Free Auto Insurance Comparison
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UPDATED: Apr 1, 2020
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|Arizona Statistics Summary|
|Road Miles ||Total in State: 65,593|
Vehicle Miles Driven: 62.6 Million
|Most Popular Vehicle ||Ford F150|
|Average Premiums (Annual)||Liability: $508.76|
Combined Premium: $972.85
|Percentage of Motorists Uninsured||12%|
State Rank: 24th
|Cheapest Providers||Civil Service Employees and Western General|
The average American driver logs 37 miles a day, but the average Arizona driver travels closer to 40 miles a day. That’s 40 miles of risk!
Thankfully, the average person doesn’t have an accident every day, or even every year, but the risk is always present and car insurance can help you recover financially after an accident or other vehicle damage.
As if figuring out what you need for insurance when you drive your car isn’t enough, have you thought about whether or not you need any kind of insurance for a golf cart, a moped, or another non-traditional vehicle?
Sometimes car insurance seems like this nebulous topic. You have it because you’re required to, but maybe you don’t even know what kind of coverage you need or what your coverage can even do for you.
You can compare car insurance quotes right here to get started finding the right company for your needs.
We’ll help you understand the requirements and the options — even for your golf cart. We’ll also cover pretty much anything you’d like to know about driving in Arizona.
Arizona Car Insurance Coverage and Rates
Car insurance is required almost everywhere in the United States, and even where residents have the option to show proof of financial responsibility, for the average person, car insurance is still the only way to do that.
To drive without traditional insurance in Arizona, you need to show proof of financial responsibility through a bond or certificate from the Arizona Office of Treasurer showing deposit in cash or certificates of deposit of $40,000.
Arizona is a tort state, so the party at fault in an accident is responsible for all the accident-related costs.
If you think you can get out of purchasing car insurance if you use a golf cart, moped, or motorcycle to get around, think again! These liability limits featured below are required for non-traditional vehicles, as well.
Not sure what’s required? We’ll cover that right now!
|Insurance Required||Minimum Limits –15/30/10|
|Bodily Injury Liability||$15,000 per person|
$30,000 per accident
|Property Damage Liability||$10,000|
Recently, the Arizona legislature passed a bill to raise the minimum car insurance requirements. The governor vetoed this bill, and so the previous limits are still in effect.
Liability coverage is all Arizona requires. The minimum required insurance is known as “basic coverage.” If you cause an accident, your liability coverage will pay for the damage you caused to another part up to the limits of your plan.
Liability coverage will not pay for any of your own damages.
Also, keep in mind that Arizona requires $10,000 of property damage liability, but if you cause an accident that causes a total loss of a $60,000 truck, your basic coverage will only pay for $10,000 of that damage, and you’ll be liable for the other $50,000.
Apart from there are No Deductible Full Glass coverage laws in Arizona.
The state required basic coverage will keep you from getting a ticket for driving without insurance, but it may not be enough coverage to adequately protect your assets or future assets.
Premiums as Percentage of Income in Arizona
Arizona’s average insurance cost is slightly less than the national average. In fact, Arizona is the 14th cheapest state for car insurance.
The average disposable personal income (DPI — income after taxes have been taken out) for an Arizona resident after taxes is $34,321 per year. Car insurance premiums for full coverage average just under $1,000 per year.
You can use the calculator below to estimate your premium based on income.
So, even though your income and expense may vary from the average, typically, you’ll pay about 2.8 percent of your annual DPI for car insurance.
Keep in mind that this average is based on the cost of full coverage. Basic coverage will cost significantly less annually, but, of course, will offer no protection for your own vehicle damage.
Below, you’ll see how Arizona’s car insurance rates compare to the national average for 2015.
|Type of Coverage||Average Cost in Arizona||Average Cost Nationally|
As costs increase, expect to pay between one and three percent more each year for identical coverage.
Overall Health of Arizona Car Insurance
An easy way to gauge the financial health of insurance companies is to look at loss ratios. For an easy explanation, the money they pay out on claims compared to the money they take in on premiums is the loss ratio.
So, if they pay $60 in claims out of $100 taken in on premiums, their loss ratio would be 60:100, or 60 percent. The other 40 percent goes to paying overhead.
It’s bad news for a company who pays more in claims than it takes in for premiums, and it’s bad news for a consumer who pays premiums to a company with a high loss ratio.
