I don’t know about you, but every six months, when it’s time to renew my car insurance, I almost go into a panic. Suddenly, I’m searching articles, getting insurance quotes, and reviewing coverages as if I’ve never seen any of them before. You never know when an accident could happen, so it’s important to understand your coverage now so you don’t have to worry about it later.
Whether you’re a day away from renewing your policy now or just thinking about your options for later, here’s what you need to know about Erie Car Insurance.
Erie car insurance (also known as auto insurance) is a product that Erie Insurance Group offers. The company has been providing insurance coverage since 1925 and today has over 6,000 employees and 13,000 independent agents nationwide. The company provides other insurance and auto insurance types, including homeowners insurance, life insurance, and business insurance.
Auto insurance policies offer a set of coverages to protect you financially in many scenarios in which you may be involved in an automobile accident. It can help cover medical costs, car repairs, and more. Auto insurance is required in most states, and some states require specific coverages to be included in an auto insurance policy.
Erie Insurance’s financial strength is well-proven through its financial ratings. Erie Insurance Group has earned A.M. Best rating of A+. In 2019, it also made the highest ranking in the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study.
How does Erie Car Insurance work?
If you’re considering purchasing a car insurance policy from Erie Insurance, the first step is to get a quote. You can start this process with just a few clicks on the Erie Insurance website.
The company offers a few different types of insurance, so be sure that you’re requesting an auto insurance quote, not another type.
After you’ve input your insurance type and zip code, you’ll be brought to a screen to enter more information about yourself.
Then you’ll be asked for information about the vehicles you want your auto insurance policy to cover.
If you have multiple vehicles, you can add the additional vehicles after inputting the first one. When you’ve finished adding information about each car you want coverage for, you can click on the “Continue” button.
Your name and vehicle info will automatically be added to the driver’s information. You can also enter additional information, including the age you were when you earned your license.
As with the vehicles, you can also add additional drivers to the policy. When you’ve finished adding all of the drivers you want coverage for, you can click on this “continue” button.
The next step is to enter your contact information. You’ll also be asked a few additional questions, including the date you need your auto insurance coverage to become effective.
After you’ve submitted these final details, you’ll be given your quote if you qualify for a policy from Erie Insurance.
This quote is just an estimate based on the coverage options that Erie Insurance has generated for you. You’ll need to review the coverage options to ensure that you’re comfortable with what’s included in your policy.
These are the coverage amounts that were included in the quote that I received:
You can change your coverage amounts and “re-rate” your quote. This will rerun the selection based on the new coverage amounts. For example, when I changed my bodily injury liability coverage amount, I clicked on the re-rate quote button and received this:
You can do this as many times as you’d like to review the costs for each coverage amount.
Erie will provide you with information for a local agent on this page as well. You can reach out to the agent to discuss your coverage options and complete an auto insurance policy application.
As with any auto insurance policy, the pricing of a policy from Erie Insurance will depend on several factors. Factors that are taken into consideration include your age, where you live, and your driving record. If you have other drivers on the policy, their information will be considered as well. Aside from these factors, the amount of coverage that you purchase can raise or lower your price.
In the first quote that I received, my premium would have been $95.50/month for the following:
Bodily injury liability: $100,000 for one person, $300,000 for the total incident
Property damage liability: $100,000
Supplementary uninsured/underinsured motorists bodily injury: $25,000 for one person, $50,000 for the total incident
Optional basic economic loss: $25,000
Personal injury protection: $50,000
Collision deductible: $500
Comprehensive deductible: $500
Roadside and rentals: Class 2 - Traditional Sedan
Lowering just one of these coverage amounts changed my quote. I reduced the bodily injury liability coverage to $25,000 for one person and $50,000 per incident, which lowered my monthly premium to $88.50.
That being said, you might not want to go for the lowest amounts possible to lower your insurance premium. If you do end up involved in an accident, you may end up paying far more than the few dollars you saved on your premium. You can speak with your insurance agent to get personalized recommendations on coverage amounts. Still, ultimately, it comes down to what’s required in your state as well as the level of risk that you’re comfortable with taking.
