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Auto Insurance in Chicago, IL (The Complete Guide)

Density11,960 people per square mile
Average Cost of Insurance in Chicago$4,497.74
Cheapest Car Insurance CompanyLiberty Mutual
Road ConditionsPoor: 28%
Mediocre: 35%
Fair: 14%
Good: 22%
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The Second City is famous for its architecture, waterfront, food, bars, and veritable history, an ever-evolving city with many iconic contributions to North American culture: blues music, deep dish, brownies and much more.

With so many people contributing to the beautiful city’s culture over the decades, Chicago has evolved.

Mark Twain said it the best: “It is hopeless for the occasional visitor to try to keep up with Chicago—she outgrows his prophecies faster than he can make them. She is always a novelty; for she is never the Chicago you saw when you passed through the last time.”

With so much to do and see, Chicago has a high concentration of cars on the road. Since you will be sharing the road with so many drivers, it’s prudent to get the best car insurance protection.

However, we understand the process of buying insurance can be overwhelming and frustrating. Through this complete guide that covers what is car insurance in Chicago, we will give you all the information so you can choose the best coverage.

We will talk about the coverage types, coverage rates, driving rules to follow in the city, factors impacting your premium rate, and much more.

Before you begin, you can get free quotes from major insurance providers in Chicago. You can use our FREE tool to start your search. Just enter your zip code to start.

Table of Contents

The Cost of Car Insurance in Chicago

If you are in the market for car insurance, you might be wondering insurers calculate your car insurance rate? What factors impact your premium? There are many factors that determine your auto insurance rates, such as your credit score, location, driving record, and annual commute.

You might find yourself asking how does my Chicago, IL stack up against other top metro auto insurance rates? We’ve got your answer below.

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In this section, we will cover these factors and also talk about which companies you can choose in specific situations.

Demographics: Male vs. Female vs. Age

The first thing you should know is how your age and gender can impact your insurance rate.

Insurance companies usually consider teens to be risky and charge a higher-than-average rate. They find that young drivers, especially teens, are prone to unsafe driving and therefore have a higher probability of filing a claim.

These states no longer using gender to calculate your auto insurance rates — Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania. But age is still a significant factor because young drivers are often considered high-risk. Illinois does use gender, so check out the average monthly auto insurance rates by age and gender in Chicago, Illinois.

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Of course, this is a generalization and does not apply to everyone. However, without other relevant data on which to base probable behavior, insurance companies will tend to charge a higher-than-average rate.

Chicago, Illinois auto insurance rates by company and age is an essential comparison because the top auto insurance company for one age group may not be the best company for another age group.

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A young driver can reduce their premium rate by keeping a clean driving record. As you age and mature as a driver, your premium rate will tend to align with the average.

As per DataUSA, the median age in Chicago is 34.6.

Insurance companies tend to reduce your rate considerably when you reach the median age. Let us review the average rates charged by insurance companies in Chicago for different age groups.

Average Annual Rate$9,627.05$3,248.57$2,721.02$2,545.5160
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As we discussed, the insurance rates tend to fall with age.

The average annual car insurance rate in Chicago is a whopping $6,378 between the ages of 17-25, eventually stabilizing at around $2,700 at the age of 35, the median age of the city.

Gender is another factor that may impact your car insurance rates in Chicago.

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We have observed that, nationally, insurance rates are usually more expensive for males. In Chicago, the trend continues as the average annual rate for males is $4,535 while it is $4,277 for females.

However, your rate may differ from the average, as it depends on other factors as well.

There are some states (e.g., California) that have banned insurance companies from considering gender as a factor, but Illinois, as of now, still allows for gender-based pricing.

But what about your marital status? Does that change your premium rate?

We partnered with Quadrant Data Solutions to understand the impact of marital status on insurance rates.

DemographicRate (Cheapest)
Married 60-year old female$2,494.91
Married 60-year old male$2,596.11
Married 35-year old female$2,708.30
Married 35-year old male$2,733.75
Single 25-year old female$3,098.36
Single 25-year old male$3,398.79
Single 17-year old female$8,808.60
Single 17-year old male$10,445.50
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According to the data, a single 17-year-old male driver pays on average $10,445 while his female counterpart pays $8,808. In comparison, a married 35-year-old male driver pays, on average, $2,733, while a married 35-year-old female driver pays $2,708.

The difference is partly because insurance companies believe married people have a lower risk profile and therefore are less likely to file a claim.

They also have a long-standing driver record and credit history that helps them model the probable behavior.

Cheapest Zip Codes in Chicago

An insurance company has data on the number of claims, thefts, and accidents of the zip code you provide for your insurance. Therefore, your zip code is critical for the insurer to calculate your rate accurately.

Check out the monthly Chicago, Illinois auto insurance rates by ZIP Code below:

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Remember: You should provide the correct zip code in your application. Incorrect data can not only provide you inaccurate quotes but can also be labeled as insurance fraud.

You can use the following table to find the average rate in your zip code.