Check out the loss ratio for these two types of coverage in Arizona.
|Type of Coverage||2014||2013||2012|
|Medical Payments||69.21 %||77.92%||83.60%|
|Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage||75.40 %||81.35 %||84.52%|
After a rough year for the insurance companies in 2012, they’ve brought their ratios into a more healthy range over the next couple of years.
Recent Rising Insurance Rates
In the past four years, car insurance rates have risen by 30 percent in Arizona! The reason? The technology installed in vehicles to make them safer costs a lot of money to replace. To pay for the increased repair costs, insurance companies have raised rates.
Janet Ruiz, with the Insurance Information Institute, predicts rates will balance out when more cars with safety technology are on the road and the frequency of accidents decrease.
Add-ons, Endorsements, and Riders
We talked about the loss ratio of Medical Payments and Uninsured/Underinsured motorist coverage above. Those are optional coverages that you should think about adding to your basic policy, especially when you consider that 12 percent of Arizona motorists are uninsured.
If one of those uninsured drivers causes an accident with you, you’d be out of luck without Uninsured/Underinsured coverage. The following types of coverage are also worth considering to decide if they’re right for you.
- Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP)
- Personal Umbrella Policy (PUP)
- Rental Reimbursement
- Emergency Roadside Assistance
- Mechanical Breakdown Insurance
- Non-owner Car Insurance
- Modified Car Insurance Coverage
- Classic Car Insurance
Pay-as-you-drive is a Good Option
It’s not legal in all states, but good news for you Arizona residents, it’s a valid option there!
You’ve probably seen or heard about Progressive’s Snapshot option. It bases your rates on how safely you drive based on its monitoring system. Usage-based insurance is a recent option that’s become available in the car insurance industry.
Pay-as-you-drive takes it another step and bases your rate on the exact number of miles you drive. Metromile is licensed in Arizona and offers just that type of policy.
This type of policy isn’t right for everyone, and definitely not for people who drive more than the average person, but we have a quiz right here to help you decide if it’s a good choice for your situation.
Up next: the answer to the great question…does my gender change my car insurance rates?
Male Versus Female Car Insurance Rates
As you can see, the rates are quite similar between the sexes. You’ll save slightly by being a male in Arizona.
Twenty-five-year-old males will pay $15 less per year with Progressive and $70 less per year with Geico than their identical female counterparts.
Fifty-five-year-old males will pay $60 less per year with Progressive and $18 more per year with Geico than their identical female counterparts.
Cheapest Arizona Car Insurance Rates by ZIP Code
The tables below show the cheapest and most expensive car insurance rates in Arizona.
|Cheapest ZIP Codes in Arizona||City||Average by ZIP Codes||Most Expensive Company||Most Expensive Rate||Second Most Expensive Company||Second Most Expensive Rate||Cheapest Company||Cheapest Rate||Second Cheapest Company||Second Cheapest Rate|
|85616||Huachuca City||$3,055.06||Allstate||$3,836.45||State Farm||$3,693.74||Geico||$1,794.03||Travelers||$2,304.77|
|85635||Sierra Vista||$3,048.77||Farmers||$3,781.88||State Farm||$3,667.82||Geico||$1,758.66||Travelers||$2,342.48|
|86403||Lake Havasu City||$2,883.46||Farmers||$3,704.06||State Farm||$3,552.73||Geico||$1,828.75||Travelers||$2,132.47|
|86404||Lake Havasu City||$2,896.40||Farmers||$3,740.33||Allstate||$3,518.68||Geico||$1,828.75||Travelers||$2,149.26|
|86406||Lake Havasu City||$3,027.98||Allstate||$4,230.13||Farmers||$4,158.03||Geico||$1,828.75||Travelers||$2,226.06|
|86429||Bullhead City||$3,025.22||State Farm||$3,896.82||Allstate||$3,862.91||Geico||$1,791.37||Nationwide||$2,459.12|
|86442||Bullhead City||$3,031.71||State Farm||$3,878.61||Farmers||$3,750.98||Geico||$1,791.37||Nationwide||$2,520.18|
|86443||Temple Bar Marina||$3,049.56||Farmers||$4,457.80||State Farm||$3,862.46||Geico||$1,828.75||Travelers||$2,448.01|
A number of cheap ZIP codes can be found in Lake Havasu City.
