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Last updated: June 15, 2024

USAA SafePilot Review

SafePilot offers drivers an easy, risk-free way to increase their car insurance discount.

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USAA is known for offering lower-than-average premiums, and it gives drivers an additional chance to save up to 30 percent through SafePilot, its usage-based discount program.

The program operates through an app, which tracks your driving habits whenever you’re on the road. If you practice safe driving, you’ll enjoy bigger discounts once it’s time to renew your policy.

As a writer for, I’ve conducted industry research to find out more about how SafePilot operates. While I’m not a USAA policyholder, I’ve reviewed other usage-based discount programs and can speak to how they compare to ones from other providers.

Is USAA SafePilot right for you? I’ll guide you through how it works, customer ratings, and where it falls among its competitors so you can decide.

Check out our USAA review for more on whether the provider is right for you. We’ve also reviewed the best auto insurance companies for military members.

Quick Look: USAA SafePilot Pros and Cons


  • Provides 10% discount upon sign-up, and up to 30% at each renewal

  • Won’t ever increase insurance premiums

  • Offers higher discount for enrolling multiple drivers


  • Program not available in California, New Jersey, or Delaware

  • Some Android users report the app drains battery

What is USAA SafePilot?

SafePilot is a discount program from USAA that rewards you for safe driving habits. SafePilot tracks the following aspects of your driving:

  • Location and time of day driven
  • Whether you’re the passenger or driver
  • Phone use, including distracted driving, hands-free calling, and hand-held calling
  • Hard braking
  • Hours driven annually
  • Potential accidents detected

How Much Do You Save With USAA SafePilot?

USAA customers save 10 percent when they sign up for SafePilot, then up to 30 percent off at the next policy renewal, depending on their driving habits. Multiple customers have reported receiving up to 30 percent off through SafePilot.

When Do You Start Earning the SafePilot Discount?

After the initial 10 percent auto insurance discount for signing up for SafePilot, you’ll need to drive at least 325 miles and 16 hours during each policy period in order to earn the potential 30 percent discount. If you don’t drive often, it may still be worth it to sign up for SafePilot just to receive the initial discount. Plus, like with State Farm Drive Safe & Save, USAA affirms that your driving score won’t ever raise your premiums.

If you have multiple drivers using SafePilot, USAA will aggregate your driving scores to determine the discount. Note that each participating driver must log the minimum 325 miles and 16 hours each policy period to be eligible for a score and discount.

How Does USAA SafePilot Work?


Getting started with SafePilot is simple. Once you download the app, just log in and enable all the requested phone settings so SafePilot can track your trips. Then tap “Let’s Begin” to launch SafePilot before you hit the road.

Trip Tracking

Like GEICO DriveEasy, USAA uses an app to measure your driving habits. The SafePilot app is separate from the USAA mobile app, and it automatically tracks trips. However, you’ll need to distinguish whether you’re the driver or passenger before any trip — even if it’s not in your car. If you don’t make the distinction, you may end up with a lower driving score for trips you didn’t drive yourself, like taxis or rideshares. Customers also report that any phone use while driving affects their score, including hands-free calling.

While it’s easy to have SafePilot downloaded on your phone, I’d likely find it inconvenient to mark trips before or after driving (and customers with safe driving programs that function similarly, like Progressive Snapshot, report the same). Some programs like State Farm Drive Safe & Save use a transponder to track safe driving, which ensures a more accurate score — and in my opinion, much fairer.

Data Privacy

SafePilot requires you to share your location data to participate in the program. In addition to using your data to calculate your driving score and discount, USAA may use this information when you file a claim after an accident. USAA states that this can help speed up the claims process.

Unlike many other safe driving programs, USAA states it will not share your driving information with third-party or marketing companies.1 The fact that USAA protects user data in this way is a big plus to me.

Crash Detection

The SafePilot app also includes crash detection — if it notices a sudden stop akin to a crash, it’ll send a notification to check whether you’ve been in an accident. You can use the crash detection feature to call 911 to receive support more quickly.

App Store and Google Play Reviews

Because I’m not a USAA customer, I checked out the reviews for a better sense of how customers use the SafePilot app.

App Rating (out of 5)
Android (Google Play) 4.2 stars
iPhone (App Store) 4.5 stars

For both iPhone and Android versions of the app, reviews commonly mention that there isn’t enough feedback to justify point deductions. The app only explicitly calculates scores based on harsh braking and phone use, but users report receiving small point deductions without feedback. Many reviews also say that the app calculates scores inaccurately, deducting points for making phone calls before driving or pulling over at gas stations. These are complaints I have seen with other safe driving programs as well.

Also, users of the Android version complain that the app uses a lot of data and drains battery life since it requires users to turn off battery optimization. If you’re an Android user, it’s an important consideration if you need to conserve your data on the road.

Meanwhile, customers who have received the highest discounts from SafePilot share that they don’t touch their phones at all while driving.

