The Best Alaska Auto Insurance Companies
Thanks to intense winters and lots of rural roads, driving in Alaska can be an adventure (much like living there). The good news is, auto insurance prices in Alaska are pretty average compared to the rest of the country. But depending on what kind of driving you do in the Land of the Midnight Sun, you’ll want to consider your auto insurance carefully.
If you mainly drive around town, you can probably stick with the minimum liability coverage. But if you do a lot of driving in rural or wilderness areas, you might want to add comprehensive coverage to protect against theft, vandalism, or collision with an animal. Even if you live in an urban area, without comprehensive coverage you won’t be able to file a claim in the event of damage due to a natural disaster. Legally, companies in Alaska also have to offer an uninsured/underinsured motorist liability policy that protects you if you end up in an accident with a driver who doesn’t have insurance, but it’s considered an optional extra.
How We Found the Best Alaska Auto Insurance Companies
To find the best auto insurance companies in Alaska we used a similar methodology to our review on nationwide providers. We started with the three largest auto insurance providers in Alaska by market share: State Farm, Allstate, and Progressive. Then, we evaluated these providers based on their coverage options. We made sure they each offered at least the basic kinds of coverage many drivers are interested in: liability, comprehensive, and collision. We checked each company’s website for how many of the supplemental coverage options (endorsements) and discount options they offered from our lists of the most common and popular endorsements and discounts.
Multi-Policy; Multi-Car; Home Ownership; Safe Driver; Continuous Insurance; Hybrid/Electric Vehicle; New Car; EFT, Paid in Full and Good Payer; Early Quote or Early Signing; Good Student; Student Away at School; Driver Training; Anti-lock Brake; Anti-theft Device; Airbags; Daytime Lights; Safe Driving Program; Military and Deployment; Membership/Affiliate Programs; Drivers Over 50/Retired; Drivers Under 18; Federal Employee; Usage-Based; Family Plan; Paperless Billing; Healthy Habits; Higher Deductible.
Bodily Injury Liability; Property Damage Liability; Medical Payments; Comprehensive; Uninsured/Underinsured Bodily Injury; Collision; Gap Loan/Lease Payoff; Pet Injury; Rental Reimbursement; Roadside Assistance or Towing; Custom Parts & Equipment Value; Coverage for Teen Drivers; Ridesharing Coverage; Personal Injury Protection; Umbrella; Mechanical Breakdown; Vanishing Deductible; Accident Forgiveness; New Car Replacement; Property Protection.
We also evaluated each company’s site for its customer service, education, and navigation tools, seeing, for example, whether a company offers a live chat with customer service option or a helpful FAQ section that might actually answer some of your questions you have while shopping. Then, we consulted JD Power and Consumer Reports — to see how each company’s customer service and claims service ratings stacked up — and Moody’s, AM Best, and S&P Global — for their most recent financial stability ratings for each company. Lastly, we tested online quote tools for each provider.
The 4 Best Auto Insurance Companies in Alaska
State Farm also boasts a good reputation when it comes to customer service and claims experience — earning 89/100 overall customer rating from Consumer Reports and 3 out of 5 from JD Power for overall satisfaction and claims experience. You can rest assured when it comes to State Farm’s financial stability as well, the company earns extremely high ratings from Moody’s, AM Best, and S&P Global.
State Farm provides a significant number of discounts — including a healthy driving habits discount for those with a clean driving record and a student-away-at-school discount if you want a break on insuring a driver who lives far from home and won’t be driving that often. It also offers the 11 endorsements — slightly less than competitors Allstate and Progressive, but it includes the most important, like liability (including for uninsured/underinsured drivers), collision, and comprehensive, as well as add-ons, such as rental reimbursement if you have to rent a car while yours isn’t driveable, and coverage specifically tailored for teen drivers.
One thing we didn’t like about State Farm’s online quote process was that you have to provide a social security number or driver’s license number to get an online quote. Since they’re the only one of our top picks that require this, it seems like an unnecessary hurdle to receive potential pricing. That said, you can always get a quote from an agent over the phone.
If customizing your auto insurance policy is top on your priority list, Allstate offers the most endorsements and supplemental insurance options of any of our top picks. They cover all the basics, liability and under/uninsured motorist coverage, collision, and comprehensive coverage, as well as some options we couldn’t get with other companies, like new car replacement and property protection coverage.
Allstate was one of only two companies (the other was State Farm) in our top picks for Alaska to offer rideshare coverage, so you can be covered if you drive for Uber or Lyft. It also offers a range of discounts, although slightly fewer than State Farm. Allstate was the only one of our top picks to offer an early signing discount, up to 10% off if you sign your policy seven days before it becomes effective.
Allstate had good scores from Consumer Reports, an 88/100 reader score for overall satisfaction, “Very Good” (the second-best rating) for simplicity of claims process, and “Excellent” (the best rating) for the all-important timely claims payments. Allstate also keeps up with the likes of Progressive and State Farm in its J.D. Power customer satisfaction rating, for which it receives 3 out of 5. Allstate’s financial stability ratings, too, while still good and considered stable by all three ratings companies we checked, are lower than those of our other top picks.
The Allstate website doesn’t offer an FAQ section or a customer service option for live chat with an agent, however, it generally does offer a lot of clear info about coverage options, available discounts and endorsements, as well as a state-specific page outlining the requirements for auto insurance in Alaska. Allstate’s online quote tool stood out as easy to use, quick, and customizable, which makes it easier to figure out whether they’re the right auto insurer for you.