Zip codeAverage Annual Rate
60657 $3,813.21
60614 $3,837.67
60601 $3,853.01
60602 $3,866.67
60611 $3,885.20
60606 $3,901.06
60654 $3,925.77
60610 $3,937.50
60605 $3,976.26
60604 $3,991.79
60603 $4,006.24
60613 $4,055.80
60699 $4,113.14
60631 $4,144.64
60656 $4,184.23
60640 $4,199.50
60618 $4,263.32
60607 $4,263.61
60646 $4,278.23
60701 $4,320.08
60660 $4,329.47
60622 $4,329.78
60625 $4,340.72
60630 $4,349.39
60647 $4,352.72
60642 $4,365.00
60655 $4,371.46
60626 $4,446.26
60615 $4,456.26
60645 $4,468.13
60634 $4,478.10
60616 $4,509.45
60659 $4,542.39
60643 $4,566.04
60707 $4,572.14
60633 $4,587.01
60641 $4,599.02
60638 $4,605.84
60608 $4,656.33
60652 $4,664.85
60617 $4,751.21
60632 $4,806.57
60612 $4,821.18
60609 $4,880.99
60653 $4,900.13
60629 $4,910.08
60628 $4,962.87
60637 $4,979.15
60619 $5,004.51
60639 $5,010.63
60620 $5,106.75
60649 $5,112.76
60621 $5,252.39
60644 $5,295.93
60651 $5,302.29
60624 $5,308.33
60623 $5,319.98
60636 $5,370.32
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What’s the Best Car Insurance Company in Chicago?

We know that choosing the best car insurance company can be difficult, especially in Chicago, which has such a multitude of options.

Which Chicago, IL auto insurance company has the cheapest rates? And how do those rates compare against the average Illinois auto insurance company rates? We’ve got the answers below.

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With so many factors influencing insurance rates, different insurers may offer varying products for consumers.

You must determine the best insurance company based on your requirements. Are you looking for the best company for a higher commute or one that will give you a good deal even if you don’t have the best credit score?

In this section, we will discuss the best car insurance companies for varying factors.

Cheapest Car Insurance Rates by Company

All national insurance providers such as GEICO, USAA, Progressive, Allstate, etc. are present in Chicago. The plethora of options increases the competition and allows you to shop around for the best rate.

Insurers weigh factors differently and can, therefore, offer varying rates. The following table shows the average rates companies offer to different demographics.

GroupMarried 35-year old femaleMarried 35-year old maleMarried 60-year old femaleMarried 60-year old maleSingle 17-year old femaleSingle 17-year old maleSingle 25-year old femaleSingle 25-year old maleAverage
Liberty Mutual$1,730.29$1,870.12$1,446.38$1,620.84$5,831.92$6,480.50$1,794.62$1,880.23$2,831.86
State Farm$1,985.18$1,985.18$1,794.69$1,794.69$6,256.93$7,886.52$2,248.18$2,602.06$3,319.18
American Family$3,145.58$3,145.58$2,885.32$2,885.32$8,974.54$12,401.20$3,145.58$4,060.93$5,080.51
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Rates differ by age and marital status in Chicago.

Based on average rates, Allstate is the most expensive insurer in Chicago. Allstate charges a 17-year-old male driver $14,600 for car insurance.

In contrast, Liberty Mutual may only cost $6,480 for the same teen’s annual car insurance. This why you should shop around to check for the best rates available to you.

On average, Allstate drops the insurance by $8,975 for a 25-year-old single male driver and another $1,300 when the driver is a 35-year-old married male.

However, a cheap rate shouldn’t be your only consideration while selecting a car insurance policy.

What if your annual mileage is more than the average commuter’s? Which car insurance company should you prefer?

Best Car Insurance for Commute Rates

As per the Federal Highway Administration, the average total annual miles driven per licensed driver in Illinois is 12,528 miles, which is less than the national average of 14,312 miles.

Insurance companies use the data on the average annual commute to calculate premium rates.

To understand the impact your commute can have on your insurance premium rate, we teamed up with Quadrant Data Solutions.

In the following table, you will see the average premium rate offered by insurance companies in Chicago, organized by annual commute.

Group10 miles commute. 6000 annual mileage.25 miles commute. 12000 annual mileage.Average
Liberty Mutual$2,831.86$2,831.86$2,831.86
State Farm$3,238.09$3,400.27$3,319.18
American Family$5,015.74$5,145.27$5,080.51
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Few insurance providers increase your premium rate with an increase in your annual commute.

Among the major insurance companies in Chicago, those who do not increase the premium based on an increase in commute are Liberty Mutual, Progressive, Nationwide, Farmers Insurance, and Allstate.

Best Car Insurance for Coverage Level Rates

Increasing coverage level increases the exposure of insurance companies on your policy. Therefore, insurance rates are bound to increase as you add additional coverage to your policy.

Your coverage level will play a major role in your Chicago auto insurance rates. Find the cheapest Chicago, Illinois auto insurance rates by coverage level below:

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However, depending on the type of coverage you opt for, each insurance company can price your policy differently. Here are average rates offered by different insurers, organized by coverage level.

Liberty Mutual$3,022.31$2,649.53$2,823.75$2,831.86
State Farm$3,510.15$3,123.99$3,323.39$3,319.18
American Family$5,084.55$4,891.45$5,265.52$5,080.51
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GEICO, Progressive, and Farmers Insurance may increase the insurance rate by approximately $800 on average if you opt for high coverage instead of low. However, all other major insurers may increase the rate by around $300 or less.

But what is high, medium, and low coverage?

Your policy must include the legally required coverage in Chicago. However, you can opt for additional coverage depending on your requirements.

The minimum required car insurance in Chicago includes:

  • $20,000 for property damage in an accident caused by you
  • $25,000 for bodily injury per person in an accident caused by you
  • $50,000 for total bodily injury per accident caused by you

The state-mandated minimum coverage is the lowest coverage that you can opt for in Chicago. However, you should buy more than minimum auto insurance to safeguard against financial injury.

Depending on your requirement, you can opt for the following additional coverages:

  • Collision
  • Comprehensive
  • Med Pay
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist
  • Personal Injury Protection

Based on what and how much coverage you choose, you may either have medium or high coverage.