Another way you may lower your premium is to take advantage of Erie Insurance’s auto insurance discounts. When you receive a quote, it may include some of these discounts. Even so, you should speak with an agent to see if you might qualify for additional discounts. Some of the discounts offered by Erie Insurance are the safe driving discount, multi-car discount, and multi-policy discount. According to the insurer, the typical multi-policy discount is around 20%.
Erie Car Insurance features
An Erie auto insurance policy is broken up into a few different sections. First, let’s look at the six essential components of an auto insurance policy.
Almost every state in the U.S. requires drivers to carry liability coverages. Each state has a required minimum coverage amount — your agent can help advise you on how much you need to have.
Bodily injury liability
If you’re at fault for an accident, this coverage will help pay for the costs related to another person’s injuries. It can also cover damages if you are sued due to someone else’s injuries or death.
Property damage liability
If you cause damage to someone else’s property with your vehicle, this coverage can help pay for those damages.
Supplementary uninsured/underinsured motorists bodily injury
Some states also require uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. It covers situations where you might be involved in an accident with a driver who has no insurance or is underinsured. It can help pay for your medical bills and, in some cases, can even help cover repairs to your vehicle.
States do not require comprehensive coverage, but your lender may need it if you lease or finance your vehicle. It can cover damages to your car from various circumstances, including theft, fire, hail, or vandalism.
Comprehensive coverage comes with a deductible. So if a covered situation damages your car, you’ll need to pay your deductible out of pocket before your insurance company will payout for the damages,
This is another type of coverage that might be required by your lender if you lease or finance your vehicle. It can help cover damage to your car if you are involved in a fault accident with another car or an object such as a fence.
Collision coverage also comes with a deductible, which you must meet before your insurance company pays out for covered collision damages.
This coverage can help you pay for your medical expenses following an accident. It may also cover additional costs resulting from your accident, such as lost income or childcare expenses.
Personal injury protection is required in some states and not available at all in others.
Erie also offers additional coverages that you can add to your policy.
Erie Auto Plus
This optional package provides benefits that can enhance a basic auto insurance policy. It includes a diminishing deductible, meaning that your deductible is reduced for each year you remain claims-free. It also provides increased coverage limits to help cover things like emergency travel costs and personal items. In certain situations, this package may allow you to waive your deductible overall. It can also pay for up to 10 additional days of transportation expenses if your vehicle is totaled. A death benefit is included in this package as well, offering $10,000 if you or a relative passes away due to a bodily injury from an auto accident.
Erie Rate Lock Feature
This allows you to lock in your insurance rate, allowing you to avoid increases even if you file a claim. The only way your rate would change if you enable this feature is if you add or remove a vehicle/driver from the policy or if your vehicle's address changes.
If you have a motorcycle, you can add coverage for it to your auto policy at a competitive price. The coverage includes $3,000 for damage to accessories, gear, and safety riding apparel. Unfortunately, this coverage is not available in every state.
New car replacement
Adding this coverage will provide you with the actual replacement cost of your vehicle if it’s totaled. Without this coverage, if your car is totaled, you will only receive the depreciated value of your car.
If your car is in the shop due to an accident, this coverage can ensure that you’ll have alternative transportation. You can choose from five classes of rental car options, and the annual cost of this coverage is typically less than an average one-day car rental.
Roadside & rentals bundle
This package includes roadside service coverage and transportation expense coverage for collision and comprehensive losses. This can provide you with reasonable towing and labor costs as well as coverage for a rental car. This coverage varies by state, but your agent can help you review your options.
If you work with a private company such as Uber or Lyft, you can add on this optional coverage to protect your vehicle when you’re transporting passengers.
People with cars and motorcycles. Sure, you can purchase an entirely separate motorcycle insurance policy. But with Erie, you can save money by adding this coverage right to your auto policy.
Drivers with multiple cars. Erie makes it easy and affordable to add multiple vehicles to your policy.
