Nationwide Auto Insurance Review

Last Updated on May 25, 2022

Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, commonly known as Nationwide, is a property and casualty insurance company based in Columbus, Ohio. Founded in 1926, Nationwide has nearly a century of experience insuring policyholders across the United States. Today, Nationwide employs over 25,000+ people across the country while providing auto insurance, home insurance, and other insurance products.

Types of Auto Insurance Coverage Offered by Nationwide

Nationwide offers similar car insurance to other major car insurance companies in the United States. You can buy minimum liability car insurance through Nationwide. Or, you can buy full coverage car insurance with added protection.

Here are all of the types of car insurance offered by Nationwide:

Bodily Injury Liability: Required in most states, bodily injury liability covers medical bills, loss of income, and other damages incurred by someone as a result of your actions while driving. If you injure a pedestrian or another driver, for example, then Nationwide’s bodily injury liability coverage can cover this damage up to the limits of your policy.

Property Damage Liability: Also required in most states, property damage liability covers the cost of repairing or replacing another person’s vehicle or other damaged property, assuming you were at fault in the collision.

Personal Injury Protection: Required in some states, personal injury protection covers medical bills for you and your passengers after an accident.

Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage: Required in some states, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverages protect you from motorists without insurance or with too little insurance.

Medical Payments: Also known as MedPay, medical payments coverage covers medical costs for you and your passengers in a collision. Some states require MedPay, while most states do not. It can complement health insurance and provide extra coverage for health-related expenses.

Collision Coverage: Nationwide offers collision coverage to pay for damage to your vehicle if you hit another vehicle or object. Collision coverage is optional in all states.

Comprehensive Coverage: Nationwide offers comprehensive coverage to cover your vehicle from damage that occurs outside of an accident. Also known as other than collision coverage, comprehensive coverage covers vandalism, theft, weather events, and accidents involving animals.

Towing and Labor Coverage: Nationwide offers optional towing and labor coverage, which covers towing and labor when your car gets struck, breaks down, or becomes inoperable due to an accident.

Rental Car Expense: Nationwide’s rental car coverage covers the cost of renting a car or other transportation when your normal vehicle is being repaired after a covered accident. Nationwide also refers to this coverage as loss of use or transportation expense coverage in some states.

Gap Coverage: Gap coverage covers the “gap” between the amount remaining on your vehicle’s loan and the amount you receive after a total loss insurance claim. If you crash a new vehicle, for example, there may be a sizable gap between what you receive and what you owe. Nationwide’s optional gap coverage covers this gap.

Accident Forgiveness: Nationwide offers accident forgiveness to certain customers in select states. If you have accident forgiveness on your policy, then you can avoid a rate increase after a single at-fault accident or minor violation on your policy.

Roadside Assistance: Nationwide offers 24/7 emergency roadside assistance if you need fuel, tire changes, jumpstarts, or towing.

Vanishing Deductible: Nationwide’s vanishing deductible option gives you a $100 discount on your deductible for each year of safe driving, up to $500. Depending on your policy, your deductible could disappear completely.

Total Loss Deductible Waiver: In the event of a total loss insurance claim, Nationwide could waive the entire physical damage deductible (for comprehensive or collision claims).

Free Windshield Replacement: If you live in certain states, Nationwide will waive your deductible if you need to repair or replace your windshield.

Non-Owners Car Insurance: Nationwide offers non-owners policies, which are great for drivers without a vehicle of their own but still need insurance because they frequently rent or borrow vehicles.

What Makes Nationwide’s Auto Insurance Unique?

Nationwide has several features that distinguish it from other large insurance companies, including:

SmartRide Usage-Based Insurance: Nationwide is one of a growing number of companies offering usage-based insurance and driver tracking programs. In exchange for sharing driving data with Nationwide, you may qualify for steep discounts through SmartRide. Nationwide gives you a 10% discount just for signing up for SmartRide, for example, with further discounts available to safe drivers with good habits.

SmartMiles Low Mileage Insurance Plans: Do you work from home? Do you drive much fewer miles than the average person? You may qualify for Nationwide’s SmartMiles low mileage insurance plan. SmartMiles rewards low mileage drivers with lower rates. It’s a usage-based insurance plan with a flexible, monthly rate based on the number of miles you drive.

On Your Side Review: Nationwide provides free “On Your Side” reviews with policyholders. A Nationwide agent can review your insurance needs to ensure you qualify for all available discounts.

Wide Range of Insurance Products & Services: Nationwide offers an extensive range of insurance products and services, including insurance products, investment products, business insurance, and more. You can easily bundle multiple insurance products together with Nationwide to save money.

Backed by a Century of Experience: Nationwide was founded in 1926, and the company has nearly a century of experience providing insurance to policyholders across the United States.

Nationwide Mobile App: Like most large insurers, Nationwide offers a good mobile app. You can get 24/7 support through the mobile app. You can also pay bills, view policy documents, and access ID cards through the Nationwide mobile app, among other perks.

How Much Are Nationwide’s Auto Insurance Rates?

Nationwide, like most large insurance companies, aims to offer competitive rates in all states. Generally, the company is close to the average car insurance premium in all covered states.

According to our research, the average Nationwide policyholder pays around $1,439 per year for full coverage car insurance, or around $120 per month.

In comparison, the average driver in the United States pays around $1,450 per year for full coverage car insurance. That makes Nationwide’s rates fairly close to the nationwide average.

However, Nationwide’s rates vary widely based on your age, the type of car insurance policy you have, your location, your driving record, what kind of car you drive, state insurance laws, policy limits, discount eligibility, ZIP code, and more.

Nationwide’s Auto Insurance Discounts

Nationwide offers a range of discounts to help you save hundreds – or even thousands – on car insurance.