Just remember you don’t necessarily need all of the optional coverage. You can pick auto insurance company options wisely and save on insurance premiums.

Best Car Insurance for Credit History Rates

Car insurance companies check credit as a factor in determining your premium rate.

Your credit score will play a major role in your Chicago auto insurance rates unless you live in these states where discrimination based on credit is not allowed: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and North Carolina. Find the cheapest Chicago, Illinois auto insurance rates by credit score below.

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The companies use the credit information to estimate if you would be able to pay your premium on time. The lower the credit score, the higher the risk to the insurance companies.

Here are the average premium rates in Chicago based on your credit score:

Liberty Mutual$2,497.44$1,978.61$4,019.53$2,831.86
State Farm$2,892.70$2,248.35$4,816.48$3,319.18
American Family$4,601.42$3,895.47$6,744.63$5,080.51
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As we mentioned before, each insurance company may have a different weight attached to the factors that might impact your rate.

For drivers with a poor credit score, Liberty Mutual, Travelers Insurance, and USAA may be the cheapest options on the market.

However, if you have a good credit score, you can consider Liberty Mutual, State Farm, GEICO, and USAA for the best rates.

If you have improved your credit score over time, you can consider GEICO, Allstate, and American Family. Among the major providers, these companies generally have the most significant drop in insurance rates.

Best Car Insurance for Driving Record Rates

Your driving record is an essential indicator of your driving behavior. Insurance companies use the information to estimate the probability that you will file a claim.

Your driving record will play a major role in your Chicago auto insurance rates. For example, other factors aside, a Chicago, IL DUI may increase your auto insurance rates 40 to 50 percent. Find the cheapest Chicago, IL auto insurance rates by driving record.

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In the following table, you will find the average rates in Chicago organized by driving incident.

GroupClean recordWith 1 accidentWith 1 DUIWith 1 speeding violationAverage
Liberty Mutual$2,348.76$3,360.15$2,942.07$2,676.46$2,883.66
State Farm$3,015.20$3,623.17$3,319.17$3,319.17$3,319.18
American Family$3,751.26$5,256.77$7,062.35$4,251.65$5,356.79
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As you can see, insurance companies tend to increase rates depending on the driving violation.

USAA may increase your rate by more than $1,000 if you are responsible for an accident. GEICO, American Family, and Allstate may increase your premium by around $3,000 if you commit a DUI offense.

On the other hand, State Farm, Progressive, and Liberty Mutual seem to be the most forgiving of a DUI.

To get an idea about your driving behavior, insurance companies will access your Motor Vehicle Report (MVR). MVR will give them the summary of driving violations including:

  • Traffic tickets
  • Convictions
  • Accidents
  • Parking tickets and other smaller infractions

Car Insurance Factors in Chicago

We have considered credit score, driving record, annual mileage, and other factors that might influence your premium rates.

Factors affecting auto insurance rates in Chicago, IL may include your commute, coverage level, tickets, DUIs, and credit. Controlling these factors will help you maintain cheap Chicago, Illinois auto insurance.

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However, there are external factors that can impact your premium rates, as well. Factors such as prosperityeconomyhomeownership, and income in Chicago can influence your rate calculation.

With an estimated population of more than 2.5 million people, Chicago is the third-largest city in the country. Such a large community will have an impact on the average rates in the city.

In this section, we will review the different factors that influence your insurance rate in Chicago.

Growth & Prosperity

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Chicago metropolitan area is the third-largest economic area in the country, after New York and Los Angeles.

In 2017, Chicago’s metro area’s GDP was $679 billion and has registered a growth of 5.8 percent between 2017-2018.

Chicago has a diversified economy with a strong presence of manufacturing, printing and publishing, finance, and insurance. The city is also home to the largest commodity trading exchange in the world.

According to the Metro Monitor Report by the Brookings Institution, Chicago has been growing at a steady clip for the last few years.

Growth (51st)

Jobs: +2.8 percent (65th of 100)

Gross metropolitan product (GMP): +5.8 percent (65th of 100)

Jobs at young firms: -10.5 percent (31st of 100)

Even though growth in Chicago has been lagging behind the national average, unemployment is at an all-time low.

The growth is attracting a lot of new people to the city, increasing the premium rate on your car insurance.

According to the Brooking’s Metro Report, the standard of living and the average annual wage has been increasing faster than the national average. The is an increase that may also impact your insurance cost.

Prosperity (11th)

Productivity: +2.9 percent (63rd of 100)

Standard of living: +2.7 percent (43rd of 100)

Average annual wage: +7.9 percent (46th of 100)

Median Household Income

According to DataUSA, the median household income in Chicago ($55,295) is less than the national median household income ($60,336) and the state of Illinois ($62,292). However, the Chicago metropolitan area has a median household income of $68,403.

In contrast, the annual average premium in Chicago is $4,497. On average, residents of Chicago pay 8.13 percent of their income toward car insurance while the residents of Illinois are paying 5.17 percent.

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To calculate how much of your income is going toward car insurance, you can use the free calculator:


Homeownership in Chicago

Homeownership indicates financial stability to the insurance company. It may also indicate that you should be able to pay the insurance premium on time.

Let us review the homeownership rate in Chicago to better understand how it will impact your insurance rates.

According to DataUSA, the median property value in Chicago is $255,900. The median property value in the country is slightly lower, at $193,500.

The higher-than-median property prices, coupled with a lower-than-median household income, has resulted in a much lower ownership ratio than the national average.

In 2017, only 44.9 percent of houses were occupied by owners in Chicago. The national average is 63.8 percent.

