Top 5 COVID Relief Discounts from Auto Insurers

Carlos Kirby
· 4 min read
When the
lockdown hit,
auto insurance companies
made a lot of noise about how they would help their policyholders weather the pandemic. Every major insurer had its own way of lowering costs for consumers.
But not every insurer offered the same reprieve. And we now know that insurance companies were forced to offer these discounts in order to follow state regulations—regulations many of them failed to meet over the last year.
State governments are already after insurers to correct their overcharges, but who gave the most back? These were the top five Coronavirus relief discounts for auto insurance, compiled with a little help from
Insurance Journal
Car insurance companies offered some discounts associated with COVID-19

GEICO offered a 15% credit

At first glance,
15% credit to auto insurance policyholders didn’t look all that impressive, but then we noticed the time frame. That discount applied to premiums from April all the way to October. 
Like Chubb, GEICO had its sights set on the future. The relief it gave lasted much longer than the discounts offered by most of its competitors, which explains its chart-topping $2.5 billion price tag.
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Farmers stepped up quick

The discount Farmers gave policyholders at the beginning of the pandemic is a little more difficult to judge than the others. It’s possible that it should top this list. It’s also possible that it should be on it at all.
That’s because Farmers Insurance didn’t give a discount. It just dropped its premiums by 25 percent—without a timeframe attached to it. It also started a usage-based discount system with its
Signal app
, offering up to a 15% discount for safe drivers.

Shelter offered some impressive discounts

Shelter Insurance represents the large group of insurers that only provided discounts for April and May of 2020. So why is the company on this list? In this case, it was the size that mattered.
While most insurance companies offered a measly 15% discount or credit to their clients, Shelter doubled that. It also eased rules on payment lapses and cancellations. 

Plymouth Rock offered some fair car insurance discounts

Plymouth Rock also didn’t put a timeframe on its relief plan, but it otherwise followed the same strategy of most insurers, providing a premium credit for policyholders. 
25% of its clients’ payments went back in their pockets, at least for those with liability and personal injury protection coverages.
The company also waived comprehensive and collision deductibles for health care workers involved in accidents while driving to and from work, or in the line of duty—a show of support worth noting. 

Chubb offered the biggest car insurance discount

Of all the insurers listed by Insurance Journal, Chubb offered the best discount for the first months of the lockdown—a 35% premium reduction over April and May of 2020.
But the best thing about Chubb’s response to COVID was their perspective on the future. The company promised additional discounts in the proceeding months “as the situation warrants.” Most other insurers focused completely on the present moment.

What insurance company should you choose?

Looking back on the responses of insurers to a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic can give us a little window into the character of these companies, and hopefully, it makes it easier for us to trust them to protect us.
But it shouldn’t be the only thing—or even the main thing—you focus on when choosing a provider. Your decision should primarily hinge on where you can find the best price for the coverage you need.
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