|Most Expensive ZIP Codes in Arizona||City||Average by ZIP Code||Most Expensive Company||Most Expensive Rate||Second Most Expensive Company||Second Most Expensive Rate||Cheapest Company||Cheapest Rate||Second Cheapest Company||Second Cheapest Rate|
Cheapest Arizona Car Insurance Rates by City
Want to know where your city ranks in terms of car insurance costs? Take a look at the tables below.
|Cheapest Cities in Arizona||Average by City||Most Expensive Company||Most Expensive Rate||Second Most Expensive Company||Second Most Expensive Rate||Cheapest Company||Cheapest Rate||Second Cheapest Company||Second Cheapest Rate|
|Bullhead City||$3,028.47||State Farm||$3,887.72||Allstate||$3,690.80||Geico||$1,791.37||Nationwide||$2,489.65|
|Fort Mohave||$3,066.87||State Farm||$3,972.37||Farmers||$3,740.81||Geico||$1,791.37||Nationwide||$2,500.77|
|Huachuca City||$3,055.06||Allstate||$3,836.45||State Farm||$3,693.74||Geico||$1,794.03||Travelers||$2,304.77|
|Lake Havasu City||$2,955.72||Farmers||$3,931.05||Allstate||$3,890.41||Geico||$1,828.75||Travelers||$2,179.26|
|Temple Bar Marina||$3,049.56||Farmers||$4,457.80||State Farm||$3,862.46||Geico||$1,828.75||Travelers||$2,448.01|
The next table shows the most expensive cities for car insurance.
|Most Expensive Cities in Arizona||Average by City||Most Expensive Company||Most Expensive Rate||Second Most Expensive Company||Second Most Expensive Rate||Cheapest Company||Cheapest Rate||Second Cheapest Company||Second Cheapest Rate|
|Citrus Park||$4,118.30||Allstate||$5,330.30||State Farm||$5,204.20||Geico||$2,595.96||USAA||$2,740.85|
|El Mirage||$4,371.02||Farmers||$6,050.94||State Farm||$5,986.88||Geico||$2,643.88||USAA||$2,740.85|
|Flowing Wells||$4,143.15||Farmers||$6,011.95||State Farm||$5,994.86||Geico||$2,312.23||USAA||$3,119.38|
|Paradise Valley||$4,326.68||Allstate||$5,751.97||State Farm||$5,440.05||Geico||$2,412.91||Travelers||$3,832.92|
|San Tan Valley||$4,138.35||Allstate||$5,436.63||State Farm||$5,308.73||Geico||$2,246.12||USAA||$3,153.44|
|South Tucson||$4,093.28||State Farm||$5,868.74||Farmers||$5,746.37||Geico||$2,290.61||USAA||$3,023.03|
|Tortilla Flat||$4,092.31||Farmers||$5,412.36||State Farm||$5,407.93||Geico||$2,585.36||Travelers||$3,212.74|
Now that you have an idea of how car insurance rates where you live compared to rates in the rest of the state, let’s take a look at the insurance companies licensed in your state to help you find the right company.
Arizona Car Insurance Companies
There are nearly 1,000 companies licensed to provide insurance in Arizona. Where do you even begin?! We’ll make finding the right one easy by showing you how the companies compare in the areas of financial stability, customer satisfaction, and customer complaints.
Ratings let’s see how they compare…
The 10 Largest Arizona Car Insurers’ Financial Ratings
|Providers by Size||Rating|
A good financial rating means the company has the funds to be able to pay claims. A large company with a good rating is a good sign, but how do these companies treat their customers?
Arizona’s Insurers with the Best Ratings
A good customer satisfaction rating indicates that the company will be easy to work with. A bad customer satisfaction rating…not so much.
Next, we’ll see which companies did the worst.
Arizona’s Insurers with Highest Complaint Ratio
Keep in mind that every company is going to get some complaints, and a bigger company will have more customers and will get more complaints. What really matters is the complaint ratio.
The ratio is the number of complaints divided by the number of justified claims and then multiplied by 100. The higher the number, the higher the rate of complaints.
