Did you know that Vancouver is often voted as the most congested city in Canada? So much traffic on the roads results in you spending more time each day in your car. More vehicles on the road can also result in a higher number of road traffic accidents. It is, therefore, important that Vancouver residents have adequate auto insurance. Vancouver ranks among the three most expensive places in Canada for car insurance.
In British Columbia (BC), the government provides auto insurance through the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC). Provincial law requires you to purchase liability coverage through ICBC. The British Columbia government mandates that you must have third-party liability coverage of at least $200,000. They also require you to have medical payments coverage, funeral expense benefits, liability income benefits and death benefits. However, many residents also choose to purchase additional coverage. So how do you find the best car insurance, BC? Also, if you live in other parts of Canada, take your time to check out the best car insurance options in Ontario as a whole, Toronto, or Brampton, too.
5 Best Car Insurance Providers in Vancouver
1. Scotia Life Financial
Scotia Life Financial is a popular option for Canadians looking for vehicle insurance. They offer a variety of coverage options to suit individual budgets and insurance needs.
Scotia offers the mandatory coverage requirements needed in Vancouver. You can then customize your package and add on additional coverage options, including:
- Liability Coverage
- Uninsured Auto Coverage
- Collision Coverage
- Comprehensive Coverage
- All Perils Coverage
- Rental Vehicle Coverage
There are some great advantages to choosing Scotia Life Financial. They offer a 24/7 claims service. This means you can always contact them in the event of an accident. They also offer coverage for ‘loss of use’. This means you will be covered for the cost of a rental vehicle if your vehicle is being repaired or replaced.
Scotia also offers flexible payment options to suit your budget and an online self-service feature. You can save money on your insurance if you take out another insurance product with them. They also offer a multi-vehicle discount.
A huge advantage to Scotia’s car insurance policies is the roadside assistance they provide. Roadside assistance is available 24/7, throughout Canada. You will always be covered if you break down or have any issues with your car.
2. Westland Insurance
Westland Insurance is one of the leading insurance brokers in Western Canada. Established in 1980, they are a BC-owned and operated company. They offer insurance products to individuals, businesses and non-profit organizations across Western Canada.
Choosing a broker that specializes in insurance in your province could be a huge benefit. Westland Insurance are experts on the mandatory insurance requirements in BC and the insurance needs of Vancouverites. They know the insurance needs of inner-city drivers and those who want to drive in the countryside, off-road or the mountains.
Westland Insurance offers Basic Autoplan coverage that provides you with the five key benefits required by law in BC. They also offer a wide section of additional coverage, including:
- Extended Third-Party Liability
- Collision Coverage
- Rental Vehicle Coverage
- Luxury Vehicle Coverage
- OFF Road Vehicles Coverage
- Excess Special Equipment Endorsement
Westland Insurance has dozens of offices throughout Vancouver and BC. To get a quote, or request more information, visit them directly or complete an insurance quote request form on their website.
There is an after-hours emergency contact number if you have an accident or need to make a claim. Their offices are also open on Sundays for all your insurance needs.
3. AMC Insurance
AMC Insurance has dedicated Vancouver auto insurance agents who are experts on Vancouver insurance. They help you find the best car insurance. They will also help you decide whether you want the basic ICBC plan or optional private insurance.
A dedicated insurance professional will help you find the right coverage. AMC offers affordable insurance policies without sacrificing its excellent customer service.
They have several insurance packages available including:
- Vancouver Basic Autoplan – This is the basic ICBC insurance required by law in BC.
- Vancouver ICBC Optional Insurance – This allows you to choose additional coverage and extra protection, as part of your plan.
- Vancouver Private Insurance – This private car insurance allows you to tailor your coverage.
- ICBC Enhanced Care – This offers a saving of approximately 20% on full ICBC coverage. You will have access to significantly better care and more recovery benefits if you are injured.
You can also choose from a variety of additional coverage options. This includes at-fault collision, extended third-party liability, specific perils, and loss of use. If you are involved in an accident, the insurance agency will handle everything.
To get a free insurance quote, contact AMC online or by telephone.
ICBC Basic Autoplan Insurance is the mandatory coverage required in Vancouver. It can be purchased directly from ICBC, cutting out the middleman completely. As well as the mandatory requirements, ICBC also offers optional coverage. This ensures you have the highest level of protection. Optional insurance products include:
- Collision Coverage
- Hit and Run Coverage
- Comprehensive Coverage
- Extended Third-Party Liability
- Loss of Use
- Specified Perils
- Income Top-Up
Whether you want to purchase new insurance, renew your policy, or update your insurance, ICBC can offer you assistance and a policy to suit you. They have more than 900 Autoplan brokers across BC.
ICBC offers discounts on their insurance plan if you meet certain criteria. Some of the savings they offer include experienced driver savings, senior savings, and a disability discount. They also offer a low-kilometre discount and an anti-theft device discount.
