How to Choose the Right Comprehensive and Collision Coverage Levels for your Budget and Lifestyle

When was the last time you used “subrogation” in a sentence? How about “telematics”? “Indemnity”? Odds are unless you’re studying your handy insurance jargon glossary on a daily basis, you’re probably not dropping these terms into casual conversation. The world of insurance terms can be confusing, intimidating, and downright frustrating, especially to someone just learning the ropes. Whether your switching insurance companies, changing plans, or just trying to educate yourself on your options, you might quickly find yourself bemoaning the often-confusing, sometimes-convoluted, always-complicated terminology.

How-to-Choose-the-Right-Comprehensive-and-Collision-Coverage-Levels-for-your-Budget-and-Lifestyle

Luckily, Metromile has found a way to make insurance lingo actually make sense—even to the most inexperienced newbie. Finding a plan that fits your budget and lifestyle and keeps you feeling at ease knowing you’re covered is so important—not just for your peace of mind, but for your physical and financial security. Here’s what you need to know so you can choose the plan that’s perfect for you.

What Do “Comprehensive” and “Collision Coverage” Cover Anyways?

Throw the word “comprehensive” on anything and it sounds pretty impressive and all-encompassing, right? What else could you possibly need if you’ve got something “comprehensive” on your side? Well, for starters, collision coverage. If you’re struggling to make sense of how something “comprehensive” could omit an issue as major as collisions (especially when cars are involved), you’re not alone. Before you judge a book by its cover and go with the first seemingly all-inclusive plan you see, get to know the ins and outs of what “comprehensive” and “collision” coverage are really all about:

  • Collision insurance coverage: Collision coverage helps pay for repairs to your own vehicle in case you crash into another car, an object, or you experience a roll-over. This type of insurance will also help cover the cost to replace your car if it is totaled in an accident. In the event of a hit-and-run, your car could be covered with this type of insurance, but it’s not guaranteed in all states. While you might think this type of coverage should be required, it’s not—most states only mandate you to have coverage for injuries or damages you cause to someone else in an accident. There aren’t many states that require drivers to have insurance that covers their own damages.
  • Comprehensive insurance coverage: Comprehensive coverage is also optional in most states, but you’ll want it if you think it’s a good idea to be covered in the event of non-accident-related damages. Comprehensive coverage helps pay to repair or replace your car for damages that occurred in just about anything but an accident. Usually, this type of plan covers damages from events including natural disasters, fires, falling objects, vandalism, theft, and hitting (or being hit) by animals like deer, cows, bears, etc.

While both collision and comprehensive plans cover a lot of ground, neither one truly protects you in all situations across the board. There are certain things neither one cover—take vehicle wear and tear, for example. If you need new brake pads or a headlight bulb replaced, you won’t be able to rely on collision or comprehensive coverage to foot the bill. And while comprehensive coverage will be a huge help if your car is stolen, it won’t help you replace any items that were in that stolen vehicle.

Do You Really Need Comprehensive and/or Collision Coverage?

In most states, no one’s going to (figuratively!) twist your arm to sign up for comprehensive and collision coverage. The majority of states only require liability coverage (which covers damages for the people you hit in the event of an accident that’s your fault). But just because you’re not required to have additional coverage doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t consider it.

When you’re trying to figure out the kind of coverage you really need and want, it’s best to look beyond the bare minimum legal requirements of your state and take stock of several factors in your life:

  • What’s your monthly budget? The more money you pay for your policy and the lower you set your deductible, the less money you’ll have to pay out of pocket in the event of an accident or other event. You don’t want to barely scrape by every month in order to afford your coverage, but you do want to settle on an amount that’s affordable and puts your mind at ease.
  • Do you have an emergency fund? If you don’t opt for collision or comprehensive coverage, could you repair or replace your vehicle in the event of a crash or other incident?
  • Do you own your car? If you lease or finance your car, your bank may require you to have collision or comprehensive coverage (be sure you’ve closely studied your contract!), but if the car is all yours, then you’ll have to decide for yourself whether you have the funds to fix or replace it after a damaging event.
  • How likely are you to file a claim? It’s impossible to predict the future, and the saying “accidents happen” is a saying for a reason. But if you know you’ve gotten into your fair share of fender benders over the years, then that fact is worth taking into consideration.

