About Metromile Auto Insurance

If you don’t use your water or electricity at home, you don’t pay for it, right? With their pay-per-mile insurance, Metromile Auto Insurance uses this same concept to help customers who drive less than 10,000 miles per year save $500+.

Despite allowing urban dwellers to simplify the car-owning experience—and even helping “make car ownership a possibility where it wasn’t before”—Metromile insurance policies provide the same level of coverage that you’re used to with other carriers. You’ll just pay less.

Metromile also promises customers access to a 24/7 claims team, along with a OBD-II dongle (more next) that can decode your check engine light, manage how much you drive, and even remember where you parked your car.

If you live in the city and drive relatively little, you deserve lower rates than someone who commutes 60 miles a day, right? But is Metromile really as “revolutionary” as they’d like you to think? Even if they are, does this mean they’re your best option?

Let’s start answering your questions by looking at the “engine” that powers Metromile insurance.

Metromile Pulse OBD-II Dongle & Smartphone App

Formerly known as Metronome, Metromile’s Pulse is a small wireless device that plugs into your car’s diagnostic port (the same one used by your mechanic to diagnose problems with your car), without the need for tools or any other hassle.

According to Metromile, any information shared through your OBD-II port will be collected by the company, including the health of your vehicle (things like a check engine light). It can also track your miles driven, your location using GPS (this can be turned off at any time), and its onboard accelerometer and gyroscope can measure changes in velocity and angle (useful in the event of an accident). If you choose, you can download a CSV of all your data.

Finally, Pulse’s data can be accessed through Metromile’s app or through their online dashboard, where you can see routes that cost the least to drive, track and compare your gas mileage over time, monitor your car’s health, and even receive street sweeping alerts (currently available in Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego, and Los Angeles).

If you receive any alerts, Pulse can help you decode the problem and even put you in contact with Metromile’s staff mechanic, who will help address whatever’s going on.

Metromile App Alert for Car HealthIf Pulse alerts you to any potential problems, getting in touch with Metromile’s staff mechanic is as easy as pressing a button.

Given Metromile’s focus on technology—not to mention the fact that they specialize in insuring low-mileage drivers—how much can you expect to pay?

How Much Does Metromile Auto Insurance Coverage Cost?

We’ll talk about how Metromile establishes their rates in just a second, but in a nutshell, all their premiums are based on a monthly base rate, plus “a few cents” per mile. Here’s a quick example:

Let’s say you have a base rate of $35 per month, plus $0.05 per mile. If you drove 5,000 miles per year, you’d pay a total of $670 in total, or about $55 per month.

  • $35 base rate X 12 = $420
  • 5,000 miles X $0.05 per mile = $250
  • $420 + $250 = $670 per year

Pro tip: For a more personalized approach, be sure to use the savings estimator when you get a quote at Metromile.com, or call an agent directly.

However much you pay, your bill will consist of the current month’s base rate, plus your mileage charge for the previous month. If you don’t drive any miles during a month, you’ll only be charged the base rate.

You can earn multi-vehicle and mature driver (55+) discounts on your Metromile policy. There are no fees for terminating your policy, although you will be required to sign up for paperless document delivery and automatic billing.

Are Metromile’s Rates Really Based On Mileage?

If you go on a road trip, you won’t be charged for any miles you drive over 150 miles per day (250 miles in WA). You also won’t be charged when driving a rental vehicle. What happens if you regularly exceed your allotted mileage?

According to Metromile’s FAQ, you’ll be assessed your standard per-mile charge, but “you will never be penalized or have your rate increase purely because of an increase in annual miles. You are allowed to drive as much as you’d like …”

With average annual auto rates just north of $900, we can see from the numbers above that Metromile might be a drastically less expensive option compared to traditional insurance. However, if we were to triple the annual mileage in our example to 15K, this would result in a new annual premium of $1,170—far higher than the national average.

So, while Metromile’s eligibility (again, more soon) might not be based on mileage, their insurance is for low-mileage drivers and rates probably won’t be very competitive once you break the 10,000-mile mark.

