Car Insurance for women
why is it cheaper
compared to men?
It’s a widely known fact that women pay less in annual premiums on their car insurance compared to men. In fact, across all ages and other demographic slices, women pay annual premiums of $1,427 per annum, where the average cost for men is $1,434.
This represents a percentage difference of just 0.5%, although it can be larger for some age groups. Conversely, for some age groups, men actually pay less for car insurance.
Understanding how and why women pay less for car insurance may help you discover how insurance works and how you can save money on insurance, regardless of your gender.
The pricing gap
The gap between men and women’s insurance premiums varies by age. Before the age of 25, the average gap between men and women’s premiums (all other things being equal) is up to 13%. After the age of 25, the average difference is approximately 0.5%.
This equals a $7 difference on a premium of around $1,500. In fact, between the ages of 30-35, men’s premiums are actually cheaper than those of women. However, this value is marginal and reverses past the age of 35.
Insurance companies base premiums on a wide range of data. The gap between male and female insurance rates is fundamentally a product of statistics, and across the board, the statistics show discrepancies between male and female drivers.
Type of accidents
A study by the Journal of Safety research found that there was a great deal of discrepancy not just in the frequency of accidents by gender, but also by the type of accidents that each gender has.The results showed a variety of interesting conclusions when it comes to gender differences with regards to insurance claims:
Women are 28% more
likely to drive on a
Women are 66% more likely
to wear a seatbelt.
Teenage men are twice as
likely to be in a fatal accident
than teenage women.
Men are more likely to commit a hit-and-run.
In crashes of equal severity, women are more likely to be injured and have more extensive injuries than are men (due mostly to differences in body size and strength).
The most common crashes involving men are rear-end crashes, whereas the most common crashes involving women are right-angle crashes (T-boning).
Men are more likely to speed than women. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in fatal accidents involving men, speeding was a factor in 24% of cases.
By contrast, for fatal crashes involving women, speeding was a factor in 15% of cases. This shows that, men are more likely to speed than are women, making them a riskier prospect to insure.
According to research from the FBI, 536,202 men were arrested for DUIs in 2013. By contrast, 174,149 women were arrested on the same charge.
That means that men are more than three times as likely to be arrested for a DUI. Since a DUI has a major impact on car insurance premiums, the gender discrepancy will have a major impact on the average cost of premiums across the genders.
Age as a factor
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), a driver aged 16-20 is four times more likely to crash than a driver aged 21+. As a result, the insurance premiums are far higher; teen drivers pay by far the highest premiums of any demographic, regardless of gender. However, even within these high premiums, there is a gender insurance gap. In fact, gender differences are highest for young drivers.
As the table below shows, the gender pay gap for young drivers is dramatic, although it does diminish as a driver gets older.
Average male Premium
per annum ($)
Average female Premium
per annum ($)
Gender does, therefore, play a role when it comes to shaping insurance premium prices. However, it is not the only factor. In fact, as you get older, it diminishes as a factor in determining insurance premium prices. Past the age of about 25, car insurance is shaped by factors far greater than gender. The biggest four factors in influencing car insurance premiums are:
- Cost of Car
- Driving History
Car insurance is a measure of risk, or how likely car insurance companies think it is that you will have a claim filed against your policy. After the age of 25, the statistics show little gender discrepancy between men and women when it comes to accidents and moving violations. As a result, insurance companies accord it little value when it comes to shaping insurance premiums.
Marriage may seem like a tangential factor when it comes to driving, but studies have shown that it correlates with a reduced risk of crashing. Secondary factors such as health also improves when you get married.
As a result, car insurance companies have lower premiums for those who are married, because they are less likely to crash. This diminishes with age, although at a younger age, the differences in premium price between married and unmarried drivers is significant.
Where you live has a major bearing on the cost of your insurance premiums. Your insurance company calculates your premium based on the frequency of accidents and crime levels in your zip code. Moreover, the specific location of your home is a factor, in terms of whether your car is parked on-street, off-street, or in a garage.
Cost of Car
The cost of your car is also a crucial detail. Expensive cars are more expensive to fix, whereas a cheap car, combined with a high deductible, is a cheap way for you to save money on your premium.
A crucial question that many drivers have is how and why it is legal for insurers to have gender insurance gap differences, particularly at a time when gender equality seems to be progressing in other forms of life. In 2012, the European Union rules that car insurance companies were not allowed to discriminate on the basis of gender.
The European Court of Justice ruled that different premiums for men and women, ‘were incompatible with the principle of unisex pricing included in EU gender equality legislation.’ Car insurance companies across the European Union are, therefore, now prohibited from using gender as a factor in costing a car insurance premium, as they would be from taking into account racial, ethnic, or sexuality.
In the United States, there has been some similar legislation, although nothing as far-reaching as the European Union. Some states don’t use gender as a factor when it comes to car insurance. In Hawaii, Massachusetts, and Montana, it is not permitted for insurance companies to discriminate based on gender. In the vast majority of states, however, it can still be used as a metric when costing a car insurance premium.
There’s not much you can do about changing your demographic slice when it comes to car insurance. Instead, you should focus on the things you can change. Improving your driving record, taking an advanced driving course, buying a cheaper car, and adjusting your deductibles are all far more tangible ways to reduce your car insurance premiums than focusing on gender differences.
Ultimately, as you get older, the gap between male and female insurance premiums diminishes to a near negligible amount, meaning that you will not be missing out on significant savings by the time you get past your 20s.
Licensed Insurance AgentCynthia Lanctot