Available discounts with Nationwide include:

Multi-Policy: According to Nationwide, drivers can save an average of $646 by bundling home and car insurance policies together.

SmartRide: Nationwide’s driver tracking program is called SmartRide. In exchange for sharing driving behavior with Nationwide, Nationwide provides a discount on your insurance. SmartRide is usage-based insurance that could help low-mileage drivers and other drivers save hundreds on car insurance. Nationwide provides a 10% discount just for signing up for SmartRide, with further discounts available based on usage.

SmartMiles: If you are a low mileage driver, then you could benefit from Nationwide’s SmartMiles program. You get the same coverage as other Nationwide policies, but with a flexible, monthly rate based on the number of miles you drive.

Accident-Free Discount: Get a discount for having an accident-free driving record with Nationwide. The company offers an accident-free discount based on the number of years you’ve gone without a claim.

Good Student: Drivers ages 16 to 24 who maintain a B average or better are eligible for Nationwide’s good student discount.

Defensive Driving: Complete a state-approved safety course and get a discount. Depending on your location, you may need to be 55 or older to qualify for Nationwide’s defensive driving discount.

Anti-Theft: Nationwide’s anti-theft discount is available if your vehicle is equipped with certain anti-theft devices. You may need to provide Nationwide with proof of the anti-theft device to qualify for this discount.

Safe Driver: Nationwide offers safe driver discounts to customers who are free of at-fault accidents and major violations for the last five years. After five years of safe, incident-free driving, you may be eligible for a much more affordable car insurance rate.

Automatic Payments Discount: Set up automatic payments from your bank account and get a one-time discount.

Paperless Billing: Nationwide offers a small discount to drivers who sign up for paperless billing.

Pros and Cons of Nationwide

Nationwide is the best choice for some drivers but not others. Here are some of the pros and cons of buying car insurance from Nationwide.

Pros

  • Fewer than expected complaints to the NAIC relative to other insurers of its size
  • Very strong financial strength rating (FSR) from A.M. Best and other industry analysts
  • Wide range of car insurance products and services for all different needs
  • Competitive pricing compared to other large insurers
  • Strong website, mobile apps, and customer service availability
  • Unique discounts, usage-based insurance products, and other insurance coverage options

Cons

Nationwide Reviews: What Do Customers Have to Say?

Nationwide, like most large insurance companies in the United States has good and bad reviews online.

Some drivers have very good things to say about Nationwide, claiming the company handled their case well and paid them fairly. Many customers are also happy with the price they pay for Nationwide’s auto insurance.

Other drivers, however, complain about poor customer service, poor claims handling, and other issues. Some customers also find Nationwide’s rates are not competitive in certain areas, claiming the company charges hundreds of dollars more per year for similar coverage.

According to the 2021 J.D. Power auto insurance study, Nationwide ranked much lower than its competitors in most subregions. J.D. Power compiles annual insurance company ratings by interviewing policyholders who recently made a claim. Nationwide scored lower than average in most subregions.

Nationwide received particularly poor scores in the Central subregion in the 2021 J.D. Power study, for example. The average major insurer scored 841 in the Central region, with the top insurer (Shelter) scoring 856 and the second-worst insurer (Travelers) scoring 824. Nationwide placed dead last with a score of 798, nearly 30 points lower than its nearest competitor.

Nationwide scored below average in every subregion, according to the 2022 J.D. Power report.

A.M. Best has awarded Nationwide a financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior), indicating the company is in a very strong financial position and should have no trouble covering its liabilities. A.M. Best affirmed that rating in December 2021, praising the company’s strong balance sheet, marginal operating performance, favorable business profile, and appropriate enterprise risk management.

Nationwide has an average score of 3.8 stars out of 5 on WalletHub (2,000+ reviews), an average score of 4.5 stars out of 5 on NerdWallet, an average score of 3.5 stars out of 5 with Consumer Affairs (2,400+ reviews), an average score of 8.2 out of 10 from MarketWatch, and an average score of 80% from ValuePenguin.

Nationwide has been BBB accredited since 1955. The company has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Nationwide has a score of 1.13 stars out of 5 on BBB.org based on 200+ customer reviews.

Our Rating of Nationwide

One of the top 10 largest insurance companies in the United States, Nationwide covers drivers in all 50 states. The company offers a diverse range of auto insurance products and other services while employing 25,000+ people across the country. Founded in 1926, Nationwide is backed by nearly a century of experience and continues to operate out of Columbus, Ohio.  

Quality of Coverage
Price
Claims Satisfaction
Financial Strength
Customer Reviews

Summary

Nationwide has less-than-stellar reviews from customers and industry analysts in recent years. The company continues to drop down the J.D. Power rankings, receiving below average scores in every subregion in the latest rankings. Although Nationwide charges competitive prices for car insurance, customers tend to have a worse-than-average claims experience with Nationwide. Nevertheless, Nationwide insures millions of drivers across the country, and many drivers rely on Nationwide daily for easy, effective, and affordable car insurance.

4.2

Final Word on Nationwide’s Auto Insurance

Nationwide is the eighth largest car insurance company in the United States. The company insures drivers and homeowners across the country.

With average reviews, competitive prices, and a wide range of insurance products and discounts, Nationwide offers similar car insurance to competing providers. Most customers are happy with their Nationwide auto insurance policy, although some customers complain about higher-than-average prices and poor claims handling.

To learn more about Nationwide or to request a free quote today, visit the official website at Nationwide.com.

Nationwide Contact Information
Company AddressOne Nationwide Plaza
Columbus, OH 43215
Websitehttps://www.nationwide.com/
Customer Service Phone Number1-877-669-6877
Claims Phone Number1-800-421-3535
States ServedAll 50 States (except Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, and Massachusetts)