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Best car insurance for veterans and members of the military

The best car insurance for veterans and people in the military is USAA, which has the lowest rates and highest-rated customer service of any major company.

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By

Andrew Hurst

Andrew Hurst

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

Andrew Hurst is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. His work has also been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, NPR, Mic, Insurance Business Magazine, ValuePenguin, and Property Casualty 360.

&Rachael Brennan

Rachael Brennan

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

Rachael Brennan is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. Her work has also been featured in MoneyGeek, Clearsurance, Adweek, Boston Globe, The Ladders, and AutoInsurance.com.

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By

Kristi Sullivan, CFP®

Kristi Sullivan, CFP®

Certified Financial Planner

Kristi Sullivan, CFP®, is a certified financial planner and a member of the Financial Review Council at Policygenius. Previously, she was a regional consultant at Fidelity Investments for nine years.

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If you’re in the military or a veteran, you still need car insurance to protect yourself from the cost of an unexpected car accident, just like a civilian. We found that USAA is the best car insurance for active-duty members of the armed forces and veterans. 

USAA has the cheapest rates, plus it’s available nationwide and offers unique discounts for service members and vets. GEICO is our runner-up pick for the best auto insurance for veterans and members of the military.

quote-output-logo-usaa

USAA

Best military car insurance

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GEICO

Best runner-up

Best military car insurance for most people: USAA

USAA

4

Policygenius rating

How we score: Policygenius’ ratings are determined by our editorial team. Our methodology takes multiple factors into account, including pricing, financial ratings, quality of customer service, and other product-specific features.

USAA logo

Our top pick for most drivers in the military

USAA's cheap rates and consistently highly-ranked customer service make it the best car insurance for military families and veterans.

Why we chose USAA:

  • 37% cheaper than average

  • Discounts for deployment and for keeping your car on-base

  • Available in every state and the District of Columbia

  • High customer service ratings

  • World-class app and claims-filing tools

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USAA is our pick for the best car insurance for drivers affiliated with the military. You’re eligible for USAA as long as you’re an active-duty, reserve, or veteran member of the military (or a family member of someone who served).

In terms of price, USAA is also the cheapest military car insurance out there. We looked at the cost of car insurance in the states with the most armed forces personnel and found that a full-coverage policy from USAA is 37% cheaper than average.

Company

Monthly cost

Annual cost

USAA

$87

$1,044

State Farm

$95

$1,141

GEICO

$99

$1,192

Travelers

$113

$1,351

American Family

$118

$1,420

The five cheapest military car insurance companies.

USAA also has excellent customer service. J.D. Power ranked USAA at the top of its claims satisfaction study multiple years in a row. USAA also made our Policygenius list of the best auto insurance companies. [1]

Is USAA cheaper than GEICO?

Yes, USAA is $12 cheaper each month than GEICO, on average —  a difference of $144 per year. But GEICO (or another company) could be a cheaper option for you. The best way to find affordable coverage is get multiple quotes and compare rates before choosing a policy.

Runner up for best military car insurance: GEICO

GEICO

4.6

Policygenius rating

How we score: Policygenius’ ratings are determined by our editorial team. Our methodology takes multiple factors into account, including pricing, financial ratings, quality of customer service, and other product-specific features.

GEICO logo

Our pick for the second-best military car insurance

GEICO's many discounts, including a 15% discount for veterans, could make it the best cheap alternative to USAA for military car insurance.

Why we chose GEICO

  • Costs 28% less than average

  • 15% discount for military personnel and government workers

  • Extra savings for drivers who are deployed

  • Available in every state

Read our full GEICO car insurance review

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GEICO is our pick runner-up for best car insurance for veterans and military families. Unlike USAA, GEICO doesn’t exclusively offer coverage to members of the military, it’s available to everyone (and in every state).

Coverage from GEICO costs 28% less than average for most people and is just $12 more each month than USAA, so it remains an affordable option for military drivers looking for cheap coverage.

Also, GEICO offers special discounts for service members, like lower rates if you’re deployed, as well as a 15% discount to drivers who are in the military or are government workers. 

If you work for the Department of Defense (or another government agency) and aren’t eligible for coverage with USAA, GEICO is the best insurance for you.

GEICO also offers savings if you’re a part of the following professional, military-related associations and affinity groups:

  • Association of the United States Army

  • Armed Forces Benefit Association

  • Navy League of the United States

  • Navy Federal Credit Union

How does a military car insurance discount work?

Active military members, veterans, and their families may all qualify for a military car insurance discount.

Car insurance companies all have their own standards around what type of military discounts to offer (and who qualifies for a discount) so when you’re applying for car insurance, make sure to indicate whether or not you’re a member of the military. If you’re not sure if you qualify for a discount, ask a representative.

While some car insurance companies offer standalone military discounts, others offer a military discount as part of an employer or industry-based discount. Often referred to as affinity discounts, these discounts can also apply to teachers, firefighters, nurses, and similar groups. 