The Partnership Between Metromile & Uber

Metromile and Uber have partnered to provide insurance 24/7 for Uber drivers, whether the policyholder is driving their car for personal use or while on the clock for Uber. This way, Metromile claims that most drivers will save money on their personal insurance premiums, since they drive relatively fewer personal miles and are avoiding costly commercial insurance policies.

Metromile’s FAQ reads:

“The partnership between Uber and Metromile enables coordination to verify data on both sides. Because Metromile logs all miles, we can subtract all miles between a ride being accepted and a ride ending (cancellation or a passenger safely exiting the vehicle) and bill only for personal miles.”

Before moving on, let’s talk about which coverages you can choose from with Metromile.

What Coverages Does Metromile Auto Insurance Offer?

Metromile Auto Insurance offers 4 different levels of liability protection, along with “full” coverage:

Pro tip: Remember that if your car is leased or financed, the bank might require higher coverage than you’d otherwise choose, which can increase your premium.

The reason you want coverage on your vehicle is so that it’ll be covered in the event of an accident. But what can you expect from the Metromile claims process?

Metromile Insurance Claims

Once you file a claim for a covered vehicle, you’ll be assigned a “dedicated Metromile customer experience advocate” to walk you through the process and answer your questions.

The Metromile claims team will also help you locate local repair facilities and keep you updated on the work as it progresses. If you require glass coverage, Metromile can make everything easy and convenient, regardless of which window needs replacement.

What Are Metromile’s Eligibility Requirements?

Before diving in, it’s important to note that Metromile’s policies are underwritten by National General Insurance. This means your coverage is provided by NGI, while Metromile only acts as the agent who sells you the policy. As such, Metromile isn’t the one approving or declining coverage.

The primary eligibility criterion for a Metromile policy is an OBD-II port, which has been required on most new vehicles sold in the U.S. since 1996. If you don’t have one you won’t be able to connect the Pulse or track miles, thus defeating the premise behind the company.

Metromile is currently only available in in California, Illinois, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington. You’ll also need to own or lease a permanent vehicle (Metromile doesn’t offer named non-owner policies). If you don’t reside in one of these, you can sign up for Metromile’s waitlist, where you’ll be notified when they come to your state.

Whether or not you qualify for a Metromile policy (and how much you’ll pay once you do) largely comes down to factors used by other insurance carriers; namely, your age, the type of vehicle you drive, the history (accidents and citations) of you and any other drivers in your household, and credit history and length of prior insurance, depending on state.

Despite what you might assume based on the data that’s transmitted from the Pulse Dongle, Metromile specifically states that “per-mile insurance doesn’t consider other driving factors such as how fast you drive, how suddenly you turn, or how hard you brake, just how many miles you drive.”

Has Metromile Received Positive Online Reviews?

Whether you’re reading about them through top-ranked consumer-focused sites like NerdWallet, Better Business Bureau, Compare.com, and many more, the consensus seems to be that if you drive infrequently (less than 10K per year), you could potentially save a decent chunk of change with Metromile.

On the flip side, many seemed to agree that if you don’t (at least) meet this basic guideline, you could potentially spend much more than a traditional auto policy.

Here on HighYa, 17 Metromile customers provided their feedback at the time of our research, giving the insurance agent an average rating of 2.4 stars. Common compliments revolved around significant savings (one reviewer claimed to have saved 50%) and solid claims experiences. Most complaints appeared to reference high premiums and confusing/frustrating claims experiences. In most instances, Metromile responded to these complaints directly.

Metromile’s iOS app had an average rating of 3.5 stars during our research, while their Android app came in slightly higher at 3.8 stars. Clearly, most users were pleased with the apps’ performance, although some complained that the designers sacrificed functionality for a more streamlined experience.

Should You Buy a Metromile Insurance Policy?