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Arizona Car Insurance Rates by Company
We’re presenting the 25 highest and lowest rates based on research of over 100 companies in Arizona. The premiums listed below are given for the following 8 driver profiles with liability #1 coverage:
|By Company (Highest Rates)||Average Rates||By Company (Lowest Rates)||Average Rates|
|Electric Insurance Company||$4,276.24||Civil Service Employees Insurance Company||$986.48|
|Peak Property And Casualty Insurance Corporation||$4,232.00||Auto-Owners Insurance Company||$1,018.93|
|First American Property & Casualty Insurance||$4,014.04||United Services Automobile Association||$1,023.73|
|First American Property & Casualty Insurance Company||$3,772.20||American Family Insurance Company||$1,030.13|
|Esponse Insurance Company||$3,706.20||Mutual Of Enumclaw Insurance Company||$1,055.67|
|Allied Property And Casualty Insurance Company||$3,692.40||Geico Casualty Company||$1,161.27|
|State Auto Property & Casualty Insurance Company||$3,681.05||American National Property And Casualty||$1,216.40|
|Esurance Property And Casualty Insurance Company||$3,661.25||State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance||$1,272.58|
|Stillwater Insurance Company||$3,576.47||Ids Property Casualty Insurance Company||$1,276.39|
|Lm Insurance Corporation||$3,325.93||Horace Mann Insurance Company||$1,283.83|
|MGA Insurance Company, Inc.||$3,046.86||National General Insurance Company||$1,324.77|
|Lm General Insurance Company||$3,032.37||Country Mutual Insurance Company||$1,342.56|
|United Insurance Company Inc.||$2,965.03||Integon Indemnity Corporation||$1,347.07|
|Allstate Fire And Casualty Insurance Company||$2,962.50||General Casualty Company Of Wisconsin||$1,348.76|
|Young America Insurance Company||$2,888.35||Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Company||$1,360.27|
|American Access Casualty Company||$2,875.14||Cincinnati Insurance Company, The||$1,408.66|
|Sentry Insurance A Mutual Company||$2,850.33||State Auto Property & Casualty Insurance||$1,418.76|
|Amica Mutual Insurance Company||$2,798.79||Travelers Property Casualty Insurance||$1,426.92|
|Mercury Casualty Company||$2,774.63||Allied Property And Casualty Insurance||$1,433.46|
|Commonwealth Casualty Company||$2,755.83||Secura Insurance, A Mutual Company||$1,448.16|
|California Casualty General Insurance Company Or Oregon||$2,721.60||Coast National Insurance Company||$1,506.20|
|Safeco Insurance Company Of America||$2,688.71||Federal Insurance Company||$1,521.39|
|Infinity Standard Insurance Company||$2,626.09||Pacific Indemnity Company||$1,521.39|
|Primero Insurance Company||$2,594.50||Vigilant Insurance Company||$1,521.39|
|Assurance America Insurance Company||$2,591.24||Great Northern Insurance Company||$1,521.39|
The premiums listed below are given for the following 8 driver profiles with liability #2 coverage:
|By Company (Highest Rates)||Average Rates||By Company (Lowest Rates)||Average Rates|
|Peak Property And Casualty Insurance Corporation||$6,140.00||Western General Insurance Company||$309.50|
|First American Property & Casualty Insurance Company||$4,817.60||Anchor General Insurance Company||$723.63|
|Electric Insurance Company||$4,810.86||ACCC Insurance Company||$801.30|
|Esurance Property And Casualty Insurance Company||$4,654.80||Safe Auto Insurance Company||$905.80|
|First American Property & Casualty Insurance||$4,437.30||Safeway Insurance Company||$963.90|
|LM Insurance Corporation||$4,208.67||Arizona Automobile Insurance Company||$1,083.85|
|Sentry Insurance A Mutual Company||$4,136.59||Civil Service Employees Insurance Company||$1,115.90|
|Stillwater Insurance Company||$4,058.61||United Services Automobile Association||$1,156.08|
|LM General Insurance Company||$3,813.84||American Family Insurance Company||$1,196.03|
|Allied Property And Casualty Insurance Company||$3,771.50||Auto-owners Insurance Company||$1,218.53|
|Infinity Standard Insurance Company||$3,644.31||Access Insurance Company||$1,222.50|
|Commonwealth Casualty Company||$3,618.36||American Access Casualty Company||$1,281.40|
|Infinity Select Insurance Company||$3,546.80||Assuranceamerica Insurance Company||$1,288.30|
|Infinity Insurance Company||$3,414.90||American National Property And Casualty||$1,341.80|
|Peak Property And Casualty Insurance||$3,376.90||Integon Indemnity Corporation||$1,359.65|
|Safeco Insurance Company Of America||$3,247.23||Mutual Of Enumclaw Insurance Company||$1,376.48|
|Farmers Insurance Company Of Arizona||$3,059.61||Young America Insurance Company||$1,387.00|
|Infinity Casualty Insurance Company||$3,032.53||General Casualty Company Of Wisconsin||$1,407.28|
|Metropolitan Casualty Insurance Company||$2,901.10||IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company||$1,429.54|
|Response Insurance Company||$2,887.91||National General Insurance Company||$1,438.28|
|American National Property And Casualty Company||$2,855.05||Geico Casualty Company||$1,444.11|
|Travelers Property Casualty Insurance Company||$2,787.55||Horace Mann Insurance Company||$1,450.81|
|State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company||$2,773.47||United Insurance Company Inc.||$1,453.70|
|Economy Preferred Insurance Company||$2,737.02||American Hallmark Insurance Company Of Texas||$1,503.50|
|Mercury Casualty Company||$2,647.20||Secura Insurance, A Mutual Company||$1,537.11|
Compare company rates to find the rates for YOUR specific situation.
