From the start of the Mississippi at Lake Itasca, through the Twin Cities and the small-town charm of Southern Minnesota, there’s plenty to explore in your home state. But before you hit the road driving, you want to make sure you have the car insurance you need.

Luckily, drivers in Minnesota can expect to pay below the national average for their car insurance premiums. But that doesn’t mean you should settle on the first policy you find. In order to get the best possible car insurance rates for your policy, it’s essential you take the time to compare car insurance quotes from multiple insurance companies to find cheap car insurance that’s right for you.

This can be done easily with quote comparison from Onlineautoinsurance.com. Simply answer a few questions about the driver and vehicle being covered, and you’ll see quotes from multiple car insurance companies servicing your area within moments.

But before you start shopping around, you need to understand your policy requirements and consider any additional coverage you need. So what is the minimum coverage in Minnesota? And is it enough for you?

Minimum Requirements for car insurance in Minnesota

Minnesota car insurance laws require you to carry no-fault insurance as well as liability and uninsured motorist policies. The following are the minimum limits you must purchase:

$40,000 Personal Injury Protection

Also known as no-fault insurance, this will pay the cost of your medical expenses, as well as lost wages and other expenses associated with your injury. However, the maximum limit on your policy is split, with no more than half of it going to medical bills and the other half of it only going towards lost wages and services you might need.

PIP is designed to pay out regardless of fault in an accident, though some circumstances allow drivers to step outside the no-fault system and sue for damages. If you are driving a motorcycle or snowmobile at the time of your injury, you will need a separate injury protection policy.

Liability Coverage

This policy is divided into two parts. You will need a minimum of:

  • $30,000 Bodily Injury Protection per person injured in an accident.
  • $60,000 Bodily Injury Protection per accident with multiple injuries.
  • $10,000 Property Damage Liability to pay to repair vehicles and structures in an accident you are at fault for.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage

This policy will pay benefits to you if you’re in an accident with an at-fault uninsured motorist and damages exceed your PIP benefits. You will need a minimum of:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury to one person
  • $50,000 for bodily injury to two or more people per accident

Underinsured Motorist Coverage

This policy will pay benefits to you if your damages exceed the maximum limits of another driver’s liability policy. You will need a minimum of:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury to one person
  • $50,000 for bodily injury to two or more people per accident

Of course, these are only the minimum requirements. One bad accident can quickly exhaust your policies, and the rest of the money will have to come out of your pocket. In addition, if you’re at fault for an accident, you won’t get any help to repair or replace your car. It would be wise to compare the cost of raised limits when shopping for car insurance. Skimping on coverage won’t save you money if you get into a car accident

Driving without car insurance is also expensive (and against the law). If you fail to provide proof of insurance in a traffic stop, you can be fined between $200 and $1000 dollars, as well as facing up to 90 days in jail. You may also have your license suspended and your registration revoked. But this all pales to the cost of getting into a serious accident without insurance. It’s not worth it.

Collision and Comprehensive

Also, known as Full Coverage, these two policies are often required by lenders if you’re still paying off your car. But even if you own your vehicle outright, you might not be able to afford to repair or replace it in some circumstances where your insurance won’t cover you. Consider adding these policies, especially if your vehicle is still worth a significant amount of money.

Collision insurance will pay to repair your car no matter what the circumstances are. It may be combined with your uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, or another driver’s liability coverage. This can ensure your car gets all the repairs it needs, or can be replaced if it’s totaled.

Comprehensive coverage pays for a wide spectrum of events outside of your control, including damages from fire, falling limbs, hail, and other so-called “acts of God.” It will also pay to repair or replace your vehicle if it’s stolen or vandalized. Even if you opt to skip collision coverage, ask your insurance company if you can purchase comprehensive separately. Replacing your car can be very expensive if it’s stolen or otherwise totaled.

What determines your car insurance rates?

Car insurance companies assess the risk of insuring drivers based on a combination of personal factors, as well as the vehicle you’re insuring. The individual factors include age, sex, credit score, driving history, and location. High-risk drivers will always pay more insurance premiums, and some companies may not offer you coverage if they think it’s not worth the risk.

Your annual mileage, the amount it costs to repair or replace your vehicle, and the risk of theft all play a role in the price of your coverage. If you don’t drive very often, you should ask about limited use policies to save money on your insurance premiums.

Of course, your rates will also be determined by the maximum limits you set, the size of your deductibles, and any additional policies you choose to add. But you shouldn’t skimp on car insurance to lower your monthly payments—if you can’t afford the cost of an accident, you’re wasting your money on your insurance policy.

Finding the cheapest car insurance

Choosing the cheapest car insurance for you is more than finding the company with the lowest rates. A few dollars more a month can save you thousands of dollars in an accident. Know the coverage you need, and make apples-to-apples comparisons of policies with the same level of coverage. Only then can you find the company with the best rates for you.

The best way to make sure you have low car insurance rates is to drive safely and avoid car accidents and motor vehicle citations. These can have a huge impact on your premium, often for as long as three years. Focus on the road and obey traffic laws at all times.

There are plenty of car insurance discounts out there for savvy consumers to take advantage of. These may include:

  • Multi-car discounts to ensure multiple vehicles
  • Multi-policy discount to bundle separate policies, such as renter’s or life insurance
  • Safe driving discounts
  • Good Student discounts
  • Discounts for vehicle features, such as anti-lock brakes or anti-theft devices

Check with your insurer to make sure you’re getting all the car insurance discounts you qualify for and read about all the discounts each company offers before you buy a new policy.

The bottom line

Now that you know what you need, you’re ready to get covered! Just fill out the form, select your level of coverage, and choose the insurance company that’s right for you. Even if you already have coverage, you could save hundreds of dollars a year by switching to a new insurer.

With no obligation to buy and no pressure from an insurance agent, you can choose a car insurance policy and print proof of insurance within minutes, all from the comfort of your home. So what are you waiting for?