Your auto insurance company may look at your car’s yearly mileage when deciding your rates. The reason is simple: you’re at a higher risk to get into a car accident when you drive more often. Staying off the road is a great way to help keep you out of trouble. You could also get a low mileage discount on your car insurance.
It’s not uncommon to hear about a “low mileage discount” or “low mileage insurance” offered by auto insurers. However, you don’t usually find mileage benefits listed on car insurance company websites. But most track or ask about how much you drive. This can end up affecting your rates.
Your annual mileage is one of many auto insurance rate factors. Insurance providers see heavy or frequent drivers as a risk to get into accidents and, as a result, cost them more money. This means that if you drive less, you’ll look like less of a risk and could get lower rates from your insurance company.
Every insurer handles savings for this discount differently. They likely won’t name it a “low mileage discount” or might not call it anything at all. The amount you save by driving less will vary based on your insurance provider and situation.
This article will help you understand how insurers reward customers for driving less. We’ll talk about how much you can save and which companies offer this discount.
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How the Low Mileage Discount Works
You can potentially get a low mileage discount and save on your premium if your annual mileage is below a certain threshold. Depending on your insurer, around 7,000 to 12,000 miles per year is low mileage. It can sometimes be more.
However, keep in mind that insurance companies typically won’t have a specific low mileage discount. Most won’t give it a name but will still lower your rates for keeping your mileage low driving under a certain threshold.
Telematics Devices Track Mileage
Some companies may want you to use a telematics device that records your actual driving habits. This could be in the form of a physical device you install in your car or a mobile app from your provider. Insurers often use these to track safe driving and include mileage as a factor that shows how safe of a driver you are. Below is a list of common things telematics tracks for your provider:
- Your speed
- Your acceleration
- How hard you brake
- Your miles driven
- When you drive
Who Qualifies for a Low Mileage Discount?
Almost anyone can save by reducing how much they drive each year. But there are certain groups of people that are more likely to get this discount than others. For example, someone who works from home probably has a better chance of qualifying than someone with a long commute.
You’ll put fewer miles on your odometer and, therefore, pay less for car insurance if:
- You work from home. Besides saving you from stress, working from home can save your car from the wear and tear of a daily commute.
- You’re a carpooler. Carpooling with friends or co-workers can help keep your car’s miles down. Even if you sometimes use your car to carpool, you’ll still come out ahead.
- You frequently use public transportation. Using public commute options such as buses, light rails, or trains can help you avoid unneeded miles on your car.
- You’re a student. Students who are away at college might not need their car that much if their campus has everything they need. College students who leave their car at home won’t be driving much and could even qualify for the student away discount.
- You’re retired or a senior citizen. You likely don’t drive to work every day if you’re retired. This will help your annual miles low and help you save on car insurance, which can be higher for people 60 and older.
Insurers with a Low Mileage Discount
Several of the leading insurance companies offer discounts when you drive below a certain number of miles each year. Many of them do this by estimating your driving activity with telematics. This is usually a part of many insurers’ safe driving programs.
Insurers may also offer pay-per-mile or usage-based insurance (UBI) options. These alternative policies and plans help you pay only for the miles you drive, allowing you to pay less for coverage each month.
Note: some discounts aren’t available in every state. Contact your insurer to see if you qualify.
Below is a list of companies that offer a discount to customers that minimize driving:
You’ll get a rate reduction from State Farm if you keep your driving activity down. State Farm also has a program called Drive Safe & Save that tracks your driving habits. This program could save you up to 30% on car insurance. You can use it as a mobile app or through OnStar.
The Drive Safe & Save program allows State Farm to estimate how much you drive, potentially making it easier to claim your discount. Be aware that you could lose your discount if your driving increases.
Nationwide doesn’t have a discount for mileage. Rather, they offer a pay-per-mile program called SmartMiles. With this program, you’d pay a base rate and a varying monthly rate depending on how much you drive. SmartMiles uses telematics to track your trips and help you save if you drive less frequently.
Like other providers, GEICO uses annual mileage as a factor when they figure out your rates. But they don’t have an actual discount.
