Your Teen’s Getting Wheels for the Holidays in California! Gift Them Car Insurance, Too
Is your holiday gift for your teenager going to be particularly hard to wrap or put under the tree this year? Is it the young driver’s first car? Be sure to match that whopping surprise with another present, one that admittedly won’t be appreciated nearly as much until later — a California car insurance policy.
The insurance policy will be the most valuable stocking stuffer your teen driver receives this year. Here’s why.
California Car Insurance Is Critical for Your Young Driver
We’re not even counting the fact that auto insurance coverage is mandatory in California, as it is in almost every state in the nation. While that’s real motivation, and your kid’s new wheels don’t leave the driveway without coverage in effect, the need goes far beyond the legal requirement.
You see, young drivers have a certain, er, reputation behind the wheel. Insurance company underwriters long ago realized that drivers in their teens and early- to mid-twenties tend to drive faster and more recklessly, attracting more tickets for moving violations. They also get into more vehicular accidents for which they’re at fault. Statistically, this is particularly true of males.
In addition to their impulsiveness, young drivers are learning safe driving on the job, so to speak. That means that while they might have easily passed their driver’s tests, there’s a whole lot more that drivers pick up over time, simply by making hopefully minor mistakes and correcting bad habits.
Until they get those lessons learned, it can be expensive. In 2020, the National Safety Council estimated that the average cost per vehicle of a typical accident, for property damage only, was $4,700. That’s assuming no one is injured or killed. It’s basically the cost of broken glass and crushed metal.
What if your kid’s at fault? You can actually think of your young driver’s full coverage car insurance policy as a gift to yourself. After all, you’re the one who’ll ultimately foot the bill if your teen causes an accident.
Car Insurance Is Expensive for Young Drivers in California
We’ve established that young drivers are less experienced behind the wheel, typically more reckless, and likelier than more mature drivers to cause pricey car accidents.
That’s why insurance companies charge young drivers more — often much more — for coverage than those in other age groups. Even teens who don’t have the slightest fender bender or speeding ticket on their driving records pay more for their auto insurance.
Young drivers who can’t afford the higher cost sometimes buy the state-required liability insurance, a barebones form of coverage that only financially protects others. You’ll still be left paying for damage to your own child’s vehicle due to a collision or other causes of loss or damage.
The only other alternative if the teen alone must foot the bill is to forgo a personal vehicle until he or she can get full-time work and afford coverage. Now do you see why your policy purchase is such a valuable holiday gift?
You’ll Want Your New Driver to Have Roadside Assistance
Imagine your child out late at night, alone and stranded on some California road with a dead car. Maybe the car ran out of gas, there was a hit-and-run, the battery died, the door somehow locked on its own…and so on.
The point is, young drivers can find all kinds of ways to get in trouble behind the wheel. That’s why roadside assistance is such a critical add-on to your child’s full coverage car insurance policy.
Roadside assistance is 24/7 help as near as a phone line that’s always open. All your teen has to do is place that call, explain what’s going on and where, and get timely help with a changed tire, a locksmith maneuver, battery charge, tow to a nearby service garage, or whatever else is needed.
With roadside assistance on your child’s policy, even if you can’t prevent mishaps, you can at least be sure your teen has some solutions at the ready.
You Can Make Car Insurance Gift-Giving Easy and Affordable
An insurance agent who works for a single carrier can sell you the most affordable coverage available…from that carrier. However, if three or four policies from other companies are actually better deals, you won’t hear it from that agent. You can’t expect an agent from a specific insurer to promote competitive insurance plans, after all.
Independent agents, on the other hand, sell insurance products from multiple carriers. They can go shopping for coverage from several plans to find the one that best fits your needs and budget.
Your local independent insurance agent also knows valuable strategies for further reducing the insurance rates you pay in the Golden State. For instance, you might pay less if you add your child’s car insurance to the policies you already own on other family vehicles. Another idea is to see if you can “bundle” your coverage with other lines of insurance from the same provider, such as homeowners or life insurance.
Is your child a good student? There are even discounts available from some insurers for young drivers who get good grades in high school or college.
The point is, your independent insurance agent knows all the ins and outs to finding the coverage your new driver needs at the rates your family can afford. So don’t hesitate to give your teen driver the most boring but valuable gift of all this year, along with that first car.
Find Affordable New Driver Auto Insurance Today
Let our independent insurance agents help you make the most of your holiday gift-giving. Call us at (800) 390-4071 or get a quick quote online. We also invite you to meet us face-to-face at a California Cost-U-Less location near you.