Chris Tepedino is a feature writer that has written extensively about auto insurance for numerous websites. He has a college degree in communication from the University of Tennessee and has experience reporting, researching investigative pieces, and crafting detailed, data-driven features. His works have been featured on CB Blog Nation, Flow Words, Healing Law, WIBW Kansas, and Cinncinati....

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Reviewed by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer

UPDATED: May 8, 2012

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Buying the cheapest full coverage auto insurance is more than just looking at the prices that you will pay for a premium. You should also look at the actual coverage that you are paying for as well as the discounts that can bring your actual price down considerably. You are not saving money at all by not getting the insurance that you need, which you may not fully understand until you have an accident and found out that it is not covered under your policy.

What Does Full Coverage Auto Insurance Really Mean?

Full coverage is a term that may mean different types of coverage in each state. With very few exceptions, there are minimum required insurance coverage levels for each state. Before you choose insurance coverage, make sure that it is going to satisfy your legal requirements as well as give you the right peace of mind. The basics for auto insurance are:

cheapest full coverage auto insurance

  • Liability only coverage. This is typically the minimum required insurance and covers only your liability in an accident. It does not cover your own vehicle or other expenses including your medical expenses.
  • Collision auto insurance. This coverage is meant to protect your own vehicle in the event of an accident. In addition, it also provides the same coverage that the liability coverage does. There are limits to what comprehensive auto insurance covers. It only covers an accident between two or more vehicles.
  • Comprehensive auto insurance. This covers all other types of losses. For instance, comprehensive insurance covers accidents involving animals as well as weather related losses. It also covers damages from theft, vandalism and glass breakage.

For most states, full coverage auto insurance means both liability and either collision or comprehensive coverage or both. The more coverage that you choose, the higher the premium will be. However, that additional cost is worth it when it comes to a loss. For instance, a single vehicle versus animal accident can typically cost a minimum of $2,000 and may cost more in the long run. If you have the state minimum insurance, that cost is completely coming out of your pocket.

Bringing Your Insurance Costs Down

To get the cheapest full coverage auto insurance, you need to do several things:

  • Start by knowing whether full coverage insurance makes sense for your current situation and vehicle.
  • Shop for quotes from several insurance companies.
  • Compare coverage and price from those companies.
  • Look for as many discounts as you could possibly qualify for.
  • If you think that you might qualify for a discount, and then ask- the worst thing that can happen is you will be told no.

Before You Get a Quote from Any Agency or Online Resource

The more information that you have ready to go, the more time you will save on your insurance. You will need to know:

  • The current name, coverage type and premium cost of the insurance that you have
  • The make/model of your car

For an initial quote you should not have to give a lot of personal information. Do not give out your social security or vehicle identification numbers unless you are getting ready to purchase a policy.