Factors and Discounts that can Change the Cost of your Car Insurance

In today's economy many people do not want to spend the extra money each month in order to carry adequate car insurance. Many simply buy the minimum that is required, or some skip it all together. In today's economy, many people simply cannot afford to do these things. Not having insurance can lead you to be stuck with hundreds of thousands of dollars in bills if you were to be involved in an accident. Today it is even more important to carry adequate car insurance, but fortunately, you can generally find a discount premium to help ease the financial burden each month.
First it is always a good idea to understand the factors that go into your car insurance premium. Car insurance rates are calculated based on risk - the higher the risk, the more you pay. Although most people think of driving history as the main indicator of risk, this is just one of many factors. Car insurance companies do extensive research in order to find factors that correlate with risk. Things such as marital status, age, gender, car type, credit history, occupation, address, and education level are all factors that can help determine your car insurance rate. Once you understand how your rate is calculated, you can try to adjust your life so these factors are working in your favor.

Car Insurance Discounts

Some of the factors responsible for your car insurance premium cannot be changed. You cannot help your age or gender, for example. Fortunately, you can also save money through insurance discounts. There are many different discounts, but not all insurance companies will offer every discount, and there will be different eligibility information across the companies. Here are some of the most common car insurance discounts:
  • Good student - this discount is given to students who maintain a certain GPA each semester. It can apply to high school and college students.
  • Driver's education - you can earn this discount for taking a driver's education class. Not all classes count, so it is best to check before enrolling.
  • Good driver - by avoiding accidents and traffic violations, you can get a discount on your car insurance. Some companies increase this discount each year you stay safe on the road.
  • Loyalty - staying with the same car insurance company over time can often earn you a loyalty discount.
  • Multi-car - if you have multiple cars in your family, insuring them on the same policy can get you a multi-car discount.
  • Multi-policy - similarly, if you have other insurance needs (home, life, health, renters, etc.) you can usually get a discount for purchasing all the policies through the same company.
  • Safety and security- by driving a vehicle with updated safety and security features, you are less likely to be hurt in an accident or have your car stolen or vandalized. This lower risk means more savings for you.
  • Low mileage - if you stay under a certain amount of miles per year, you can usually earn a discount. This is simply because the less you are on the road, the less likely you are to get into an accident.

Car insurance quotes: your action plan for hurricanes

The hurricane season is just around the corner and now is the best time to assess your insurance option for covering the potential damage delivered by bad weather. Even now there can already be a slight increase in car insurance quotes for policies covering hurricanes, especially in those areas where they happen most of the time. However, even if you manage to buy a policy with suitable hurricane coverage, knowing how to proceed during and after the hurricane has hit is also very important. That's why we're providing you with several tips from insurers and insurance experts that will help you minimize the costs and get the best coverage when disaster strikes:
Before the disaster
  • First of all you have to make sure that your insurance company is adequate in dealing with hurricane-related quotes. It would be best to learn about their hurricane payout rates even when you're comparing car insurance quotes, not when the disaster is about to happen.
  • If you want to insure a classic or retro car against hurricane damage it's best to find an insurer that specializes in such cars, not a general insurance company. Specialized car insurance providers usually have a more adequate approach when it comes to evaluating damage and finding a good repair shop for an old vehicle.
  • Keep all your insurance documentation in a safe place that is likely to survive the hit and keep the papers intact. Make copies of all the documents and keep them in another place as well, just as a backup.
  • If your garage is likely to get flooded or badly damaged during the hurricane, arrange for a backup storage location for your vehicle, preferably at higher ground. If you can't find one contact your insurer to make the arrangement - they are likely to help you out with that.
After the disaster
  • Take as many photos as needed to document the damage inflicted to your car. Having several photos from before the hurricane is a great bonus as they will help the insurance company to assess the damage more accurately. Once you've taken the photos call the insurer right away.
  • Do not start the engine or try to drive around in the damaged car before an assessment is made by the insurer. The engine may be flooded and other systems may also contain bad water, which will inflict more damage if you try to start the car.
  • Removing contaminated water from your car should be a priority. The sooner you do it the better. Have a professional drain all the fluids from the engine and the car interior for better results.
  • Remove any debris that got inside the car during the hurricane but only after you've documented the damage through photos. You have to provide proof that the damage was inflicted by the debris you've removed when the insurance agent arrives.
  • Negotiate the cost of repair with the insurer. Ask for several options when it comes to repair shops and see if the insurer will cover you if you take the car to a different shop. Ask the repair workers to give you an estimate on the work to have some negotiating basis with the insurer.

