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If you’re searching for the best car insurance in South Carolina, this article will help you find providers that offer quality coverage at affordable rates. We’ve analyzed car insurance quotes to provide our recommendations for the top auto insurance companies across the Palmetto State.

Our review team offers honest and unbiased reviews of the top car insurance providers in the industry. Through hours of research and secret shopper analyses, we’ve found South Carolina’s best and cheapest car insurance options.

Cheapest Car Insurance In South Carolina

Rates for auto coverage vary widely across state lines, so it’s important to look at data specific to car insurance in South Carolina. The table below shows companies that typically offer some of the cheapest car insurance premiums in South Carolina. According to our rate estimates, at an average of $1,016 per year, USAA car insurance tends to be the cheapest option in South Carolina.

Car Insurance Providers in South Carolina

Estimated Annual Cost

USAA

$1,016

Geico

$1,085

Progressive

$1,192

State Farm

$1,368

Nationwide

$1,380

Auto-Owners Insurance

$1,396

Travelers

$1,458

How Much Is Car Insurance In South Carolina?

According to our rate estimates, the average cost of car insurance in South Carolina is around $1,610 per year. This is about 7 percent less than the national average of $1,732.

Drivers who live in Columbia, Charleston, and Greenville can expect to pay more than those in less populous areas. Still, they’ll likely spend less than those in comparable urban areas across the country.

Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that traffic fatalities increased by more than 18 percent from 2011 to 2015 in South Carolina. NHTSA data also shows that the state had the nation’s fourth-highest rate of traffic fatalities per capita in 2019. Based on these statistics, it’s somewhat surprising that rates for car insurance in South Carolina generally stay below the national average.

Cheapest Car Insurance In South Carolina: Young Drivers

Insuring a young driver–such as a teen driver–can be very expensive. Through our research, we found that car insurance in South Carolina tends to be about one-third more expensive for 24-year-old drivers than for 35-year-old motorists. Geico usually provides the cheapest premiums for these drivers, averaging $1,561 per year.

Car Insurance Providers in South Carolina

Estimated Annual Cost

Geico

$1,561

USAA

$1,644

Travelers

$1,681

State Farm

$1,798

Auto-Owners Insurance

$2,036

Cheapest Car Insurance In South Carolina: Speeding Tickets

If your driving history includes a single speeding ticket, you’ll pay higher-than-average rates for car insurance in South Carolina. Following the posted speed limits in South Carolina keeps you safer on the road while helping you maintain a clean driving record and pay less for auto insurance. Geico is often the cheapest option for South Carolina drivers with speeding tickets, with an annual average of $1,085.

Car Insurance Providers in South Carolina

Estimated Annual Cost

Geico

$1,085

USAA

$1,250

State Farm

$1,477

Progressive

$1,571

Southern Farm Bureau

$1,626

Cheapest Car Insurance In South Carolina: Recent Accidents

Driving records help determine whether policyholders pay average rates or extremely high prices to insure their vehicles. While relatively affordable options exist, prices for car insurance in South Carolina are typically much higher after an accident. The lowest rates for South Carolina drivers with recent accidents tend to come from USAA, which averages $1,473 per year.

Car Insurance Providers in South Carolina

Estimated Annual Cost

USAA

$1,473

Geico

$1,616

State Farm

$1,641

Southern Farm Bureau

$1,888

Travelers

$1,936

Cheapest Car Insurance In South Carolina: Bad Credit

Bad credit scores greatly increase the cost of car insurance in South Carolina. In fact, having poor credit usually leads to higher rates than for those with recent car accidents and potentially even DUIs on their driving records. With an average annual rate of $1,963, Progressive usually offers the lowest cost for drivers with bad credit.

Car Insurance Providers in South Carolina

Estimated Annual Cost

Progressive

$1,963

Nationwide

$2,030

USAA

$2,333

Geico

$2,387

Travelers

$2,485

Top 5 Auto Insurance Companies In South Carolina

After careful research, our review team named USAA, Geico, Progressive, State Farm, and Travelers as the top five auto insurance providers in South Carolina. We formulated these rankings based on a number of factors, including cost and coverage.

Best Car Insurance in South Carolina

Overall Rating

Cost Rating

Coverage Rating

1. USAA

5.0

5.0

4.5

2. Geico

5.0

4.5

5.0

3. Progressive

4.5

4.5

4.5

4. State Farm

4.5

4.5

4.0

5. Travelers

4.0

4.0

4.5

*Our research team scores car insurance companies by taking nationwide factors into account. The order of insurers in this table is specific to car insurance in South Carolina.

#1 USAA

USAA offers coverage in all 50 states, though it’s available only to those in the armed forces, veterans, and their families. The company has discounts for new vehicles, good drivers, and those who bundle policies.

We named USAA Best for Military Members in our review of the country’s best auto insurance companies. It was also awarded an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best as well as an A+ score from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). For more information on this auto insurance provider, read our USAA insurance review.