USAA SafePilot vs. the Competition

Here’s how SafePilot stacks up to other major providers’ discount programs:

Discount program Maximum discount (often varies by state) Enrollment discount (often varies by state) What it tracks Review period
Allstate Drivewise 40% 10%
  • Speeding
  • Braking
  • Time of day driven
50 trips; discount on renewal
State Farm Drive Safe & Save 30% 10%
  • Acceleration and speed
  • Braking
  • Cornering (sharp turns)
  • Phone distraction
  • Mileage (in some states)
Every 6-month renewal (first 90 days counted for initial discount)
GEICO DriveEasy 25% 10%
  • Braking and acceleration
  • Smoothness (consistent speeds)
  • Phone distraction
  • Cornering (sharp turns)
  • Other trip factors (including time of day)
Each policy renewal (usually 6 months)
USAA SafePilot 30% 10%
  • Braking
  • Annualized hours driven
  • Phone distraction (including hands-free calling)
Every 6-month policy renewal
Nationwide SmartRide 40% 10%
  • Miles driven
  • Braking
  • Acceleration
  • Nighttime driving
80 days
Liberty Mutual RightTrack 30% 10%
  • Braking
  • Speed
  • Acceleration
  • Nighttime and rush hour driving
  • Phone distraction
90 days
Progressive Snapshot $94 on average, according to Progressive2 $231 average
  • Braking and acceleration
  • Nighttime driving
  • Overall time on the road
  • Phone distraction
Usually after 6 months

Alternatives to USAA SafePilot

For drivers who aren’t ready to use SafePilot, USAA still offers plenty of ways to save. You can lower your premiums by taking advantage of USAA’s other discounts:

  • Bundling: Save up to 10 percent on all policies when you combine your car insurance with home or life insurance.
  • Good student: You’ll pay lower rates if you’re a full-time student with a 3.0 GPA or higher.
  • Multiple vehicles: Enjoy discounts on your policy for putting more than one car on the same policy.
  • Vehicle storage: Pay less for your policy if you need to store your vehicle for deployment or another reason.
  • Driving history: USAA rewards you with a discount if you’ve had a clean driving record for the last five years.
  • Low mileage: If you drive 12,000 miles annually, you qualify for USAA’s low mileage discount. USAA now also offers pay-as-you-drive insurance for low mileage drivers.

The Bottom Line: Is USAA SafePilot Worth It?

After researching SafePilot, I think it’s worth it in most scenarios. You’ll get a 10 percent discount just for enrolling, and your rates won’t increase even if you end up with poor driving scores. USAA offers the program in most states, and it’s an easy way to optimize your insurance savings.

While the app doesn’t always give detailed feedback, this may be less important if you’re more interested in the discount. From the reviews, it looks like you’ll need to stay off your phone completely to maximize your score, though you enjoy a lower premium if you meet the minimum requirements for a discount (at least 325 miles and 16 hours driven every six months).

However, I’d hesitate to use SafePilot if I were an Android user. The Android app reportedly drains battery and data, which can be a concern on the road. You’ll benefit from SafePilot if you have an unlimited data plan and a power cord in your car— otherwise, I’d recommend skipping the program.

In summary:

SafePilot Is Best For You If You:

  • Are a military member, veteran, or family member of military personnel
  • Want to maximize your auto insurance savings
  • Regularly drive without interacting with your phone
  • Have multiple family members on the same policy

SafePilot Is Not Best for You If You:

  • Prefer to use hands-free features on your phone while driving
  • Are a high-mileage driver
  • Live in California, New Jersey, or Delaware

Why You Can Trust Our Reviews

We use the following methodology to evaluate telematics discount programs like USAA SafePilot.

Tracked Behaviors and Data

We consider which behaviors the program tracks to calculate discounts. During trips, these programs typically track speed, phone use, braking, and cornering. We’re more partial to usage-based programs that recognize trips on their own. It’s also important that the insurance company keeps customer data safe and won’t disclose it to third-party agencies for marketing.


We look at where the program is offered since programs are not always available in every state. Additionally, we consider whether the discount is different depending on location.

Telematics Technology

We consider the pros and cons of whether the program relies on a mobile app or plug-in device to track your driving. Although mobile apps are easier to set up, some apps drain battery life and can mistakenly detect trips while users are passengers. Plug-in devices require more effort to set up, but may be more accurate. When evaluating the apps themselves, we look at ratings and reviews on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.


We are partial to programs that give 30 percent off or more in potential savings, along with a sign-up discount. It’s also important that programs won’t potentially raise your rates, as some programs do increase premiums for individuals who drive unsafely.

SafePilot Frequently Asked Questions

How does USAA SafePilot know I am driving?

SafePilot knows you are driving by utilizing smartphone sensors to detect when your car is moving. Since moving the phone physically can also activate sensors, it’s best to keep your phone stable while driving.

Can you cancel USAA SafePilot?

Yes. If you want to cancel SafePilot, you can delete the app from your phone. Once you stop using the app, you’ll no longer receive the discount for each policy period. It’s also a good idea to contact your agent and let them know you’d like to unenroll from the program.

Does USAA SafePilot cost money?

No, SafePilot doesn’t cost money. The program won’t increase your premiums, so your driving score will only count toward a discount during each policy renewal.

Does SafePilot track your location?

SafePilot tracks your location to ensure that your trip details are accurate. They may also use your location data for claims processes.


  1. USAA SAFEPILOT®. USAA. (2024).

  2. Get Snapshot from Progressive. Progressive. (2024).