Based on what we’ve learned here, it seems like a good idea to obtain a Metromile quote if you:

  1. Drive less than 10K miles per year, due to the company’s unique pay-per-mile model. In fact, if you’re dead set on purchasing a policy like this, Metromile is the only game in town.
  2. Drive for Uber. Most lower-priced carriers specifically exclude livery—or, at least consider it a high-risk exposure and charge accordingly. As such, Metromile might provide a competitive price in this instance.

Regardless, remember that most insurance companies utilize highly complex variable rating systems to determine policy premiums. Just like any other carrier, what you pay could be much higher or lower than your neighbor, depending on thousands of different factors.

See Also: How to Decide If Usage-Based Car Insurance Is Right for You

Also, if you’re looking for some of the cool features of Metromile’s dongle—like the ability to track mileage and gas usage, provide maintenance alerts, or even provide a Wi-Fi hotspot—you have options like Hum by Verizon, Vinli, Automatic, and more. If you’re on the hunt for something bare bones that only provides diagnostics, you can probably find a dongle at your local auto parts store for $30 or less.

Did you take Metromile up on their pay-per-mile auto insurance? Tell us all about your experience by writing a review below!

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32 Customer Reviews for Metromile Auto Insurance

Average Customer Rating: 2.0
Rating Snapshot:
5 stars: 5 4 stars: 2 3 stars: 1 2 stars: 3 1 stars: 21
Bottom Line: 25% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 32
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  • 4 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Fraudulent business practices

    Defective devices sent three times. Finally, a device worked. I regretted signing up after reading the bad reviews regarding claims, endless emails regarding the shipment of multiple devices I received, and the defective devices. I canceled the policy and returned the three devices I had in my possession that they promised to collect weeks prior.

    30 days after I canceled and finalized payment and returned the three devices, I get yet another email with threats of charging me $100.00 for one device not yet received and as of now, 4/7/17, my devices are considered late! I had to cancel my credit card linked to them and open a fraud case. I have to call them at 6 am and get a nasty headache in order to deal with them again

    I thought I was done with this company. Absolute horrific customer service and follow through, with irresponsible and utter incompetence for the hardworking consumer who must take action and document every email and phone call just in case they screw me over!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    I had terrible experience with Metromile

    • San Jose, CA,
    • Apr 7, 2017

    At first, Metromile seems to me cheaper, and the charge per mile was a great idea. But that's it. Then started terrible things. They never pay me, and I had to pay from my own pocket for my accident.

    Just don't spend your money; it is a disaster!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Run far, far away!

    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Apr 6, 2017

    In no way, shape, or form can I ever in good conscience leave this company a good review. I've been with Metromile for over a year now, and I can say they are the spitting image of what is "wrong" with insurance companies. They are not worth the cheaper price, no matter what they may tell you, it's cut rate service from an obviously amateur insurance company.

    I filed a claim last year for someone hitting my vehicle outside the front door of a business that had cameras outside and was forced to do all the legwork myself; trying to get the local police to retrieve the footage, calling the companies' 3rd party security and trying to "prove" what is a very obvious hit and run, with zero help at all from Metromile. They never followed up and were of zero assistance, to the point that I just left the damage on the vehicle and had to take care of it on my own.

    At this point, I've been waiting for almost six weeks for them to resolve a different claim in which I purchased a brand new car, and a lady hit me and totaled it the next day, then claimed she wasn't at fault.

    The vehicle was an obvious total loss and the shop estimated more than 50% of the value and suspension/frame damage to the new car, and their adjuster first did not show up for weeks after the accident, subsequently recommended further diagnostics of the vehicle by the dealer (who also confirmed the diagnosis by the previous shop), then issued a sub-par payout that wreaks dishonest insurance company scamming out of paying sufficiently on a brand new lease.

    Not only are they grossly incompetent and take forever to respond, they waited another week after declaring the vehicle a total loss and are trying to go back on the payout and force me to wait 8-12 weeks to fix the vehicle, stating that they are being charged vehicle storage fees, which they themselves incurred by taking such an excruciatingly long time to respond to the claim and then requesting the vehicle be sent for further testing at the dealer. They are now saying they shouldn't have to pay the fees and that the cost to repair the vehicle, while still about 55% of the value, is too low to be a total loss, regardless of suspension and frame damage safety issues.