If you’ve mulled those questions over and come to the realization that collision and/or comprehensive coverage is right for you, then it’s time to figure out how much you need. Here’s where your deductible comes into play—that’s the out-of-pocket expense that you agree to pay for losses up to a set amount, like $250 or $1,000. The lower your deductible, the more you’ll pay for insurance (since your out-of-pocket expense will be lower and your insurer will have to cover the rest). You can also choose to pay a higher deductible and pay less for insurance, but that means if you do want to take advantage of your collision and/or comprehensive coverage, you’ll have to shell out more out-of-pocket before your insurance kicks in to cover the rest.

So while there’s unfortunately no perfect mathematical formula (or magic spell) to reveal your ideal level of coverage, understanding all the factors involved and thoughtfully considering the options that fit your budget and lifestyle will help you land on a plan that leaves you feeling content and comfortable.

Still Have Questions?

Totally understandable—this stuff is tricky. One great way to get more answers to common questions is to visit the Metromile Help Center. There, you’ll be able to comb through content on a variety of topics like billing, pricing, coverage, and more. If you’ve got a question, chances are someone else has it, has had it, or will have it in the future.

If you’d rather talk one-on-one with a qualified specialist, Metromile has plenty of those too. Call 1.888.242.5204 any time from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m .PT, Monday through Friday, and a licensed agent will be able to address any of your concerns, give you a personalized quote, or start your new policy. Already a customer? Awesome. Call 1.888.311.2909 between the hours of 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. PT, Monday through Friday, and a qualified specialist will help you out. Your driving situation is unique—be sure to choose a company that gets that and will work with you to find a customized plan that makes sense and meets your needs.

Michelle Konstantinovsky is a San Francisco-based journalist/writer/editor and UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism alumna. She’s written extensively on health, body image, entertainment, lifestyle, design, and tech for outlets like Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, Seventeen, and a whole lot more. She’s also a contributing editor at Fitbit and the social media director at California Home + Design Magazine. She is an avid admirer of shiny objects, manatees, and preteen entertainment.

What is Prepayment?

Here at Metromile, we hear a lot of questions about our initial prepayment to sign up for Metromile. We also truly value transparency and don’t wish to confuse any of our customers. The way we work is a little different than traditional auto insurance companies, so that’s why we are here to clear up any confusion about how prepayment works.

What-is-Prepayment

One of the key differentiators between Metromile and traditional insurance carriers is our unique billing model. The short explanation is: the less you drive, the less you pay each month. The Metromile billing structure gives you – the customer – the unique opportunity to always be in control of your monthly bill. This means that you can tailor your bill to fit your budget and your lifestyle. Pretty cool, huh?

So, herein lies the confusion: if your bill varies each month based on how much you drive, how is it possible to prepay for many months at a time? Let’s throw it all the way back and chat about how billing works here at Metromile before diving into the explanation.

How Billing Works at Metromile

When you first purchase your Metromile policy, you are charged for your first month’s base rate (plus any additional prepayment). This is because we don’t have any data on how many miles you drove that month. Then, at the end of the first month, you’re charged for the next month’s base rate + any/all miles you drove the previous month, at your per-mile rate.

Autopay is a requirement for all Metromile customers. If there ever comes a time when you need to update your billing info, it’s not a problem. You can always update your billing information from your online dashboard or app at any time. Simply navigate to ‘Billing’ and then select ‘Edit’ in the ‘Payment Method’ section on the right-hand side of the page to edit your payment information.

A special note for all you New Jersey customers: you exceptional folks may opt-out of autopayments and opt-in for manual billing at any time by calling us at 888-244-1702.

So… You Still Haven’t Told Me What ‘Prepayment’ Is

Because we charge for insurance based on mileage, Metromile requires a one-time, upfront payment to start a new policy – and this is called a prepayment. A percentage of your prepayment will be applied as a credit to each of your first five billing statements – which means that your first five bills will be slightly lower. When you receive your sixth bill, the prepayment credit will have been fully spent, so you will no longer see a credit. You can think of your prepayment as a “security deposit” on your insurance policy. In the event of a cancellation in the first six months of having the policy, we will refund any remaining prepayment credit.

Prepayment is only a requirement for your first policy term, the credit is applied to your first five monthly bills. After six months your policy will renew, and no future prepayment will be charged or applied to your policy.

Your monthly bill will be made up of your low monthly base rate + (per-mile rate x miles driven that month) – (prepayment amount ÷ 5) until your sixth bill. From there on out your bill will be calculated by taking your base rate, and adding it to your per-mile rate, multiplied by the number of miles driven that month.