GEICO also has a program named DriveEasy to reward customers for for safe driving. To get started, you’ll have to install GEICO’s mobile app and sign up. The app monitors your driving behavior, including how far you drive. In this way, you may be able to receive savings from GEICO based on your mileage.
Though they don’t have this sort of discount, Allstate offers a pay-per-mile policy called Milewise. Allstate says that Milewise can allow you to save anywhere from 20 to 72% on your auto coverage when you driven10,000 miles per year or less. Milewise comes with a daily base rate and a per-mile rate. Be aware that it’s not available in every state. Contact your Allstate agent for more information.
Progressive takes how much you drive into account when they decide your rates, but they don’t have a low mileage discount. Instead, their Snapshot program may give you a chance at lowering your premium if you don’t drive much.
Like other insurers’ safe driving programs, Progressive’s Snapshot uses telematics to check your driving habits and give you discounts. Your miles driven is one of the habits they keep an eye on. You’ll need to download the app or plug a device into your car to use it.
USAA will give you a discount if you aren’t a frequent driver. They’ll also take up to 60% off your premium when you need to store your car for any reason. Contact your USAA agent to find out exactly how much you can save, whether it’s available in your state, and how little you must drive to qualify.
Liberty Mutual considers total miles driven when they choose your rates. But they don’t have any discounts for low mileage drivers. Instead, they offer a pay-per-mile program called RightTrack. Using a telematics device, this program tracks your car’s miles every month and will calculate your rates. You may need to reach out to Liberty Mutual to find out more about how to enroll.
Farmers’ Signal app can help you get a discount for driving less frequently. Like other carriers’ programs, the program enables Farmers Insurance to track your driving and potentially reward you. It watches things such as when you drive, how much you drive, how fast you drive, and more. Call your Farmers agent for more detailed info about how much you can save with Signal.
Travelers doesn’t have a specific discount for how much you drive. They may, however, use your yearly mileage as a factor when deciding how much you’ll pay for car insurance. So, if you drive very little, you could pay less than someone that takes frequent road trips.
You can qualify for a low mileage discount from AmFam for driving less than 7,500 miles per year. You could also get additional savings through their usage-based KnowYourDrive program that uses an app to track your driving habits.
Farm Bureau Financial Services
Farm Bureau offers a low mileage discount when you drive less than 7,500 miles a year. Its website doesn’t specify the savings. You’ll need to contact the insurer directly or ask an agent to learn more.
Auto-Owners offers a low mileage discount to customers that drive less than 10,000 miles a year. The insurer doesn’t say how much you’ll save. It depends on a few things. One of those is exactly how much you drove in your previous policy period. Before the end of your current auto insurance policy term, Auto-Owners will contact you and ask for a photo of the insured vehicle’s odometer. Once you’ve uploaded the photo, Auto-Owners will evaluate your mileage and other rate factors to determine your savings. It’s as easy as that.
This is only a partial list of insurance companies offering this discount savings options. Get a quote to compare car insurance companies with discounts or programs that offer low rates to occasional drivers.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is a low mileage driver?
A: These are drivers that put around 7,000 to 10,000 miles per year on their odometers. Remember that every insurance company will have its own requirements, meaning that the number could even be higher than 10,000 miles per year. In the long run, these drivers are usually people who don’t need to drive that often. Common examples include:
- People who work from home
- People who carpool or use public transit
- Retired people
- College students
Q: Is it possible to get car insurance for low mileage driving?
A: It may not be called low mileage, but you can get car insurance policies for infrequent driving. Many major auto insurance companies offer pay-per-mile or UBI plans that target occasional drivers. You could pay a lot less with these than with traditional insurance policies. There are also companies like Metromile that offer similar pay-per-mile plans.
Q: Can my insurance go up if I drive too many miles per year?
A: Your car’s yearly mileage is a factor that could affect your auto rates. If companies give you discounts for driving less, there’s a chance they could raise your rates if they think you drive too much. This is because, in their eyes, you’re at a higher risk of being in an accident when you drive more.