Find the cheapest car insurance quotes in British Columbia

Alexandre Desoutter Alexandre Desoutter  updated on 2020-11-05


You want to know how much is car insurance in British Columbia and what are the mandatory car insurance coverages in British Columbia?

You’ve come to the right place !

In this guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about car insurance in British Columbia: cover features, tips to save money as well as cheapest car insurance companies for your car in British Columbia.

Let’s dive in!

How does car insurance work in British Columbia?

In British Columbia, public insurance is required by British Columbia government. Basic auto insurance coverage is provided by public insurance. Third Party Liability is mandatory trough the ICBC, the British Columbia Government. You can upgrade you car insurance to be best protected trough private insurance. So in BC, you need to have the ICBC Basic Autoplan.

BC mandatory car insurance covers :

  • Medical costs, wage loss (up to $300,000 in medical and rehabilitation costs)
  • Third party Liability
  • Underinsured Motorist Protection
  • Hit-and-run damage and injuries​

What are the different car insurance in British Columbia?

In British Columbia, there are several car coverages that are mandatory by law:

Third-party liability

This insurance is compulsory and covers you for:

  • Material damage and bodily injury caused to others by your fault
  • The minimum mandatory amount is 200 000 $

As seen before, third party liability is offered by British Columbie Government.

Statutory accident benefits coverage

This insurance provides protection for bodily injury and:

  • Covers you if you are injured in an accident regardless of who is at fault
  • Covers the medical staff involved in the accident: medical care, rehabilitation and auxiliary care services
  • Covers income replacement.

Uninsured automobile insurance

This insurance applies if you or someone in your vehicle is either injured or killed by an uninsured driver, or by a hit-and-run driver.

This little table recapitulates well which car insurance coverage is mandatory in British Columbia.

Car insurance coveragesRequired ?
Public insurance Yes
Third-party liabilityYes
Accident benefitsYes
Direct Compensation Property DamageNo
Uninsured automobilistYes
CollisionNo
ComprehensiveNo
Car insurance coverages mandatory in British Columbia

What are the optional auto insurance coverages in British Columbia?

Here are all the options you can add to your car insurance to be best protected:

Collision car insurance in British Columbia

This auto insurance protects you in the event of a collision of your vehicle with an object, which can also be the rollover of your vehicle. This insurance covers property damage caused by this accident. For example, if you hit a traffic sign, you will be covered by collision insurance. This coverage is not mandatory.

Comprehensive car insurance in British Columbia

This insurance protects you for anything that is not collision or upset, as the name suggests, therefore for anything that is vandalism, glass breakage, theft, fire. If you park your vehicle on the street and when you come back, one of the windows has been broken, you will be able to use this insurance if you have subscribed to it. It is possible to make car insurance estimates to see how much you want to be insured up to.

Specified Perils Auto Insurance in British Columbia

It covers you for risks that you have specified in the contract. For example, you can mention glass breakage but not include vandalism, theft but not include fire.

All-risk car insurance in British Columbia

This insurance is a combination of all other insurances: collision, payout and collision free. The deductible is the same for all damages. You will thus be protected for all incidents beyond your control (vandalism, theft, fire) but also for incidents resulting from a road accident, collision with an object, or the overturning of your vehicle.

What are the other options that you could add to your car insurance in British Columbia ?

Here are the options you could add to your car insurance in British Columbia, most of the car insurance companies propose this :

OptionsDetailsAvailability in British Columbia
Leased vehiculeYour rental vehicle will be insured in the same manner as your insured vehicle(s).Yes
Accident ForgivenessYour first accident won’t increase your car insurance premium Yes
Replacement value for total lossAlso known as replacement value, your insurer will compensate you based on the purchase value of the vehicle without taking depreciation into account.Yes
Alternate Transportation BenefitsAlso known as loss of use of the vehicle, this covers the cost of rentals, transportation, cabs that you had to take during the period when you were unable to use your vehicle.Yes
Emergency roadsideif you are out of gas, stuck, have a cracked wheel, the road assistance is there for it. Yes
Options you can add to your car inusurance

How much is car insurance in British Columbia?

In British Columbia, there are a number of factors to consider when determining the price of your car insurance.

The price of car insurance in British Columbia is based on several factors such as:

  • Your age
  • Your sex
  • Your driving record, i.e. your driving history
  • Your permanent address: it won’t be the same price if you live in a crowded city or in the countryside.
  • The type of vehicle you drive: depending on the vehicle you drive, your premium will increase or not. If it is a really a model that can be easily stolen, your premium will get higher. If you drive one of the most stolen cars, it is quite sure that your premium will tend to be higher.
  • The use you make of your vehicle: are your journeys to and from work daily, for example? Do you use your vehicle for business purposes?
  • The number of people insured on your car insurance and their driving level
  • The date you obtained your driver’s license
  • Third party liability: did you choose 1 000 000 $ third party liability? More? Less? This changes your premium a lot.
  • The optional coverage : did you add accident forgiveness for exemple? Roadside assistance? Same, this impacts your premium.

Car insurance quotes British Columbia

On average, car insurance in BC is more expensive than other region in Canada.

According to a report from the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) from 2019, british Columbia drivers pay $1,830 on average for their car insurance coverage per year. This is much more than other regions in Canada, and it is due to lack of competition in British Columbia, as car insurance is mainly public.

What are the best discounts offered by car insurances in British Columbia?

British Columbia auto insurers offer many discounts to save money on your insurance. Here are some of the best discounts known:

  • Young driver discounts
    Many insurers offer discounts for young drivers because the insurance premium for young people is quite high.
  • Group discount
    You can benefit from a discount if you are part of a group, this can be members of an association, employees of the same company etc.
  • Discount for experienced drivers
    You can get a discount if you have a good driving record and are over 50 years old.
  • Discount for combined policies
    You can get a discount by combining your car and home insurance for example, the discount is often between 5 and 15%.
  • Discount for winter tires
    It’s snowing in British Columbia! That’s why insurers often offer a discount if you add snow tires to your vehicle.
  • Retiree discount
    You may be eligible for a 15% discount on Accident Benefits
  • Renewal Discount
    Your loyalty can be rewarded by some insurers, if for example you have been with them for many years without having caused any accidents. You may also be eligible for other discounts depending on the auto insurers in Ontario:
  • Low mileage
    Adding security to your vehicle

9 ways to get cheap car insurance in British Columbia

Here 9 tips so save on your car insurance in British Columbia:

  1. Bundle your policies : you could easily get a discount if you buy car and home insurance at the same insurer.
  2. Shop and compare to get the best deal. Never auto renew.
  3. Choose the right amount of deductible: if you choose a low deductible, your car insurance premium will go high. So choose high deductible if you want to lower your car insurance premium.
  4. Choose the coverage you need. For example, if you drive a really old car, maybe you should’t have a very complete car insurance.
  5. Pay annually: this will avoid to pay the rate fees to pay monthly.
  6. Security-device: you should install safety devices on your car, you could enjoy discounts!
  7. Have a good driving record: the best you drive, the lower you’ll pay.
  8. Install a telematic device: this tool will register your driving behavior and your car insurance premium will be adapt to your kind of driving. So, if you’re a safe driver, and you want to save money on your car insurance, go for it!
  9. Don’t hesitate to use the discounts we have just listed, depending on your situation. For example, if you’re a student, you will find interesting discounts for you.