The Montana car insurance market has a great variety of providers offering attractive deals and excellent service. That’s why choosing the right plan for your needs and budget can turn into a challenge.
Our lists of expert reviews and helpful advice will guide you through the most affordable and functional deals. We will compare car insurance offers in Montana, their quotes, financial strength, customer satisfaction, and many other factors.
We will further discuss the legal requirements in the state, the most affordable cities, and what discounts to look for.
The Best Auto Insurance in Montana
- GEICO: Overall Winner
- State Farm: Runner Up
- The Hartford: Best for Its Variety of Discounts and Coverages
- State Farm: Cheapest Option
- USAA: Best for the Military
The Overall Winner: GEICO
GEICO is one of the largest car insurance companies in the US. It offers affordable prices, many discounts, good coverage, and intriguing options. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway owns the company, and the rate of its financial strength is A++ or Superior.
The company also has an impressively low NAIC complaint ratio — 0.62. The average for a company of its size is 1. Furthermore, J.D. Power gave it an overall customer satisfaction rating of 834/1000, placing it first on the Northwest 2020 list.
GEICO car insurance is among the cheapest in Montana but surpassed by State Farm and Progressive. If you are eligible for some of the many discounts the company offers — active and passive car safety features, responsible driving, etc. — it might be the most affordable option for you.
Discounts & Optional Coverages
Choose GEICO if you are looking for excellent overall service — the company combines good coverage, affordable prices, and discounts.
Look elsewhere if the low price is your primary criteria.
Runner Up: State Farm
State Farm is the largest provider of car insurance in Montana, with 22.04% of the market share.
The company has a high customer satisfaction rate and ranks fifth in J.D. Power’s Northwest 2020 market research. It also offers the most affordable prices in Montana.
State Farm has a wide range of great discounts that most drivers are eligible for, further reducing the premiums. The online tools are very convenient and almost eliminate the need to contact live support. You can get information on Montana car insurance rates, quotes, discounts, and similar on its website.
Discounts & Optional Coverages
Choose State Farm if you want low prices and good optional coverages.
Look elsewhere if you need top-notch customer support.
Best for Its Variety of Discounts and Coverages: The Hartford
The Hartford is not the cheapest option, but it comes with many discounts. The company sells Montana automobile insurance exclusively to AARP members.
You don’t have to be retired to join the program, as anyone can enter for a yearly fee of $16 and enjoy numerous discounts. That membership offers deals for thousands of companies from travel, hospitality, medical, and other sectors.
Discounts are not the only reason to choose The Hartford. It has a high rank for client satisfaction — third place in J.D. Power’s survey for the Northwest region with an 818/1000 score.
The company has some unique options, distinguishing it from other Montana car insurance companies. For instance, if you can’t do your daily chores after an accident, The Hartford “RecoverCare” coverage will pay for lawn maintenance, house cleaning, snow removal, and similar.
A downside is the quality of the online tools. You can’t make claims online, and its website and apps could be improved.
Discounts & Optional Coverages
Choose The Hartford if you are looking for different discounts and interesting optional coverages.
Look elsewhere if you want good online tools.
Cheapest Option: State Farm
If you are looking for cheap auto insurance in Montana, State Farm is the best choice for the general public. It offers low prices across all age and coverage categories, and it’s also the cheapest for safe drivers and clients with good credit.
The second most affordable insurance is GEICO’s, with prices going from 10% to 30% higher than State Farm’s, besides for clients with poor credit. The two companies are followed by Nationwide, which is between 20% and 40% pricier.
Another thing we liked is the extensive agent network. State Farm Havre, MT, cluster has four agents, indicating good coverage for a city with under 10,000 residents.
State Farm also offers tons of different discounts, most of them focused on safe driving. Enrolling in Drive Safe & Save and Steer Clear programs can get you up to 20% savings. Other notable discounts are for active and passive car safety features and bundling insurance policies.
Discounts & Optional Coverages
Choose State Farm if you prioritize low prices and good optional coverages.
Look elsewhere if you need top-notch customer support.
Best for the Military: USAA
USAA car insurance would be this list’s winner by far if it weren’t for its exclusivity. It’s only available to active or former army personnel and their families. It offers really low prices, great coverage, many discounts, and excellent customer support.
It has the best J.D. Power customer satisfaction ratings and the cheapest car insurance in general. USAA offers many discounts to even further reduce the price, down to a fraction of the average cost of car insurance in Montana.
Discounts & Optional Coverages
Choose USAA if you are looking for good coverage, the best prices on the market, and excellent customer satisfaction ratings.
Look elsewhere if you are not a former or active army member or part of their family.