Owning a home in Chicago indicates financial stability to car insurers. However, a steady rent payment history coupled with a good credit score is also a reliable indicator that you will pay your premiums on time.

Education in Chicago

You may remember answering a question about your highest education level in your insurance application.

Why do insurance companies need to know your education level?

Insurance companies tend to associate higher education with a lower risk profile. As per research, educated drivers prove to be more responsible drivers.

Chicago is home to the University of Chicago, which is a world-class institution of international repute. As of October 2018, 98 Nobel laureates have had an association with the University of Chicago.

Northwestern University is another internationally renowned university based out of Evanston, 12 miles north of downtown Chicago.

There are several other universities and institutions within the city limits, including Loyola University, DePaul University, University of Illinois, and Illinois Institute of Technology.

The top three universities in Chicago, according to the number of degrees conferred, are:

  • The University of Illinois at Chicago (7,525 degrees awarded)
  • DePaul University (6,428 degrees awarded)
  • DeVry University-Illinois (6,038 degrees awarded)

In 2016, various universities in Chicago granted a total of 64,031 degrees. Here is the break up of the degrees awarded:

Wage by Race & Ethnicity in Common Jobs

According to DataUSA, Asians were the highest-paid ethnicity in Illinois, followed by Whites.

In the following chart, you can see the wages for common job types, organized by ethnicity.

Wage by Gender in Common Jobs

We know that insurance rates differ by gender, but there is also a wage gap between genders. This disparity results in females shelling out a higher percentage of income toward car insurance.

As per DataUSA, the average salary for males in Illinois is $72,886, while the average salary for females in the state is $53,388. Below is the graph detailing male and female wages by profession:

Based on the wages, we can calculate the average percentage of income an individual pays for car insurance in Chicago:

Miscellaneous managers4.15.2
Registered nurses5.36.4
Elementary & middle school teachers7.77.8
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For every occupation in Chicago, females are spending a larger percentage of their income on car insurance.

Poverty by Age & Gender

20.6 percent of Chicago residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the national average of 13.4 percent. Deep poverty, defined as $5,885 a year for an individual, or less than $12,125 for a family of four, is also prevalent in the city.

The following graph shows the poverty by age and gender in Chicago.

The most surprising aspect is that females between the ages of 18 – 44 dominate the poverty demographics.

Poverty by Race & Ethnicity

African Americans are the most common ethnicity living below the poverty line in Chicago, followed by Whites and Hispanics.

Employment by Occupations

The employment growth in Chicago remained stagnant between 2016 and 2017, with the total number of employed in Chicago remaining at 1.35 million for 2017.

The following chart shows the most common jobs in Chicago:

Driving in Chicago

Whether you are driving on the Lake Shore Drive or working your way through the Loop, Chicago’s beauty never ceases to amaze. There are tons to see, eat, and do in the Windy City.

But we get it—traffic can sometimes be a headache.

According to a report by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, Chicago is the most congested city in the country.

While we cannot reduce the congestion, hopefully, this guide will help you navigate the congestion better. In this guide, we will cover speed traps, vehicle thefts, road conditions, and much more.

Roads in Chicago

If you’re interested in the road conditions, speed traps, and major roadways in Chicago, read on. In this section, we talk about the major highways, road conditions, and much more.

Major Highways

A complex network of roadways connects the Chicago metro area. Here is the map of the interstates and highways:

The significant interstates connecting Chicago include the I-95, I-80, I-55, and many more. Here is the list of interstates cross-referenced with expressway names in the Chicago area:

  • Kingery Expressway: I-80, I-94
  • Bishop Ford Memorial Freeway: I-94
  • Chicago Skyway: I-90
  • Dan Ryan Expressway: I-90, I-94
  • Ronald Reagan Memorial Tollway: I-88
  • Edens Expressway: I-94
  • Edens Expressway Spur: I-94
  • Eisenhower Expressway: I-290
  • Elgin O’Hare Expressway: I-390
  • Kennedy Expressway: I-190, I-90, I-94
  • Veterans Memorial Tollway: I-355
  • Jane Addams Memorial Tollway: I-90
  • Stevenson Expressway: I-55
  • Tri-State Tollway: I-294, I-94

Some of the major tollways in the Chicago area include:

  • Ronald Reagan Memorial Tollway/Chicago–Kansas City Expressway (I-88/IL 56/IL 110)
  • Tri-State Tollway (I-80/I-94/I-294)
  • Elgin-O’Hare Tollway (IL 390)

Popular Road Trips/Sites

There are many things you can do to keep busy in Chicago.

The city is one of America’s most renowned food towns.

Road Conditions

According to TRIP, a national transportation research group, 63 percent of roads in Chicago are either in poor or mediocre condition.

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An average driver in Chicago has to spend $627 on car repairs.

The Illinois Department of Transportation has developed a website, “Getting Around Illinois,” that will provide users real-time information on road closures, construction work, and traffic congestion.

DOT also regularly shares information on the various construction projects in the state of Illinois through its website.

The state also passed a $45 billion Capital Infrastructure Plan in June 2019, seeking to invest in transport infrastructure, including road repairs.

The government will invest $400 million towards Chicago Regional Environmental and Transportation Efficiency Fund (CREATE) that will, among other things, untangle rail lines from roads.

Does Your City Use Speeding or Red Light Cameras?

Red Light Camera Enforcement is applicable in Chicago since 2003. Any driver who receives a red-light camera ticket can see their red-light violation on the website of the Department of Finance.

You can find the location of red light camera intersections on the City of Chicago website.

