If online car insurance comparisons are new to you, you may be confused by the large number of online companies selling insurance in Hawaii.
If you have a policy now or need a new policy, you can learn to shop for the lowest rates and possibly find even better coverage. Buying more affordable coverage is simple if you know the tricks. Hawaii drivers just need to know the proper way to compare company rates on the web.
These seven discounts can lower your rates
Companies that sell car insurance don’t always publicize all their discounts in a way that’s easy to find, so the following is a list of both the well known and also the lesser-known savings tricks you should be using. If you aren’t receiving every discount possible, you are paying more than you should be.
- Passive Restraints – Cars that have air bags and/or automatic seat belt systems may earn rate discounts up to 30%.
- Clubs and Organizations – Being a member of certain professional organizations is a good way to get lower rates on car insurance.
- More Vehicles More Savings – Insuring multiple cars or trucks on one policy can get a discount on all vehicles.
- Senior Discount – Mature drivers can possibly qualify for a discount up to 10%.
- College Student – Children living away from home attending college and don’t have a car may be able to be covered for less.
- Homeowners Discount – Being a homeowner may earn you a small savings because owning a home requires personal responsibility.
- Safety Course Discount – Successfully completing a defensive driving course could save 5% or more if your company offers it.
It’s important to note that some of the credits will not apply the the whole policy. Most cut individual premiums such as collision or personal injury protection. Just because it seems like having all the discounts means you get insurance for free, car insurance companies aren’t that generous.
To see a list of providers who offer car insurance discounts in Hawaii, click here.
You are unique and your car insurance should be too
When choosing the best car insurance coverage for your personal vehicles, there really is no best way to insure your cars. Everyone’s needs are different.
For example, these questions could help you determine if your insurance needs might need an agent’s assistance.
- Is my teen driver covered when they drive my company car?
- Do I need PIP (personal injury protection) coverage in Hawaii?
- Are split liability limits better than a combined single limit?
- Are there companies who specialize in insuring high-risk drivers?
- Should I buy additional glass protection?
- How do I file an SR-22 for a DUI in Hawaii?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions, then you may want to think about talking to an agent. If you don’t have a local agent, fill out this quick form. It only takes a few minutes and can provide invaluable advice.
Aren’t my neighborhood agents an option?
Certain consumers would prefer to get advice from a local agent. Insurance agents are trained to spot inefficiencies and give you someone to call. One of the best bonuses of getting online price quotes is the fact that you can find the best rates and still choose a local agent.
By using this simple form, your information is emailed to participating agents who will compete for your insurance coverage. There is no need to leave your house as quotes are delivered to the email address you provide.
Deciding on an insurer should depend on more than just a cheap price. Ask your prospective agent these questions:
- Do they carry Errors and Omissions coverage?
- Do they feel the quoted coverages are adequate?
- Are glass claims handled on-site or do you have to take your vehicle to a repair shop?
- Which company do they place the most coverage with?
- Do they review policy coverages at every renewal?
Hawaii insurance agencies come in two flavors
When searching for an insurance agent, there are two different types of agents from which to choose. Agencies in Hawaii are either independent (non-captive) or captive. Either one can insure your vehicles, but it’s worth learning how they differ since it can impact the type of agent you choose
Captive insurance agents can only place business with one company such as Liberty Mutual, State Farm, Allstate and AAA. These agents are not able to compare other company’s rates so keep that in mind. Captives receive extensive training on their company’s products which can be an advantage. Consumers often choose to use a captive agent mostly because of the brand legacy and the convenience of having all coverages with one company.
Independent Agents (or Brokers)
These agents are not locked into one company so they have the ability to put coverage with any number of different companies and possibly get better coverage at lower prices. To move your coverage to a new company, your agent can switch companies and that require little work on your part. When comparison shopping, we recommend you contact several independent insurance agents to have the most options to choose from. They often place coverage with smaller companies who may have lower rates.
To view a full list of Hawaii agencies, click here.
Once you have acceptable answers to these questions in addition to an acceptable price estimate, chances are good that you have found an insurance agency that meets your needs to service your policy. But remember, consumers can cancel your coverage at any point so never feel that you’re stuck with any specific agency with no way to switch.
Auto insurance coverages
Having a good grasp of your policy can be of help when determining which coverages you need and the correct deductibles and limits. The coverage terms in a policy can be difficult to understand and reading a policy is terribly boring.
Liability coverages – Liability insurance protects you from damages or injuries you inflict on people or other property that is your fault. Coverage consists of three different limits, bodily injury for each person injured, bodily injury for the entire accident and a property damage limit. Your policy might show limits of 50/100/50 which means $50,000 bodily injury coverage, $100,000 for the entire accident, and property damage coverage for $50,000.
Liability coverage protects against things such as pain and suffering, structural damage and emergency aid. The amount of liability coverage you purchase is a personal decision, but you should buy as much as you can afford. Hawaii requires drivers to carry at least 20,000/40,000/10,000 but you should think about purchasing more coverage.
Comprehensive coverage (or Other than Collision) – This coverage will pay to fix damage caused by mother nature, theft, vandalism and other events. You need to pay your deductible first then your comprehensive coverage will pay.
Comprehensive insurance covers claims like fire damage, rock chips in glass and damage from a tornado or hurricane. The maximum payout you can receive from a comprehensive claim is the ACV or actual cash value, so if the vehicle’s value is low consider removing comprehensive coverage.
Collision coverages – This pays to fix your vehicle from damage resulting from colliding with a stationary object or other vehicle. You first must pay a deductible then your collision coverage will kick in.
Collision coverage pays for claims like rolling your car, damaging your car on a curb and sustaining damage from a pot hole. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so analyze the benefit of dropping coverage from vehicles that are older. Another option is to choose a higher deductible in order to get cheaper collision rates.
Uninsured Motorist or Underinsured Motorist insurance – This coverage gives you protection when the “other guys” are uninsured or don’t have enough coverage. This coverage pays for medical payments for you and your occupants and damage to your vehicle.
Since a lot of drivers only purchase the least amount of liability that is required (Hawaii limits are 20/40/10), their limits can quickly be used up. So UM/UIM coverage is a good idea.
Insurance for medical payments – Med pay and PIP coverage pay for immediate expenses for rehabilitation expenses, X-ray expenses, nursing services, prosthetic devices and dental work. The coverages can be used to cover expenses not covered by your health insurance program or if there is no health insurance coverage. Coverage applies to not only the driver but also the vehicle occupants and also covers if you are hit as a while walking down the street. Personal Injury Protection is not universally available but can be used in place of medical payments coverage
Additional reading for car insurance information
More detailed Hawaii car insurance information is available at the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs website. Consumers can learn about specific coverages, view a list of available companies, and view agent and company licensing information.
Buy online or local, you save
Low-cost car insurance can be purchased from both online companies as well as from independent agents in Hawaii, so you should compare both in order to have the best price selection to choose from. Some insurance companies don’t offer the ability to get a quote online and these small insurance companies work with independent agents.
Consumers leave their current company for any number of reasons including delays in paying claims, denial of a claim, poor customer service or being labeled a high risk driver. Whatever your reason, finding the right car insurance provider is not as hard as you think.
In this article, we covered a lot of information how to reduce car insurance prices online. The key concept to understand is the more you quote, the better your comparison will be. Consumers may even find the lowest premiums are with a small mutual company.