The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, “The State of Independence”, is America’s second state and home to Philadelphia, the birthplace of the U.S. With memories of the Founding Fathers around every corner, this state’s history is almost tangible. From the Alleghenies’ covered bridges to the whitewater rapids of the Poconos to the Dutch country farm houses, Pennsylvania holds picture-perfect scenes at every step. While the state’s byways give drivers a much needed break from busy New England life, the vibrant Pittsburgh art scene brings them back time and again. CheapCarInsurance.net is allowing Pennsylvanians more time to get out and about by finding all the important car insurance information for the state and organizing it in this easy-to-read article.
Car Insurance Quotes for Pennsylvania
Philadelphia County Car Insurance
A consolidated city-county, Philadelphia is the second smallest in the state, land-wise, but it’s largest by population, with an estimated 1.5 million residents. The City of Brotherly Love is a must-see for American history buffs, and visitors also should not miss its signature cheesesteak sandwiches.
Philadelphia opened the first zoo in the country in 1874. It is also the site of the first library, opened in 1731. Among its most famous tourist attractions is Independence Hall, the 1753 structure where the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution were debated and adopted.
Allegheny County Car Insurance
The second most populous county after Philadelphia, Allegheny County is located in western Pennsylvania near the Ohio border. Its largest city and seat is Pittsburgh, a city known for sports and steel.
Pittsburgh is home to many hills, bridges and celebrities, including Gene Kelly, Michael Keaton and Christina Aguilera. Pittsburgh is also the birthplace of Andy Warhol, and its Andy Warhol Museum is the largest in the country dedicated to a single artist. The National Aviary includes penguin and tropical forest exhibits. Also popular with visitors is the Carnegie Museum of Natural History and Art Museum.
Montgomery County Car Insurance
Called "MontCo" by locals, the third most populous county in Pennsylvania is a diverse one, ranging from open land and farms to dense urban dwellings. Located northwest of Philadelphia, its seat is Norristown, a borough of about 35,000 only six miles from the Philadelphia city limits.
Norristown is home to the unique Elmwood Park Zoo, where visitors can zipline through the trees and over the animal exhibits at Treetop Adventures. Montgomery County's King of Prussia Mall boasts more retail shopping space than any other mall in America, including Minnesota's entertainment-heavy Mall of America – which has more total space but less retail square footage.
Bucks County Car Insurance
Along with Philadelphia and Chester counties, Bucks County was among three original counties in Pennsylvania. Located in what is known as the Delaware Valley northeast of Philadelphia, its seat is Doylestown, the birthplace of the singer Pink.
Washington Crossing Historical Park memorializes the site where Washington's army crossed the river during the Revolutionary War. The 2002 film, "Signs," was both shot and set in Bucks County. Attractions include Fonthill castle, Mercer Museum and the Kids Castle play area.
Delaware County Car Insurance
Known by locals as DelCo, Delaware County is a geographically small area just west of Philadelphia. Home to an estimated 570,000, Delaware County is a growing suburban area and a popular day trip from Philadelphia.
Delaware County's seat is Media, a small borough that in 2006 became the first fair trade town in America. Historic mansions, public gardens, wine trails and theaters are plentiful, and Brandywine Battlefield Park is a must for those interested in the Revolutionary War. A macabre but fascinating Museum of Mourning Art illustrates how people have coped with death through the ages.
Lancaster County Car Insurance
Between Philadelphia and Harrisburg is Lancaster County, described as Pennsylvania Dutch Country and the Garden Spot of America. Known for its large Amish community, Lancaster County leads the nation in farmland preservation.
Its county seat is Lancaster, one of the oldest inland towns in the U.S. Tourism is a primary industry and popular attractions are the historic Fulton Theatre, American Music Theatre, Dutch Wonderland Amusement Park and downtown Central Market.
Chester County Car Insurance
Founded by William Penn in 1692, Chester County is now home to an estimated 500,000 mostly affluent residents. It encompasses the western suburbs of Philadelphia, but also suburban Wilmington on its south end.