    I am not in a position to pay lease payments on a vehicle which I was informed was a total loss and cannot be driven for months, nor can I walk or work for almost six weeks due to an injury from this accident.

    As far as I'm aware, it is illegal for an insurance company to declare a total loss then take back the determination.

    This is a decision to could possibly cause me severe credit issues and possibly bankruptcy due to their negligence and lack of efficiency, which is by far unreasonable and flat out bad business.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Never expect any roadside assistance

    Horrible customer service. If you are expecting roadside assistance, just forget about it. The minimum wait time is four hours. It was the worst decision to go with this insurance company.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 15 out 22 people found this review helpful
    Updated review

    Good deal, but terrible claim service

    • Bend, OR,
    • Mar 24, 2017

    The no-fault accident in AUGUST of 2016 is STILL unresolved.

    My claim is fully backed up with eyewitnesses reports from public safety and STILL Metromile/NGIC are denying and dragging their feet, taking our premium all these months on a car they may end up totaling.

    Complaints have been filed with the state's insurance commissioner, who thinks it does sound like a serious case, plus a class action suit attorney has been contacted. Anyone interested in joining the class action, contact me.

    Metromile, if you don't want that kind of attention I suggest you fix our car NOW.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    Comments (3)
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    • Mar 22, 2017

      Mike

      If you're interested in a class action lawsuit, let's connect.

    • Apr 1, 2017

      Charleicia Spence

      Yes, I'm interested in a class action lawsuit.

    • Apr 4, 2017

      Nate

      I would be curious to know more about the class action lawsuit.

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    • Previous review
    • Sep 18, 2016

    Three weeks since accident and STILL no estimate

    What can I say? The monthly premium is certainly better than Geico, who I was with for years before. Unfortunately, all the horror stories I've read about MetroMile's auto claim service are starting to look like they're true.

    (read moreread less...)

  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Horrible experience

    • California,
    • Mar 14, 2017

    I switched to Metromile one year ago as I thought their policy would fit well with my second car that I don't drive much. Everything was fine until a damage occurred. I called them to open a claim on a Saturday and their system was down, so they couldn't open a claim. It took me two weeks to have the claim filled and managed before being answered that they would not cover anything.

    I would NEVER recommend this insurance to anybody! It is the WORSE claim service I ever had.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 22, 2017

      Mike

      If you're interested in a class action lawsuit, let's connect.

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  • 13 out 23 people found this review helpful

    I was so hopeful that this would be good!

    • California,
    • Jan 26, 2017

    I spoke with Kristy on 1/5/2017 to sign up for the insurance plan with Metromile. She was very professional, and I was hoping this would be a great option in lowering my rates since I work at home and don't drive a lot.

    Almost immediately after signing up, I started to receive emails instructing me to attach the device. After two notifications and two days later, I called to let the company know I had not received the device. After being on hold for ten minutes, I decided to take the option of them calling me back, but they never did call me back.

    The next day I did receive the device and tried to install it in my automobile, and could never find the port to do that. I called the Metromile back, and after another 15-minute hold, I spoke with a representative that told me to take the device into an Auto Zone store, and they would install it free of charge. After waiting in line for 10-15 minutes at the store, I was informed that in the State of California and New York it is against the law for Auto Zone to install the device.

    My time has been wasted on numerous occasions with Metromile, and I have been misinformed, which resulted in more time being wasted. I don't have any confidence in the service, which I am canceling now!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 22, 2017

      Mike

      If you're interested in a class action lawsuit, let's connect.

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  • 10 out 13 people found this review helpful

    Awful customer service

    • Redwood City, CA,
    • Jan 25, 2017

    Metromile Auto Insurance and its partners have awful customer service and do not care for your repeat business. Twice in one year, I've had claims where I was not at fault. One incident was vandalism, and the other a hit and run. In both cases, I was treated as a criminal. They not only denied my deductible waiver in the hit and run, but went on to claim some two points of impact "BS" and claimed I owed two deductible.