However, there are a few bills introduced in the state legislature to restrict the use of red-light cameras in the state of Illinois.

Vehicles in Chicago

What are the vehicles owned by Chicagoans? What is the most stolen car in Chicago? 

The answer to these questions can help you reduce your premium rate.

Most Popular Vehicles Owned

Until a few years back, the Chevrolet Monte Carlo used to be the most common car in Chicago.

However, Chevrolet stopped producing the car in 2007, and now it’s no longer the top car motorists in Chicago are interested in purchasing.

According to CarGurus.com, a Cambridge-based auto research and shopping website, the following are the top brands for used cars in the city:

  1. Chevrolet 11.3 percent
  2. Ford 9.1 percent
  3. Toyota 6.2 percent
  4. BMW 6.1 percent
  5. Mercedes-Benz 5.3 percent
  6. Jeep 5.3 percent
  7. Dodge 5.0 percent
  8. Honda 4.7 percent
  9. Nissan 4.6 percent
  10. Audi 3.8 percent

In terms of top cars that Chicagoans have researched on the website:

  1. Volkswagen Beetle
  2. Honda Odyssey
  3. Toyota Camry
  4. Mercedes Benz E-class
  5. BMW 7 series
  6. Jeep Grand Cherokee
  7. Honda Accord
  8. Jeep Wrangler
  9. Honda Civic
  10. Audi A4

Cars Per Household

Chicago is ranked 26th amongst the cities with the least cars per household.

Most households in Chicago own one car. The second-most-common car count per household is two.

The low number of vehicles per capita is probably because of the congestion in the city, coupled with a robust public transportation system.

Speed Traps in Chicago

The City of Chicago also uses automatic speed enforcement mechanisms. You can see the speed camera locations on the City of Chicago website.

You should follow the speed restrictions, especially around schools and parks.

Vehicle Theft in Chicago

Experiencing vehicle theft can be frustrating and stressful. Unfortunately, this is a common occurrence in Chicago.

According to the FBI, Chicago Police registered 11,473 cases of car theft in 2016.

Chicago has the highest crime index in the country. The city is safer than only 8 percent of U.S. cities. In Chicago, you have a one in 91 chance of becoming a victim of violent crime, which is alarmingly higher than the state or national average.

CHICAGO VIOLENT CRIMES RATES per 1,0000.240.654.385.69
UNITED STATES VIOLENT CRIMES RATES per 1,0000.050.420.982.49
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However, the city also has several safer neighborhoods that might reduce your chance of being a victim of violent crime or car theft. They are:

  1. N Ozanam Ave / N Avondale Ave
  2. W Devon Ave / N Central Ave
  3. N Caldwell Ave / N Lehigh Ave
  4. W Foster Ave / N Harlem Ave
  5. N Lake Shore Dr / W Diversey Ave
  6. N Canfield Ave / W Talcott Ave
  7. W Howard St / N Oketo Ave
  8. Sauganash
  9. Irving Park Rd / N Cumberland Ave
  10. W North Ave / N Larrabee St


Nobody wants to waste time sitting in traffic when they could be spending time with family or getting more things done in a day. However, Chicago is notorious for its traffic congestion.

Traffic Congestion in Chicago

The blockage in Chicago is worse than in LA. In fact, only Washington, D.C., and Boston fair worse when it comes to traffic congestion.

According to a 2018 traffic study done by INRIX (a team of traffic experts), Chicago is the third-most-congested city in the country.

According to the study, a motorist in Chicago spends 138 minutes, on average, in congestion every year. The delay due to congestion costs $1,920 per driver.


Commuters in Chicago spend 33.1 minutes on their daily commute, which is considerably more time than the national average of 25.5 minutes.

According to DataUSA, more than 31 percent of commuters in Chicago spend over 45 minutes on their daily commute.

The daily commute is higher than average because of the traffic congestion and because 28.3 percent of commuters take public transit.

Busiest Highways

According to the Federal Highway Administration, Chicago has two highways with more than 12 lanes.

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How Safe are Chicago’s Streets and Roads?

Chicago is the county seat of Cook County.

Fatalities (All Crashes)250235239268287
Fatalities in Crashes Involving an Alcohol-Impaired Driver97856681109
Single Vehicle Crash Fatalities144149159155161
Fatalities in Crashes Involving a Large Truck by County for 20173016152828
Fatalities in Crashes Involving Speeding11910388111143
Fatalities in Crashes Involving an Intersection828097115111
Passenger Car Occupant Fatalities104937698120
Pedestrian Fatalities5363817376
Pedalcyclist Fatalities111114118
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In 2017, a total of 287 traffic-related fatalities occurred in Cook County. Single-vehicle crashes accounted for the most number of fatalities, followed by speeding.

Illinois Counties by 2017 Ranking20132014201520162017
1. Cook County250235239268287
2. Will County4861514559
3. Lake County3431365047
4. Madison County2833332145
5. Dupage County3024363640
6. St. Clair County4531394035
7. Mchenry County1719182633
8. Kane County2921293931
9. Winnebago County3522293923
10. Kankakee County141492318
Top Ten Counties538501530596618
All Other Counties453423468482479
All Counties9919249981,0781,097
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Cook County accounts for the most number of fatalities in Illinois.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, principal arterial roads were the most dangerous in Illinois. You can refer to the NHTSA website to learn about the road classification.

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According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Cook County also witnessed many railway accidents.

