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You can get same-day car insurance from nearly any major auto insurance company in a matter of minutes by going online and requesting an instant quote. Secure. Fast. Free.
Daniel is a MarketWatch Guides team writer and has written for numerous automotive news sites and marketing firms across the U.S., U.K., and Australia, specializing in auto finance and car care topics. Daniel is a MarketWatch Guides team authority on auto insurance, loans, warranty options, auto services and more.
Rashawn Mitchner is a MarketWatch Guides team editor with over 10 years of experience covering personal finance and insurance topics.
Before you drive your new car off the lot, it needs to be insured. The good news is that you can get car insurance now if you need it. Almost every leading auto coverage provider has a way for you to get same-day insurance today. It’s not too complicated — you just need to provide some basic information.
In this article, we at the MarketWatch Guides team will show you exactly how to get same-day insurance to stay legal on the road. Even if you’re short on time, we recommend comparing auto insurance quotes from a few providers. We’ve reviewed the best car insurance companies nationwide, and all of our top picks offer instant coverage.
Compare Car Insurance Rates
The MarketWatch Guides Team is committed to providing reliable information to help you make the best decision possible about insuring your vehicle. Because consumers rely on us to provide objective and accurate information, we created a comprehensive rating system to formulate our rankings of the best car insurance companies. We collected data on dozens of auto insurance providers to grade the companies on a wide range of ranking factors. After 800 hours of research, the end result was an overall rating for each provider, with the insurers that scored the most points topping the list.
Learn more about our methodology and editorial guidelines.
You can get same-day insurance from almost any large national car insurance company on the market today. Once you call or go online to receive a free car insurance quote, most companies let you purchase a plan that begins on the same day. You also might be able to get same-day insurance from smaller regional providers.
You don’t need to do anything special to get same-day car insurance. You can talk to an insurance agent in person or over the phone. But the easiest way is generally to sign up for a policy online. Most major providers offer tools to help you get an online quote quickly and easily.
Your insurance rates depend on a number of different variables about you and your vehicle. To get an accurate car insurance quote, you should prepare the following information before you apply:
You should also have an electronic payment method ready in case you need to put a deposit down or make an initial payment to start coverage. Most often, this can be done with your banking information or debit card.
You can find car insurance for instant purchase whether you go online or call a local agent. You’ll need the same information outlined above in either case. Using an insurance broker may take slightly longer because the broker will take your information and compare quotes from multiple companies. That said, you should still be able to get auto insurance coverage on the same day if you are prepared.
The easiest way to get quick car insurance is to use an instant car insurance quote form online. You can find instant quote forms on provider websites or you can use comparison quote forms like the one on this page. Secure. Fast. Free.
According to our rate estimates, the average good driver pays $2,008 per year for full coverage car insurance and $627 per year for minimum coverage. Starting insurance immediately doesn’t cost extra, which means you’ll still have access to cheap car insurance. You’ll still be eligible for car insurance discounts too, such as one for bundling your home insurance, life insurance or renters insurance with your auto policy.
We’ve included average monthly and annual car insurance rate estimates for a number of companies that offer same-day coverage below. These rates apply to full coverage insurance policies for 35-year-old drivers with good driving records and credit scores.
Your same-day car insurance coverage options are no different from the standard coverage options. In other words, you can get everything from bodily injury and property damage liability insurance to collision insurance and comprehensive coverage almost immediately.
When you need to buy car insurance now, you’ll have access to the following options:
Your rates will almost certainly vary, as insurers base their rates on a number of variables about you and your vehicle.
Getting same-day car insurance is easier than ever before. But while you will have access to the same rates and policies as you would if you bought coverage ahead of time, there are some disadvantages to buying immediate car insurance.
If you need to buy car insurance now, you might miss out on a few discount opportunities. For example, Allstate offers an Early Signing Discount® if you buy an auto insurance policy at least one week before you need to use it. A same-day plan from Allstate wouldn’t include this policy discount. The same goes for other providers.
While typically same-day car insurance won’t cost you more than a normal insurance policy, you don’t have as much time to compare car insurance options. That means you could miss out on finding the provider that offers the best rates for you. If you just get one quote, it may or may not be the most affordable insurance premium available. Using an online quote tool or looking for sample quotes like the ones found in this article can help you save time on quote comparisons.
