USAA

4.0
from 0 reviews

A formidable insurance agency with product lines in auto, home, life, and personal services, and a specialization in offering Armed Force members excellent benefits.

Overview

USAA is exclusively sold to the United States Armed Forces. It was founded in 1922 by 25 military officers who couldn't find car insurance. These officers were viewed as high risk because of their connection to the Army. They formed the United States Army Automobile Association an sold their first policy. In 1923 they offered their services to the Marines and Navy and in 1924 they dropped Army from the title and changed their name to United States Automobile Association. Today they are a formidable insurance agency with product lines in auto, home, life, and personal services and if members of the Armed Forces need insurance USAA offer some excellent benefits. Their quality of service is consistently marked very highly in the industry.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • They consistently rank high in customer satisfaction and offer some of the lowest rates in the industry.
  • They have excellent benefits for their members.
  • One-stop-shop for the insurance needs of those in the military.
  • USAA is member owned so they don't answer to shareholders.

Cons

  • USAA is only available to armed forces.
  • They don't have a lot of options for add-ons
  • Fewer bill pay options for members than other companies on the market.

USAA Insurance Coverage

USAA offers a few benefits but they cover all their bases with with their standard coverage. That being said they do offer a few options for add-ons from their standard insurance. Below is a short list of additional options for coverage. Rates may vary state to state and may not be offered everywhere.

  • Accident Forgiveness this add-on is available for members who have been accident free for five years. USAA won't raise their rates after one at-risk accident.
  • Rideshare Insurance is optional coverage available for customers who drive for Uber, Lyft, or similar companies. These companies often offer liability while a customer is in the vehicle but this option keeps the policy holder covered while they are between rides.
Group Average Rate
Single 25-year-old female $1,038
Single 25-year-old male $1,093
Married 35-year-old female $823
Married 35-year-old male $818
Married 60-year-old female $768
Married 60-year-old male $767

Standard Insurance Coverage

  • Full Coverage
  • Comprehensive
  • Collision
  • Liability Coverage
  • Bodily Injury
  • Physical Damage
  • Personal and Passenger Protection
  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
  • Extended Benefits Coverage
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Property Damage
Annual Mileage Average Rate
6,000 miles $829
12,000 miles $885

Car Insurance Rates

USAA is unique in that it is run by members as opposed to being beholden to shareholders. This allows them keep their rates lower. Across the board USAA has some of the lowest rates nationally. On average their rates are 35% cheaper than the average. The next closest carrier was GEICO in a side by side comparison USAA was generally cheaper overall but Massachusetts and Kansas where GEICO's annual average rate was $396 and $611 respectively. USAA rang in at $414 and $678 for Massachusetts and Kansas. Surprisingly, State Farm was the cheapest in Massachusetts at $346 but generally State Farm was more expensive than both USAA and GEICO. Even at such low rates USAA still have several good discounts, and while they don't have a military discount, they do offer a wide variety of other discounts.

Coverage Type Average Rate
Low $830
Medium $885
High $940

Car Insurance Discounts

USAA has a high degree of customer satisfaction consistently ranking at the top of the industry. One of the reasons is their rates and especially their discounts. Below is a list of discounts available through USAA. Some of these may vary or not be allowed from state to state.

  • Safe Driver Discount is available when policy holders maintain a good driving record for five years or more.
  • Defensive Driving discount when policy holders improve their driving skills with a USAA approved defensive driving course.
  • Driver Training Discount for drivers that are 21 or younger and have completed a basic driver training course.
  • Good Student Discount for policy holders who maintain a B average or higher.
  • New Vehicle Discount if your vehicle is less than three years old.
  • Multi-Vehicle Discount wen you insure more than one vehicle on the same policy.
  • Annual Mileage Discount when you drive less you save.
  • Vehicle Storage Discount policy holders can save up to 60% when the insured vehicle is in storage.
  • Family Discount when policy holders take over their parent’s policy, they can save up to 10%
  • Length of Membership Discount is a loyalty discount for staying with USAA .
  • Vehicle Storage Discount on comprehensive coverage when you garage your vehicle on a military base
  • Military Installation Discount will give policy holders up to 15% when their vehicle is stored on a military base.
  • Multiple Policy Discount bundle together any other product lines, such as home or life insurance and receive a discount on their policy.

USAA Insurance Vs. Competitors

USAA is an excellent insurance agency and consistently ranks very well in all areas with a few exceptions. Recently the banking portion of the USAA was found in violation of the Electronic Funds Act and was cited for failing to implement a consent order from the Comptroller o Currency. The allegation was that USAA didn't implement an effective risk management program. USAA has since come into compliance and the Auto Insurance division wasn't responsible or in control of those actions. Their reputation was however tarnished and as a result has some less than stellar ratings with BBB and Moody's Rating dropped the company from stable to negative. Below we will compare USAA to their competitors and see how they measure up. These ratings factor somewhat but overall don't factor much in the comparison. What is a factor is that the USAA is only available to those affiliated with the US Armed Forces.

USAA Insurance Vs GEICO: GEICO and USAA balance out very well. They are both cheaper than the national average and both offer an array of discounts and bundling options. There are several places where GEICO wins out over USAA. GEICO has more options, more discounts, more add-ons and is in general a little more versatile for the average consumer. Even for military the edge lies with GEICO. One area where USAA is better is in their customer service. The company tends to be better in terms of overall customer satisfaction and they get far fewer negative reviews than GEICO. The price as stated above fluctuates between the two-company dependent on the state, discounts, and needs. They are both excellent companies and have good features GEICO is more widely available and that is likely a factor for a lot of people.

USAA Insurance Vs State Farm: These two companies are known for low rates. Like the comparison to GEICO this will likely be down to individual needs and which company meets those needs better. State Farm rates can be cheaper than USAA, but its more often than not USAA as a better price point for monthly premiums. State Farm does have more options in terms of optional coverage and a few more discounts than USAA. USAA has better customer service than State Farm and again these two companies are very close in price and it comes down to what individual drivers need from their automobile insurance.

USAA Insurance Vs Allstate: Allstate is a good company, but USAA just has better customer service, is on average USAA is half the price of Allstate, and offers coverage for ride share. As before Allstate does offer more coverage, pay, and service options than USAA and a few more discount options than USAA. It is likely not enough to equalize the price but it is definitely something to consider in an insurance customer's comparison shopping. Head to head USAA is just a better company but they are still worth taking a look at.

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