Calendar YearCityCountyHighwayHighway User TypeHighway User SpeedRail Equipment TypeNonsuicide fatalityNon suicide injury
2012CHICAGOCOOK111TH STREETAutomobile10Commuter01
2012DOLTONCOOKYARD UP PRIVATETruck-trailer5Cut of Cars00
2012PALATINECOOKQUENTIN FAU 2574 ROAAutomobile0Commuter00
2012HARVEYCOOKPRIVATE CROSSINGTruck-trailer2Yard/Switch00
2012ALSIPCOOKW 122ND STREETVan30Freight Train00
2012CHICAGOCOOK95TH STREETPedestrianCommuter10
2012CHICAGO HTSCOOKRHODIA PLANTTruck-trailer5Yard/Switch00
2012CHICAGOCOOK103RD STAutomobile15Freight Train01
2012LANSINGCOOKTORRENCE AVEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2012ELMWOOD PARKCOOKGRAND AVE.Automobile5Freight Train00
2012ALSIPCOOK123RD STPedestrianLight Loco(s)00
2012CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer10Cut of Cars01
2012SOUTH HOLLANDCOOK168TH STREETAutomobile1Freight Train00
2012DOLTONCOOKYARD UP PRIVATETruck-trailer2Cut of Cars00
2012CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATE YARDTruck-trailer2Freight Train01
2012RIVERSIDECOOKLONG COMMON RDPedestrian0Freight Train10
2012CHICAGOCOOK115TH STAutomobile5C12
2012FRANKLIN PARKCOOKBELMONT AVE.Automobile3Freight Train01
2012CHICAGOCOOK55TH AND KENTONAutomobile20Freight Train00
2012CHICAGOCOOK115TH STAutomobile15Commuter01
2013COOKPRIVATE CROSSINGTruck-trailer3Yard/Switch00
2013CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKFAU1592/E 130TH STAutomobile15Freight Train00
2013LA GRANGECOOKE. 47TH & BLUFFAutomobile0Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKCARONDLETAutomobile40Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOK5345 S. LONG AVE.Automobile16Freight Train01
2013MELROSE PARKCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer15Light Loco(s)00
2013ELK GROVE VILLAGECOOKLUNTTruck-trailer30Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer12Freight Train00
2013DOLTONCOOK144TH STREETTruck-trailer6Yard/Switch00
2013CHICAGOCOOKSOUTHWEST HWYAutomobile0Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Freight Train00
2013TINLEY PARKCOOK167TH STAutomobile10Freight Train00
2013GLENWOODCOOKMAIN ST FAU3603Automobile0Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKSTATE STREETPedestrianLight Loco(s)10
2013BARRINGTONCOOKNORTHWEST HWY/US14Truck-trailerFreight Train01
2013CHICAGO HTSCOOKCHICAGO RDPedestrian0Freight Train10
2013ALSIPCOOKKOSTNER AVEPedestrianFreight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKMONTEREY AVEAutomobile10Commuter01
2013CHICAGOCOOK95TH STREETAutomobile10Psgr Train00
2013HARVEYCOOKRR ACCESS RDTruck-trailer3Yard/Switch00
2013CHICAGOCOOK119TH STREETAutomobile10C01
2013CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATE RDTruck-trailer5Light Loco(s)00
2013RIVERDALECOOKPERRY AVTruck-trailer2Freight Train00
2013COOKPROVISO YARD PRIVATETruck-trailer5Light Loco(s)00
2013RIVERDALECOOK137TH STAutomobile0Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOK95TH STREETTruck-trailer0C00
2013COOKCOTTAGE GROVE AVEPedestrianFreight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOK105TH STREETAutomobile5Special MOW Eq00
2013HARVEYCOOKRR ACCESS RDTruck-trailer2Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKFAU1592/E 130TH STAutomobile0Freight Train00
2013CHICAGOCOOKRACINE AVEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2014COOKFOREST VIEW AVEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2014SOUTH HOLLANDCOOK162ND STAutomobile5Freight Train00
2014ELK GROVE VILLAGECOOKLIVELYAutomobile30Freight Train00
2014ROBBINSCOOK139TH STREETAutomobile5Commuter10
2014CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Light Loco(s)00
2014CHICAGO HTSCOOKWENTWORTH AVAutomobile0Freight Train00
2014RIVERSIDECOOKHARLEM AVEAutomobile0Psgr Train01
2014MCCOOKCOOKLAWNDALE AVETruck-trailer7Freight Train00
2014CHICAGOCOOK99TH STPick-up truck0Freight Train01
2014FRANKLIN PARKCOOK25TH AVEPedestrianCommuter11
2014OAK LAWNCOOKKILBOURN AVEPedestrianCommuter01
2014CHICAGOCOOKRACINE AVEAutomobile0Light Loco(s)00
2014CHICAGOCOOK97TH STREETAutomobile0Freight Train02
2014DOLTONCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer10Freight Train00
2014MIDLOTHIANCOOK147TH STREETAutomobile35Freight Train01
2014LA GRANGECOOKLA GRANGE RDPedestrianPsgr Train10
2014NORTH RIVERSIDECOOKCERMAK RDAutomobile0Freight Train00
2014CHICAGOCOOK95TH STREETAutomobile10Light Loco(s)00
2014CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Freight Train00
2014CHICAGOCOOKW 104TH STAutomobile0Freight Train00
2014CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer1Light Loco(s)00
2014BERKELEYCOOKWOLF ROADAutomobile0Freight Train00
2014HARVEYCOOKRR ACCESS RDTruck-trailer5Light Loco(s)00
2014BLUE ISLANDCOOK119TH STREETAutomobile20Yard/Switch00
2014CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Freight Train00
2014BLUE ISLANDCOOK139TH STAutomobile15Freight Train00
2014HARVEYCOOKWOOD STAutomobile2Freight Train00
2014CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Freight Train00
2014MAYWOODCOOKFIRST AVE.Automobile0Freight Train00
2014MELROSE PARKCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer10Yard/Switch00
2014CHICAGOCOOKKILBOURNE AVETruck-trailer10Commuter00
2014COOKPRIVATETruck-trailer6Light Loco(s)00
2014COOK73 AND CENTRALTruck-trailer2Freight Train00
2014CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Light Loco(s)00
2015ELK GROVE VILLAGECOOKLIVELY BLVDTruck-trailer30Freight Train00
2015HARVEYCOOKRR ACCESS RDTruck-trailer5Yard/Switch01
2015CHICAGOCOOK115TH STREETAutomobile15Commuter00
2015CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Light Loco(s)00
2015BURNHAMCOOKCH 69/BURNHAM AVEPedestrianYard/Switch01
2015CHICAGOCOOKPRIVATETruck-trailer0Light Loco(s)00
2015MCCOOKCOOKLAWNDALE AVEAutomobile0Light Loco(s)00
2015HARVEYCOOKRR ACCESS ROADPick-up truck5Light Loco(s)00
2015ALSIPCOOK122ND ST.Automobile10Freight Train00
2015CHICAGOCOOKHARLEM AVEPedestrianCommuter01
2015ALSIPCOOK122ND STREETTruck-trailer5Light Loco(s)00
2015CHICAGOCOOKKILBOURNE AVENUEAutomobile30Light Loco(s)01
2015MELROSE PARKCOOKPROVISO YD PVTTruck-trailer10Single Car00
2015MAYWOODCOOKFIRST AVENUEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2015LEMONTCOOKLEMONT ST.Pedestrian0Freight Train00
2015CHICAGOCOOKCITY ST/STONEY ISLANTruck-trailer5Freight Train00
2015CHICAGOCOOKFAU2867/RACINE AVEPedestrianFreight Train01
2015LA GRANGECOOK47TH STREETAutomobileFreight Train01
2015HARVEYCOOKASHLAND AVEAutomobile25Freight Train10
2015BURNHAMCOOKCH 69/BURNHAM AVEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2015NORTHLAKECOOKLAKE STREETTruck-trailer2Yard/Switch00
2015ALSIPCOOK123RD STAutomobile0Freight Train02
2015BLUE ISLANDCOOKCHATHAM STAutomobile30Freight Train03
2015OAK LAWNCOOK107TH AVENUEAutomobile35Freight Train01
2015CHICAGOCOOK115TH STREETAutomobile0Commuter01
2015CHICAGOCOOK87TH PULASKIAutomobile5Commuter24
2015LEMONTCOOKPRIVATE CROSSINGTruck-trailer5Freight Train01
2016CHICAGOCOOK95TH STREETAutomobile0Commuter00
2016GLENCOECOOKPARK AVENUEPedestrianCommuter01
2016RIVERDALECOOKRIDGELAND AVEAutomobile3Freight Train01
2016HARVEYCOOKPRIVATE CROSSINGTruck-trailer7Freight Train00
2016ELMWOOD PARKCOOK73RD STREETPedestrianCommuter10
2016BARRINGTONCOOKMAIN STAutomobile2Freight Train00
2016COOKNORMAL AVENUEAutomobile10Freight Train00
2016COOKEUCLID AVEAutomobile0Commuter00
2016CHICAGOCOOK119TH STAutomobile20Psgr Train11
2016CHICAGOCOOK102ND STAutomobile0Commuter00
2016COOKPRUXNE STREETAutomobile10Freight Train00
2016RIVERDALECOOK138th STAutomobile2Freight Train00
2016CHICAGOCOOK59TH STAutomobile15Freight Train01
2016ELMWOOD PARKCOOKWEST GRAND AVEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2016DOLTONCOOKLINCOLN AVENUEAutomobile0Freight Train00
2016ORLAND PARKCOOK153RD STAutomobile0Psgr Train00
2016CHICAGOCOOKRACINE AVE.Automobile1Cut of Cars00
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Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report