Hopefully, that helped to clear up any questions or confusion that you had about how prepayment works at Metromile.

Now that you fully understand how prepayment works, it is a perfect time to finally get that quote you’ve been thinking about. As always, we are truly here to serve you, so please Tweet, or DM us with your burning questions. We’ll get you answers as soon as we can. Be safe out there and see you on the roads!

Julianne Cronin is a Bay Area freelance writer, content creator, and founder/editor of the women’s lifestyle site, The Wink. You can find her working on her capsule wardrobe, collecting cacti, and trying out the latest beauty products on Instagram

How to Handle a Hit & Run

Look, If you’ve ever been involved in a car accident, you’ve likely experienced any number of emotions ranging from fear to anger and everything in between. But if that accident was a hit and run, you may have also been left feeling confused and hopeless. After all, how do you claim your rightful compensation for damages and injuries if the person at fault has fled the scene? Luckily, there are some specific procedures and policies in place to protect hit and run victims — here’s what you need to know:

How-to-Handle-a-Hit-Run

What Qualifies as a Hit and Run?

An accident qualifies as a hit and run if a driver intentionally flees the scene without providing the other party with their contact information. An example of this would be if another vehicle hits yours on the road and then speeds off or if a driver hits your parked car when it’s unattended and fails to leave behind their info.

How to Handle a Hit and Run

It’s understandable that a hit and run might leave you feeling frustrated and upset. The best thing you can do is try to remain calm and start collecting as much information as possible. The more facts you have about what happened, the more it will help your insurance company make a decision about your claim, and the more likely it is that the police will catch the driver responsible for the damage.

As soon as you’re safe and feel prepared to take action, follow these important steps:

    1. Try to gather as much information about the car that hit you as you can. If you were in your vehicle, do your best to recall details like the color, make and model of the car and the license plate number.
    2. Survey the scene to locate any potential witnesses who may be able to help fill in the details. Be sure to get contact information for these people.
    3. Before you leave the accident scene, take photos of the area, and be sure to immediately snap photos of your car, especially if there are traces of paint left behind from the other car.
    4. Write down the time and location of the accident; if you were away from your parked car when the accident occurred, write down as much information as you can gather.
    5. Call the police as soon as possible and file an accident report — even if the police can’t locate the responsible driver, the report serves as an official document that may help speed up the insurance claims process. Police reports must be submitted within 48-72 hours of an accident, so don’t wait to take this important step.
    6. File an auto insurance claim. If you’re a Metromile customer, follow the Accident Checklist and assess the damage to your vehicle.

Whatever you do, do not chase after a driver who hits you and leaves the scene. This may lead to another accident. Remain as calm as you can and follow the steps above instead. If you’re involved in a hit and run, or any accident, and you’re a Metromile customer, quickly and easily file a claim online or by calling 1.888.595.5485. Our team will help you get back on the road safely as soon as possible.


Michelle Konstantinovsky is a San Francisco-based journalist/writer/editor and UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism alumna. She’s written extensively on health, body image, entertainment, lifestyle, design, and tech for outlets like Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, Seventeen, and a whole lot more. She’s also a contributing editor at Fitbit and the social media director at California Home + Design Magazine. She is an avid admirer of shiny objects, manatees, and preteen entertainment.

How the Metromile Claims Process Works

Filing a car insurance claim doesn’t have to be intimidating. In fact, with Metromile’s step-by-step process, we will walk you through the steps to filing a claim and offer a simple solution to an often overly-complicated procedure. Whether you’ve experienced a hit-and-run, a minor fender bender sitch, or are in need of a quick glass repair, knowing what you should have prepared to file a claim can make for a seamless experience and get you back on the road faster.

Using the Metromile app to request roadside assistance

First, we need to know what type of claim you will be filing – roadside assistance, a glass and windshield claim, a hit-and-run claim, or a general claim. Knowing which type of claim will help us direct your claim to the right department.

So, which types of claims fall into which categories? Pull up a chair and let’s chat.

Roadside Assistance

As we all know, cars can be somewhat unpredictable. If your car decides to break down at the worst possible time, Metromile has got your back! If your car breaks down on the road and you have elected Metromile Roadside Assistance coverage, you can submit an Online Roadside Assistance Request, file through the Metromile app, or call Metromile Roadside Assistance at 800-983-3400 to request service. Our Metromile Roadside Assistance team will make arrangements to assist you and also can provide an estimated time of arrival.