Taking the family on a road trip and quotes for car insurance

Road trips are an iconic part of American culture, yet some families avoid them due to fears that a fun vacation could instead become an exhausting nightmare. Long drives don't have to be stressful as long as you plan a great route ahead of time. Here are some of the top American road trips, with tips for enjoying the ride.
California Highway 1
California Highway 1, also called the Pacific Coast Highway, will give your family views of some of the most beautiful scenery on offer in the United States. The highlight of this route is Big Sur. This cliff-hugging, winding route makes its way along the central California coast and takes about five hours to complete at a leisurely pace. You can start your trip in Monterrey and end in Morro Bay. Stay alert as the road has narrow shoulders and sharp drop-offs and may be difficult for RVs to navigate.
Maine Route 1
Scenic views of the Maine Coast is something that this tourist attraction is well known for. Historic villages like Kennebunk, Eastport, Bar Harbor and York and beautiful rolling farmlands are just some of the places that you will be driving through. Along the way stop at antique shops, historic forts, lighthouses, seafood restaurants and gift shops. Many popular attractions are located quite a distance from Route 1 so you will want to plan accordingly:
  • Plan to get active by stopping at some of Maine's legendary hiking trails
  • Take a side trip on a boat tour or cruise
  • Check out some of the local cuisine like lobster or clam chowder by driving off the main road
Blue Ridge Parkway
It is the most-traveled road in the National Park System and is a scenic route that is 469 miles long. It is easy to see why, with the beautiful views as the road winds along the famous Blue Ridge Mountains.
  • The Blue Ridge Parkway Association has its own travel planner mobile app so you can learn about all of the scenic places, historic sites, trails, overlooks, lodging and more
  • End your road trip with an excursion to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park at the Parkway's southern end
  • The Parkway Visitor Center offers exhibits on the region's recreational opportunities, including places to visit on and hear the Parkway
Road Trip Planning Tips
Of course, the key to any fun adventure lies planning ahead:
  • Get cheap car insurance quotes to have the coverage you need for a long trip
  • Provide older children with a map so that they can navigate the journey as you go
  • Break your trip into two hour time chunks to keep everyone happy
  • Be willing to be spontaneous and make any unplanned stops as needed
  • Bring plenty of snacks, including healthy choices that may not be available on the road
And if you switch to more car insurance quotes before going on vacation, you'll have plenty of extra money to spend along the way.

Cheap Car Insurance: Unusual Places to Take the Family

Summer vacation is a great time to break away from your routine and reconnect with your family. Yet even the best summer vacation ideas can grow stale when you do them year after year. If you want to enjoy your family time in an offbeat way, one of these three unique vacation ideas may fit the bill for your next family trip.
Crater of Diamonds State Park
Take your family on a real-life treasure hunt at the Crater of Diamonds State Park. Located in Arkansas, the site is the only diamond-producing area in the world where the public can search for diamonds. Even better, the official policy of the park is "finders, keepers," which means that you can keep all of the loot you manage to find! Kids will have a thrill with the idea that they are true treasure hunters.
  • All of the diamond hunting takes place atop a 37-acre plowed field, the eroded surface of an ancient volcanic crater.
  • Most diamonds found at the park are too small to be cut, though valuable diamonds have occasionally been found.
  • Diamonds from the park can be mounted in jewelry to serve as a souvenir of your trip.
The park is open throughout the year except for Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Years Day. Admission rates are $8 for adults, $5 for children ages 6-12 and free for children under six.
The park also has tools and equipment available for rent. There are plenty of accommodations nearby, as well as many additional area attractions.
Concordia Language Villages
Concordia Language Villages, located in the Northwoods of Minnesota, offer a unique learning opportunity for families. As a premiere language and cultural immersion program, it offers your family an opportunity to have an international experience without the cost of traveling abroad. The full-immersion setting provides the following:
  • Comfortable lodging
  • Homemade, ethnic cuisine
  • Educational programs for adults and children
Global Citizens Network
If you are looking for a completely out-of-the-box experience that will stay with your family for a lifetime, a volunteer vacation could be right for you. These trips give your family a chance to learn about another culture, while also learning about the importance of volunteerism. The Global Citizens Network sponsors trips around the globe, but also has family volunteer trips to indigenous communities in domestic locations:
  • The Anishinabe People of White Earth Reservation located in Becker, Clearwater, and Mahnomen counties in north-central Minnesota
  • The Quileute People of La Push located near Forks, Washington
Before you leave on a driving vacation, make sure your cheap car insurance is updated with all of the coverage you need. Then you can enjoy a fun trip with no worries. You can also check with your cheap car insurance to see if it offers discounts or provides coverage for rental cars if you don't want to drive directly to your destination.

Do you rermember those popular TV cars?

Throughout the years of movies and television, it is not just the actors that have made it into our hearts but also a few "sweet rides" that have captivated their audiences. Most people have spent at least a few short moments wishing they could drive one of them or maybe wondering where they are now.
Herbie, the Love Bug
It is no surprise that Herbie would be among these most popular TV vehicles. Herbie was first seen in his own 1968 film, and also had his own television show in 1982 before gracing the big screen again in 1997. What made Herbie so cool?
  • He had a mind of his own; any little car with a big personality is great
  • He was a matchmaker
  • He is an atypical race car that overcomes the odds. Everybody loves the underdog!
KITT (Knight Industries Three Thousand) from Knight Rider
In a time when super computers were not so super, KITT was impressing people with a computer mind in a slick black 1982 Pontiac Trans AM, and the second KITT as a 2008-2009 Ford Shelby GT500KR. What made KITT so popular?
  • KITT had his own voice
  • He was technologically advanced, showing the possible future of artificial intelligence
  • KITT was also classic crime fighter that often saved the day
The General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard
If you were a good old country boy in the 70s and you were not driving a pick-up truck you would likely be in muscle car. The Dukes of Hazzard sported the perfect Chrysler 2-door coupe. The television show took place in the 70s but a movie version hit the big screen in 2005. There's no denying the General Lee was a dream car:
  • Classic stunts like jumping and riding sweetly through winding rough terrain (in real life, you could never get cheap car insurance driving like this)
  • The fact that all people jumped into the car and never used doors
  • It was brightly colored and numbered although its racing was always back-road style
  • Was magically faster than all the cop cars that chased them
All of these beautiful cars will forever be remembered. With how often they seem to reappear, they may just pop up again in newer and newer sequels. The affection that people have for these "sweet rides" is what keeps them coming back to grace the silver screen. You may just see Herbie showing his big personality, KITT saving the day, or the General Lee cruising the back roads running moonshine in the future. But before you try to mimic the antics of these classics, go online and pick some solid and still cheap car insurance coverage to be prepared to pay for the damages.