Which Auto Insurance Company is Better – Progressive or Allstate?
Progressive and Allstate are the #3 and #4 largest auto insurance companies in the United States. Both companies were founded in the 1930s but have had very different paths since then.
What are those differences, and is one better than the other?
Progressive is the 3rd largest auto insurer in the United States and almost exclusively does auto insurance. Recently it has expanded into the homeowners’ market, but its main focus is personal auto insurance.
Progressive’s first niche market was for risky drivers, and it’s still a good company today for people with bad driving records. However, it also targets younger drivers and more recently has tried to expand into targeting all types of drivers.
Progressive uses a hybrid approach to selling insurance. It is a direct-to-consumer company like Esurance, but it also is available through independent agents around the country.
Progressive offers a multitude of discounts to its customers. Some of them are very easy to obtain, such as the paperless discount or the EFT payment discount.
Progressive’s AM Best rating is an A+.
Allstate is more than just an auto insurance company. In addition to offering the full range of insurance products, such as home, business, life, and roadside assistance coverage, Allstate also offers investment and retirement planning services.
Allstate operates through its network of over 12,000 agents throughout the country. Their agents are called captive agents, meaning that they only work with the Allstate company and don’t have access to any other insurance company.
Allstate also owns a subsidiary company called Esurance. Esurance is a direct-to-consumer insurance company that only offers its products online or over the phone.
Allstate’s AM Best rating is an A+.
Today, both companies are targeting similar market segments. They both want to write insurance for the “preferred” segment, which is basically people without driving accidents or violations in the last few years, good credit, and a house to insure in addition to the auto.
However, Progressive still also attracts drivers with bad driving histories. There isn’t a driver that Progressive won’t insure, although that doesn’t mean the premium will always be low. But for a price, anyone can get auto insurance through Progressive.
Progressive vs Allstate Comparison
Both Progressive and Allstate offer a multitude of discounts and have millions of happy customers. They both have strong brands and reach their customers in multiple ways. Their approach and specific discounts could give the edge for your specific circumstances.
Multi-Policy Discount: Progressive offers up to a 20% discount for having any homeowners policy, even if it’s not through Progressive. This is a unique incentive but is still less than Allstate’s discount on both the home and the auto. They give up to 10% off on the auto policy and up to 25% off on the homeowners policy.
Multi-Vehicle Discount: Both insurance companies offer discounts for having more than one vehicle on your policy. The exact discount amount varies for both companies, but averages about 10% for both.
Good Driver Discount: Allstate really shines in this discount, although Progressive does well compared with other companies. A good driver discount is given for drivers without any accidents or violations in the last 3 years. Progressive’s discount is up to 31%, while Allstate’s is up to 45%.
Good Student Discount: This discount is given for students with at least a 3.0 GPA (B average). Allstate’s good student discount is up to 20%, while Progressive’s varies but is usually between 5% – 10%.
Telematics: Telematics is the use of drive-tracking technology that is increasingly being offered by insurance companies. You can either track your driving by using a mobile app or by easily installing a small device in your car.
Allstate’s telematics program is called Drivewise, while Progressive’s is called Snapshot. Both programs last for the entire policy period for new customers, which could either be 6 months or 12 months. If you’re an existing Progressive customer, the Snapshot period will last between 30 and 75 days.
The important driving habits that telematics tracks are excessive speeds, fast accelerations, and braking, total mileage driven, and time of day.
Allstate offers a 3% discount just for signing up for the program, and drivers can potentially save up to 21% if they score exceptionally well. Progressive offers a $25 discount for using the program, with up to a 30% potential discount.
Customer Service: Allstate’s customer service revolves heavily around its local agents, who can provide localized service directly at your doorstep. Progressive also has local independent agents who can provide the same service, but they also have their own customer service center and a robust online presence.
Competitive Rates: Rates are based on many factors such as location, driving history, age, gender, vehicle type, credit score, and more. One family might be more competitive with Progressive in Texas, while the same family might be more competitive with Allstate in Virginia.
Progressive’s ability to insure anyone and any type of vehicle gives them the edge here.
Final Verdict: Allstate and Progressive are both excellent auto insurance companies. They stack up pretty evenly with each other, especially if you consider Allstate’s Esurance approach to online insurance selling.
Progressive has expanded to be a good fit for anyone, including families, older drivers, and drivers with a bad driving history. Allstate is a little more selective, but is usually competitive and offers a wider range of services.