Nationwide Car Insurance Review [2024] Staff Profile Picture
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With a reputation spanning 90 years, Nationwide Car Insurance stands as a well-established provider with a solid reputation and robust financial backing. This review will delve into the pros and cons, analyzing consumer rankings from prominent recent studies. We’ll also break down Nationwide’s premium competitiveness compared to other notable insurance companies, offering a comprehensive overview to help you decide on your auto insurance needs. 

Our Take on Nationwide Auto Insurance

  • 5 stars: ranking

  • Key Takeaways 

    • AM Best rating: A+

    • J.D. Power rating: 875/1000

  • Pros 

    • Extensive coverage options

    • Vanishing Deductible program

    • Solid financial backing 

  • Cons 

    • Higher premiums 

    • Strict eligibility criteria

    • Limited discount availability 

Nationwide auto insurance offers coverage options catering to various needs, featuring innovative perks like the Vanishing Deductible program and strong financial stability. 

However, higher premiums compared to competitors may deter budget-conscious consumers. Some find eligibility criteria too strict, limiting accessibility. Nationwide’s discount offerings are also seen as less extensive than industry standards, potentially missing opportunities for broader customer appeal. 

Despite these drawbacks, the company’s extensive coverage and unique benefits make it a strong consideration for those prioritizing comprehensive protection and innovative programs. 

Nationwide Auto Insurance at a Glance

Where Nationwide stands out

  • Extensive coverage options: Nationwide offers a broad spectrum of coverage choices, allowing policyholders to tailor their insurance to their specific needs. This includes add-ons like Accident Forgiveness, Roadside Assistance, and Total Loss Deductible Waiver, providing a comprehensive safety net. 

  • Vanishing Deductible program: The unique Vanishing Deductible program rewards safe driving by reducing the deductible by $100 every year drivers go without an accident. Policyholders can earn up to $500 in deductible reductions, incentivizing and recognizing responsible driving habits.

  • Solid financial backing: Nationwide’s financial stability, reinforced by its longstanding presence in the insurance industry, assures policyholders of the company’s ability to fulfill claims and commitments. This stability contributes to a sense of security, which is crucial for consumers.

What could be improved

  • Higher premiums: Some customers have reported that Nationwide tends to quote higher premiums than its competitors for similar coverage, making it less cost-effective for budget-conscious individuals. For example, Nationwide quoted us the highest premium for a four-door sedan compared to its top competitors.

  • Strict eligibility requirements: While specific discounts and programs can be enticing, some policyholders have found the eligibility criteria stringent.

  • Limited discount availability: Nationwide’s discount offerings may be perceived as more restricted than industry standards, potentially missing out on opportunities to attract and retain customers with a broader array of cost-saving options. 

Nationwide compared to the competition

The following table provides a comprehensive comparison between Nationwide and its top competitors, offering insights into the financial aspects of coverage.


Bi-Annual Premium

Monthly Premium


















Liberty Mutual




Available discounts

Nationwide offers a range of discounts on auto insurance to help policyholders save on premiums. These include:

  • Multi-Policy Discount: Policyholders can combine home and auto insurance to unlock substantial savings, with typical savings averaging $646. This encourages consolidation of coverage for convenience and financial benefits. 

  • SmartRide Program: By enrolling in SmartRide, a usage-based program, drivers can lower their premiums. The program assesses driving habits, rewarding safe practices with potential discounts.  

  • SmartMiles Program: For those who drive fewer miles, SmartMiles is a usage-based program tailored to reward low-mileage drivers. This provides a flexible option for individuals who may use their vehicles sparingly, promoting fair pricing based on actual usage. 

  • Accident-Free Discount: Maintaining a clean driving record is financially rewarded with reduced rates. This discount incentivizes safe driving habits, promoting road safety among policyholders.

  • Good Student Discount: Recognizing the correlation between academic performance and responsible behavior, Nationwide offers a discount for students with a B average or higher. 

  • Defensive Driving Discount: Nationwide provides a discount for completing an approved defensive driving course demonstrating a commitment to safe practices. 

  • Anti-Theft Discount: Installing anti-theft devices enhances vehicle security, lowering the theft risk and potential insurance claims. Policyholders are rewarded with discounts for taking proactive measures to protect their vehicles. 