According to an Allstate study on driver behavior, Chicago was ranked the 133rd (out of 200) safest city to drive in nationwide. An average driver in Chicago has 8.3 years between claims, whereas the national average is 10.57 years.

The report also highlighted that Chicago, on average, registered 28.78 hard-braking events per 1,000 miles, which is considerably higher than the national average of 19.

Due to the dangerous driving habits, you would be 28 percent more likely than the national average to have a collision in Chicago.


Here’s the list of ridesharing companies in Chicago:

  • Arro
  • Blacklane
  • Carmel
  • Curb
  • Jayride
  • Limos.com
  • Lyft
  • Talixo
  • Taxi
  • Uber
  • Via

E-star Repair Shops

How to find the best repair shop near you?

Esurance created an E-star repair shop network that provides a list of reputable and top-quality repair shops near your location.

Here are the top 10 repair shops near the Loop:



Chicago has a continental climate, characterized by warm summers and cold winters. Lake Michigan influences Chicago’s climate by moderating temperature, causing cooler summer and warmer winters. However, the lakefront effect also brings additional snow to the city.

Here’s the quick summary of the Chicago weather:

Annual High Temperature59.3°F
Annual Low Temperature43.3°F
Average Temperature5.13°F
Average Annual Rainfall18.67 inches
Days per year with rainfall119 days
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The number of disasters in Cook County is higher than the national average. Common natural disasters in Cook County tend to be floods, storms, tornadoes, snowstorms, winter storms, and blizzards.

