Who is Flo from the Progressive commercials?

Actress Stephanie Courtney has been portraying Flo, the Progressive car insurance woman, in commercials since 2007. Flo has been an excellent spokesperson for the company, and we'll cover the reasons why below.

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UPDATED: May 23, 2022

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Written By: Laura BerryReviewed By: Joel OhmanUPDATED: May 23, 2022Fact Checked

Here's what you need to know...

  • In addition to car insurance, Progressive offers coverage for boats, houses, and other vehicles including snowmobiles
  • Flo is one of the icons created for Progressive to sell their insurance, and she’s now widely known
  • Not quite a mascot and more of a face for the company that customers can easily identify, Flo is similar to the GEICO gecko in that way

Wondering who the woman that plays Flo in the Progressive car insurance commercials is and why she’s all over their commercials? Lots of different companies have spokespersons that help deliver a message, but not all of them become memorable.

Flo the Progressive commercial woman has become one of the most memorable characters captivating people nationwide. Flo, the often loved but sometimes hated Progressive Superstore cashier, is portrayed by Stephanie Courtney.

Courtney has been an actress for well over 20 years. However, it’s only more recently that she began her career as the perky Progressive car insurance woman. Flo has become the Progressive spokesperson and has done an amazing job, considering there are plenty of drivers who can identify her and the brand she represents.

To compare quotes from top companies like Progressive side by side with many competing companies simply enter your zip code above to start comparing car insurance.

Who is the actress behind Flo?

So now we can answer the question, “Who is Flo?” Her name is Stephanie Courtney.

Stephanie Courtney is an actress who was born on February 8th, 1970, in Stony Point, New York. She began her acting career in the first grade and fell in love with it immediately. She has an English degree from Binghamton University. As for her personal life, she is both a wife and mother as well.

Her sister, Jennifer Courtney, is also an actress. On November 25, 2008, Stephanie Courtney married Scott Kolanach, who is the lighting director for The Groundlings.

The Groundlings is a Los Angeles improv theater where Courtney is the main company member. Courtney still performs improv at The Groundlings, but she originally started doing stand-up comedy in New York.

After graduating from the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City and doing mostly free theater, Courtney moved to Los Angeles where there were more acting opportunities.

It only took six months of stand-up comedy before she was discovered by her current manager.

Her first movie role was that of Kate in “Sweet Bird of You” in 1988. In that same year, she appeared in the television show “Mr. Show with Bob and David.” In 2000, Courtney’s television career started to gain momentum and by 2003 she was making more feature films.

In 2007 she played Gayla in “The Heartbreak Kid” along with Ben Stiller. You may have seen her in big television hits such as “Angel,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “ER,” and “Without a Trace.” Her latest movie was in 2009, where she played Karen Balsac in “Coco Lipshitz: Behind the Laughter.” Most recently, Courtney appeared on Jay Leno as well.

In total, she has had more than sixty movie and television appearances, which does not include all of her commercials or live shows.

Courtney was awarded the Copper Wing Award in 2003 for Best Ensemble Acting. She shared the award with her co-stars of “Melvin Goes to Dinner.”

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What sort of spokesperson is Flo for Progressive?

The character of Flo, the Progressive insurance marketing icon, was born sometime in 2007. As mentioned above, she is played by Stephanie Courtney in a series of television commercials for Progressive.

Flo’s role is that of a cashier selling Progressive in a bright, white retail store. Capturing the attention of viewers everywhere, Progressive was happy to sign another contract for a series of commercials with Courtney back in 2008 and then again in 2009.

After two hours of getting her hair teased and her makeup applied, Courtney is transformed into her character of Flo.

Although the Progressive woman is a scripted character, Courtney is allowed to add some improvisation to the role, letting the silly side of the actress spill onscreen a bit.

It seems the big debate about Flo is why she is so appealing to the masses. She has been described as cute, perky, comical, and relatable. She has also been described as annoying, so it ultimately depends on the person watching the commercial and whether or not they find Flo to be someone they find funny.

However, statistically, the latter group is in the very low numbers and most people are quite fascinated with her.

The debate is mostly what makes Flo so relatable. Some attribute it to her appearance, with the retro look and stark contrast to modern dress. Others think her bubbly personality is charming and gives her an approachable aspect.

Perhaps the combination of the two is what makes her a growing sensation in the media. Whatever the reason is, the majority of people enjoy her as a spokesperson.

Progressive has done all that it can to capitalize on the sudden fame of its spokesperson. They even have a “Dress Like Flo” section on their website. This may seem extreme, but you have to remember that it’s all to advertise their insurance. If your customers are having fun, they’re going to think you’re a fun company, and that builds a reputation.

This is no doubt why they have given Flo center stage. She even has her own Facebook page, which garners plenty of attention from members.

Flo in Progressive’s Television Commercials

In her character role, Courtney plays Flo, a cashier that works in a Progressive insurance retail store. With her outgoing personality, she is also known as the Progressive woman.

While most of the commercials with Flo are behind the cash register or in the store, there is also one that takes Flo on the road. One Progressive commercial features Flo on a motorcycle, selling Progressive as the number one motorcycle coverage company.

Other “in-store” commercials also stress that in addition to motorcycle insurance, Progressive offers boat insurance and homeowners insurance.

Although Courtney’s commercials featuring Flo are delivered with comical intent, the underlying Progressive insurance slogan is, “Caring for you and your loved ones.”

Other selling points include shopping less and saving more, saving more while getting more, shopping on your terms, freedom to name your price, free quotes, savings that everyone can enjoy, easy to use, great deals, and multiple discounts.

Hopefully, this helped in answering the question, “Who is the progressive woman?”

What should you know about Progressive insurance?

As much as we may have made it seem as though Flo is all there is to Progressive, there’s much more to their insurance.

Progressive has been selling insurance since 1937.

In addition to car insurance, they also sell coverage for boats, commercial autos, motorcycles, RVs, snowmobiles, and trucks.

In 2008, Progressive launched their Name Your Price® plan, letting people set their insurance budget and customizing an insurance package to meet that price.

The plan takes into consideration various coverage options along with limits and deductibles to offer a policy suited to a price that is affordable for you.

Once a ballpark range is determined, a sliding scale is used to help custom tailor the package for the client. In addition, Progressive offers MyRate(SM), which was also introduced in 2008.

MyRate(SM) is an optional plan that offers customized rates to drivers based on their driver safety, rewarding drivers who drive safely with lower rates and less expensive car insurance.

Progressive has added Segway insurance to their product line, ensuring you and your Segway HT. A Segway HT can go up to 12.5 miles per hour and is very cost-effective, taking up no more room than the width of an average person.

The batteries are rechargeable and a nickel’s worth of energy cost will get you two hours of use.

It is a novel form of alternative transportation and Progressive offers novel insurance for it. The only states where Progressive does not offer Segway HT insurance are Massachusetts and Washington, D.C.

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The Bottom Line

Progressive absolutely has a forward-thinking approach to selling insurance. Flo ensures that people watching the commercials are aware she works for Progressive, and she provides a smiling face for the company. They also have a wide range of policies available, which can be useful if you’re looking for more than one policy.

No matter what type of insurance you’re looking for, comparison shopping is usually your best chance to save some money.

You can easily compare multiple companies with our free comparison quote tool below. All you have to do is enter your ZIP code to begin.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

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Written by Laura Berry
Former Insurance Agent Laura Berry

Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP® Joel Ohman

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