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History of Esurance
Esurance is an offshoot of Allstate Insurance Company, which is one of the more well-known names in the insurance world. It was one of the very first companies to start selling car insurance to consumers directly online. And that history of online interactions means it still stands out from a technology perspective.
Currently, Esurance offers car insurance policies in 43 states. Yet it has only 17 offices around the country. That’s because customers are meant to have easy online and over-the-phone interactions for buying car insurance, paying their insurance, settling claims, and anything else they need to do. Right now, Esurance insures about 5.2 million vehicles in the U.S.
What They Have to Offer
As we noted above, Esurance is best known for its stand-out mobile and online tools. For instance, you can use the mobile app to put in a claim with a photo of the damage. You can get an estimate almost immediately, and you can often get paid in just one day. You can also get on a video chat with an appraiser, who may be able to approve your payment right then.
If you have a car in the middle of being repaired, you can use RepairView on the app to get updates on your car’s status. Or you can use the app’s What If calculator to see how certain events might raise or lower your rate.
Besides these technical perks, Esurance is known for just having an intuitive interface and an easy-to-operate app. This appeals to those among us, including yours truly, who prefer to handle everything via web rather than over the phone or in person.
Of course, Esurance also offers a variety of insurance products, which are highly customizable. Their CoverageMyWay program lets you personalize your coverage options. Besides the standard liability, comprehensive, and collision service, Esurance offers add-ons like:
- Loan/lease gap coverage
- Emergency roadside assistance coverage
- Rental car coverage
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist liability coverage
- Medical payments coverage
- Personal injury protection coverage
- Custom equipment coverage
- Pay Per Mile insurance (but only for Oregon residents)
Overall, you can probably find the policy you need with Esurance if you’re like most vehicle owners.
Pros and Cons of Esurance
We’ve already discussed a few of the good things about Esurance, chief among them its technology. But here are a few other good points to consider, as well as some potential drawbacks.
- They offer excellent technology, including great mobile tools that make filing claims quick and easy.
- They offer a variety of discounts, including multi-policy discounts, emergency roadside assistance discounts, online shopper discounts, and claim-free discounts.
- The company generally has good ratings from J.D. Power and Company. They perform especially well in the Pricing and Call Center Representative categories in the 2017 Insurance Shopping Study.
- They’re backed by Allstate, which has excellent financial ratings and overall stability.
- Esurance gets only mediocre reviews for the claims and payout process on J.D. Power’s 2017 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study. It scored especially low on the repair process.
- Their prices may be higher than some other budget insurers, such as Progressive and GEICO.
The Dollars and Cents
When we review insurance, we like to include quotes, since price is close to the top of the list of important things people look for when buying car insurance. But keep in mind that your quote can vary considerably. You could pay a lot more or less for insurance, depending on your particular situation, including your state, driving history, and the car you’re insuring.
But, nonetheless, we will walk through the quote process here so you can get an idea of pricing with Esurance. For these purposes, we’ll work with information close to my own. We’ll get pricing for a married female car owner who drives a 2009 Saturn Vue and lives in Indiana.
Here’s what the quote engine came up with:
That seems like a great quote, at first. The quote, however, is only for 50/100/50 liability insurance coverage with no comprehensive or collision coverage. I added those, each with a $500 deductible. Then I decided to add some of the extra features, including roadside service and rental car coverage.
With these additional coverages, the monthly cost jumped up to $77.35, or $455 for six months. That could be quite a bit higher than what you’d find with other companies.
Also, I was surprised during the quoting process that the quote engine didn’t work smoothly at this point. I had to reload it a few times to get it to spit out the new quote once I changed the parameters. That doesn’t bode well for an insurance company whose primary draw is its technology!
Who Is It Best For?
Depending on your current insurance situation, Esurance could be cheaper than what you have now. But you’ll definitely want to get a quote, since it doesn’t consistently rank well for low premiums. But if you’re looking for flexible insurance policies backed by a highly-rated company, Esurance could work for you. This is especially true if you live in Oregon and don’t drive much. In this case, check out the Pay Per Mile insurance, which could save you a bundle.