To protect against natural disasters, you should purchase a suitable comprehensive policy.

Public Transit

Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) manages public transportation in Chicago. CTA operates the subway system called the ‘L’ and several bus routes.

CTA charges customers $2.5 for the ‘L’ and $2.25 for the bus, while the transfers cost $0.25. You see the full fare chart on the CTA website.

The transit authority also offers a Ventra card, a reloadable chip card designed to help make the payment easier for a daily commute.

Alternate Transportation

Chicago is late to the scooter-rental game. The city is currently running a four-month pilot program in the city’s the West Side neighborhood.

Around 10 companies are participating in the pilot program, including Bird, Lime, Lyft, Bolt, Grüv, Jump, Sherpa, Spin, VeoRide, and Wheels.

Chicago also has a citywide bike-sharing program called Divvy. Each ride costs $3, and a day pass is worth $15.

Parking in Metro Areas

We know that parking is a hassle in the Loop. There are several apps available to help you book a parking spot ahead of time:

  • SpotHero
  • Parkwhiz
  • Chicago Parking Meters

Air Quality in Chicago

Cars powered by fossil fuels contribute to air pollution; this includes particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, nitrogen oxide, etc. To control vehicle emissions, the Environmental Protection Agency enforces various rules and regulations.

Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI365117222206-
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Military/Veterans in Chicago

We thank all the military personnel and veterans for the services they rendered for this country.

Through this section, we want to make the process of buying car insurance a tad easier for you. We will talk about the options and average annual rates available for military personnel.

In Chicago, the majority of military personnel and veterans have served in Vietnam and the Second Gulf War.

The military base closest to Chicago is the Naval Station Great Lakes Base, which has been operational since 1911. It is the largest training center in the Navy and is the training location of over two million sailors. The next closest military base is Grissom Air Reserve Base in Indiana.

You can seek quotes from the following insurers, as they provide insurance discounts for military personnel and veterans:

  • Allstate
  • Esurance
  • Farmers Insurance
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Metlife
  • StateFarm
  • The General
  • USAA
Farmers Insurance$4,605.20 39.32
Liberty Mutual$2,277.65 -31.09
StateFarm$2,344.88 -29.06
USAA$2,770.21 -16.19
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Liberty Mutual (a 31 percent discount), followed by State Farm (29 percent), provides the maximum discount to military personnel and veterans in Chicago.

Unique City Laws

Did you know that kites can’t be flown within Chicago city limits?

Chicago, like many other large cities, has some unique city laws.

Handheld Device Laws

In Chicago, it is illegal to use handheld devices while driving, but you are allowed to use hands-free devices.

Food Trucks

Food trucks have it rough in Chicago. According to the law, food trucks cannot operate within 200 feet of any fixed business that serves food. The fine for violating the rule is $2,000.

The food trucks also have to install a GPS monitoring system that reports their whereabouts once every five minutes.

According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, the city regulations have been prohibitive to the growth of the food truck industry.

You can check out the licensing laws on the City of Chicago website.

Tiny Homes

Tiny homes have the potential to provide a path to homeownership for individuals and families that are being priced out of the real estate market.

Unfortunately, tiny houses in Chicago fall into a gray area, neither are explicitly banned nor allowed.

Chicago law stipulates that the minimum size for free-standing dwelling should be 500 square feet and that multiple free-standing dwellings cannot be built on a single plot.

Parking Laws

We understand the parking can be a hassle in Chicago. Here are some quick tips to help you park.

  • All residents of Chicago (whether homeowner or renter) must obtain city parking stickers.
  • You should not park more than 12 inches from the curb
  • Park at least 20 feet away from a crosswalk, 20 feet from a stop sign, and 15 feet away from fire hydrants
  • Street parking is not allowed in more than two inches of snow

You can metered parking on the City of Chicago website.

Chicago Car Insurance FAQs

How much is car insurance in Chicago?

The average annual cost of car insurance is $4,497 in Chicago. The average cost of car insurance in Chicago for men is $4,535, and for women, $4,277.

What Type of Car Insurance is Required in Illinois?

Illinois follows a tort system with modified comparative negligence. Under the system, the driver who caused the accident pays up to the percentage of their fault. The state laws require you to carry minimum liability insurance.

What Happens When You Drive Without Insurance in Illinois?

In Illinois, you are required to carry proof of insurance in the vehicle at all times. Failure to do so may attract fines and suspension of driving privileges.

The penalties can be between $500 – $1000 for the first two offenses. You can also have your license and registration suspended for up to four months.

The rule is enforced either during the traffic stop or through a random selection process, where the state sends you a questionnaire that you need to submit within 30 days.

What is the State Minimum for Car Insurance in Illinois?

The minimum required car insurance in Chicago includes:

  • $20,000 for property damage in an accident caused by you
  • $25,000 for bodily injury per person in an accident caused by you
  • $50,000 for total bodily injury per accident caused by you

Can I Review my Red-Light Camera Violation?

If you received a red-light camera ticket, the video of your red-light violation will be available for two years.

Are you ready to start your search for car insurance quotes? Use our FREE tool to get quotes from different insurers. Just enter your zip code to get started.


  1. https://highways.dot.gov/
  2. https://apps.dot.illinois.gov/roadconstructionpermits/roadConstructionReport.htm
  3. https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/depts/cdot/supp_info/red-light_cameraenforcement.html
  4. https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/depts/cdot/supp_info/children_s_safetyzoneporgramautomaticspeedenforcement/automated_speed_enforcementfrequentlyaskedquestions.html
  5. https://datausa.io/profile/geo/chicago-il/#commute_time

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