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Insurance companies consider drivers in their teens to be high risk and price their policies for this age group accordingly. But 18-year-olds who shop around will find they can save thousands of dollars a year. American National, for instance, is the cheapest car insurance company for 18-year-old drivers. It offers policies at about $2,250 per year for full coverage, according to Insurance.com’s analysis of nationwide insurers.

Erie, Berkshire Hathaway, and Western National also offer good rates.

An 18-year-old driver, on average, pays $5,242 a year for a full coverage policy, according to Insurance.com’s latest data analysis. By comparison, a 40-year-old with a good credit and driving history pays on average about $1,700 a year for full coverage.

Key takeaways

  • Car insurance rates for 18-year-olds based on coverage limits are - $1,786 per year for state minimum coverage, $2,149 annually for Liability-only coverage (50/100/50) and $5,565 a year for full coverage.
  • American National is the cheapest car insurance company for 18-year-old drivers. It offers full coverage policies at about $2,250 per year.
  • Cheapest car insurance for 18-year-old male and female drivers is offered by American National at $2,497 per year and $2,022 per year respectively.
  • 18-year-old drivers can save on their car insurance by comparing quotes, driving a cheaper or affordable car, and taking advantage of available discounts.

Why do 18-years-olds pay so much for car insurance?

Young drivers typically shell out more for car insurance than older drivers due to their lack of experience behind the wheel. According to the most up-to-date Centers for Disease Control and Prevention figures, in 2019 nearly 2,400 teens aged 13–19 were killed in the United States, and about 258,000 were treated in emergency departments for injuries sustained in a car crash. The CDC also says that, in 2018, motor vehicle crash deaths among 15- to 19-year-olds resulted in some $4.8 billion in medical and work loss costs.

In this guide, you can find cheap car insurance rates for 18-year-olds by state, the companies offering the cheapest insurance, and tips to save on auto insurance rates.

How much is car insurance for 18-year-olds?

While the average 18-year-old driver pays $5,242 a year, or about $437 per month, for a full coverage policy, teens also can opt for state minimum, liability-only, and other coverage types.

Below are average annual car insurance costs for common coverage levels for 18-year-old male drivers:

  • State minimum coverage: $1,786 per year
  • Liability-only coverage (50/100/50): $2,149 per year 
  • Full Coverage: $5,565 per year

For a full coverage auto insurance policy, the coverage limit is 100/300/100, where $100,000 is for bodily injury per person, $300,000 for bodily injury per accident, and $100,000 for property damage.

Cheapest car insurance companies for 18-year-old drivers

American National has the cheapest full coverage car insurance rates for 18-year-old drivers, but other insurers offer below-average prices.

Erie, Berkshire Hathaway and Western National are among those that offer cheap car insurance for 18-year-old drivers. USAA also provides cheap insurance for teens, but it only provides its services to veterans, military members and their families.

The table below shows how insurance companies rank in terms of price for 18-year-old drivers buying full coverage policy.

CompanyAverage Annual Rate
American National$2,259
Western National$3,519
American Family$3,558
State Farm$3,629
Auto Owners$3,645
Vermont Mutual$3,938

Cheapest car insurance for 18-year-old: male vs female

American National is the cheapest car insurance provider for both 18-year-old male and female drivers. However, car insurance from American National is cheaper for female drivers than for 18-year-old male drivers. Female drivers pay $2,022 per year, whereas 18-year-old male drivers pay $2,497 annually for the same coverage.

According to the CDC, the motor vehicle death rate for male drivers aged 16–19 is twice that of female drivers of the same age. And the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that two out of every three teenagers who die in car accidents are males, thereby making male drivers a high risk to insure.

CompanySingle 18-year-old FemaleSingle 18-year-old Male
American National$2,022$2,497
American Family$3,434$3,681
Western National$3,291$3,747
Auto Owners$3,354$3,935
State Farm$3,303$3,954
Mapfre Ins$3,407$4,035
Vermont Mutual$3,498$4,378

Note: USAA auto insurance is available only to military members, veterans, and their families.

Average car insurance for 18-year-old males and females

When it comes to car insurance, 18-year-old male drivers pay $5,565 per year on average, whereas 18-year-old female drivers pay $4,918 annually. That’s a difference of $647 based on gender.

Some states, including California and Michigan, do not allow insurance companies to charge different rates for teen adults based on their gender. However, in many places in the United States, insurance companies take gender into account when determining auto insurance rates.

What states have the cheapest car insurance cost for 18-year-olds? 

Hawaii is the cheapest state for 18-year-old drivers to get car insurance at about $1,414 per year. It’s $3,828 cheaper than the national average of $5,242 for 18-year-olds. 

The below table shows the cheapest to most expensive states for car insurance rates for 18-year-old drivers.

State Avg Annual Premium
North Carolina$2,854
New Mexico$4,420
New Hampshire$4,470
South Dakota$4,478
North Dakota$4,546
West Virginia$5,194
South Carolina$5,346
New York$5,597
District of Columbia$5,802
New Jersey$6,734
Rhode Island$6,972

How can 18-year-olds save on car insurance?

For young drivers, car insurance can be a major expense. But there are ways to save. Here are some tips for 18-year-olds looking to get the best deal on car insurance.

  • Compare quotes: Car insurance rates vary from company to company. This is because insurers use different parameters -- such as your driving record, age, gender, type of car you own, and where you live -- to determine your insurance premiums. So, 18-year-olds should consider comparing quotes from multiple companies to get the best deal on car insurance.
  • Take advantage of discounts:Most insurance companies offer discounts for teen drivers, such as good student discounts and discounts upon completing a driving course.
  • Drive a cheaper or affordable car: The cost of repairing an expensive vehicle is often greater than the price of fixing a less costly model. This means drivers pay more in monthly insurance premiums for an expensive car model.
  • Reconsider your coverage needs: Most insurance carriers recommend that you have a full-coverage policy for 18-year-olds, as they are more likely to get into accidents. However, if your car is old and the repairs would be more expensive than the car is worth, you might be able to get away with a minimum-coverage policy.


Insurance.com has prepared in-depth car insurance guides for drivers of different ages. You will learn how much you expect to pay for insurance based on your age and how you can save on premiums each year. Check out the guides below:

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