An annual Restaurant Festival draws about 30,000 foodies to West Chester, its county seat. Popular with visitors are the American Helicopter Museum and Educational Center, West Chester Railroad, Sandy Hollow and the Brinton 1704 House and Historic Site.
York County Car Insurance
Stretching just south of Harrisburg to the Maryland border, the Pennsylvania county of York is located in an agricultural region known as the Susquehanna Valley. The fastest growing county in the state for those aged 20 to 35, it is named after York, England.
The county seat is York, birthplace of the York Peppermint Pattie, a chocolate covered confection still produced by Hershey Co. The city also hosts what is reportedly the world's oldest fair, dating back to 1765. Popular with visitors is the Harley-Davidson factory tour and Perrydell Farm Dairy.
Berks County Car Insurance
Part of Pennsylvania Dutch Country, Berks County northwest of Philadelphia. Its county seat and only city is Reading, pronounced "Redding," home to the railroad of Monopoly fame and once known as Pretzel City USA.
The Wertz Bridge is the longest covered bridge in the state, crossing the Tulpehocken Creek and closed to motorized traffic. The Reading Pagoda is a 100-year-old structure that provides views of the landscape and is the only pagoda in the world with a fireplace and chimney. Visitors also enjoy the Mid Atlantic Air Museum, Crystal Cave, Central Pennsylvania African American Museum and Boyertown Museum of Historic Vehicles.
Westmoreland County Car Insurance
The southwest Pennsylvania county of Westmoreland is home to many commuters who prefer rolling hills and farmland to living in the city. The county seat is Greensburg and largest city is Murrysville, which is just 25 miles east of Pittsburgh.
Popular attractions are the Museum of American Art, live entertainment at the Palace Theatre, Historic Hanna's Town and Saint Clair Park, where concerts are held during the summers. The Westmoreland County borough of West Newton is the site of the annual Pittsburgh Renaissance Festival, which takes place over six weekends leading up to Labor Day. Other annual events include the Delmont Apple 'n Arts Festival, Fort Ligonier Days and the Westmoreland Fair.
Car insurance quotes are for one car and one driver who has state minimum coverage with $500 comprehensive and collision deductibles. The hypothetical driver is 40 years old, female, married, employed, a college graduate, and has good credit. She has no moving violations, claims, or lapse in coverage. The vehicles are assumed to be garaged on premises, used primarily for commuting, and driven 16,000 miles per year. Car insurance quotes include commonly available discounts and are estimates and not guaranteed.
Average Car Insurance Premiums
Pennsylvania’s premiums closely resemble the nation’s. NAIC.org reports that the state’s premiums as a percentage of income also nearly matched the nation’s during the last several years.
Drunk Driving Fatalities
According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s recent study, Pennsylvania’s drunk driving fatalities were above the national average in 2010 and 2011, but have dropped below since then.
Vehicular Theft in Pennsylvania
A solid decrease in Pennsylvania’s vehicle thefts in 2012 brought its rate to 117. The FBI reported the national average that same year at 229, over 110 points higher than Pennsylvania’s. Since then the number of thefts have continued to drop slightly.
LAWS & REGULATIONS
With as much history as there is in “The Keystone State”, laws and regulations are part of its DNA. Driving laws and regulations can be a complicated part of that, and this list has simplified the problem by gathering all the essentials in one place.
Minimum Requirements for Car Insurance in Pennsylvania
- The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PENNDOT) sates that drivers must maintain insurance on their vehicles at all times. The minimum coverage includes Medical and Liability Insurance.
- Medical Payments minimum:
- $5,000 per accident
- Liability minimums:
- $15,000 per person.
- $30,000 per accident.
- $15,000 per accident for property damages.
New Driver Licensing Requirements
- While all drivers must be licensed to drive in Pennsylvania, new drivers under 18 years of age have a system entitled the Graduated Driver’s License program to help them get more driving experience. However, all new drivers, regardless of age, must at least obtain a Permit prior to obtaining a drivers license.
