Average miles driven by state

Americans drive an average of 14,263 miles per year, according to the Federal Highway Administration. Drivers in Wyoming drive the most annual miles at 24,069, while drivers in Washington D.C. drive the least number of miles at 4,623.

Stephanie Nieves author photo


Stephanie Nieves

Stephanie Nieves

Editor & Home and Auto Insurance Expert

Stephanie Nieves is a former editor and insurance expert at Policygenius, where she covered home and auto insurance. Her work has also appeared in Business Insider, Money, HerMoney, PayScale, and The Muse.

Updated  | 2 min read

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Americans rely on their cars to commute, run errands, and travel for fun — but how many miles does the average American drive per year? 

According to data from the Federal Highway Administration (FHA), [1] Americans drive an average of 14,263 miles per year, which is about 1,189 miles per month. Collectively, that’s 220 million licensed drivers driving more than 3.3 trillion miles each year in the U.S. But drivers in some states clock more miles on the road than others, which could have an affect on their car insurance rates.

Key Takeaways

  • Drivers in Wyoming have the highest annual mileage at 24,069 miles a year

  • Drivers in Washington D.C. drive the fewest number of miles per year at 4,623

  • How much you drive can have an affect on your car insurance rates 

  • Drivers who drive fewer than 7,500 miles per year may qualify for a low-mileage discount

Average miles driven by state

Americans drive an average of 14,263 miles per year, according to the most recent data from the FHA. Here’s a look at the average annual miles driver per year by drivers in each state:

StateAnnual vehicle miles (in millions)Number of licensed driversAnnual mileage per driver
District of Columbia3,756535,5794,623
New Hampshire13,8281,195,21111,570
New Jersey78,2056,377,41312,263
New Mexico27,7721,449,71119,157
New York123,98612,194,36010,167
North Carolina122,4757,620,00116,073
North Dakota9,826556,06417,671
Rhode Island7,581761,0469,961
South Carolina57,9393,877,96814,941
South Dakota9,922638,42815,541
West Virginia19,0771,130,38916,876
U.S. Total3,261,772228,679,71914,263

States with the highest average mileage

Of the 50 states plus Washington D.C., drivers in Wyoming have the highest annual mileage at 24,069. Considering Wyoming is one of the least densely populated states, it makes sense that Wyoming drivers spend more time on the road getting where they need to go. 

  1. Wyoming: 24,069 miles per year

  2. Mississippi: 19,966 miles per year

  3. New Mexico: 19,157 miles per year

  4. Missouri: 18,521 miles per year

  5. Georgia: 18,334 miles per year

States with the lowest average mileage

Unsurprisingly, drivers in Washington D.C. drive the fewest number of miles per year at 4,623, followed by Rhode Island at 9,961 miles a year. 

  1. Washington D.C.: 4,623 miles per year

  2. Rhode Island: 9,961 miles per year

  3. New York: 10,167 miles per year

  4. Washington: 10,949 miles per year

  5. Alaska: 11,111 miles per year

Why mileage matters when it comes to car insurance

The more you drive, the higher your chance of getting into an accident. That’s why car insurance companies ask you about your annual mileage when you apply for coverage — if you drive far more than the average driver in your area, you may be more of a risk to insure, which means you may see higher rates.

But most car insurance companies also reward drivers who drive less with low mileage discounts. Low mileage discounts generally apply to people who drive less than 7,500 miles per year, but some companies may set their own mileage limit for the discount.

Drivers who work from home can take advantage of this discount, since they don’t have to commute to and from work. Some companies also offer discount programs that track your driving through a phone app and reward safe or infrequent driving.

If you know you won’t be driving much, you can talk to your insurer about which of these discounts are available to you.

Is 30,000 miles a year a lot?

The average American drives 14,263 miles per year. So someone who drives 30,000 miles a year drives more than double the average American — which is a lot.

How many miles can a car last before it breaks down?

Some cars easily last a decade or more on the road while others may fall apart well before then. How long your car will last depends on its make and model, as well as how much you drive, where you live, and how well you keep up with routine maintenance.

Are highway miles easier on a car?

Driving on the highway can mean less wear and tear on some parts of your car, like your brakes since you’re stopping less often. But generally, your car will stay in the best shape if you keep up with your regular maintenance, like changing your oil, replacing worn tires, and fixing issues as soon as they come up.