Same-Day Car Insurance

What do you need to get instant car insurance? Author Icon Written by Trusted Choice Author Icon
Written by Trusted Choice

More than seven million people visit our site every year looking for unbiased information about insurance and other related topics. And with great readership comes great responsibility, which means we’re dedicated to providing honest and accurate information.

Reviewer: Jeffrey Green Reviewed by Jeffrey Green
Reviewer: Jeffrey Green
Reviewed by Jeffrey Green

Jeff Green has held a variety of sales and management roles at life insurance companies, Wall street firms, and distribution organizations over his 40-year career.  He was previously Finra 7,24,66 registered and held life insurance licenses in multiple states. He is a graduate of Stony Brook University.

Family and salesperson using digital tablet in a car showroom. Same day car insurance.

At the end of the day, almost all auto insurance companies offer same-day or “instant” car insurance. With most insurers, you can get a quote online (or on the phone with an independent agent) while you’re shopping for a new car. You can almost instantly find the coverage that best suits your needs and buy a new policy – all while you’re still at the dealership. 

While this process can be pretty speedy, you’ll want to compare policies so you get a same-day insurance policy that’s right for you. When making your decision, dig into the types of coverage offered, discounts available, limits for deductibles and liability, and any other customizable features you might need.

Which Insurance Companies Offer Same-Day Insurance?

You can get same-day or instant car insurance with almost any auto insurer. Most provide tools that make it possible to easily get a quote online. With most, you can even use your smartphone or tablet. 

However, unless you truly need immediate insurance, it’s best to talk to an independent agent who can assess your needs and help you choose the right coverage. Even over the phone, an independent agent can get you same-day auto insurance coverage.

Insurance Company Can You Get Same-Day or Instant Auto Insurance?
Allstate Yes
American Family Yes
Amica Yes
Erie Insurance No
Farmers Yes
Liberty Mutual Yes
MetLife No
Nationwide Yes
Progressive Yes
Travelers Yes

* USAA only offers car insurance for members of the military and their families. 

What Information Do I Need to Get Same-Day Insurance?

Getting a quote for same-day or instant auto insurance is easy. However, there are some materials you’ll need to gather to speed up the process and get you on the road faster. Here’s a list of the information you’ll need to have ready to buy instant insurance:

  • Your Social Security number (SSN)
  • Your driver’s license number
  • The distance you drive to and from your job
  • Information about moving violations, accidents, or recent claims
  • The make, model, and year of your vehicle (or vehicles)

Your insurer may require additional information. For instance, if there will be multiple drivers on the policy, you might need their SSN, driver’s license, or information about their driving record. But if you’re in a hurry, you can always start with your own information and add additional drivers at another time.

What Can Prevent Drivers from Getting Same-Day Insurance?

There are some scenarios and exceptions that might prevent you from getting instant car insurance. The simplest reason is if you don’t have all the information your insurer needs to provide you with an accurate quote. 

However, there might be circumstances where the insurance company needs additional information to determine whether they can provide you with coverage. Here are a few more situations that can stop you from getting same-day or instant auto insurance:

  • Not having a permanent address. Since insurance companies use your residential address as a determinant in your quote, they may not sell you a policy if you can’t verify your address.
  • You have too many accidents or claims on your driving record. The number of moving violations, accidents, or claims on your record is an indicator of liability and means you could be too risky for an insurer.
  • You drive a rare or classic car. If a particular insurer cannot find your unique vehicle in their database, they might have to do a bit more legwork to sell you a policy. Also, not all auto insurers provide coverage for classic cars, but there are several that do, including Hagerty, State Farm, Safeco, Heacock Classic, and American Collectors.
  • You have bad credit. Your credit score is one of several factors that help insurers calculate a quote for auto insurance. If your score is below average and the insurance company needs more information, you might not be able to get instant car insurance.

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Things to Consider before Purchasing Same-Day Insurance

In this day and age, convenience and instant gratification make the world go ‘round. Getting same-day or “instant” car insurance certainly fits that mold, and it’s a perfectly safe option. However, there are some instances where it might be better to take the slow-and-steady route. Reasons you might want to hold off on getting same-day insurance include:

  • Shopping for the best rates and coverage options. If you don’t absolutely need coverage right away, planning ahead is always a good idea. This gives you a chance to be mindful of your decision and shop around for the best rates and coverage for your needs.
  • Bundled discounts. Many insurance companies offer car insurance discounts if you purchase your policy in advance. For example, with a little time and planning, you could bundle your home and auto insurance together, which is a great way to save.
  • Reduce risk. When you buy coverage in advance, you can ensure that your coverage is continuous and that you have no gaps, helping you to avoid penalties or increased rates.

If you’re poring over Google search results and find a “Wow! That’s a great price!” car insurance ad, it can be tempting. We understand that you’re in a hurry, that time is of the essence, and you want cheap car insurance (and you want it now). Most major insurers offer instant auto insurance, whether you buy online or with an agent. 

To ward off buyer’s remorse, take the 30 minutes you would spend banging your head against the wall and, instead, connect with an independent insurance agent. They’ll be able to ascertain your specific situation and get you the coverage you need at the price that’s right.

Frequently Asked Questions about Same-Day Insurance

Yes, you can! Many car insurance companies offer quotes and sell policies online. If you have the time, buying a policy online will give you time to do your research to ensure you’re getting the coverage you want and need before you make your purchase.

No, auto insurers will not charge you more for purchasing instant car insurance. That said, many insurers will give you a discount if you buy your policy seven days or more in advance.

Absolutely. Most major auto insurers (such as Progressive, State Farm, and others) offer instant auto insurance and can have your coverage go into effect immediately.

Although there are some exceptions, you’ll need the same information as you would to get vehicle coverage at any other time. These requirements include your home address, driver’s license number, the make and model of your car (including the VIN), as well as information about your driving record and, potentially, your Social Security number.

Yes, indeed! While there are sometimes exceptions, your car insurance policy will usually cover you immediately after you purchase it.

No. In fact, there is no situation in which vehicle insurance is retroactive. If you are uninsured and get into an accident, then attempt to buy a policy that day and attempt to make a claim, you will be caught. In a case like this, not only would you be immediately dropped by your insurer, but you will also have committed a crime: insurance fraud.

There are a number of ways to get auto insurance, whether it’s same-day, instant, or otherwise. However, working with an independent insurance agent is often the easiest route. Your agent will get to know everything about you and your vehicle and shop around for multiple policies that best meet your needs. Many insurance companies offer same-day insurance coverage, so even if you’re in a rush to get a policy, you have options.

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