Glass and Windshield Claims

Has an errant, high-velocity pebble taken a hit to your windshield? File a claim through Metromile’s Glass and Windshield claims center. If you need to file a claim for a broken window or windshield, and you have purchased comprehensive coverage, you can file a glass only claim online, file through the Metromile app, or call Metromile Glass Assistance at 888-256-8375 to report a claim.

Hit-and-run Claims

As a vehicle owner, one of the most frustrating situations you might be involved in is a hit-and-run. If you are the victim of a hit-and-run, you should definitely file an accident report with the police. The more information you can provide in the instance of a hit-and-run, the better. Information to provide (if it’s available):

  • Information about the car that hit you:
    • Make
    • Model
    • License Plate
  • Any possible witness information
  • Time and location of the accident
  • Pictures of the accident scene
  • Pictures of your car

We understand that in certain situations, it may not be possible to provide all of the above information. At the bare minimum, be sure to have the following information handy when filing your claim:

  • Time of incident
  • Location of hit-and-run
  • The damage
  • The Accident Report Number (obtained from the police)

Metromile policyholders can always file a hit-and-run claim online or through the Metromile app 24/7 – or you can report a claim by calling (888) 595-5485.

General Claims

For everything else: file a general claim. Metromile policyholders can file a claim online or through the Metromile app 24/7, or you can report a claim with a claims representative by calling (888) 595-5485 M-F 6am-6pm. You will need the following information readily available when filing your claim:

  • Your Metromile insurance policy number
  • Date of the accident
  • Location of the accident
  • Description of the accident
  • Party names
  • Vehicles involved

We also recommend that you:

  • Take pictures of (or write down) driver and occupant names, contact numbers and driver’s license information
  • Obtain insurance carrier information (including policy number) from the other person(s) involved
  • Write down vehicle information for any vehicles involved in the accident including: make, model, license plate number and damages
  • Write down any witness information
  • Take pictures of the accident scene, skid marks, and debris (if it is safe to do so)

So, what now? After you’ve filed your claim through Metromile, here are some next action steps to take.

Repairing Your Vehicle

The first thing you’ll need to get is a damage estimate. Your Metromile Claims Representative will be able to guide you through the repair process. In most situations, we’re able to complete an estimate from photos of the damage to your vehicle.

HOWEVER. If you are not ready to repair your car, that’s okay too. Metromile does not require you to repair your car in order to submit a claim. When filing, just let your claims representative know that you aren’t ready to repair your car.

In the case of a total loss, Metromile defers to the state rules regarding how to determine the value of your vehicle. If your vehicle is deemed a total loss (as outlined by your state rules), your policy remains in effect. You will need insurance for your rental car or temporary transportation while you shop for a replacement – however, we won’t charge you mileage while you’re shopping for a replacement vehicle. Once obtained, contact Metromile to add your replacement vehicle to your policy.

With Metromile, you never have to wonder if your insurance company has your back, because we always will! Get a free quote today and join the Metromile fam – we’re always one call, tap, or click away. Be safe out there and see you on the roads!

Julianne Cronin is a Bay Area freelance writer, content creator, and founder/editor of the women’s lifestyle site, The Wink. You can find her working on her capsule wardrobe, collecting cacti, and trying out the latest beauty products on Instagram

How do Metromilers Drive Less?

You may be surprised to learn a car insurance company cares so much about preserving the Earth. But here at Metromile, we’re all about sustainability and lowering mileage. In fact, we pride ourselves on incentivizing our customers to drive less, since they pay based on the miles they drive.

With Earth Day just around the corner, we wanted to understand our customers’ driving patterns, and how we could – all together – inspire other drivers to lower their carbon footprint. So, we asked, and you answered. We’re proud of our customers for doing their part all year long, to take care of Mother Earth.

How do Metromilers Drive Less?

If you find that you, too, ditch your car to preserve the Earth, per-mile insurance could be a great fit for you. To learn more or to see how much you could save, get a free quote now.

Coverage 101: Explaining Your Coverage Options

So you’ve decided to make the switch to Metromile — congrats! Not only will you save major cash with pay-per-mile insurance, but you’ll have access to four different levels of liability protection, plus choices for your comprehensive and collision deductibles. But if insurance lingo has you confused, don’t sweat it: Understanding your options is easier than you think.