Cheapest Car Insurance in Montana (By City)
We’ve requested quotes for a 30-year-old single male driver with a clean record. His vehicle is a 2012 Honda Accord, a four-door sedan. Below you can see the best options we received in various cities around Montana.
Billings is the largest city in Montana and the center of Yellowstone County. It was founded in 1882 as a railroad town and soon earned the nickname “Magic City” due to its fast growth. Now, it’s one of the most important trade and commerce crossroads in the US.
The insurance prices are affordable across the major companies.
State Farm offers the cheapest auto insurance in Billings, MT, and Progressive and Allstate follow. Considering that State Farm is also the best for customer satisfaction, optional coverages, and discounts, it’s undoubtedly our recommendation.
Missoula is the second-largest city in Montana and, due to its location between five mountain ranges, is often referred to as the “hub of five valleys.” Interesting facts are that the first woman in the US Congress, Jeannette Rankin, is from there, and the Montana Grizzlies — the college football team — dominates the division.
The Missoula car insurance market has plenty of insurers, the cheapest of which is State Farm. Progressive and Travelers are close behind, but The General is one of the pricier options.
Great Falls is the third-largest city in Montana. It’s named after the nearby waterfalls. People built dams and electric plants to harness the water, earning the city its nickname — The Electric City. With more than a million visitors a year, Great Falls is also a trendy tourist destination.
The auto insurance in Great Falls, MT, is not expensive. State Farm offered minimum liability insurance of $50 a month for the above-described customer. The same coverage costs $58 with Progressive and $71 with Allstate.
State Farm is the most affordable insurer and has the highest customer satisfaction rating, making it a sound choice.
Bozeman is statistically the fastest-growing micropolitan area in the US for the last three years. The city has excellent quality of life and several emerging high-tech companies headquartered there. Montana State University is there, as well.
Living in a small but booming city has its perks, and the cheap car insurance in Bozeman, MT, is one of them. State Farm offers the lowest price for the minimum, state-required insurance, while other insurers have noticeably higher prices for the same plan.
State Farm also has the highest customer satisfaction rates and the lowest premiums in general, making it the best alternative.
Helena, Montana’s capital, was founded during the Gold Rush, and thanks to the abundance of gold deposits in the area, the town had 50 millionaires in 1880. Currently, it has the largest percentage of army veterans in the state and is awarded for being the most patriotic city.
State Farm offers the cheapest car insurance in Helena, MT, followed by Progressive and Travelers. Again, State Farm is our recommendation due to the best combination of low prices and high customer satisfaction rates.
Even with only 3,300 residents, Glasgow is the largest city in a 110-mile radius, making it an important transport and trade hub. It also had a prominent role in WWII with a bomber airbase and a German POW camp built there. Tony Raines, the famous NASCAR driver, was born in Glasgow.
The insurance premiums in the city are generally low. State Farm provides the cheapest Montana car insurance, and Glasgow rates are no exception, followed by GEICO and Nationwide.
Since both State Farm and GEICO have good coverage, similar customer satisfaction ratings, and financial strength, choosing one is just a matter of personal preference. You should compare their plans, options, and discounts to decide which suits you better.
Montana Auto Insurance Laws
Montana Automobile Insurance Plan (MTAIP)
Drivers with misdemeanors, bad credit, and other similar offenses often have difficulties finding adequate insurance offers.
The state of Montana has a program that enables high-risk drivers to get an affordable policy. It is called Montana Automobile Insurance Plan (MTAIP), and it is a part of the Western Association of Automobile Insurance Plans. Anyone turned down by the car insurance providers within the last two months can apply.
Every insurance company has to participate in proportion to its market share. Once the agency finds you a provider, they have to keep you as a client for three years.
This plan will cover the minimum requirements for the state. You can also choose the full plan — $100,000 per person, or $300,000 per accident for bodily injuries, and $50,000 for property damage.
Montana Car Insurance Requirements
Car owners in Montana are required to carry at least the minimum liability insurance. It covers:
- $25,000 for bodily injury per person
- $50,000 for bodily injury per accident
- $10,000 for property damages
When buying insurance, you should keep in mind that cars tend to cost over $10,000, and your minimal liability policy won’t be able to cover it. The same can be said for medical treatments as they are pretty expensive. So, it would be best to choose a more extensive coverage plan.
The insurance companies in Montana are also required by law to offer an uninsured/underinsured policy. If a client doesn’t want it, they must decline in writing. That policy covers:
- $25,000 per person
- $50,000 per accident
No-Fault Car Insurance Laws in Montana
Montana is an at-fault state. That means that the person who caused the accident will use their insurance to pay for the bodily injuries and property damages.
A judge decides who is responsible. If the fault is shared, that will reduce the compensation.
