Cheapest Car Insurance In Pasadena, CA

After a thorough investigation, I would recommend Mercury as the top cheap car insurance option in Pasadena.

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Updated: 12 July 2024
Written by Bob Phillips
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Nestled in the embrace of the San Gabriel Mountains, Pasadena beckons with its architectural marvels like the Gamble House and the vibrant energy of the Rose Parade. However, threading through its picturesque streets comes with a caveat – the price of car insurance. The average annual premium of $1,932 outpaces both California’s standard of $1,750 and the national average.

In this City of Roses, the quest for wallet-friendly car insurance is akin to a treasure hunt. Fret not, for we’ve combed through the options and unearthed that Wawanesa shines as the beacon of affordability among providers in this neck of the woods.

We’re not just stopping there. Let us shed light on other crucial dimensions of budget-conscious car insurance: When it’s full coverage you’re after, Mercury steps up to the plate with the best rates. For the minimalist coverage seekers, GEICO takes the crown.

If a less-than-perfect driving record shadows you, CIG swoops in with the most economical solution. Young driver? State Farm’s got your back with the friendliest rates. And for those seasoned in years, 21st Century extends a hand with the most pocket-soothing option.

Cheapest And Best Car Insurance Companies In Pasadena, California 2024

Best Car Insurance, Pasadena 2024

Compare The Cheapest Car Insurance Companies In Pasadena, California

Overall Rating Average Annual Cost J.D. Power Rating (California) Best For AM Best Rating Get A Quote



Cheapest Overall


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Cheapest Full Coverage


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Cheapest Minimum Coverage


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Not Rated

Cheapest For Driving Violations


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State Farm



Young Drivers


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21st Century


Not Rated



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Our Methodology

For uncovering the most economical car insurance rates in Pasadena, we delved into insights from a multitude of car insurance review platforms. Several of these sources meticulously scrutinized rates, drawing from publicly available data gathered by Quadrant Information Services. Our assessment hinges on an amalgamation of these rate averages, serving as the foundation of this evaluation. However, it's essential to acknowledge that the pricing landscape of each company is in constant flux, influenced by dynamic factors unique to your circumstances.

Augmenting the comprehensive evaluation is my personal viewpoint, which stems from fifteen years of active involvement as a licensed insurance agent. Coupled with a California residency spanning sixteen years and a car insurance purchase history exceeding three decades, this amalgamation of experience contributes to the holistic rating presented here.


Quotes Analyzed


Years Of Industry Experience


Brands Reviewed


Research Hours

Cheapest Car Insurance Companies In Pasadena, California

Cheapest Overall

Overall Rating

Key Statistics

10/10 Affordability
10/10 Customer Reviews
8/10 Claims
9/10 Coverage Level

Why We Like Them

Upon scrutinizing the most budget-friendly car insurance options in Pasadena, California, one name stands out: Wawanesa. Across all evaluation criteria, Wawanesa’s performance remains competitive, yet it’s their all-encompassing average rate that claims the title of being the most cost-effective overall.

Exclusive to the Golden State, Wawanesa’s standard coverage not only encompasses the obligatory bodily injury and property damage liability mandated by the state but also goes the extra mile. This includes a unique perk – coverage for specialized vehicle equipment. This means that any post-purchase customizations and add-ons made to your vehicle will be protected by original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts, distinguishing it from standard or aftermarket alternatives.

To determine the top choice overall, our evaluation encompassed more than just rates – we took into account the insurer’s overall quality as well. We firmly believe that while being the most economical is noteworthy, it doesn’t automatically translate to being the ultimate choice within a specific category. Within this realm, Wawanesa emerged as a strong contender, boasting rates that were highly competitive, a comprehensive coverage scope, and a plethora of available options.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • J.D. Powers consistently reports elevated customer satisfaction ratings
  • An expansive array of supplementary features
  • Marketed through an extensive network of independent agents in California
  • Wawanesa operates exclusively within California, which proves inconvenient for those relocating out of the state
  • Assistance with claims and policy support is confined to standard business hours
  • The mobile app exclusively caters to Android users

Cheapest Overall Rates In Pasadena

Company Rate Per Year
Wawanesa $1,140
GEICO $1,272
USAA $1,478
Progressive $2,094
State Farm $2,228

Cheapest For Full Coverage

Overall Rating

Key Statistics

10/10 Affordability
7/10 Customer Reviews
8/10 Claims
8/10 Coverage Level

Why We Like Them

Clinching the top spot in the category of most economical full coverage in Pasadena is Mercury. This insurer boasts a surplus of conventional discounts commonly extended by car insurance providers, and additionally introduces a couple of distinctive offerings: Mercury RealDrive and MercuryGO.