  • Safe Driver Discount: Remaining accident-free for an extended period of five years merits additional savings. This extended timeframe recognizes and rewards long-term safe driving habits.

  • Autopay Discount: Setting up automatic payments streamlines the billing process and is rewarded with a discount. This benefits policyholders and ensures timely payments, contributing to a positive credit history.

What Auto Insurance Coverage Options Are Available?

Nationwide’s auto insurance offers comprehensive coverage options to protect drivers and their vehicles. The key coverages include:

  • Liability Coverage: The minimum legal requirement in most states, this coverage protects against financial loss due to injury and covers damage to others’ property caused by the insured.

  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP): This offering covers medical expenses, lost wages, and other related costs for the insured and passengers, regardless of fault.

  • Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage: This type of insurance safeguards against expenses resulting from accidents with drivers who lack insurance or have insufficient coverage.

  • Medical Payments: Also called med-pay, this insurance covers the medical expenses for the injured and passengers, irrespective of fault, in the event of an accident. 

Nationwide also offers various vehicle-specific coverage options, as detailed below:

  • Collision: This type of coverage pays for damage to the insured vehicle in case of a crash with another car or object. 

  • Comprehensive: This offering covers non-collision incidents like theft, vandalism, or natural disasters. 

  • Towing and Labor Coverage: This coverage reimburses for towing and labor costs incurred during a covered event. 

  • Rental Car Reimbursement: This covers rental car expenses during repairs after a covered accident. 

  • Gap Coverage: Commonly called “gap insurance,” this covers the difference between the actual cash value of a vehicle and the amount owed on a lease or loan in the event of a total loss.

While many competitors offer similar options to towing coverage, rental car reimbursement, and gap insurance as optional coverage, Nationwide makes it a primary focus in their policies. This may be helpful for individuals who are confident in purchasing these coverages, but it can make for a significantly more expensive policy for those who feel less certain. 

Additional coverage options

Nationwide’s auto insurance goes beyond the basics, offering additional coverage to boost policyholder protection.

  • Accident Forgiveness: Policyholders can shield their premium from the impact of their first at-fault accident, avoiding a steep rate hike.

  • Vanishing Deductible: Users can earn a $100 reduction in their deductible for each safe driving year, accumulating up to $500 in savings over time, rewarding consistent, safe driving habits.

  • Roadside Assistance: Nationwide provides peace of mind with 24/7 roadside assistance, ensuring help is just a call away for towing, tire changes, and fuel delivery.

  • Total Loss Deductible Waiver: If facing a total loss, this coverage waives the physical damage deductible, relieving policyholders of additional financial burdens during challenging times. 

Nationwide Auto Insurance Consumer Experience

Nationwide’s auto insurance consumer experience reflects mixed reviews, with notable strengths and areas for improvement. In the 2023 J.D. Power Auto Claims Satisfaction Study, Nationwide ranked below average but outperformed key competitors like Geico and Progressive. However, it’s crucial to note that Nationwide did not secure an above-average overall consumer satisfaction ranking in any U.S. region. 

This can be attributed to the following factors:

  • Customer service: Some users have reported frustration with Nationwide’s customer service, noting a higher likelihood of needing to make phone calls for policy issues. This may pose an inconvenience for those who prefer online interactions.

  • Online tools: Nationwide’s website and mobile app are less user-friendly than those of industry leaders like Geico and Progressive. A smoother online experience is increasingly important to consumers across the country.

  • Claims processing: Independently navigating the claims process might prove challenging due to limited online tools. Customers may find it necessary to contact a local agent or make a phone call, potentially contributing to a less streamlined claims experience.

While Nationwide excels in certain aspects, these factors may contribute to varied consumer satisfaction results. Continuous improvements in customer service accessibility, online tools, and claims processing could enhance Nationwide’s overall consumer experience and competitiveness in the industry. 

Where Can You Get Nationwide Auto Insurance in the United States?

True to its namesake, Nationwide auto insurance is available in all 50 states, including the District of Columbia.

How Much Does Nationwide Auto Insurance Cost?

Out of all the companies we surveyed, Nationwide quoted the highest premiums — costing $1,226 biannually or $204 monthly. Surprisingly, it doesn’t offer a discount for paying the premium in full, distinguishing itself from competitors in pricing structure.

