Buying auto insurance doesn’t have to be intimidating. There are many options to help you tailor your policy to your needs – and your budget. Armed with some basic information, you can make smarter insurance decisions. These car insurance tips can help you narrow your choices and save time and money.

1. Make sure you’re legally covered

Car insurance requirements vary from state to state, but one thing is the same virtually everywhere in the U.S. – if you drive a car, you’re required to have some form of car insurance or proof of financial responsibility. Several factors, including your driving record and insurance history, may affect your policy rates. Start here to find the minimum requirements for your state.

2. Understand your insurance options

Insurance can seem complicated with so many choices available to protect you and your car. Nationwide offers easy-to-read descriptions of various insurance coverages so you can understand the basics, such as the difference between collision and comprehensive, before you call an agent or get a quote online.

3. Get at least three quotes

Compare price and service options by getting quotes from at least three insurance companies. Make sure you request the same coverage from each to get an apples-to-apples comparison. Rates may vary from one company to another, and the lowest priced insurance may not give you all the coverage you need. Look at price, amount of coverage, benefits and claims services before you make your decision.

4. Take advantage of discounts

You might be surprised by the number of discounts available to lower your for auto insurance rates. For example, if you insure multiple vehicles with Nationwide or stay with us for at least five years, you may receive substantial savings. Be sure to ask about these and other auto insurance discounts when you shop for a policy.

5. Look for extra help when you need it

Nationwide offers extra products and services for purchase to give the drivers in your family even more protection.

  • Accident Forgiveness –With this optional coverage, Nationwide will not raise your auto insurance rates following your first at-fault automobile accident.
  • Roadside Assistance – Nationwide Roadside Assistance coverage is available in two different levels, Basic and Plus, so you can choose the one that works best with your budget. Get covered for fuel delivery, lockout service, jump-starts and more.
  • Loss of use – If you can’t drive your car due to a covered loss, this coverage helps pay for a rental car or other transportation expenses so you can get back on the road.