Mercury RealDrive operates by tracking your mileage – a boon for those with limited mileage, as it can yield rates up to 5% lower. This feature proves especially advantageous for individuals working remotely or with short commutes.

Enter MercuryGO, an innovation designed to reward safe driving practices. With potential savings of up to 40% (and 10% for teenage drivers), this program commends those who exhibit smooth driving habits, steer clear of speeding, and refrain from phone use while driving.

Opting for minimal coverage undoubtedly secures the most economical rates. On the flip side, embracing full coverage extends a robust shield of financial security, effectively safeguarding your assets and liability vulnerabilities.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • Presents competitive rates across all age demographics
  • Includes the provision of mechanical breakdown insurance
  • Records a notable quantity of unfavorable online customer service reviews
  • Distributed through a more limited agent network in comparison to several competitors

Cheapest Full Coverage In Pasadena

Company Rate Per Year
Mercury $1,396
Nationwide $2,020
State Farm $1,980
Travelers $2,330
Farmers $2,510

Cheapest For Driving Violations

Overall Rating

Key Statistics

9/10 Affordability
8/10 Customer Reviews
8/10 Claims
9/10 Coverage Level

Why We Like Them

When it comes to California, driving infractions can swiftly elevate your insurance costs. However, in our exploration, we pinpointed Capital Insurance Group (CIG) as the frontrunner in providing the most affordable rates for drivers with violations in the Golden State.

CIG stands as a prominent property and casualty insurer across the West Coast, solely offering auto insurance in five states, including California. Its distribution network involves a fleet of independent agents representing a variety of car insurance companies.

Interestingly, CIG boasts a robust mobile app. However, it’s worth noting that this app is exclusively available on iTunes and Google Play, omitting the Android platform. This limitation, unfortunately, excludes this service aspect for a substantial number of drivers in Pasadena.

Navigating the roads of the Bay Area with driving infractions can significantly amplify your insurance expenses. Therefore, it’s crucial to uncover insurers that strike a balance, ensuring that car insurance remains attainable in Pasadena even for drivers with violations.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • Offers round-the-clock availability for customer service
  • Boasts a rich history spanning over 120 years
  • Maintains an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau
  • Restricted availability in merely five states, which might be limiting for California residents relocating out of the state
  • Online quotes are regrettably not a feature of their service offerings

Cheapest For Driving Violations

Company Annual Increase
CIG $1,942
Nationwide $3,500
GEICO $2,050
State Farm $2,925
Allstate $2,320

Cheapest For Minimum Coverage

Overall Rating

Key Statistics

10/10 Affordability
9/10 Customer Reviews
10/10 Claims/Payouts
9/10 Coverage Level

Why We Like Them

In the dynamic realm of Pasadena, GEICO shines as the frontrunner, boasting the most budget-friendly rates for state minimum coverage on average. Per California regulations, drivers are mandated to carry at least $15,000 in bodily injury liability coverage per person and $30,000 per accident, along with a minimum of $5,000 for property damage liability per accident.

While these rates hold allure for those content with minimal coverage, it’s prudent to consider expanding your coverage if you’re a frequent driver, have a track record of driving violations, or seek heightened protection.

Notably, GEICO garners consistent acclaim for its exceptional customer service, adept claims handling, customer endorsements, policy renewals, and client loyalty. As the second-largest auto insurance company in the U.S., GEICO is renowned for its pocket-friendly offerings both online and over the phone.

Abundant discounts add to GEICO’s appeal, particularly for Pasadena drivers operating older vehicles, who aspire to economize by maintaining California’s mandatory minimum auto insurance coverage. Effortlessly manage your policy through GEICO’s user-friendly website and mobile app.

Opting for minimum coverage might suffice if you own an older model vehicle with high mileage and have no immediate need for comprehensive and collision coverage. However, it’s crucial to acknowledge that such a choice entails a higher potential for financial loss in the event of an accident.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • Receives an above-average customer satisfaction score according to J.D. Power
  • Boasts a comprehensive website and mobile app
  • Offers an array of available discounts
  • Absence of gap or rideshare insurance options
  • Presents a constrained roster of local agents

Cheapest For Minimum Coverage

Company Rate Per Year
GEICO $550
Nationwide $880
State Farm $800
Allstate $880
Farmers $691

Cheapest For Seniors

Overall Rating

Key Statistics

9/10 Affordability
6/10 Customer Reviews
8/10 Claims
8/10 Coverage Level

Why We Like Them

Among various age groups, senior drivers are often entitled to some of the most economical car insurance rates in Pasadena. Notably, our investigation pointed towards 21st Century as the front-runner in offering the most affordable rates to seniors.