USAA Pros

USAA Cons

Strong scores from AM Best and the BBB

Only available to military members,

veterans and their families

Excellent customer service

Available in all 50 states

#2 Geico

Due in part to the fact that it’s a great option for both student drivers and military members, our review team recognized Geico as the Best Overall Provider for 2022. Geico is available in all 50 states and offers a long list of potential savings, such as for newer vehicles, new drivers, and students with strong grades.

Geico received an outstanding A++ financial strength rating from AM Best and an A+ rating from the BBB. Read our Geico insurance review for an in-depth look at this car insurance provider.

Geico Pros

Geico Cons

Highest-rated provider in our industry

review

Doesn’t offer gap insurance

Standout coverage for students and

members of the military

Average claims satisfaction

Strong AM Best financial strength

rating

#3 Progressive

A wonderful option for high-risk drivers, Progressive won our review team’s title of Best Usage-Based Insurance. This provider offers auto insurance across all 50 states and has discounts for continuous insurance coverage, homeowners, and those who bundle policies.

Progressive was awarded an A+ financial strength rating from AM Best. For more details about the company, read our complete Progressive insurance review.

Progressive Pros

Progressive Cons

Offers highly rated usage-based insurance

Below-average claims satisfaction

Top choice for high-risk drivers

Doesn’t offer military discounts

Strong financial health

#4 State Farm

State Farm is a great option for teens behind the wheel, and our team recognized it as the provider that’s Best for Student Drivers. The company offers car insurance in every state except for Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

State Farm received an excellent A++ financial strength rating from AM Best and offers notable discounts for new vehicles, new drivers, and students. For an in-depth look at State Farm, read our State Farm insurance review.

State Farm Pros

State Farm Cons

Good choice for students and teen drivers

Average rates are somewhat higher

Easy-to-reach insurance agents

Largest auto insurer in the nation

#5 Travelers

A top option for teen drivers, Travelers has been offering high-quality insurance products since 1853. Travelers is now the 10th-largest auto insurance provider in the country, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

Travelers maintains an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best as well as an A rating from the BBB. For more information about the company’s car insurance in South Carolina, check out our Travelers insurance review.

Travelers Pros

Travelers Cons

Strong scores from AM Best and the BBB

Doesn’t offer military discounts

Various discounts available

Below-average customer satisfaction

Great choice for teen motorists

Requirements For Car Insurance In South Carolina

South Carolina, just like almost every other state, has a state minimum coverage requirement for auto insurance. State law in South Carolina mandates that drivers carry these types of coverage:

  • Bodily injury liability: $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability: $25,000 per accident
  • Uninsured motorist coverage/underinsured motorist coverage: 25/50/25 limits

Additional coverage that’s helpful but not mandated by South Carolina law includes the following:

  • Collision coverage
  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Medical payments (MedPay) coverage

While these extras cost more than a cheap car insurance policy that only meets minimum requirements, they could give you peace of mind on the road. To many drivers, that makes full coverage car insurance worth the purchase.

Is South Carolina An At-Fault State Or A No-Fault State?

South Carolina is an at-fault state, so the driver deemed responsible for a car accident will pay for the damages incurred by other drivers. Most states have at-fault insurance laws, so laws for car insurance in South Carolina are relatively similar to those in the rest of the country.

How To Get Car Insurance In South Carolina

After thorough review, our team ranked USAA as the top auto insurance provider in the Palmetto State. Due to its outstanding discounts and cost-effective policies, USAA offers the cheapest auto insurance rates for various types of South Carolina drivers.

Though USAA usually offers car insurance in South Carolina at below-average prices, the company has high-quality coverage. Geico, Progressive, State Farm, and Travelers also offer strong car insurance coverage options at great prices, making them well worth a look if you don’t qualify for USAA coverage.

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FAQ: Car Insurance In South Carolina

How We Rate Insurers

Our review process aims to deliver consistent and unbiased assessments of car insurance providers. While there are multiple qualities that make a car insurance company successful, our review team focuses on those we believe are the most important for consumers:

  • Cost: Cost can be difficult to compare between insurers because so many factors impact annual premiums. The cheapest insurer for one driver may not be the cheapest for another. To determine our cost score, we look at insurance rate estimates generated by Quadrant Information Services, discount opportunities, and consumer reports.
  • Coverage: To determine our coverage score, we look at the number of coverage options available as well as coverage limits and deductible options. Our ratings also take into account additional services and benefits like roadside assistance.
  • Reliability: It’s important that an auto insurer is able to meet its claims obligations. Companies with a strong financial strength rating from AM Best score best in this category. Established insurers with a long history of reliable service also receive positive marks.
  • Service: We comb through customer reviews on sites like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to learn about customer experiences. Insurers with a low volume of complaints score well in this area. We also consider the claims process, giving higher ratings to car insurance providers that offer easy-to-use claims apps.

*Data accurate at time of publication.