A little while back we did an in-depth look at USAA and their comprehensive insurance policy for Veterans and Service Members. After some great user feedback, we decided to take another look at Geico’s military programs and discounts.
Geico Auto Insurance
So before we get too into the weeds with Geico’s military program, let’s take a look at Geico’s track record as a whole. Oddly enough Geico started in 1936 for Federal Employees and military officers. Like USAA, the company began as a niche market servicing the military and quickly grew its customer base to the 24 million strong clientele it has today.
Some of Geico’s key advantages include their exceptionally well-built web platform that’s designed to make up for their smaller agent network than some of their competitors. All in all, Geico ranks fairly middle of the road for customer satisfaction according to JD Power’s 2018 study. However, they have made great strides to up their game in the past two years. One thing we found interesting was how many people commented on our Facebook Post about USAA and their exceptional experience with Geico.
One place where Geico tends to out-perform the rest is in their cost to value structure. All in all, Geico tends to offer some of the least expensive plans around while still maintaining some quality service. Bottom line, if you’re after the least expensive insurance option available, this is probably your best bet.
Geico’s Military Discount
So if you’re looking for the short answer, Geico offers up to 15% off your insurance plan if you’re active duty, reserve, National Guard member or retired. Given that Geico already has some pretty low rates this has the option of being a pretty solid saver for anyone looking to lower their monthly bills. While money is a great thing to be concerned about we were actually pleasantly surprised when researching Geico’s military program to find out that they actually have an awesome military support system.
First and foremost, Geico offers emergency deployment discounts which are important if you’re constantly being deployed and having to worry about your insurance plan. Not only that, they have an awesome dedicated military team that is specifically trained to support their military customers. This to us is incredibly important and something that puts them on par with USAA’s services.
One thing we really wanted to point out and commend Geico on is that their military team is made up of all military retirees. This is impressive since they not only have a team of experts that will be able to help you out when you need it the most, but they are also giving back to the veteran community which we really value. So no matter what you think of Geico, at least commend them for that!
Another service offered by Geico is their insurance pause that can be applied to vehicles stored on base during your deployment as long as the vehicle is stored 30 days or longer. As long as you’re deployed and your car is on base Geico can suspend your insurance or pause it until you return. Again, big kudos to them.
Chances are you’re comparing USAA to Geico Military and looking at picking up a policy with one of these companies. While in many ways both offer some great incentives they do have some pretty stark contrasts.
Geico Car Insurance Rates
In general, Geico will be less expensive than USAA when it comes to the overall price. However, based on the research we did find USAA to have better customer service ratings from various places around the internet. They also don’t fall too far behind Geico when it comes to pricing and in some cases might actually be cheaper. USAA also specializes in supporting service members as a whole rather than just as a select group. You could argue this as a positive or a negative attribute in the sense that a company that specializes in the military as a whole might have better service or a company that puts together a select group of people whose only focus is the military might have better service since they have a much better-dedicated core.
USAA does have a larger agent network so if you find yourself in an accident you will be more likely to meet an agent face to face to take care of your needs than if you went with Geico. However, Geico does an exceptional job utilizing their military team that is dedicated to answering your needs alongside their award-winning web platform that will help you process your claims quickly and efficiently. In short, they make up for their lack of agents in the field with a dedicated team that can support your needs over the phone.
One thing we should point out is that in general, Geico does tend to have higher costs for drivers with an at-fault accident on their record as well as individuals with a low credit score. If you fit into either of those categories ensure you really shop around before making your final decision.
Reporting a Claim to Geico
The process for submitting a claim to Geico is a matter of only a few steps.
- Review your claim
- Contact parties involved
- Take statements and gather information
- Evaluate and report
Reporting a Claim to USAA
Like Geico, the process of a claim isn’t very long.
- Report a claim
- Review your policy coverage
- Inspect or approve any damages associated with the claim
- Determine a resolution
Geico’s Military Programs
One thing we did want to point out is Geico’s dedication to service members. Again, after doing some research we found Geico does a phenomenal job of supporting the troops as well as the veteran community. In addition to only hiring veterans to their military team, they have also offered jobs to service members in other areas of their company.
In addition, Geico helps give back to the military through a number of donation programs such as their Military Service Awards Program that offers $2500 and recognition to one member of each branch of service who has excelled by giving back to the military community.
Geico’s Federal Employee Discount
In addition to their military discount, Geico also offers a discount for Federal Employees. This discount is offered to employees who are GS-7 or above as well as employees who are the equivalent for GS-11 or above who are not on the GS pay scale. For more information on the GS employee program, we recommend reaching out to them directly.
Geico’s Veteran Discount
So we found that Geico does offer some Veteran discounts, however, they aren’t consistent. While they guarantee an Active Duty/Reserve/National Guard/retiree discount, they do not state anything on their website about honorably discharged Veterans. However, we did find a few resources that say they will divvy out some veteran discounts based on the state you’re living in. Your best bet is to contact them directly to see if they offer any Veteran discounts in your local area.
Geico: The Best Option if you’re Retired or State Side
Geico offers a pretty good discount for our service members. And if you’re retired and belong to one of the organizations below, you qualify for an extra 25% discount on your premium.
- Association of the U.S. Army (AUSA)
- Fleet Reserve Association (FRA)
- National Infantry Association (NIA)
However, if you are deployed, you might want to look at staying with USAA, if your decision comes down to who offers the best discounts. If you want a deployment discount through Geico, you have to be deployed to an area where you receive imminent danger pay. If you’re anywhere else, you won’t get the discount.
Because you only get a 25% discount (which is lower than USAA’s premium discount) while you’re deployed to an area receiving imminent danger pay, this means you won’t get a discount for your PCS to Germany—unless Germany becomes a combat zone while you’re there.
Geico vs. USAA Car Insurance for Veterans
While Geico beats out USAA on the overall price comparison, there are cases in which you won’t get the 15% military discount. For example, while Geico offers a discount to our veterans, it is not a discount available in every state. According to some residents, they were told their state does not qualify for the discount.
When it comes to customer service, USAA also takes the lead over Geico. This could be due to the fact that most of Geico’s interactions are handled online. According to J.D. Powers, USAA received a 5/5 on customer satisfaction and in handling claims. Geico, however, only received a 4/5 in customer satisfaction and a 3/5 when it came to handling claims.
Again, other than the few things listed above, Geico and USAA come pretty close when it comes to offering great deals to our military members and veterans. However, make sure you speak with a local representative before you make your selection. You may get better deals based on your state of residence, due to a deployment, or based on your association to various organizations. Make sure you discuss this with your agent and see who will offer you what you need at the best price.
Disclaimer: Cheaper doesn’t always mean better, keep this in mind when comparing car insurance companies. As we pointed out, Geico is a great option because of the potential overall cost. However, USAA continuously wins at customer services against Geico. They also made it to number one when it came to handling claims. And trust us, if you’ve never filed a claim, you want that to be easy. It’s enough of a headache dealing with the fact that you were in a wreck or that your car was stolen. If the representative helping you isn’t doing their best or doesn’t know their job like they should, it only makes it that much more frustrating and you might end up missing out on something as a result. Unfortunately, this means you might end up paying more than you have to in a claim, or you may not get all the benefits you deserve.
Geico Military Number
If you’re a Geico Military customer you can reach their team of dedicated experts by dialing 1-800-MILITARY (645-4827) or by reaching out to your local agent.