Under the umbrella of Farmers Insurance, 21st Century garners an impressive A (Excellent) rating for financial robustness from AM Best. It’s worth noting that while J.D. Power does not assign the company a rank for customer service among insurers in California, there’s a notable presence of negative online reviews.

Incorporating roadside assistance as a standard feature, 21st Century does present limitations in terms of coverage options. An additional consideration is that the company exclusively provides car insurance within California, which could pose a drawback for individuals departing the state, necessitating a switch in carriers upon relocation.

Finding cheap coverage is important for seniors, particularly those on a fixed income since rates begin to rise as you age.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • Supported by Farmers Insurance
  • Features a functional mobile app
  • Demonstrates a robust financial rating
  • Registers a notable volume of online complaints
  • Solely accessible within the state of California

Cheapest Coverage For Seniors

Company Rate Per Year
21st Century $1,190
Nationwide $1,221
CIG $1,370
Travelers $1,492
Farmers $1,634

Cheapest For Young Drivers

Overall Rating

Key Statistics

9/10 Affordability
9/10 Customer Reviews
10/10 Claims
10/10 Coverage Level

Why We Like Them

In the intricate landscape of auto insurance rates, young drivers often face the highest premiums due to their elevated accident risk and limited experience behind the wheel. An insightful revelation from our investigation is that State Farm takes the lead in presenting the most affordable rates for young drivers navigating the streets of Pasadena.

State Farm not only stands as the budget-conscious choice for young drivers but also extends a robust coverage spectrum, coupled with a plethora of available discounts. Among these discounts, the “Good Student” discount stands out, granting drivers who maintain a “B” average or better the opportunity to enjoy a discount of up to 25% off the standard rate.

Adding to its appeal, State Farm boasts an extensive network of neighborhood offices, catering to both sales and service aspects. Furthermore, a multitude of claims centers are strategically positioned across the Bay Area. Notably, State Farm consistently garners high marks in the realm of customer service, as evidenced by its annual rankings by J.D. Power. Additionally, the company secures an A++ rating for financial robustness from AM Best, signifying the highest level of financial strength.

In the realm of car insurance rates in Pasadena, there’s a particular group that shoulders the highest costs: young drivers. Their elevated rates are attributed to their relative inexperience and a greater likelihood of being involved in accidents.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • Presents an array of discounts, encompassing the good student discount
  • Secures noteworthy customer satisfaction and financial strength ratings
  • Incorporates comprehensive rental car coverage as a standard feature
  • Solely available through State Farm agents, without broker accessibility
  • Gap insurance remains an offering that is absent from their lineup

Cheapest Coverage For Young Drivers

Company Rate Per Year
State Farm $1,835
Farmers $1,948
Nationwide $1,844
Travelers $1,852
Chubb $2,879

How To Buy Car Insurance In Pasadena

If you’re looking at car insurance in Pasadena, here are five key steps to guide you:

  1. Gather crucial details: Compile names, birthdates, driver’s license numbers, vehicle VIN, current mileage, existing insurance info, and registered owner’s name.
  2. Choose your approach: Decide between online purchase or an agent’s assistance. The choice is yours and hinges on personal preference and your comfort level in understanding required coverage.
  3. Solicit quotes from three providers: Obtain quotes from a minimum of three companies. Ensure comparability by focusing on similar coverage amounts and deductibles.
  4. Hunt for discounts: Seek out available discounts that can contribute to more cost-effective car insurance in Pasadena.
  5. Transition from your old policy: Once you’ve selected a carrier and your new coverage is in effect, make sure to reach out to your prior insurer to cancel your old policy. This ensures you’re not paying for redundant coverage.

Average Cost Of Car Insurance In Pasadena

Average Cost In Pasadena– By Age

Age Group Average Yearly Rate
Teenagers $2,040
20s $2,160
30s $1,704
40s $1,560
50s $1,680
60s $1,500
70s $1,752

Average Cost In Pasadena – By Gender

Gender Average Annual Rate
Male $2,218
Female $2,225

Average Cost In Pasadena – By Marital Status

Marital Status Average Annual Rate
Single $2,130
Married $2,130

Largest Rate Increases In Pasadena – By Violation

Violation Average % Increase
DUI 158%
Refusing Chemical Test 158%
Leaving Accident Scene 152%
Racing 151%
Reckless Driving 148%

Average Cost In Pasadena – By Zip Code

ZIP Code Average Rate
91103 $2,028
91107 $1,932
91101 $1,342
91106 $1,800
91114 $1,345
91125 $8,380

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements In California

As you navigate the realm of car insurance options, it’s prudent to bear in mind the minimum coverage criteria mandated by California:

  • Bodily injury liability: $15,000 per person / $30,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability: $5,000 per accident

These figures reflect California’s baseline coverage prerequisites. Depending on your vehicle type and your road time, you might opt for broader coverage limits and consider the inclusion of collision and comprehensive insurance.