- Each applicant must complete a physical exam and turn in form DL-180 prior to taking the written and vision tests. Once passed, the applicant will receive a Learner’s Permit. This permit is valid for one year, and drivers under the age of 18 must complete 65 hours of supervised driving training to qualify for the road skills test. This permit, for those under 18, is called the Junior Learner’s Permit. The following restrictions apply to this permit:
- The applicant may only drive with a licensed driver age 21 or older or an immediate relative who is 18 years or older and licensed. This supervisor must sit in the seat next to him/her.
- The applicant is limited on the number of passengers he/she may carry by the number of seat belts in the vehicle.
- Junior Driver’s License. After successfully completing the 65 hours of supervised driving, the applicant is qualified to take the road test and obtain the Junior Driver’s License. The following restrictions apply:
- First 6 months, the applicant may carry no more than one unrelated passenger who is under 18 years old.
- During the second 6 months, no more than three unrelated passengers under 18 are allowed.
- The applicant must hold this Junior Driver’s License for at least 6 months
- Regular Drivers License. An applicant who satisfies the requirements for the permit and Junior Drivers License must complete a driver education course and have held a clean driving record to obtain a Regular Drivers License
- Vision Screening. Applicants with a visual acuity of 20/40 or better and 120 degrees of peripheral vision may qualify for a license with no restrictions. Applicants with a visual acuity of 20/40 to 20/70 may qualify for a daylight driving restriction, and all applicants my test with corrective lenses if needed.
- Knowledge Test. The Knowledge Test will measure the applicant’s knowledge of traffic signs, the state’s driving regulations and safe driving techniques. The information to pass the test can be found in the Pennsylvania Driver’s Manual. 15 of the 18 multiple choice questions must be answered correctly to pass.
- Road Test. Prior to the road test, the test administrator will inspect the vehicle’s:
- Registration, insurance and inspection sticker
- Windshield wipers
- Turn signals
- Doors, seats and tires.
- The driving portion consists of the applicant’s demonstration of:
- The operation of all the necessary controls within the vehicle
- Parallel parking
- A waiting period of 7 days is required for a failed test.
- Fees: Permit and 4-year license: $34.50. A complete list of the BMV’s fees can be found on the PENNDOT website.
- BAC limit: .08 Pennsylvania law (§ 3802) defines DUI conviction penalties up to the fourth offense in 10 years, and the state adjusts the penalties for the BAC level and aggravated factors. The Pennsylvania DUI Association has produced a well-made infographic for reference regarding the state’s DUI process. Each offense has differing severities for BAC levels and aggravated factors. Included here are the basic penalties for a DUI of § 3802(a)(1) – Incapable of Safe Driving with low BAC or BAC unavailable and § 3802(a)(2) – BAC .08 to less than .10:
- First Offense – Misdemeanor:
- Mandatory 6 months probation
- Fine: $300
- Full Drug and Alcohol assessment if recommended
- Second Offense within 10 Years – Misdemeanor:
- Jail: 5 days to 6 months
- License suspension: 1 year
- Fine: $300 to $2,500
- Ignition Interlock: 1 year
- Full Drug and Alcohol Assessment
- Third Offense within 10 Years – Level 2 Misdemeanor:
- Jail: 10 days to 10 years
- License suspension: 1 year
- Fine: $500 to $5,000
- Ignition Interlock: 1 year
- Full Drug and Alcohol Assessment
Texting & Driving Laws
Texting is banned for all drivers. Distraction.gov
Laws are indispensable to civilized society; except for these from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. It is illegal to sleep in a refrigerator. No one may eat peanuts while walking backward in front of the Barnstormers Auditorium when a performance is in session. Every fire hydrant must be inspected one hour before a fire. And whatever one does, they must not sit down while watering the lawn!
State Department of Insurance
Department of Transportation
Department of Motor Vehicles