An easy way to save a lot of money during deployment is to adjust your car insurance plan after the service member leaves. Depending on your situation and state laws, you can save money in each of the following ways:
- Have him listed as a non-driver. This means you will not be paying for him to be on the insurance plans. But it allows him to keep his insurance current, which is required by law. DO NOT delete or remove him from the plan entirely, because then his record will show a gap in insurance coverage, which can cause problems with future insurance or car sales!
- Reduce the coverage limits on his vehicle. If he has a vehicle that is primarily his, and you won’t be using it during the deployment, then call your insurance company and ask them to reduce the coverage to the state minimums. DO NOT cancel insurance for his vehicle! You should be turning it on and driving it around the block every month or so just to keep the engine in good condition (more on that here). Driving it anywhere besides your own driveway without insurance is illegal.
- Reduce the estimated number of miles his vehicle will be driven per year. This number is used to calculate your insurance quote, so lowering the estimated miles will help lower your overall bill.
- Get rid of extra services. His vehicle may have coverage like Emergency Towing, Roadside Assistance, Rental Car, etc. Usually these services are just a few dollars per month, but if you aren’t going to be driving his vehicle anywhere away from the neighborhood, then you don’t need them.
- Update the location of the vehicle. Your insurance company charges you differently if the vehicle is usually parked in a garage or on the street. So if you are keeping it in the garage during the deployment, tell your company that and see if it lowers your rates a little.
- Suspend or cancel On-Star and Sirius Radio. If he has a newer vehicle, he may be paying monthly for these services. These can’t be changed through your insurance provider. You will have to contact the company directly and see if you are paying for an annual subscription or month by month. Make sure they know it is a military member, and verify that he will be able to begin coverage again after the deployment with the same rates.