Coverage-101

Here’s a breakdown of the various types of car insurance coverage available so you can choose what’s right for you:

  • Bodily Injury (BI): Most states require BI coverage to cover costs related to injuries or deaths to other people in the event of an accident that’s your fault. This type of coverage pays for things like medical treatment, rehabilitation, and funeral costs, as well as costs related to mental or emotional distress that results from bodily injury. It may also pay for lawyer’s fees if you’re sued for an accident. Depending on the state you live in, you may be required to have a predetermined minimum amount of BI coverage.
  • Property Damage Liability (PD): If you’re in an accident that damages someone else’s property, PD liability will cover the costs. This type of coverage will pay for any type of tangible property, whether it’s another driver’s vehicle, or something like a building, utility pole, fence, garage door, etc. Some states will require you to have a predetermined minimum amount of this coverage too.
  • Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UMBI): If you’re in an accident in which the other driver is at-fault and uninsured, UMBI coverage will pay for any necessary medical, rehabilitation, lost wages, pain-and-suffering, and funeral costs for you and/or your passengers. Remember that UMBI will only pay up to the coverage limit, and your state may or may not require you to have a set minimum amount.
  • Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UIMBI): This one is very similar to UMBI, but it pays up to the limit for expenses in the event that the other driver is at-fault for the accident but can’t cover your costs because of their own plan’s insufficient liability limits.
  • Medical Payments: If you’re in an accident, Medical Payments could pay the medical deductibles and copayments that aren’t covered by your health insurer, or the insurer of any of your passengers. This type of coverage is optional and, depending on your state, may be possible to combine with a health insurance policy.
  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP): In general, PIP covers your medical costs regardless of who’s at fault for the accident. The benefits vary by state, with some states offering coverage for things like lost wages, child care, and/or funeral costs.
  • Comprehensive: This type of optional coverage comes in handy if your car is stolen or damaged in ways that don’t involve a collision (think hail damage, glass breakage, fire, vandalism, damage from an animal, flood, earthquakes, falling objects, and theft). It’s up to you to choose a deductible amount — that’s the out-of-pocket cost you agree to pay before coverage is afforded.
  • Collision: This is another type of optional coverage that covers you if your car collides with another object (like a car, a brick wall, a tree, etc). This coverage protects your car only and not the other party’s damage. Again, the deductible amount you choose is the out-of-pocket expense you have to pay before coverage kicks in.
  • Collision Deductible Waiver: This type of coverage isn’t available in every state, but if you have it, your collision deductible will be waived in case you’re in accident with an at-fault driver who’s uninsured. You’ll need the license plate number or name of the person that caused the damage and you’ll have to report the claim quickly.
  • Underinsured Motorist Property Damage (UMPD): If you’re hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, this type of coverage will pay for the damage to your vehicle. UMPD coverage isn’t available in every state, and some states require you to choose between UMPD and Collision coverage.

Ready to choose the type of coverage that fits your needs? Need some more info? Just visit Metromile today to get a free personalized quote.


Michelle Konstantinovsky is a San Francisco-based journalist/writer/editor and UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism alumna. She’s written extensively on health, body image, entertainment, lifestyle, design, and tech for outlets like Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, Seventeen, and a whole lot more. She’s also a contributing editor at Fitbit and the social media director at California Home + Design Magazine. She is an avid admirer of shiny objects, manatees, and preteen entertainment.

7 Steps You Can Take to Become a Safer Driver

No one likes to admit they could use some improvement behind the wheel. But the fact is, accidents happen and they happen a lot (over 7 million times in the United States alone in 2016). While you can’t control many of the risks on the road, you can set yourself up to be as safe as possible.
7-Steps-You-Can-Take-to-Become-a-Safer-Driver

7 Steps You Can Take to Become a Safer Driver

    1. Forget about your phone. This is one of the most important (and simplest) things you can do to improve the safety of you, your passengers, and others on the road. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, studies have shown that using a cell phone while driving — even when it’s a hands-free phone — is the equivalent of driving drunk. Scary, right? That means if you really want to reduce your risk, it’s best to refrain from talking.

    And texting is definitely a dealbreaker. Sending a text may seem simple, but on average, it causes you to lose your focus on the road for 4.6 seconds. And if that doesn’t sound so bad, consider the fact that you can drive the length of a full football field in that amount of time. Even if you’re fully stopped, just keep your phone out of reach and pay attention to everything going on around you.