Of our top picks for Alaska, Progressive’s website was the most informative and educational with more resources and customer service tools, like a customer service live chat option, an informative FAQ section, and easy to find info on coverage options, discounts and endorsements.
Progressive also offered the second-most endorsements and supplemental coverage options, 13 out of the 20 we looked for. It’s the only company we analyzed to offer a gap loan/lease payoff if your car is declared a total loss and you owe your lender more than the declared cash value of the car. It’s also the only company in our top picks to offer pet injury coverage as part of its collision coverage, which would cover vet bills for a pet injured in a covered accident.
While Progressive offers more discounts than our other top picks, 13 out of the 27 we looked for, it wasn’t by a huge margin. And it may well have the right discounts for your situation. For instance, Progressive was the only company in our top picks to offer a teen driver discount for adding a new driver (under 18) to your policy.
Progressive had slightly better J.D. Power and Consumer Reports ratings than Allstate, 3 out of 5 from J.D. Power for overall rating and claims experience rating, and a “Very Good” (second-best) rating for Simplicity of Claims Process from Consumer Reports and “Excellent” (best) rating for Claims Timely Payment. It did receive one point lower than Allstate, 87/100, for the Consumer Reports overall reader score.
We also loved Progressive’s online quote tool, which was easy to use, gave us a quick estimate and allowed us to quickly see how adjusting certain coverage areas would affect our estimated premium.
USAA is Alaska’s second largest car insurance provider by market share, even though it’s only available to active or retired members of the U.S. armed forces and their families. If you’re in the service (or have an immediate family member who is), we highly recommend considering USAA for your auto insurance, since it’s consistently one of the best-rated providers in the country.
In particular, USAA is known for great customer service and claims support, often taking first place in J.D. Power’s claims satisfaction survey, and earning “excellent” customer satisfaction scores across the board at Consumer Reports. Beyond that, it equals State Farm’s elite financial scores — meaning a USAA insurance policy is a safe investment.
However, we can’t compare USAA’s prices to other providers, because their online quote tool requires verification by a member of the military. But if you qualify, you should definitely get a quote from USAA.
Guide to Alaska Auto Insurance
Understanding Alaska’s minimum liability requirements
Minimum liability is the lowest amount of auto insurance coverage your state requires in order to legally drive there. This is generally a liability limit covering bodily injury and property damage referred to by three numbers. Alaska’s is noted as 50/100/25, which means:
- $50,000 bodily injury coverage per person
- $100,000 bodily injury coverage per accident
- $25,000 property damage coverage per accident
This is one of the higher minimum liability limits in the nation, which means that insured people in Alaska are going to be better off in actually covering the costs of an accident than in many states, even if they only buy the bare minimum. However, you should consider buying as much auto insurance as you can afford, as you never know what kind of coverage you’ll need. For instance, an accident with a brand-new car worth $55,000 might mean that $25,000 of property damage could still leave you with quite a big bill to pay for the rest of the damage.
Another unique feature of Alaskan auto insurance is that every company is required to offer (50/100/25) insurance for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, too. This is what will cover your bodily injury or property damage costs if the other driver is uninsured or underinsured. You don’t have to accept this coverage — you’ll need to reject it in writing if you don’t — but it’s clearly something policy makers are trying to encourage in order to protect motorists in the event of an accident with a driver who doesn’t have enough insurance
Of course, there are lots of things to consider when it comes to what will be the best auto insurance package for you and many different factors determine your auto insurance premium. So the best thing to do when looking for auto insurance is to shop around. Our review on the top providers in Alaska is a great place to start the process.
Keep an eye on your credit
A bill passed in Alaska in March 2018 means that insurers in the state can use credit data to determine premium rates when a policy is renewed. Before this, insurers in the state could already use a consumer’s credit score when determining the premium when first buying a policy with the company, but the new bill means that credit score can continue to be checked each time a policy is renewed, potentially impacting your premium rate.
Supporters of the new law say that consumers with good credit history will save money on their insurance premiums, while opponents say it will result in potentially higher auto insurance costs for rural Alaskans, racial minorities, the elderly, and the poor. In any case, whether you’re shopping for new car insurance or considering renewing your existing policy in Alaska, it’s important to be aware of your credit rating and how it might affect your premium.
Consider comprehensive coverage
Because of its location along the Aleutian Trench, Alaska is subject to seismic activity, like the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck Anchorage on Nov. 30, 2018. Since Alaska is a coastal state, earthquakes also bring the risk of an accompanying tsunami. If your auto insurance includes comprehensive coverage, your vehicle will be covered for damages due to earthquakes, tsunamis, and other natural disasters. If you don’t purchase comprehensive coverage, you run the risk of having to pay for disaster repairs out of your own pocket.
Alaska Auto Insurance FAQ
Is it against the law to drive without insurance in Alaska?
Yes. All registered vehicles must have auto insurance in Alaska, and an additional law requires drivers at fault in an accident to accept financial responsibility for any damages. Driving without auto insurance can lead to a first-offense fine of $500 and a 90-day driver’s license suspension. If you’re responsible for a road collision without carrying auto insurance, your license could be suspended for up to three years.
How much does auto insurance cost in Alaska?
The price of your premium will depend on your car, accident history, financial profile, credit score, and other personal details, but the average premium in Alaska is $1,027, right in line with the national average of $1,009.
Is Alaska a no-fault state?
No. Alaska is an “at-fault” state. This means that if you cause an accident you are financially responsible for compensating anyone involved in the accident. This includes any damages to the vehicles in question and any medical bills from resulting injuries.