In some cases, you might not be able to get same-day insurance. For example, most car insurance providers will ask for your Social Security number to verify information in your application and calculate a risk score based on your credit history. If you don’t have a Social Security number or can’t provide one at the time, the insurance company will need more time to process your application, or it can deny coverage.
One piece of information that needs to be verified is your home address. Insurers can use your credit record to verify this. If you recently moved, the insurance company might not be able to verify your address as quickly, which could lead to delays in approval. Or, if you’re living in one location but your permanent address is listed as another, that can slow things down too.
Auto insurers will pull your full driving record based on your driver’s license number. It’s important to be completely honest when reporting car accidents, tickets and other traffic convictions. If you leave anything out, the company will be able to see that discrepancy, and it will need to spend more time reviewing your application.
Be aware that it’s possible for a company to sell you car insurance and then cancel your policy within the first 30 to 90 days for providing incomplete or incorrect information, also called material misrepresentation. Cancellations for material misrepresentation or nonpayment go on your record, and this can make it harder to get same-day coverage (or any auto insurance) in the future.
Finally, if you’re buying an especially expensive car, an underwriting officer may need to review your insurance application, as some quote tools are not able to accurately assess rare or exotic cars and specialty vehicles. You wouldn’t be able to get same-day insurance coverage in this case.
If you need car insurance now, you can get it by comparing quotes online, calling an agent or even using a broker. Your new insurance will take effect the same day you make your first payment, so you can enjoy your car without worrying about a lapse in coverage.
Just because you need car insurance today doesn’t mean you have to settle for the first provider that pops up online. You should take as much time as you can to compare coverage and quotes from different providers, then get same-day insurance from the company with the best deal.
We recommend starting your search with State Farm and Geico, both of which have strong reputations and affordable coverage.
We named Travelers our Best for Most Drivers because it provides extensive coverage with great service and offers cheap auto insurance for many drivers. Travelers can cover a wide range of drivers and vehicles with same-day insurance. The company offers plenty of auto insurance add-ons, keeping each driver satisfied with their policy.
The company also offers a good range of discounts that many drivers qualify for. Travelers has an A rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best, which shows the insurer works to resolve customer issues and has a superior ability to pay out claims.
Keep reading: Travelers insurance review
State Farm is the largest auto insurance company in the U.S. and holds the highest score for customer experience in our research, which is part of why we gave it our Best Customer Experience award. It offers a generous student discount of up to 25% for maintaining good grades. Drivers under 25 can also take advantage of the Steer Clear® educational program to save another 20%. Because of this, State Farm can be a good option for families with students.
State Farm has a reliable insurance claims service according to the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study. The company also has a strong reputation, with an A+ rating from the BBB and an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best.
Keep reading: State Farm insurance review Secure. Fast. Free.
Below are some common frequently asked questions about same-day car insurance:
According to our full coverage rate estimates, USAA is the cheapest online car insurance provider with average costs of $1,512 per year. This cost applies to 35-year-old drivers with good credit and good driving records. Nationwide, Geico and State Farm are also among the most affordable providers on average.
No, you can’t drive a car you just bought without insurance. It is illegal to drive without insurance at any time, even if you just purchased a used car from someone down the street. Dealerships won’t let you drive home without proof of insurance, either. The good news is that it’s easy to get same-day insurance from top companies online.
You can get insurance almost instantly. As long as you have information about your vehicle and the drivers included on your car insurance policy, you can get auto insurance in as little as one hour or less. Most drivers can get same-day car insurance from top-rated insurers without a problem.
No, you can’t get standard car insurance for one day in the United States. If you are driving someone else’s vehicle, their insurance policy can cover you.
Car insurance only covers accidents that happen after you begin coverage. You can purchase car insurance on the day of an accident, but it will not retroactively cover an accident that happened earlier in the day.
Because consumers rely on us to provide objective and accurate information, we created a comprehensive rating system to formulate our rankings of the best car insurance companies. We collected data on dozens of auto insurance providers to grade the companies on a wide range of ranking factors. The end result was an overall rating for each provider, with the insurers that scored the most points topping the list.
Here are the factors our ratings take into account:
*Data accurate at time of publication.
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