Largest Car Insurance Companies in Arizona
|Insurance Company||Premiums Written||Market Share|
|American Family||$276,833||5.70 %|
|Berkshire Hathaway||$723,482||14.91 %|
|CSAA Insurance||$100,187||2.06 %|
|Liberty Mutual||$279,343||5.76 %|
|State Farm||$818,982||16.87 %|
Number of Property and Casualty Insurance Companies in Arizona
|Property and Casualty Insurance||Number of Providers|
Following the laws in your state is important for safety, first of all, but also so you can avoid getting in trouble! But to follow the law, you have to know the law, and that can be confusing.
We’ll clear things up for you by presenting some of the most important laws you need to know right here.
Car Insurance Laws
It may seem that an insurance company can come up with whatever rates and rules they want to benefit themselves. Fortunately, for the consumer, there are regulations. In Arizona, there is a 30-day wait period for rate filings.
Let’s look at some of the specific laws for consumers regarding car insurance.
If your driver’s license has been revoked for certain drug or alcohol offenses, you will be required to obtain proof of future financial responsibility in the form of an SR-22. You then must maintain this proof for three years.
When in Arizona, your vehicle must have a windshield and it must be free from cracks. If you have comprehensive coverage for your vehicle, you have the option to get a zero-deductible windshield repair or replacement benefit.
To protect the consumer, the laws for replacement state that the consumer can choose the repair vendor and although aftermarket parts may be used, they must be equal in quality to the manufacturer’s parts.
Compare car insurance rates now and see which company offers you the coverage you want at the best price.
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Automobile Fraud in Arizona
The insurance industry estimates that fraud accounts for 10 percent of their losses. Why does this matter to you? If companies weren’t losing that money, you’d be paying lower premiums.
Car insurance fraud is committed in many different ways:
- Lying about where you live
- Faking a theft
- Unnecessary bodily injury claims
- Switching VINs
- Diverting money from an insurance company
Those convicted of committing insurance fraud face stiff penalties in Arizona.
|Type of Penalty||Imprisonment||Fine||Civil Penalty|
|Class 6 Felony||Up to 10 years||Up to $150,000||Up to $5,000|
To be convicted, the prosecution must be able to prove the defendant intended to commit fraud.
Statute of Limitations
For both property damage and bodily injury claims, the statute of limitations is two years.
Vehicle Licensing Laws
We’ll show you what you need to know to register your vehicle and renew your registration, now.
If you live in or commute regularly to Tucson or Phoenix, your vehicle will have to pass an emissions test before you can register it. If there’s a check engine light on, it’s an automatic fail. Therefore, be sure to identify the problem and get it fixed before getting it tested.
Based on your vehicle’s model year and Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), here’s how often it will need to be tested and what it will cost in Tucson:
|Yearly||1967 and newer model year diesel vehicles and heavy duty vehicles with a GVWR greater than 8,500 lbs.||$12.25|
|Yearly||1967 through 1995 model year vehicles with a GVWR of 8,500 lbs. or less||$12.25|
|Every Other Year||1996 and newer model year vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of 8500 lbs. or less.||$12.25|
Here is the same breakdown for the Phoenix area:
|Yearly||1967–1980 model year vehicles||$16|
|Yearly||1981 and newer model year vehicles with a GVWR greater than 8500 lbs.||$16|
|Yearly||1981–1995 model year vehicles with a GVWR less than 8500 lbs. that are equipped with all-time 4x4 or traction control||$16|
|Yearly||1967 and newer model year diesel vehicles with a GVWR less than 8500 lbs.||$16|
|Yearly||1967–1980 and newer model year diesel vehicles with a GVWR greater than 8500 lbs.||$25|
|Every Other Year||1981 and newer model year vehicles with a GVWR less than 8500 lbs.||$17|
Getting Your Car Registered
If you have the following documentation ready, you’ll be all set to register your vehicle:
- Emissions Test (where required, see above)
- Vehicle Insurance
- Proof of Ownership
- Loan Information
If you don’t have all these prerequisite items ready, you can apply for a 90-day registration.