SR22 Montana Car Insurance
SR-22 is a document that confirms that a driver has at least the minimum liability insurance required by state laws. In Montana, some drivers are required to file a “proof of financial responsibility” to the local Motor Vehicle Division after a license suspension, DUI, insurance lapses, etc.
The drivers must keep the certificate for three years. The cost varies between $15 and $50. That is a one-time tax, but keep in mind that being deemed a high-risk driver will likely increase your future premiums.
Montana Auto Insurance for New Residents
You can drive an out-of-state insured vehicle in Montana for up to 60 consecutive days. After that, you will need to update your policy. Active military personnel are exempt from this rule.
Price Optimization in Montana
Price optimization is a controversial procedure through which companies use data unrelated to risk management to determine their clients’ premiums.
Car insurance providers use data mining of different databases and personal consumer information to determine how much they can increase your premium without forcing you to leave.
For instance, people who shop around for insurance will get lower premiums than those who automatically renew theirs.
The state of Montana has declared this practice unfair and discriminatory. Amica Mutual and State Farm publicly claim that they don’t use price optimization, while other insurers remain silent.
How to Get Cheap Car Insurance in Montana
Check Car Insurance Reviews
It’s important to choose an insurer you can trust, not simply the one who is the cheapest at the moment.
Some people research online forums, but there is a catch — mainly dissatisfied customers comment there. That may create a wrong image of the company.
Location is also essential, so check the local reviews. For instance, AAA insurance in Montana might not have the same options and quality as the California division.
Your safest option is going through unbiased expert reviews. We can gladly offer you such opinions. Keep in mind that you should always shop around. Pick at least five favorite companies and request quotes from each one.
See Who Provides the Highest Discounts
Discounts are crucial because they can considerably reduce the final price. For auto insurance in Montana, companies offer various deals. They can be for safe drivers, paying online or in advance, bundling insurance policies, etc. Some providers cater specifically to army personnel and government employees.
Most of the time, you will find this information on the official websites. In other cases, if you can’t find specific percentages, you will have to pick up the phone and talk to an agent.
Compare Montana Auto Insurance Quotes
Insurance companies use many factors such as your age, driving history, credit score, and car type to calculate your quote. Even the slightest change can have an impact. That’s why you should request quotes from several providers before deciding.
What’s more, the companies may even offer you a lower price if they see you are shopping around and are interested in their competitors. So, spending some time gathering car insurance quotes in Montana is likely to pay off.
Car insurance costs are personalized for every driver. The premium depends not only on the coverage but also on the discounts you are eligible for, your circumstances and information, and many other factors.
Reviews, both personal and expert, can be a great place to start your research. As companies’ offers vary significantly, it’s best to gather many quotes before deciding on the best one.
Even though Montana has excellent prices on car insurance, driving violations can still increase your premium drastically.
People Also Ask
How much is car insurance in Montana?
The average price of minimum, state-required car insurance is around $466 per year. The minimum coverage requirements are generally low — between $25,000 and $50,000 for bodily injury and $10,000 for property damages — so most drivers decide on higher coverage.
Because of that, the average car insurance cost in Montana goes up to $1615. The highly recommended Uninsured/Underinsured coverage is part of the reason for the high price.
Is car insurance required in Montana?
Yes, minimum liability car insurance is mandatory in Montana. It covers bodily injuries — $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident — and property damages up to $10,000.
Also, the companies are required by law to offer uninsured/underinsured policies, and drivers have to decline in writing if they do not want to purchase it. It covers expenses in case of a no-fault accident with a driver with insufficient insurance or none at all.
What vehicle insurance is mandatory in Montana?
Montana requires all drivers to have at least the minimum liability car insurance. The coverage amounts are $25,000 per person and $50,000 for bodily injuries, and $10,000 for property damages per accident.
Insurance companies are also required by law to offer uninsured/underinsured policies, and the clients have to decline in writing if they do not want to buy it.
Does insurance follow the car or the driver in Montana?
Car insurance in Montana follows the car. The types are bodily and personal injury liability, collision, and comprehensive. In practice, if you lend someone your car and they cause an accident, your insurance will pay for bodily injuries and property damages.
But if the damage exceeds your coverage limits, the rest will be paid by the insurance of the person driving your car.
Who really has the cheapest car insurance?
According to our research, USAA provides the cheapest car insurance in Montana, but it is only available to active and former army members and their families.
State Farm offers the most affordable car insurance available to the general public. The company also has the best customer satisfaction ratings in the region and good coverage plans and options.
Is Montana a no-fault insurance state?
No, Montana is an at-fault state. It has a fault-based insurance system, meaning that the person responsible for the crash will pay for injuries and damages.
In states like that, liability insurance is especially important, as uninsured drivers can face heavy penalties. So, make sure you don’t have any insurance lapses if you switch between Montana car insurance companies.