Progressive Auto Insurance Review

Progressive impressed us with a wide range of discounts, particularly for drivers whose risk factors may work against them — like teenagers or drivers with worse driving records.

It doesn’t offer quite as many options as its competitors, but it does provide some offerings that we didn’t find among any of our other top insurers. If you’re a low-mileage driver, you may benefit from Snapshot, a usage-based insurance plan that can be particularly attractive for drivers in urban areas who may not rely on a car as their day-to-day form of transportation.

That said, Progressive performed worse than its competitors in terms of financial solvency and came in below the industry average for claims satisfaction in J.D. Power's 2017 Auto Claims Satisfaction Study. While you may get the best quote from Progressive, it’s worth considering your priorities when it comes to customer service.

The Claim

Progressive claims to provide unmatched value among major auto insurers.

Is it true?

Potentially.

While Progressive is certainly one of the better insurers for value, we’re not convinced that it’s the unequivocal best. In auto insurance, the value a company can provide often translates to the number of discounts that will bring down your premium after you’ve selected your coverage. And while you won’t qualify for every discount an insurer offers, more discounts mean more chances to save — and Progressive doesn’t give as many chances as others.

That said, though it has fewer discounts than some insurers, we like the ones it does offer. Deductions for simple activities like signing a new policy early and opting for paperless billing are broadly accessible, which means more customers may be able to access these savings. And as a company that’s been known to insure riskier customers than other major providers, Progressive offers some unique discounts that will help those drivers who are often forced to settle for higher premiums. This includes a seemingly too-good-to-be-true discount for drivers under 18, a demographic that’s widely considered one of the most likely to get in an accident. Progressive is undoubtedly a competitive value insurer — we’re just not convinced it’s the very best.

Product Overview

Best for

High-risk or low-mileage drivers

Not for

Drivers with good records or those looking for seamless claims filing

Features

Price Quotes differ from person to person
In business since 1937
Standout features Gap coverage
Pet protection
Custom parts replacement
Discount for drivers under 18
Usage-based plan
Rental reimbursement
Discounts Safe driver or accident-free discount
Good student discount
Multi-policy discount
Anti-theft discount
Paperless documents discount
SmartRide discount
J.D. Power 2017 Auto Claims Satisfaction Study rating 853/1,000 (below industry average)
A.M. Best financial strength rating A+ ("Superior")
Moody’s rating A2 ("Good")
S&P Global rating AA ("Very strong")

Gap coverage

Gap insurance pays the difference between the value of your wrecked vehicle and the amount remaining on your auto loan. This is important protection for customers who have recently purchased a car — if you’re involved in an accident that totals your new ride, you don’t want to be left footing the cost of a replacement while you’re still paying for the old one.

Pet protection

Progressive was one of the only auto insurers in our evaluation of the best auto insurance providers to offer pet protection, which pays the costs of veterinary bills if your pet is injured in your car. Veterinary costs can add up quickly; pet protection helps ensure that both you and your pets have the protection you need when the unforeseeable occurs.

Custom parts and equipment value

For drivers who like to personalize their vehicles, insurance coverage can often leave you hanging by refusing to pay the full costs of custom parts after an accident. Progressive does away with these worries by offering supplemental protection for accessories, including stereos, TV equipment, navigation systems, phones, grilles and spoilers, and even custom paint jobs.

Discount for drivers under 18

Progressive is one of only a few major insurers to offer a discount for drivers under the age of 18, a demographic that’s among the riskiest to insure. This near-unheard-of discount demonstrates Progressive’s dedication to insuring traditionally high-risk drivers. What’s more? Students earning B average grades or higher in school can also earn deductions.

Possible drawbacks

Lower financial strength ratings

It’s essential that your insurer has the financial solvency to back its claims: If your provider can’t pay out when the time comes, it won’t matter how much or how little you paid for your policy. Progressive has lower financial strength ratings than many of its competitors, and even though they’re still solid, it’s worth taking into consideration as you compare providers.

Fewer supplemental coverage options

While Progressive does offer some hard-to-find supplemental coverage options that we appreciate, like pet protection and Snapshot, it has fewer total options than competitors like Travelers and Allstate. It’s notably missing coverages like accident forgiveness, personal injury, property protection, and new car replacement that were standard with most insurers.

Fewer discounts

When it comes to sheer number of discounts, Progressive falls behind other major providers like Travelers. It doesn’t offer discounts for safety features that were fairly common among its competitors, nor does it provide deductions for driver training programs.

The Competition

Progressive
Travelers Insurance
Allstate
State Farm
Our review
Our review
Our review
Our review
A.M. Best financial strength rating
A+
A++
A+
A++
J.D. Power 2017 Auto Claims Satisfaction Study score
853/1,000
851/1,000
864/1,000
865/1,000
Supplemental coverage options
10
14
12
8
Number of discounts
12
16
11
10
Online claim filing
24/7 support

Progressive vs. Travelers Insurance

If you’re drawn to Progressive for its low advertised rates, we also recommend Travelers Insurance. Travelers offers more discounts and supplemental coverage options than any of our other top picks, and thus provides more opportunities to save. Additions like accident forgiveness demonstrate Travelers’ understanding that accidents happen no matter how good of a driver you are.

Progressive vs. Allstate

Progressive and Allstate both excel when it comes to offering discounts for younger drivers. Progressive has one for any driver under age 18, while Allstate’s extends to any students under 25, making it a great choice for college students. That’s not to say that Allstate isn’t a good choice for other drivers: It has slightly higher claims satisfactions than Progressive, too. Regardless of your age, it’s worth comparing quotes from both companies.

Progressive vs. State Farm

While State Farm has impressive customer satisfaction scores and financial strength ratings, we’d recommend Progressive for most drivers. It has more supplemental coverage options and discounts, meaning you’re likely to get exactly the protection you need at a lower price. However, State Farm is a better option for Uber and Lyft drivers — it lets you add rideshare coverage to your personal auto plan instead of buying a separate commercial policy.

Progressive FAQ

What is Progressive Snapshot?

Snapshot is a program offered by Progressive that bases your rate on the distance and manner of your actual driving using either a telematics device installed in your vehicle or through the Snapshot mobile app. Snapshot monitors the time spent driving as well as your habits: Sudden braking or high speeds can increase your rate, while infrequent use and low mileage will help save money. This program particularly benefits urban drivers who rely on other modes of transportation for day-to-day travels, but anyone confident in their driving abilities may see savings.

Can I bundle with Progressive home insurance?

Progressive has seen considerable success over the past few years, thanks partly to the company’s move into the home insurance industry — a $300 billion market that Progressive CEO Tricia Griffith calls a “game-changer.” If you’re thinking about purchasing home insurance in addition to your auto coverage, it’s worth finding out how Progressive stacks up against your current provider — bundling could save you money on your monthly insurance costs.

The Bottom Line

Progressive scores lower than many of its competitors in both financial strength and claims satisfaction, but it also offers some pretty unique discounts and supplemental coverage options. In keeping with its reputation for insuring riskier customers, Progressive has rare discounts for drivers who are frequently forced to go without. That said, it has fewer overall discounts than major players like Travelers, so you may find better rates elsewhere. While it may not be the best auto insurer for all of your needs, Progressive is nevertheless a strong option for riskier drivers who may face higher rates with other insurers.