    2. Keep your car in good shape. No, repairs aren’t cheap, but investing in the appropriate maintenance will ensure your vehicle is up to snuff and safe. Make sure you get routine check-ups for your tires, brakes, fluid levels, lights, wipers, and anything else indicated in your owner’s manual.

    3. Buckling up is always a must. Your best defense in a crash is your seatbelt — no buts about it. No matter how far you’re driving or whether your passengers are riding in the front or back, every single person in the car should be wearing a seatbelt at all times.

    4. Properly position your hands. Remember when your driver’s ed teacher insisted you keep your hands on the steering wheel at the 10 and 2 o’clock positions? Believe it or not, that 10 and 2 theory has been debunked. Guidelines have recently changed to instruct drivers to keep hands lower on the wheel, either at 9 and 3 or 8 and 4. The modified grip gives you more stability and control and it’s the most ergonomic option.

    5. Only drive when you’re well rested. Getting behind the wheel when you’re seriously exhausted is seriously dangerous. Sleep deprivation can have the same effect on your body as drinking alcohol, and as you can imagine, make it incredibly difficult to pay attention and make fast decisions. And according to a 2010 study, one out of every six fatal crashes involves a drowsy driver. If you’re tired, find an alternative plan — it’s not worth the risk.

    6. Keep a safe distance. It’s never a good idea to get too close to the other cars around you on the road. Maintain a safety cushion around your vehicle so you can see everything going on around you and you have room to act quickly if necessary.

    7. Minimize all distractions. Now you know that looking at or talking on your phone shouldn’t be an option while driving. But ideally, eating, drinking, and searching for that perfect playlist shouldn’t be on your list of behind the wheel activities either. Whenever you’re in the driver’s seat, focus all your attention on the task at the hand.

Of course, accidents can happen despite your best efforts to stay safe. That’s why it’s so important to stick with an insurance company that has your back. Make the smart choice and visit Metromile today for a personalized quote.

The 8 Best Spring Road Trip Destinations

The weather’s warming up, the kids have a break from school, and the open road is calling loud and clear. All those pleasant post-winter happenings can only mean one thing: Spring has officially sprung.
The-8-Best-Spring-Road-Trip-Destinations
Road trips are one great way to soak up some sunshine and scenery, whether you’re bonding with your family or exploring on your own. But if you’re overwhelmed by the prospect of picking a perfect destination, take a deep breath: With so many amazing sights from California to Maine and everywhere in between, you really can’t go wrong on the road.

Here are some of the very best road trip destinations to consider this spring:

1. California’s Pacific Coast Highway


California’s-Pacific-Coast-Highway
Highway 1 is by far the most scenic way to maneuver between Los Angeles and San Francisco, but the 550-mile PCH has much more to offer beyond that commute. Drive from north to south to stay on the ocean-side of the road for the whole journey and you might just catch the sunset somewhere between Big Sur and Santa Monica.

2. Hawaii’s Hana Highway


Hana
If you’re lucky enough to find yourself in this island paradise, up the ante with a super scenic 52-mile drive along the Road to Hana. You’ll see tropical flowers, bamboo fields, rainforests, and waterfalls from start to finish, but be prepared: there are over 600 hairpin turns and over 50 one-lane bridges to navigate for those stellar views.

3. Oregon’s Historic Columbia River Highway


Oregon’s-Historic-Columbia-River-Highway
The 70-mile journey from Portland’s Columbia River to the 11,000-foot volcanic Mount Hood (the state’s highest peak) is a Pacific Northwest must. Wildflowers dot the landscape, and you’ll get to see Multnomah Falls, one of America’s tallest yearlong waterfalls.

4. New England Coast


New-England-Coast
Boston is a great destination in and of itself, but if you follow the southern coast from Gloucester, Massachusetts to New Haven, Connecticut, you’ll find 250 miles of marine wildlife to look at and world-famous seafood to sample.

5. Michigan’s Gold Coast


Michigans-Gold-Coast
A beach getaway may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of this northern state, but Americans have been flocking to Lake Michigan’s shores since the late 1800s. There are plenty of charming B&Bs and wineries to visit along the 300-mile western shoreline, and you can even take a surf break in New Buffalo!

6. Texas Hill Country


Texas-Hill-Country
Bask in gardens of bluebonnets as you drive the 87 miles that starts just north of Austin and continues through San Antonio and beyond. If you take U.S. 290 west to Johnson City’s Wildflower Loop and then move along U.S. 281 N, you’ll have a chance to see the state’s official bluebonnet capital, Burnet.