Their website provides useful information about how they calculate your quote. They also explain any risk factors that may result in a higher quote. View this list on their website and make any necessary changes to help reduce your premium. Their website also offers you a free estimate that you are not obligated to take.
BCAA is a leading provider of insurance in British Columbia. They currently provide insurance to 1 in 3 BC households. They are one of the largest ICBC Autoplan brokers in BC.
BCAA employs local experts in 29 locations across BC. You can visit them in person or contact them via telephone for all your insurance needs. Choosing a BC-based company can be advantageous. They have expert knowledge of all your ICBC requirements, as well as any additional insurance you may require.
They offer the mandatory ICBC Autoplan, as well as BCAA Optional Car Insurance. Optional Car Insurance customers will also receive additional benefits, including:
- Free tire protection.
- One accident forgiveness – This allows you to protect your driving record and prevent your premium from rising.
- Guaranteed repairs if your car is repaired by a BCAA Approved Auto Repair Service (AARS).
- Lock Re-Keyed – Up to $1,500 reimburses to re-key or re-code your locks.
- Pet Coverage – Up to $1,000 if your pet is injured in a car accident.
- $500 Service Guarantee – If your claim is not opened within 6 business days.
They offer a 24/7 emergency claims team and excellent customer service. BCAA members can receive impressive discounts. This includes up to 20% on optional car insurance and up to $1,000 a year on BCAA insurance.
Best Car Insurance Online
When looking for car insurance in BC, many people find it easier and faster to search for policies online. Most car insurance brokers should also help you to set up your ICBC mandatory car insurance. Some of the most popular providers of additional BC car insurance are:
- BCAA – Based in British Columbia. They offer a 10% discount if you take out their policy. They provide a 24/7 emergency claims team.
- Belair Direct – Their coverage plans are highly customizable to suit your needs. They often offer discounts for purchasing your insurance online.
- Westland Insurance Vancouver – They offer private insurance. Lower prices are offered for those who drive low kilometres annually.
Factors that Impact Your Car Insurance Rates
Several factors may affect insurance rates in Vancouver. It may be possible to lower your coverage cost by looking at what may be affecting your premium.
A key thing you can do to help reduce your cost is to take a safety awareness course. This shows that you are a responsible driver and are aware of the rules and regulations when driving in BC. A safety awareness course could save you money on your monthly premiums.
Also, ensure you maintain a clean driving record. Consider insurance costs before purchasing a particular car and do not include any unnecessary extras in your policy. Below, we will look at some of the factors that may be affecting your premium.
One of the most significant risk factors for insurance companies is drivers demographics. In particular, a driver’s age can have a big impact on the policy cost. Drivers below the age of 30 are deemed to be the highest risk, so they will be charged more for their policy. Newly qualified drivers, especially younger ones, will find that the cost of insuring their car is significantly higher than other drivers.
Your gender can also affect your policy cost. Young male drivers are statistically more likely to be involved in a traffic accident. Their higher policy price will reflect this.
Where You Live
Across Canada, people living in cities will pay more for their auto insurance than people living in the countryside. However, the cost of your policy can vary hugely within Vancouver. Living in an area with high crime rates, high reports of car thefts or more vandalism will harm your auto insurance rates.
If you live close to a major road or in an area of high traffic, you are likely to have a higher monthly premium. This is because the more vehicles on the road, the more likely an accident will occur. Generally, living in an area with more traffic accidents will cause you to be seen as high-risk by insurers.
Your vehicle information is a key factor that may impact your premium cost. The make, model and engine size of your car are all contributing factors. Car models that are stolen more frequently are viewed as being high-risk. A faster car with a more powerful engine is statistically more likely to be involved in a traffic accident.
An insurance provider will also take into account the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle when calculating the price of your coverage. Consider this when purchasing a new car.
Your own driving history will have a significant impact on your premium rates. An accident where you are deemed to be at fault will stay on your driving record for up to 10 years. Convictions such as speeding tickets will remain on your record for up to three years and can raise your premium rate by up to 40%.
A major conviction such as Driving Under the Influence can double your policy cost. You may also be at risk of having your coverage cancelled. Previous insurance claims may also negatively impact your policy price.
Type of Insurance
There are several mandatory requirements in Vancouver. These include third-party liability coverage, accident benefits and uninsured driver coverage. Any optional extras you have in your policy will raise your price.
However, do not automatically rule out, including additional coverage. If you ever needed to use them, it could save you a significant amount of money compared to paying out of pocket.
The Bottom Line
Although Vancouver is one of the most expensive cities in Canada for auto insurance, it is still possible to keep your costs low. Searching for your policy online allows you to easily compare quotes from multiple providers. You will also be able to customize your plan to match your driving needs. Keep a clean driving license, and always follow the road safety rules in Vancouver. By following these tips, you should get the level of coverage you require at an affordable price.