If you’re transferring to Arizona from another state, you’ll have to surrender your out-of-state plates when you receive your Arizona plates.
The Penalty for Driving Without Insurance
Insurance is required, so getting caught without it is going to cost you.
|Penalty||First Offense||Second Offense within three years|
|Fine||$500 minimum||$750 minimum|
|License, registration, and license plate suspension||Three months||Six months|
If you’re pulled over or have been involved in an accident, law enforcement is going to require proof of insurance. This can be shown in one of the following ways:
- Insurance Card
- Electronic Proof of Insurance
- Bond or Certificate of Deposit for $40,000
Any changes in your insurance status must be reported to the Motor Vehicle Department (MVD) of Arizona, including:
- new policy
If the MVD receives notice that your policy is no longer active, they will send you an inquiry.
If you don’t maintain proper coverage, your registration and or driver’s license can be suspended.
If you have a vehicle you intend to not drive and not insure, canceling your policy is NOT enough. You’ll need to go through the process of “de-insuring” that vehicle. By filling out the de-insurance form, you can receive a certificate for that vehicle, and your license and registration will not be suspended.
Getting a License
Regardless of your age or residency status, we’ll show you what you need to know for getting an Arizona driver license.
Arizona is currently compliant with the REAL ID ACT, so your Arizona license is adequate for domestic air travel — at least until October 1, 2020.
Arizona now offers REAL ID-compliant driver licenses and IDs, so even if your license isn’t up for renewal yet, you might want to get your compliant ID now. If you travel domestically after October 1, 2020, and don’t have a passport, you’re going to need the REAL ID license, so don’t wait until it’s too late.
Have a teen getting close to driving age? Do you know the graduated licensing system in Arizona? We’ll walk you through the requirements and restrictions next.
|Type of License||Age Requirement||Pre-Requisites||Passenger Restrictions||Driving Restrictions|
|Learner's License||Minimum 15 years 6 months||Pass vision and written tests||–||Must have a 21-year-old or older licensed driver in the passenger seat|
|Intermediate License||Minimum 16 years||Six months holding period|
Minimum 30 hours (10 of which at night) supervised driving
|Limit of one passenger younger than 18 (except when the passengers are siblings, or when a licensed parent or legal guardian occupies the passenger seat)*||No driving between midnight and 5 a.m. (Except with a licensed parent or legal guardian in the passenger seat, or when traveling to and from work, school, or religious activities, or for family emergencies)*|
|Unrestricted License||Minimum 18 years||Passing vision, written, and road tests||None||None|
*Restrictions in place only for the first six months receiving the intermediate license.
Maybe you’re on the other end of the age spectrum. We’ll cover what you need to know next.
In Arizona, you have to renew your license every 12 years until you turn 65. Then you have to renew it every five years. A vision test will need to be done at each renewal regardless of age.
A road test may be required only if impaired driving is reported.
A physician or concerned family member or another individual can submit a report to the MVD, but only the MVD can make the final determination of an individual’s ability to drive.
The MVD can suspend or revoke a driver’s license when deemed necessary, and they may also issue restrictions such as the following:
- Daylight driving only
- No freeway driving
- Driving within a defined radius of a person’s home
- Golf cart driving only
If any of the following criteria from the Arizona Department of Transportation website applies to you, you’ll need to get an Arizona driver license:
- You work in Arizona (other than for seasonal agricultural work).
- You are registered to vote in Arizona.
- You place children in school without paying the tuition rate of a nonresident.
- You have a business with an office in Arizona that bases and operates vehicles in this state.
- You obtain a state license or pay school tuition fees at the same rate as an Arizona resident.
- You have a business that operates vehicles to transport goods or passengers within Arizona.
- You remain in Arizona for a total of seven months or more during any calendar year, regardless of your permanent residence.