Factors That Impact The Cost Of Your Car Insurance Policy In Pasadena

Within the vibrant economic mosaic of Pasadena, the realm of car insurance rates exhibits a distinct complexion. The city’s undulating hills and tempestuous weather patterns contribute to a landscape where accidents are common, nudging rates skyward. Of course, the make of your vehicle and your driving history also contribute to this intricate equation.

Here are three additional factors that accentuate the intricacy of auto insurance affordability in Pasadena:

  1. Metropolitan Density: Pasadena’s sprawling urban expanse embodies bustling city life. This urban density ushers in congestion on the roads, elevating the probability of accidents. Varied population concentrations within ZIP codes further influence the rates, with more densely inhabited zones often translating to higher premiums.
  2. Crime Implications: Certain enclaves within the city grapple with escalated crime rates, spanning theft and vandalism. Taking up residence or employment in these areas yields an upward nudge in rates, transcending the city’s average.
  3. Pulse of Accidents: The rhythmic beat of accidents resonates on Pasadena’s streets and thoroughfares, particularly during peak hours. This heightened frequency of collisions reverberates through insurance rate structures, significantly impacting those traversing long commutes over iconic spans such as the Bay or Golden Gate bridges.

California Car Insurance Laws To Know

  • Under the purview of the California Department of Insurance, demonstrating financial responsibility for any owned vehicle is a requisite. This safeguards against injury to others or damage to their property. The most common method of establishing financial responsibility is by acquiring auto liability insurance. In compliance with California law, “All drivers and vehicle owners must always be capable of demonstrating financial responsibility and must carry evidence of the applicable form of financial responsibility in their vehicles.”
    Failure to possess auto liability insurance could result in fines, license suspension, and even vehicle impoundment.
  • California law explicitly bars insurance companies from utilizing an individual’s credit history or credit score as determinants for insurability and rate calculation. This regulation aims to maintain equitable insurance costs across various economic strata.

In The News

As reported by CBS News, prominent auto insurers are reassessing their presence in the California market. This strategic shift is attributed to insurers contending that the state’s drivers pose higher costs for coverage.

Despite a comparable pre-pandemic driving volume among Californians, driving behavior seems to have encountered a slump. This downturn has contributed to a surge in auto accidents. Consequently, several insurance companies find themselves disbursing more funds in claims than they are collecting.

A marked escalation in auto insurance losses, a 25% increase from 2020 to 2021, contrasts with a relatively modest 4.5% hike in premiums, as per data from the American Property Casualty Insurance Association. The heightened frequency and severity of auto accidents, coupled with the associated coverage expenses, have catalyzed this adjustment in the insurance landscape.

Information About Pasadena

If you’ve come across “Visit California” campaigns and explored their online resources, you’re likely to have encountered their admiration for Pasadena. The narrative unfolds, stating, “Encompassing just a little over 20 square miles and home to a population that gracefully embraces the hundred-thousand mark, Pasadena unquestionably secures its spot as one of California’s hidden gems. Renowned for its elegant architectural heritage, vibrant cultural scene, and an inviting embrace of nature, this city has a unique charm.

From defining its culinary identity with a spectrum ranging from cozy bistros to eclectic eateries; hosting cherished art festivals, live performances, and museum showcases; to offering an array of outdoor activities, Pasadena undoubtedly emerges as a cherished destination on any explorer’s checklist.”

Car Insurance Discounts In Pasadena

In the pursuit of cost-effective car insurance in Pasadena, embarking on a quest for discounts is paramount. Here are the prevailing discounts frequently encountered:

  • Being a “safe driver” with a good driving history
  • Installing vehicle safety features
  • Customer loyalty discount for staying with the insurer for a specified period
  • Being claims-free for a specified period
  • Driving fewer than average miles
  • Having a short commute to work
  • Being a student with at least a “B” average
  • Being in the military
  • Being age 55+ and retired


What is the cheapest car insurance in the State of California?  

Claiming the mantle of affordability, GEICO stands as the provider with the most economical car insurance rates in California, amounting to $481 annually for minimum liability coverage.

How much does car insurance cost in Pasadena on average?  

For comprehensive coverage, the typical annual expense of car insurance in Pasadena settles at $1,932 on average.

Do I need car insurance in Pasadena?  

California’s legal framework mandates auto liability insurance, making it a prerequisite for Pasadena drivers to possess and maintain.

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