7. South Carolina’s Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway


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If you plan your trip just right, you might just catch the peach trees in full bloom along SC’s Highway 11, dubbed “Great Blue Hills of God” by the Cherokees. Starting in early June, you’ll be able to pick up loads of local fruit from roadside stands, and the 120-mile route features numerous waterfalls and covered bridges to dazzle the eye.

8. Maine’s Acadia All American Road


Maine’s-Acadia-All-American-Road
Add birdwatching to your agenda if you’re planning to drive the coastal 40-mile road just outside of Acadia National Park: Bald eagles and nesting peregrine are known to frequent the area. The drive starts in Trenton and follows the 27-mile Park Loop Road before heading down to Sand Beach, Otter Cliff, and and Jordan Pond. You’ll get your fill of homemade treats at all the small town haunts along the way (and have the opportunity to work up a sweat hiking Acadia’s 1,532-foot Cadillac Mountain, which overlooks the Atlantic).

Need a car insurance plan that fits your road trip needs? If you’re a Metromile customer, your daily mileage charges are capped at 250 miles per day for each vehicle (150 miles per day in New Jersey). You’ll never be charged for the miles above those amounts in any calendar day.

Make the switch: Visit metromile.com/insurance to learn more and get a quick quote.


Michelle Konstantinovsky is a San Francisco-based journalist/writer/editor and UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism alumna. She’s written extensively on health, body image, entertainment, lifestyle, design, and tech for outlets like Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, Seventeen, and a whole lot more. She’s also a contributing editor at Fitbit and the social media director at California Home + Design Magazine. She is an avid admirer of shiny objects, manatees, and preteen entertainment.

Car Insurance Rates Are Rising — Here’s Why

If you’ve had the sneaking suspicion that your car insurance rates have recently skyrocketed, you’re unfortunately not imagining things. Regardless of your location, chances are you’ve noticed a distinct increase on your bill, and that cost spike can be super frustrating. The silver lining is that a better understanding of the state of the auto insurance industry can empower you to make the most informed, educated choices possible when it comes to your plan. More knowledge and awareness means more opportunities to save money and drive smarter — and who doesn’t love that?

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How Much Is Car Insurance Costing Americans These Days?

According to experts, the average American pays more than $1,400 a year for car insurance coverage. And if that sounds like a whole lot, you’re right: auto insurance rates have increased at more than twice the rate of inflation. Current rates are 20% higher than they were in 2011, and every state in the country has increased its rates by anywhere from 1% to 60%. And the past 6 months have been especially rough as rates have gone up by 6% in that time period alone.

What Determines Your Premium Rate?

While $1,427 may be the national average, a lot of factors can impact your personal cost:

  • Local and state laws
  • Population changes and urbanization
  • Your claims history and driving record
  • The addition of any new drivers to your policy or changes of the primary drivers of vehicles on the policy (particularly teenagers: Parents adding a male teenager to their policy may pay as much as $6,186, and in some cases, 227% more than the cost to insure an adult driver alone)
  • Deleting a vehicle from the policy
  • Change of employment
  • Medical conditions that can increase your risk
  • A history of convictions or driving violations
  • Changes to your insurance plan’s structure or payment plan fees
  • Your credit score

But Why The Recent Surge?

While all the factors mentioned above can certainly have an impact on your premium, they don’t account for the recent surge in premium pricing. Experts believe a few different factors could be at play:

  • Extreme weather. In recent months, various parts of the United States have experienced hurricanes, wildfires, and other major natural disasters. Devastating events like these can result in more claims, which drive up the cost of insurance rates.
  • Distracted drivers. Texting and driving don’t mix under any circumstances. As drivers allow themselves to be distracted by their smartphones, they cause more accidents; many of which could be deadly. According to reports, 40,200 people died in 2016 in traffic accidents, an increase of 14% over 2014. Because more road accidents equate to higher costs for insurance companies, those insurers are forced to raise their rates, passing the increased costs along to customers. That’s why in some states if you’re caught texting or using your phone while driving, you’ll see your insurance premium go up by anywhere from 16% to 40%.
  • Better (pricier) technology. While cars are becoming safer thanks to ever-improving technology and design, those very same features are making cars way more expensive to fix in the event of an accident. As insurance companies have to pay more to repair more expensive cars, so do customers.
  • Fraudulent claims. According to a study by the Insurance Research Council, up to $7.7 billion in car insurance injury claims filed in 2012 were fraudulent or included fudged numbers (that’s 33% more than the reported $5.8 billion in 2002). The more claims an insurance company has to pay out, the more the cost of premiums increases. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, “not only does fraud cause higher insurance premiums for all of us, but it also raises our taxes and inflates prices for consumer goods.”