Safe drivers. If you have a sound insurance history, an insurance company that rewards you can be beneficial. Erie offers discounts and a decreasing deductible to reward claims-free drivers. Plus, the longer you’re a customer, the more benefits you may be eligible for. With a typical Erie auto policy, after you’ve been a customer for three years, your first accident can be forgiven at no surcharge.
Who shouldn’t use Erie car insurance?
People who don’t want to work with a local agent. While you can receive a quote online, you cannot purchase an auto insurance policy online. Instead, Erie recommends local independent agents to help you finalize your auto insurance application and purchase. So, if you’re looking for an insurer where you can get quick coverage online, Erie isn’t for you.
People who live on the western half of the United States. Erie only offers auto coverage in some states, so it may not be available to you, depending on where you live. Erie covers states within the Northeast and Mid-western parts of the country, including New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, Illinois, and Indiana.
Pros & cons
Erie offers personalized customer support through its independent agents.
Erie offers several types of insurance, making it easy to bundle multiple policies and save money.
Erie offers extensive coverage options, including ridesharing coverage.
Erie only offers auto insurance in select states.
Some coverages are limited, depending on the state that you live in.
You cannot purchase an auto insurance policy online.
Erie car insurance vs. competitors
I used my information and coverages to compare Erie Insurance with other insurance providers, as I did in the quote walkthrough above.
Monthly insurance rates
Additional coverage options
Erie car insurance
Erie Auto Plus, motorcycle insurance, new car replacement, rental car coverage, roadside & rentals bundle, rideshare coverage
Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington D.C., West Virginia, Wisconsin
Towing and roadside service, rental car reimbursement, rideshare, loss of use, guaranteed value, customized equipment, spare parts coverage, new car replacement coverage, full windshield, and glass repair coverage
All 50 states and Washington D.C.
GEICO offers auto insurance in all 50 states, making it an attractive option, especially if you’re the transient type. Its auto insurance policies provide all of the standard coverages you would expect, including liability coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, collision, and comprehensive. It also offers a few additional coverages, such as emergency roadside assistance and rental reimbursement.
GEICO offers discounts for various people, including students, federal employees, members of the armed forces, and multi-policy customers. You can also benefit from additional savings such as the Five-Year Accident-Free Good Driver Discount for safe drivers. GEICO allows you to get your quote and complete your auto insurance purchase online, allowing you to get your policy quickly without any additional steps.
Farmers Insurance is also available nationwide. The quote I received was the most expensive of the three insurers, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be a good option. Farmers offers quite a few optional coverages that might make a few extra dollars worth it, especially if you have a classic or collector car and need spare parts coverage.
Like most insurers, Farmers offers discounts as well. The first discount that you might see when getting a quote is its early shopping savings discount. You can qualify for this if you’re shopping for a policy that will start seven or more days after you get your quote. You can also earn safe driving discounts, bundling policies, and accident forgiveness. To purchase a policy from Farmers, you need to call and speak with a Farmers representative.
When considering car insurance companies, you might be wondering about the customer service you’ll receive. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) gave Erie Insurance a customer complaint score of 1.10, which is a fairly average score. Erie has a good reputation for customer satisfaction and claims satisfaction as well.
Does Erie Insurance offer a mobile app?
Yes, Erie customers can manage their online accounts and access policy information from its mobile app.
What auto insurance products do I need?
The auto insurance coverages that you need will depend on where you live and your circumstances. With Erie, you can work with your agent to select the coverages that are right for you.
The bottom line
Erie Insurance is a good auto insurance provider, but it’s not available everywhere. In addition to standard coverage, you can add on several optional coverages and features to enhance your policy. Policyholders can also benefit from discounts and rewards like diminishing deductibles for remaining claims-free.
When compared to its competitors, Erie’s auto insurance policies are more expensive than some. That being said, it’s important to look at the total value instead of just the insurance rate when deciding which policy is right for you. For example, if you’re an Uber driver on the weekends, you’ll need to find an insurance provider that offers rideshare coverage.
If you live in one of the areas Erie serves, it’s worth getting a quote to review your coverage and rate options. Erie’s independent agents can help take the guesswork out of auto insurance by helping you select the policy that’s right for you.
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