Are you a good driver? You aren’t alone if you’d rate yourself with above average driving skills.
According to a study in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, most people wouldn’t hesitate to rate their driving skills are a seven out of ten. But what does being a good driver mean?
Insurers have their definition: You’re good driver if you’ve been accident-free and violation-free for three to five years. And you can benefit from this.
Insurers give you lower quotes, your premiums stay lower, and you might even get a discount.
A good driver discount is one of the most common discounts offered by insurers and it’s an easy way to save money on your policy.
What is a good driver discount?
Most insurers offer a good driver discount. The discount usually splits into two forms:
- The accident-free discount customers get lower rates if they go a certain number of years without an accident.
- The violation-free discount is available to drivers who haven’t had any major violations for a set number of years.
Depending on the company, they offer one or both.
Can anyone get a good driver discount?
Who counts as a good driver? The definition of a good driver varies from company to company. When looking into whether you qualify for the discount or not, insurers look at your driving record, and your accident and claims history.
If you’re interested in learning if you’re eligible or not, check with your insurance rep about the requirements.
Some insurers offer the accident-free discount if you haven’t been in an accident for three years. Others offer it only after five years. Depending on the insurer, the discount is only given to existing/continuing customers or new customers.
Not only that, the percentage of the discount depends on each company and the discount might not apply to all coverages or in all states.
How to get it
If you’re curious about the discount, ask your insurance agent to see if you already have the discount applied or how you can get it to cut down on your premium.
You can also ask about it if you’re considering switching insurance companies and you’re shopping around for rates.
How to keep a good driver discount
Once you have the discount added to your policy, there are measures you can take to keep it. Taking a defensive driving course is an easy way to improve your driving skills. The course teaches you safe driving techniques for preventing car accidents.
And just remember to follow the rules of the road. Even a speeding ticket affects your car insurance rate.
Other kinds of savings
A good driver discount is only one of many discounts that insurers often offer. Some insurers even offer other discounts and benefits that are related to safe driving.
Depending on the company, your premiums could decline for each year you don’t file a claim.
In other instances, companies extend a discount on the car insurance policy for drivers who take driver training courses or defensive driving classes since safe driving means fewer claims.
The California good driver discount
In California, regulations require insurers to offer a 20 percent discount to good drivers. For you to be entitled to the discount, you must meet the following criteria:
- Had your license for the past three years
- Don’t have more than one point on your driving record due to a violation
- Haven’t taken traffic school more than once because of a violation
- Haven’t been at fault in an accident that resulted in injury or death
- Don’t have a conviction within the last ten years for driving under the influence related driving offenses
Finding the best rate for you
Even if an insurance company is offering a good driver discount to you that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting the best rate out there. The only way to ensure that you’re not overpaying for car insurance is to shop around for multiple quotes.
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