Tips For Keeping Your Premiums As Low As Possible

Luckily, there are some easy ways you can keep your car insurance rates as reasonable as possible:

  • The simplest way: Stop paying for miles you’re not driving and switch to pay-per-mile insurance — you’ll pay a low monthly base rate plus a few cents per mile when you sign up with Metromile. Because you are paying-per-mile, you’ll always have visibility into what your monthly bill is, giving you greater control over your premium amount.
  • Maintain a clean driving record. Staying accident-free on the road may help you score a lower rate.
  • Keep your credit score up. All insurance companies factor your credit score into your quote, so stay on top of those bills. In fact, bumping your score one tier, like from Good to Excellent, can save you up to 17%.

Ready to start saving? Get your personalized quote right now and see how much you could be saving.


Michelle Konstantinovsky is a San Francisco-based journalist/writer/editor and UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism alumna. She’s written extensively on health, body image, entertainment, lifestyle, design, and tech for outlets like Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, Seventeen, and a whole lot more. She’s also a contributing editor at Fitbit and the social media director at California Home + Design Magazine. She is an avid admirer of shiny objects, manatees, and preteen entertainment.

Full Tort v. Limited Tort – What’s the Difference?

Full tort? Limited tort? …. what’s a tort? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. If you live in Pennsylvania, you may know what tort is. For the rest of the country (attorneys excluded), tort is not only a cute nickname for a tortoise but is also a legal term meaning “civil wrongdoing – in civil law, a wrongful act for which damages can be sought by the injured party.” In other words: tort means that someone can seek legal action against someone else for causing damage to them during an accident.

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Still confused where Pennsylvania comes into the equation? Let me explain. Full tort and limited tort car insurance options were instituted by the state of Pennsylvania in an attempt to decrease the number of pain and suffering lawsuits in Pennsylvania courts. Individuals who now purchase insurance in Pennsylvania are classified as either “limited tort” or “full tort.”

So, what’s the difference between full tort and limited tort? So glad you asked – you’ve been paying attention. Let’s discuss.

Full Tort

Regardless of the extent of the injury or damages, someone with full tort coverage is able to assert a claim for pain and suffering – so long as the accident was not their fault. Someone with full tort coverage is not obligated to first demonstrate that they received a serious injury from the accident before they can recover damages for pain and suffering. Because there is no threshold which must first be met, someone with full tort coverage can automatically assert a claim with their insurance provider for all of the losses they experienced from the accident, such as damages to the vehicle, medical bills, etc. – not just the out-of-pocket costs.

Limited Tort

The other side of this coin is limited tort coverage. Limited tort permits someone injured in a car accident to only recover for their out-of-pocket medical bills, wage loss, automobile repair costs, and other actual monetary loss. When someone elects to have limited tort insurance coverage, they are foregoing the right to pursue damages in a personal injury claim for pain and suffering and other similar damages, even in situations where they are not at fault.

The Exception to the Rule

BUT (and there is a but) – there is a limited exception to this general rule that permits someone with limited tort coverage to pursue a claim for pain and suffering where the injuries they sustained in the car accident were considered “serious.” Yes, serious in quotes, because “serious” injuries are not always clearly defined or proven. Of course, in cases where someone requires life-saving treatment following a car accident, those injuries sustained would be considered serious and allow full recovery for pain and suffering. The problem here is that in the majority of cases, the line that differentiates a serious injury from that of a non-serious injury is less clear.

So Which Tort is for You?

Limited tort is the more appealing option for many people because it’s less coverage and therefore less expensive. However, this choice could end up costing them greatly if they are ever involved in a car accident later on. Metromile offers both full tort and limited tort options for our customers in Pennsylvania.

Click here to get a free quote today and find out which coverage option is right for you! Be safe out there and see ya on the roads.

Julianne Cronin is a Bay Area freelance writer, content creator, and founder/editor of the women’s lifestyle site, The Wink. You can find her working on her capsule wardrobe, collecting cacti, and trying out the latest beauty products on Instagram