Car Insurance in San Bernardino – 7 Discounts to Better Rates

Are you sick and tired of not being able to afford to insure your vehicles every month? You are no different than many other California drivers.

Numerous auto insurance companies battle for your hard-earned dollar, and because of this it can be hard to compare insurers and get the best coverage at the cheapest price

You should make it a habit to check car insurance prices at least once a year because insurance rates are usually higher with each renewal. Even if you got the best deal a few years ago you will most likely find a better rate today. Starting right now, forget anything you know (or think you know) about car insurance because we’re going to show you how to use the internet to lower your annual insurance bill.

Comprehensive Car Insurance Comparison in San Bernardino, CA

Shopping for lower car insurance rates can take time and effort if you don’t utilize the most efficient way. You can waste a lot of time talking about coverages with agents in San Bernardino, or you can stay home and use online quotes to quickly compare rates.

All the larger companies enroll in a system where prospective buyers only type in their quote data once, and at least one company then gives them pricing based on that data. This saves time by eliminating repetitive form submissions to each individual car insurance company.

To access this free quoting program, click here (opens in new window).

The one downside to using this type of system is that consumers can’t choose which insurance companies you want to price. If you would rather choose individual companies to compare prices, we have a page of low cost car insurance companies in California. Click here for list of insurance companies in California.

It’s your choice how you get your quotes, but be sure to compare identical quote information for each comparison quote. If your comparisons have different values for each quote it will be impossible to determine which rate is truly the best in San Bernardino. Quoting even small variations in coverages may cause a big price difference. And when quoting car insurance, remember that obtaining a wide range of quotes will improve the odds of getting the best rates.

The car insurance bait and switch

Car insurance providers like Progressive, GEICO, Allstate and State Farm consistently run television and radio advertisements. They all make the same claim that you’ll save big if you change your coverage to them. How does each company make the same claim? This is how they do it.

All companies have a certain “appetite” for the driver they prefer to insure. For example, a profitable customer might be over the age of 50, a clean driving record, and has great credit. A customer getting a price quote who fits that profile will get very good rates and is almost guaranteed to save a lot of money.

Potential insureds who do not match this ideal profile will have to pay higher rates which usually ends up with the driver buying from a lower-cost company. The ads say “people who switch” not “everyone that quotes” save that kind of money. That’s why companies can truthfully state the savings. Because of the profiling, you should compare many company’s rates. It’s not possible to predict the company that will fit your personal profile best.

Lower rates by qualifying for these seven discounts

Car insurance companies do not advertise all available discounts in an easy-to-find place, so we researched both well-publicized and the harder-to-find ways to save on car insurance.

  • Organization Discounts – Belonging to a professional or civic organization is a good way to get lower rates on car insurance.
  • One Accident Forgiven – Some insurance companies permit an accident without raising rates if you are claim-free prior to the accident.
  • Drivers Ed for Students – Make teen driver coverage more affordable by requiring them to enroll in driver’s education in high school.
  • Good Students Pay Less – This discount can get you a discount of up to 25%. Earning this discount can benefit you up until you turn 25.
  • No Accidents – Drivers with accident-free driving histories pay less when compared to drivers who are more careless.
  • Driver Safety – Completing a driver safety course could possibly earn you a 5% discount and easily recoup the cost of the course.
  • Early Signing – Some insurance companies reward drivers for signing up prior to your current policy expiration. This can save 10% or more.

As a disclaimer on discounts, most discount credits are not given to the entire cost. The majority will only reduce the price of certain insurance coverages like medical payments or collision. So when the math indicates it’s possible to get free car insurance, it doesn’t quite work that way.

For a list of insurance companies who offer car insurance discounts in San Bernardino, click here to view.

Car insurance is unique, just like you

When buying coverage, there is no one size fits all plan. Every insured’s situation is different and a cookie cutter policy won’t apply. Here are some questions about coverages that might help in determining if your insurance needs would benefit from an agent’s advice.

  • Does my policy cover me when driving someone else’s vehicle?
  • Is borrowed equipment or tools covered if stolen or damaged?
  • Do I need roadside assistance coverage?
  • What are the best liability limits?
  • Is business equipment covered while in my vehicle?
  • Do I really need UM/UIM coverage?
  • How much liability coverage do I need in California?

If you’re not sure about those questions but you think they might apply to your situation then you might want to talk to a licensed agent. If you want to speak to an agent in your area, simply complete this short form or you can also visit this page to select a carrier

Car insurance coverage breakdown

Knowing the specifics of car insurance can help you determine the right coverages at the best deductibles and correct limits. The terms used in a policy can be ambiguous and nobody wants to actually read their policy. Shown next are typical coverages found on most car insurance policies.


Liability insurance can cover damage that occurs to people or other property. Liability coverage has three limits: bodily injury per person, bodily injury per accident and property damage. You commonly see limits of 50/100/50 that translate to $50,000 in coverage for each person’s injuries, a per accident bodily injury limit of $100,000, and property damage coverage for $50,000.

Liability can pay for things like bail bonds, repair costs for stationary objects and court costs. The amount of liability coverage you purchase is a decision to put some thought into, but consider buying as high a limit as you can afford. California state minimum liability requirements are 15,000/30,000/5,000 but drivers should carry more coverage.

Comprehensive coverage

This will pay to fix damage caused by mother nature, theft, vandalism and other events. You first must pay your deductible and then insurance will cover the rest of the damage.

Comprehensive coverage protects against claims such as a broken windshield, theft and fire damage. The maximum amount a car insurance company will pay at claim time is the ACV or actual cash value, so if the vehicle is not worth much consider dropping full coverage.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage

This provides protection from other drivers when they are uninsured or don’t have enough coverage. Covered losses include injuries sustained by your vehicle’s occupants and damage to your vehicle.

Since many California drivers carry very low liability coverage limits (15/30/5 in California), it doesn’t take a major accident to exceed their coverage limits. For this reason, having high UM/UIM coverages is a good idea.

Auto collision coverage

Collision coverage pays for damage to your vehicle resulting from a collision with another car or object. You have to pay a deductible then the remaining damage will be paid by your insurance company.

Collision can pay for claims like sustaining damage from a pot hole, colliding with another moving vehicle, driving through your garage door, hitting a mailbox and colliding with a tree. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so you might think about dropping it from older vehicles. It’s also possible to raise the deductible to get cheaper collision coverage.

Medical payments coverage and PIP

Coverage for medical payments and/or PIP reimburse you for immediate expenses for things like surgery, rehabilitation expenses and dental work. They can be utilized in addition to your health insurance program or if you are not covered by health insurance. Medical payments and PIP cover you and your occupants and will also cover getting struck while a pedestrian. Personal injury protection coverage is not universally available and may carry a deductible

More detailed California car insurance information is available at the California Department of Insurance website. California drivers can read state legal mandates and laws, report car insurance fraud, and read industry bulletins.

The following information may also be useful.

In conclusion

When buying insurance coverage, it’s a bad idea to reduce needed coverages to save money. In too many instances, drivers have reduced full coverage to discover at claim time they didn’t purchase enough coverage. Your focus should be to buy enough coverage at the best price, not the least amount of coverage.

Low-cost car insurance is definitely available online and with local San Bernardino insurance agents, and you should compare price quotes from both to get a complete price analysis. A few companies do not offer the ability to get a quote online and most of the time these smaller companies sell through independent agents.