Smart choices: college student car insurance considerations
October 5, 2023
Fall brings the promise of autumn leaves, time changes and back to school season. For parents of first-time college students, the list of things to do before your kid starts college can feel overwhelming. From getting furniture for a potential apartment to figuring out transportation logistics, one thing that parentsand students may not think about is how to handle their car insurance policy.
Car insurance, as a fundamental necessity for college student drivers, provides financial protection in the event of a covered accident or unforeseen event. But as a parent, you may feel at a crossroads: should you keep your college student on your car insurance policy, or should they get their own?
In this article, our HiRoad team will explore the importance of car insurance for college students and dive deeper into the decision-making process to help ensure that both you and your college-bound kids make an informed decision.
Understanding how car insurance applies to college students
Depending on where they live and what they drive, college students and their parents need to know how car insurance works in different scenarios. Let’s dive a little deeper.
Where your student lives
Here’s what it comes down to: where will your student consider their primary, day-to-day residence? Meaning, where will they be sleeping, eating and parking their car for more than six months of the year.
Will it be at your home or in their own place? This is whether or not they’ll be spending school breaks at home. If your student will be living at their own address, you will take them off of your policy and they’ll be required to have their own car insurance policy.
Now, there’s something to consider. If your child lives in a college dorm or student housing, it is not considered a permanent residence. They are still considered a resident of their parent’s home and should remain on their parents policy.
What your student drives
Regardless of where your student lives, if they own the vehicle they’re driving, they would be required to get their own car insurance policy and list the address of the student’s primary residence (see above).
If you’re both listed on the title of the vehicle, your student may have the option to either:
Stay listed on your policy as a driver (and co-owner) of the vehicle with a different garaging address.
Get a separate policy in their name with you listed as a co-owner with appropriate garaging address—where the vehicle will primarily be located.
In the event that you own the vehicle and your child is driving it—full-time or on breaks—you would keep them on your car insurance policy because you own the vehicle. To help clarify things though, it’s always a good idea to contact your insurer to let them know that your student is away at school with or without the vehicle.
Do college students pay more for car insurance?
Here’s the good news, if your student has their own policy, the considerations for their car insurance premium are likely to be the same for other drivers. What’s different? The actual cost of the premium. Some of those factors that influence a car insurance premium for drivers would include age, where you live, what you drive, etc.
Tips for college students applying for car insurance
For your kids who have their own set of wheels, getting car insurance isn’t always an easy task. So when they do need their own car insurance policy, here’s some helpful tips to help them navigate it well:
Shop around. Encourage your student to look into and research several car insurers. Have them get quotes and find one with competitive rates and rewards.
Utilize potential student discounts. Insurers may offer discounts for college students, which can help your student save some money.
Consider telematics-based insurance. An insurance policy that is centered around telematics can help offer savings for students who practice safe and responsible driving.
Car insurers with a customer care team and agents can help walk students through the different coverages and policy details to feel confident about their insurance decisions. With HiRoad, we offer telematics-based car insurance to drivers that recognizes and rewards their good driving behavior.
Let’s reward your student’s good driving with a car insurance policy from HiRoad. Time for aces in class and aces on the road—let’s go!
The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with HiRoad®. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. HiRoad is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. HiRoad makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.
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