Out-of-state college students enrolled with seven or more credit hours are exempt as are active duty military who qualify for exemption under the Service Members Civil Relief Act of 2003.
Here’s how you can go about getting your Arizona license as a new resident:
- Begin your application online.
- Go to the MVD office or an authorized third party office.
- Testing, which may include a vision test, but probably will not include a written or road test if you have a valid out-of-state driver license.
- Identification in the form of a social security number and a driver license or state ID.
Renewals must be completed in person at the MVD or an authorized third party office and will always include a vision test. The general population is required to renew every 12 years and residents 65 and older must renew every five years.
Violations are assigned a point value. If you receive eight or more points in a 12-month period, you may have to attend Traffic Safety School or have your license suspended.
Here are the number of points each offense carries.
|Leaving the scene of accident, hit-and-run||6|
|Failure to stop for a traffic signal, stop sign or to yield the right-of-way, causing death||6|
|Failure to stop for a traffic signal, stop sign or to yield the right-of-way, causing serious injury||4|
|Driving over or parking in a gore area||3|
|All other moving violations||2|
Rules of the Road
Getting points on your license is bad news. Your insurance premiums will go up and you will be in danger of having your license suspended. Here are some driving laws that by following, will keep your record clean.
Keep Right Laws
If you’re driving slower than the normal traffic around you keep in the right lane except when passing another motorist or turning left.
Move Over Laws
Arizona law states that when emergency vehicles are stopped on the roadway with emergency lights on, motorists must do the following:
- If on a highway having at least two lanes proceeding in the same direction as the approaching vehicle, proceed with due caution and if possible, with due regard to safety and traffic conditions, yield the right of way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to that of the emergency vehicle.
- If changing lanes would be impossible or unsafe, proceed with due caution and reduce speed, maintaining a safe speed for road conditions.
In a 55-mph zone, if you’re pulled over for driving within 10 mph over the speed limit, you may be given a “waste of finite resources” citation which is a civil rather than criminal offense and carries a $15 fine with no points added to your license.
It makes sense that different types of roadways have different speed limits. The limits listed below are the maximum the limit can be. If the roadway is posted at a lower speed, that is the legal maximum speed you may travel.
|Rural freeways and interstate highways||Urban freeways and interstate highways||Residential and business districts||School zones||Alleys|
|75 mph||65 mph||25 mph||15 mph||15 mph|
Seatbelts save lives! And they’re required to be used in Arizona.
Riding without a seatbelt is not a primary offense (except for children under 8 years old), so you can’t be pulled over for that alone, but if you commit another driving infraction, you may be pulled over for that infraction, and then cited for not using a seatbelt.
- Who has to wear a seatbelt in Arizona? The driver and front seat passengers.
- Who is responsible for front seat occupants being buckled? The driver is responsible to pay the fine for children under 16 years of age, but a 16-year-old or older passenger may be responsible for their own lack of seatbelt use.
- What is the penalty for not using a seatbelt? $10
- Can occupants legally ride in the bed of a pickup truck? Yes
Violating car seat laws is a primary offense. Children who are under eight years old and shorter than four feet nine inches must be secured in a child restraint system. The child safety seat must be in accordance with federal guidelines.
The penalty for violating car seat laws is civil and is $50. The money from fines is used to purchase child restraint systems to loan to those in need.
There are eight insurance companies that offer coverage for ridesharing services:
- American Family Insurance
- State Farm
House Bill 2135 placed the following requirements on ride-sharing services:
- Carry $250,000 worth of liability coverage when a passenger is present (same as taxi drivers)
- Criminal background checks on drivers
- Vehicle inspections
- A zero-tolerance policy for drug and alcohol use by drivers
Automation on the Road
Thanks to the governor’s 2015 executive order, Arizona became a leading state for testing and deployment of automated driving technology. Three years after the permissive executive order, Governor Ducey issued an updated order with more regulations.
Arizona has laws for drivers in order to keep them and others on the road safe. We’ll look at some of those laws next.
If you’re caught driving impaired with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more, you’ll be charged with driving under the influence (DUI).
The lookback period is seven years, so previous offenses will be considered if they happened in that timeframe. The first two offenses are considered misdemeanors and the third and subsequent offenses are felonies.