In order to qualify for a military car insurance discount, you’ll need to show proof of eligibility. Acceptable proof might include:

  • Enrollment paperwork

  • Report of separation (form DD-214)

  • Military ID card (Common Access Card or uniformed services ID card)

In most instances, veterans who are no longer active members of the military are still eligible for any military discount that car insurance companies offer. But every company is different, and coverage and available discounts can vary from one state to the next, so veterans should always ask whether or not they qualify for a discount before buying a policy.

Insurance companies with military discounts and benefits

USAA is the only major insurance company that’s exclusively for members of the military, but a few others offer discounts and perks to members of the armed forces and veterans.

If you’re in the military, you may qualify for perks from the following auto insurance companies:

  • Arbella: Save 10% if you're deployed on active duty at least 100 miles away from your home.

  • Armed Forces Insurance: Available to members of the military, vets, ROTC, and some civilian employees, AFI has a range of coverage options for members of the armed forces — but no discounts.

  • Farmers: Active-duty, active reserves, retired, and military veterans of the military may qualify for a discount from Farmers.

  • GEICO: Offers a 15% discount to members of the military and veterans, government employees, and members of military-related affinity groups. Also has special coverage for those who are deployed.

  • Liberty Mutual: Members of the military who are active, retired, or a part of the reserve forces of the U.S. Armed Forces may get a discount from Liberty Mutual.

  • USAA: Our pick for the best military car insurance and coverage for military personnel and veterans, USAA is exclusively for members of the armed forces and their families, and offers a range of other products and retailer benefits open to those who serve.

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What is the best car insurance for military families?

USAA is the cheapest car insurance company for military families. A full-coverage policy from USAA costs an average of $87 per month in the states with the highest population of military personnel, making it the most affordable option for military families.

State Farm and GEICO also have cheap car insurance for veterans and service members, but State Farm doesn’t offer special military car insurance discounts.

How did we calculate the cost of military car insurance?

We found the cost of car insurance in the 20 states with at least 30,000 military personnel assigned, according to the Department of Defense. These states are: , CA, CO, FL, GA, HI, IL, KS, KY, LA, MD, MO, NC, NY, OH, OK, SC, TX, VA, and WA.       

Do you need car insurance if you’re deployed?

Unlike civilian drivers, it’s possible for active-duty members of the military to be deployed thousands of miles away from their vehicle — which may make car insurance seem a little unnecessary. 

But you should keep your car insurance if you’re deployed, since there are some serious downsides to canceling your coverage while you’re on deployment.

Canceling your car insurance for the length of your deployment means you’d have to pay out-of-pocket for any damage that happens while the car is in storage. If someone else drives your car while you’re deployed and causes an accident while you don’t have coverage, you could still be responsible for paying for all the damage.

And when you return from duty and renew your policy, you’d also have to pay more for having a lapse in auto insurance coverage. Instead, you can still get cheaper military car insurance while overseas by:

→Read more about car insurance for National Guard soldiers

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best military car insurance?

USAA is the best car insurance for veterans and military families. You can only get USAA’s exclusive coverage, highly rated service, and cheap rates from USAA if you’re a member of the military.

What proof do you need to show I’m eligible for military auto insurance?

When you shop for car insurance coverage with USAA, or another provider that requires you to prove your eligibility, you need a bit more information on hand than a civilian. You will need to know the date that you started your service, along with the branch of the armed forces you're a part of. You will also need your discharge papers if you're no longer an active member of the military.

Do you need car insurance while you're deployed?

You shouldn’t cancel your car insurance if you’re deployed. Insurance will be more expensive after you return and reinstate your coverage. Instead, you can reduce your coverage to the bare minimums, dropping to comp-only if your car is in storage. You may also qualify for a deployment discount from your insurance company.

Is car insurance cheaper if you’re in the military?

Car insurance can be cheaper if you’re in the military. Veterans and service members can get some of the cheapest rates in the country with USAA, and other car insurance companies offer discounts to drivers in the armed forces.

References

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Policygenius uses external sources, including government data, industry studies, and reputable news organizations to supplement proprietary marketplace data and internal expertise. Learn more about how we use and vet external sources as part of our

editorial standards.
  1. J.D. Power

    . "

    J.D. Power Claims Satisfaction Survey 2021

    ." Accessed March 14, 2022.

Authors

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

Andrew Hurst

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

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Andrew Hurst is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. His work has also been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, NPR, Mic, Insurance Business Magazine, ValuePenguin, and Property Casualty 360.

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

Rachael Brennan

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

gray linkedin icon link

Rachael Brennan is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. Her work has also been featured in MoneyGeek, Clearsurance, Adweek, Boston Globe, The Ladders, and AutoInsurance.com.

Expert reviewer

Certified Financial Planner

Kristi Sullivan, CFP®

Certified Financial Planner

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Kristi Sullivan, CFP®, is a certified financial planner and a member of the Financial Review Council at Policygenius. Previously, she was a regional consultant at Fidelity Investments for nine years.

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