    These guys are crooks. Don't do business with them. I have a very competitive quote with Allstate and will be changing my provider. Way to go Metromile, way to lose decades of my business. I wouldn't recommend you to my worst enemy.

    Are there any post where someone was in an accident and was pleased with Metromile? Ask yourself this question before using them.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 9, 2017

      Goodi, Sr. Customer Experience Advocate

      Hi James, we're really sorry to hear about your experience. Previously, Metromile had been partnered with a separate company (National General Insurance Group) to underwrite our policies. In working with an external partner to underwrite our policies and resolve claims, we recognized the experience could feel disconnected and it was not the best-in-class experience that we expect for our customers. Because of that, we have launched a new claims service, which is underwritten by us, Metromile Insurance. Our new system includes an automated claims submission process online and on our app as well as dedicated assistance from our claims team who have more than 200 years of insurance experience. Qualified claims can be resolved within hours. Again, we're sorry for this frustrating experience and hope that you'll consider giving Metromile another chance.

    • Mar 22, 2017

      Mike

      If you're interested in a class action lawsuit, let's connect.

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  • 7 out 9 people found this review helpful

    Cheap but horrible

    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Jan 19, 2017

    That's right, this insurance is cheap, So you might be happy when you first joined, but I have had this insurance for two years and the HORRIBLE experience started two months ago.

    I had a comprehensive claim happen two months ago. Kim was the person who was holding my case, but before I received the check, she was no longer working there anymore. WHAT? It has been two months now since the incident, and I have not received the check yet. They sent the check to the wrong address, which Kim said the check was going to me, but the check was mailed out to the wrong body shop. HOW COME?

    Please tell me what I can do to get the check, the check doesn't belong to me, it belongs to the body shop. Don't go CHEAP, it's HORRIBLE.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 9, 2017

      Goodi, Sr. Customer Experience Advocate

      Hi Ye, we're so sorry to hear about your poor experience. Previously, Metromile had been partnering with a separate company (National General Insurance Group) to underwrite our policies. This means that they were financially responsible for claims, and also in charge of the whole process. Since customer satisfaction is of utmost importance to us, we are now underwriting our personal policies so that we can oversee the entire claims experience from purchase to resolving any claims. If you need to reach our team in the future, head to www.metromile.com/contact.

    • Mar 22, 2017

      Mike

      If you're interested in a class action lawsuit, let's connect.

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Uber Driver? This is perfect!

    • Chicago,
    • Jan 1, 2017

    So I have lived in Chicago a couple years and I can say Metromile is actually perfect for me. I use public transportation more than I did while living in the country so a lot of the time my car doesn't move.

    I also drive for Uber part time and Metromile doesn't charge for those miles since Uber provides its own insurance which in my opinion makes more sense than the Rideshare plans other providers pride themselves in offering. So far those types of plans are always 200 dollars and up. Ridiculous! If I drive for Uber once in a big while, why should I pay that much for insurance. I'd have to start driving for Uber after my regular job every day to afford that.

    Street cleaning notifications are great too. Sometimes I'm in a lot and not on the road in question but when I see those, I know that so I ignore that and move on.

    Most of the negative reviews on here are quite outrageous and mostly seem they are made by people that just don't like the technology.

    I have no experience yet with the claims process. I hope I don't have to but in the event I do, I'll write another review.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 13 out 17 people found this review helpful

    Pathetic

    I have them as an insurance company. I drive 3 miles a day. My base rate used to be $58 a month with 8.3 cents per mile when I first signed up. Only 6 months in and they raised my rates to $60 a month and 9.3 cents per mile. Sounds like they will do this EVERY 6 MONTHS! Then I just received an e-mail saying that my policy is canceled cause the expiration date on my card changed. Did anyone call me before they went and canceled my policy? Look elsewhere... I am.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 22, 2017

      Mike

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