Below are the penalties by the offense for a DUI conviction.
|Penalty Type||First Offense||Second Offense||Third and Subsequent Offenses|
|Revoked License||30–60 days||One year||One year|
|Imprisonment||Minimum one to 10 days||Minimum 30–90 days||Minimum four months|
If you refuse BAC testing, you will automatically lose your driving privilege for 12 months for a first refusal and 24 months for a second refusal within seven years.
If your BAC is above 0.15 percent, you may face an Extreme DUI conviction which will result in the following penalties:
|Penalty||First Offense||Second Offense|
|Imprisonment||30 consecutive days minimum||120 days minimum|
|Fine||$2,500 minimum||$3,250 minimum|
|Ignition interlock device||Required||Required|
Perform community service
Perform community service
License revoked for one year
Marijuana-impaired Driving Laws
Arizona has a zero-tolerance law for THC and metabolites. If caught driving impaired by drugs, you will be charged with a DUI and will face the same penalties listed above for an alcohol-impaired conviction.
Distracted Driving Laws
Arizona has the following restrictions on cell phone use and texting while driving.
|Hand-held ban||Young driver cell phone ban||Texting ban||Enforcement|
|No||Learner's permit holders and intermediate license holders during the first six months after licensing||Learner's permit holders and intermediate license holders during the first six months after licensing||Secondary|
Arizona Can’t-miss Facts
Finding out the important road stats in your state is kind of fun and definitely interesting. We’ll lay out the facts you want to know.
If you want to find out what the hot vehicles are for thieves, keep reading because that’s the fact we’re hitting first.
The tabele below shows the top 10 vehicles stolen in Arizona.
|3||Chevrolet Pickup (Full Size)||2004||850|
|4||Ford Pickup (Full Size)||2006||772|
|5||Dodge Pickup (Full Size)||2001||428|
|7||GMC Pickup (Full Size)||2015||246|
|9||Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee||1994||207|
Vehicle Theft by City
Phoenix has the highest number of vehicles stolen in Arizona. Let’s take a look at the other cities rounding out the top 10.
The worst thing that can happen on the road is a fatality. Sometimes just facing the truth of the statistics can help you drive more mindfully and safely.
The 10 Counties With the Most Fatalities Over the Past Five Years
|Sub Total 1||Top Ten Counties||798||731||849||906||945|
|Sub Total 2||All Other Counties||49||42||46||45||55|
10-year Comparison of Traffic Fatalities on Urban Versus Rural Roadways
|Type of Road||2008||2009||2010||2011||2012||2013||2014||2015||2016||2017|
Alcohol-impaired Fatalities by County
Teen Drinking and Driving Stats
Here are the facts about teen (18 years old and under) DUIs in Arizona in 2016:
- 211 DUI arrests
- 129.33 arrests per million people
- 14th ranked state for under 18 DUI arrests
Below are the facts concerning underage (under 21 years old) drinking-related fatalities:
- 1.6 fatalities per 100,000 people in Arizona
- 1.2 fatalities per 100,000 people national average
EMS Response TIme
If you’re injured in an accident and need medical help, the response time of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) could make the difference between life and death. Below are the average response times for both urban and rural areas of Arizona.
|Location of Incident||Time of Crash to EMS Notification||EMS Notification to EMS Arrival||EMS Arrival at Scene to Hospital Arrival||Time of Crash to Hospital Arrival||Total Fatalities|
The car ownership, commute time, and commuter transportation statistics in Colorado are pretty consistent with the national averages.
The average household in Arizona has two cars. In 2018, 41.5 percent of Arizona households owned two cars compared to the national average of 40.3 percent.
The average commute time in Arizona is 23.7 minutes, which is a bit shorter than the national average of 25.3 minutes.
A majority of Arizona workers, 76.1 percent, drive to work alone. Only 11 percent of workers carpool during their daily commute.
Even though Phoenix is the fifth largest city in the US, it ranks 140th for congestion. That’s a great ranking for commuters unless sitting in hours of traffic is what you like to do.
Below is a chart showing how much time commuters spend in traffic in Arizona’s three most populated — and congested — cities.
|City||Hours Spent in Traffic||Peak (Time in Traffic)||Daytime (Time in Traffic)||Overall (Time in Traffic)|
Now that we’ve provided you with just about everything you need to know about driving in Arizona, you should be confident in knowing the rules of the road and the requirements for insurance.
Remember, as an Arizona resident, if you want to drive, you’re going to need insurance! Enter your ZIP code below to get a free quote comparison. You might be surprised by how much you could save by switching insurance providers.