Servicemembers and their families require flexible car insurance policies for reasons like overseas deployment. To find the best car insurance for military members, we considered a company’s coverages, discounts, tools that might be helpful for military personnel, customer service, and financial stability.
Best Overall for the Military Community : USAA
USAA is one of the few insurance companies focusing exclusively on service personnel and their families. USAA wins first place on our list because military members have unique coverage options, discounts, and services (including a program to help you buy a vehicle if you’re stationed overseas). That’s all coupled with strong customer service and satisfaction ratings.
On-base garaging discount for active duty servicemembers
International auto policy covers cars during shipment, assists with registering internationally
USAA’s U.S. Touring Auto Policy provides coverage if you’re renting while temporarily stateside, or you’ve sold your car before deployment
Overseas vehicle purchase program helps you buy and receive a car while deployed abroad
Authorized to provide auto insurance in select overseas destinations, and has dedicated international support phone numbers
Members may receive annual dividends
Liability coverage for government-owned vehicles
Only available to former/current military and their immediate families
Can’t get a quote without being a member or qualifying for membership
Storage discounts not available in Hawaii, North Carolina, and Virginia
USAA is available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia and is open to:
- Active duty, Guard, or U.S. military reserve members
- Separated or retired veterans with an honorable discharge
- Cadets, midshipmen, and officer candidates
- Spouses, children, stepchildren, and in-laws of those currently serving or of an honorably discharged veteran
- Widows and unmarried former spouses who joined before or during the marriage
USAA offers new vehicle discounts and up to 25% off car rentals. Otherwise, “discounts” on vehicle storage or military installation storage are actually reductions of your coverage, and therefore your monthly premium—which can still save you money.
If ranked, USAA would take first place in J.D. Power’s Auto Claims Satisfaction and Insurance Digital Experience (Service Ranking) studies. It also would have scored the top spot in most regions of the Auto Insurance Satisfaction Study. Unfortunately, military-only membership restrictions limit its ability to be ranked against other insurers.
USAA has the highest possible financial strength rating of A++ from AM Best, showing it has an elite ability to pay out large claims and finance its operations.
Best for Active and Deployed Military : GEICO
GEICO (or Government Employees Insurance Company) was founded to serve U.S. government employees and military personnel. Today, GEICO has a special arm dedicated to helping servicemembers navigate car insurance, including providing discounted storage plans, custom payment agreements, overseas policies, and marine auto transport insurance.7 That’s why GEICO is our pick for active and deployed military members.
Dedicated GEICO military specialists
Five overseas locations to assist military members
12-month overseas auto insurance options
Multiple discounts geared toward servicemembers
Discounts and benefits not extended to immediate family
GEICO is available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Its military offerings and discounts are for active-duty personnel, military retirees, or National Guard or Reserves members.
GEICO has several types of military discounts that may be available:
- Up to 15% off premiums for former/current service members
- Emergency Deployment Discounts (25%) for those deployed to imminent danger pay areas
- Discounts for members of six professional associations, including the Armed Forces Benefit Association and Navy Federal Credit Union
- Auto storage while deployed for 30+ days provides beneficial suspended or reduced coverage
Geico is a three-year consecutive winner of the customer service segment of J.D. Power’s 2020 U.S. Insurance Digital Experience Study.5 Its world-class web and mobile functionality are extra handy for deployed military. GEICO is also the highest-ranked insurer in an overall customer satisfaction survey in the U.S. Northwest and North Central regions.
Moreover, AM Best’s A++ rating confirms the company’s superior financial ability to maintain its operations.
How Is Car Insurance Different for Military Members?
Military members sometimes only have a moment’s notice before being deployed or leaving for a tour of duty overseas. Many need a flexible payment plan while away or want to save money on premiums for stored cars.
If stationed overseas, active-duty military may wish to ship autos using marine insurance. Or they might want to insure a car they buy abroad. They may need to rent cars while in the U.S. on leave. Discounts and insurance for rentals in Canada, Mexico, or in international destinations are important, too.
Unfortunately, Louisiana is the only state with a mandated discount on the liability portion of auto policies for active armed forces members.
Despite the lack of regulatory requirements to provide special offerings for servicemembers, some companies like USAA and GEICO step in to offer unique payment arrangements that can reduce your coverage and therefore, your premiums. Reducing rather than pausing insurance lets you keep your car’s comprehensive coverage, protecting it if it’s stolen or damaged while in storage. Your lender or state might also require you to maintain certain coverages and minimum limits.
Carefully consider before dropping your insurance or using an international insurer. Forgoing U.S.-based auto insurance while stationed abroad may appear as a gap in your coverage, and lead to higher rates or more difficulty in finding insurance.
What Should I Look for When Choosing a Provider?
Everyone should get competing quotes to determine the best value for their desired coverage. But Military members especially should consider a provider’s customer satisfaction, military discounts and perks, and available tools and resources designed for military members.
Which Car Insurance Companies Offer Military Discounts?
Some companies offering military or veteran discounts include:
- Farmers Insurance
- Liberty Mutual
Insurers may only offer military discounts in a limited number of states, so speak to a local agent about availability.