How To Buy Nationwide Car Insurance

  1. Go to Nationwide’s website and locate the “Get a Quote” or “Start a Quote” option on the homepage.

  2. Complete the necessary information in the online quote form. The first pages only ask for basic identifying information, such as your full name, birthdate, and coverage preferences.

  3. Depending on your profile, you can complete the quote process online. However, be prepared for Nationwide to direct you to call if more information is needed or for specific circumstances.

  4. Review the quote provided and customize your coverage options to suit your needs and budget. 

Once satisfied, you can finalize the purchase online or over the phone with a Nationwide representative.

Nationwide Car Insurance FAQ

Does Nationwide offer roadside assistance?

Yes, Nationwide offers roadside assistance. Roadside assistance provides towing, tire changes, fuel delivery, and jump-starts in case of vehicle breakdowns. This coverage ensures policyholders receive prompt help when facing unexpected issues on the road, avoiding out-of-pocket expenses for emergency services. 

Does Nationwide offer gap insurance?

Yes, Nationwide offers gap insurance. This coverage helps bridge the gap between the actual cash value of a vehicle and the amount owed on a lease or loan in the event of a total loss, providing financial protection for policyholders. 

Does Nationwide offer accident forgiveness?

Yes, Nationwide offers accident forgiveness as an optional add-on coverage. This feature helps protect policyholders from premium increases after their first at-fault accident, providing financial relief and maintaining insurance rates despite the incident.

Does Nationwide offer SR-22 insurance?

Yes, Nationwide offers SR-22 insurance. This is a form of financial responsibility certification often required for individuals with high-risk driving records, providing proof of insurance compliance to the state.

Does Nationwide offer usage-based insurance?

Yes, Nationwide offers usage-based insurance through programs like SmartRide and SmartMiles. SmartRide monitors driving habits to lower premiums based on overall safe driving. SmartMiles is designed for low-mileage drivers, offering savings based on the actual miles driven. Both programs use telematics to personalize insurance rates, potentially providing rewards for good driving behaviors.

Does Nationwide offer rideshare insurance?

No, Nationwide does not offer specific rideshare insurance. Drivers engaging in rideshare services may need to upgrade to a commercial policy, which is often more expensive than a standard personal policy. Alternatively, they may consider policies with Nationwide’s competitors, as Allstate and Progressive offer straightforward rideshare coverage.


Expertise’s car insurance rating methodology takes into account the following details about each company:

  • Financial strength: This category examines a company’s ability to pay future claims based on assessments from independent agencies like AM Best and Demotech. Companies with a higher score than these third-party companies ranked higher in this category. 

  • Customer satisfaction: Our team examined, which provides an analysis of customers’ perceptions and expectations of their insurer’s performance throughout the entire claims experience. Companies that ranked higher on J.D. Power’s list scored higher in this category. 

  • Coverage availability: Our team examined state availability for each company and rated companies with more availability higher than competitors. 

  • Consumer experience: For this category, our team reviewed each company’s website, mobile app, quote tool, and customer service availability. 

  • Consumer complaints: Our team reviewed complaints to state regulators as reported by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). To assess how insurers compare to one another, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size or share of total premiums in the industry. The NAIC assigns a median complaint ratio of 1.0. Companies with an NAIC complaint score of less than 1 scored higher in this category. 

  • Premium cost: This category assesses homeowners insurance costs based on the quotes we gathered from each company for a four-door sedan with no accidents in the past five years. Companies that provided lower quotes scored higher in this category.  

To score companies in these categories, we collected data points from the companies' websites, company representatives, state regulator data, and third-party analyses. 

These data points were then compared against each other and given a star rating score, where one star represents a poor rating and a five-star score represents an excellent rating. To calculate the star rating, we looked at each company’s total weighted score, divided by the maximum score, and multiplied by five.  

Our ratings are weighted based on our editorial opinions. We use the following weightings for our homeowner’s insurance company ratings: 

  • Financial strength (20%) 

  • Customer satisfaction (15%) 

  • Coverage availability (10%)

  • Consumer experience (20%)

  • Consumer complaints (15%)

  • Premium cost (20%)

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