Since the biggest strike against teen drivers is their lack of experience, one route to reducing a young driver’s insurance prices is to get the teen driver more experience. The best way to get a teen driver more experience is through a graduated driver program.

Many states have adopted graduated driver programs, which basically increase the time and effort it takes to go from turning 16 to having full driving privileges.

Young drivers must log in more hours during the learner’s permit stage and the provisional license stage. There are also further restrictions, such as limiting the number of young passengers and restricting driving to daylight hours.

States that utilize a form of the graduated driver’s license program and the program’s creators have attributedto a steady decline in the number of teen driving deaths to the effectiveness of the program.

Even if your state does not have a graduated driver’s license program, parents can ensure that they extend the time from the learner’s permit to a full license.

Give additional driving time with a responsible driver who is over 21, and utilize driver’s education programs or private lessons.

Set Limits


Graduated driver’s license programs increase the restrictions on young drivers, and parents should not feel any reserve about adding restrictions of their own.

Obviously, restrictions should start with those behaviors that are illegal, such as speeding, forgetting to use a seatbelt, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Frank conversations should communicate to teens a parent’s expectations and strict consequences for such behaviors.

Then, parents should also focus on behaviors that are unsafe, such as texting or being distracted due to the addition of other teens in the car. Every parent should be able to assess a child’s maturity level concerning driving privileges, but they should also fully communicate their rules and consequences for breaking those rules.

Until a young driver is 18, a parent’s consent is required for a teenager to get a driving license. Parents can give consent, and they can take it away.

Furthermore, parents can also utilize cell phone programs that limit texting and calling except to certain phone numbers during specified hours of the day.

Find a Safe Car

Another way to lower the costs of teen auto insurance is to find a safe car for the teen to drive. Safer vehicles include features that minimize injuries in the event of a crash or help drivers to avoid a crash altogether.

When teens are looking for a car, utilize safety ratings to find one that has scored well during vehicle testing.

For instance, if a parent looked at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s Top Safety Picks for 2012, they would find that the Honda Civic, the Subaru Impreza, and the Ford Focus are all mid-sized, moderately priced vehicles that are safer choices for teens.

Past year winners are also available when looking for a used car. Parents can also feel better that their teen is driving as safe a vehicle as possible.

While reducing car insurance costs is important, nothing is as important as the safety and well-being of a child.

Since teenagers will likely get into at least one crash, it is important that the vehicle they are driving will protect them as much as possible.

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Get Discounts

Discounts are a great way for teens to get a lower price when it comes to auto insurance, and there is a special discount designed just for drivers under 25.

Young drivers and their families can benefit from multiple vehicle discounts, safe vehicle discounts, anti-theft discounts, and others.

Anti-theft devices are an inexpensive option for getting a discount, especially if the vehicles are worth a considerable amount of money. VIN etching is probably the cheapest passive anti-theft device that has an accompanying high discount.

Just by getting a free VIN etching offered by a local police station or municipality, or spending at most $20 for a do-it-yourself kit, drivers can save around 10 percent off of car insurance premiums.

Additionally, young drivers can also benefit from the good driver discount. Whether a high school student or a college student, good grades can equate to a substantial discount off of car insurance premiums.

Each car insurance provider has a distinctive set of requirements to qualify for the good driver discount.

Some designate a certain grade point average and others look for a student’s name on the Dean’s list. Furthermore, most expect some sort of report each quarter to keep the discount.

If a student is under 18, parents should make good grades as a requirement for keeping the privilege of driving.

Focus on Credit

Another step that can be taken to reduce car insurance rates for young drivers is to focus on building good credit.

Obviously, this step can’t be taken until at least the age of 18, but young drivers will benefit from a focus on good money management skills in more ways than just enjoying lower car insurance rates.

Young people also have the highest risk for misusing and ruining their credit, so learning these skills early on is a great idea.

The Federal Reserve offers tips on improving credit, and those steps can be followed for building initial credit as well.

Young drivers should focus on using credit cards for emergencies, paying off all debts in a timely manner, and learning what factors go into creating a credit score.

Drivers ages 18 to 24 will benefit from low-interest rates and easier loan qualifications, as well as reduced car insurance rates.

Compare Prices

The best way for teens to reduce car insurance prices is the best way for any driver. Ask anyone in the insurance industry and they will tell you that the lowest car insurance prices will come from comparing prices.

Getting many quotes for coverage from as many different providers as possible will allow any driver to get the lowest rates.

Teens or the whole family can get quotes from agents, over the phone, or online. One quick and easy method for getting multiple quotes is to utilize car insurance quote websites.

Wherever you get quotes from, make sure that you utilize the same amounts of coverage so that comparisons will be accurate.

No matter, if you are getting quotes for a teen’s coverage or for the entire family, shopping around and getting rates from many different companies, will ensure that you find the lowest price possible for a teen’s car insurance policy.

Utilize this quote comparison site to search for car insurance quotes by placing your ZIP code in the FREE quote tool now!