How Much is Motorcycle Insurance?

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Alexandre Desoutter updated on 23 May 2023

You're ready to have your motorcycle, but you don’t know how Canadian motorcycle insurance works or which is the cheapest motorcycle insurance to choose?

We break down the types of motorcycle insurance, what is required and show you how to get the best motorcycle insurance quotes.

How does motorcycle insurance in Canada work?

Motorcycle insurance is mandatory by Canadian law. A typical insurance policy includes:

  • Third-party liability: This covers you in case the insured causes damage to a third party’s property or a person's well-being while riding the motorcycle. The minimum coverage in most provinces is around $200,000 but it is recommended to have $1 to 2 million dollars in liability protection.
  • Accident benefits: In case of hospitalizations or any other medical expenses due to an accident with your motorized vehicle, the costs can be covered, this also includes those costs related in case of death.

Good to know

IMPORTANT: in case of injury or disability, Accident Benefits coverage can cover loss of income. It can even provide income to your dependents if you are killed in a motorcycle accident.

  • Uninsured automobile coverage: this covers you if the driver of the vehicle that caused the accident or injuries does not have insurance or you are involved in a hit-and-run.

Motorcycle Insurance may also include optional Direct Compensation coverage. This means that damage to your motorcycle is also covered if you are hit by an insured driver.

Finally, optional coverages may include extra medical insurance, roadside assistance and comprehensive damage coverage against weather damage, fire, theft and vandalism.

Is motorcycle insurance mandatory?

Yes, in Canada basic liability motorcycle insurance is mandatory. It does change between provinces and with the size of your motorcycle engine.

Like with auto insurance, motorcycle insurance in Canada is a patchwork of government-owned provincial systems and private companies. Public insurance is the norm in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Quebec. Riders in other provinces and territories will go through private insurers.

In Canada, all motorcyclists are obligated to have an insurance policy that includes at least third-party liability, accident benefits and uninsured automobile coverage.

How much is motorcycle insurance?

The insurance rate is determined according to different factors:

  • Age and gender: Age is not just a number when it comes to motorcycle insurance. Insurance companies consider women and older riders less risky to insure than young men. They enjoy the cheapest motorcycle insurance quotes. Men under the age of 25 are the most high-risk group and correspondingly have the most expensive motorcycle insurance.

Watch out!

Higher rates for younger drivers seem unfair, but did you know that in British Colombia, the fatality rate for riders under 25 years is 15 times higher than those over 25?

  • Location: insurance prices vary between provinces, but also based on whether you live in an urban or rural area. More traffic, more dangerous road and a greater chance for theft mean higher rates.
  • Commute: Insurers weigh your territory of operation into their pricing. Where the motorcycle will be used and how many kilometres per month you drive matters.
  • Use of the vehicle: Is the bike for occasional recreational use or everyday use?
  • Driving experience: Older riders and those with more experience pay less for their motorcycle coverage. Keeping a good record is important! A poor driving record and previous accident claims will increase what you pay. People with particularly problematic records may struggle to find an affordable policy.
  • Type of motorcycle/motorbike: The year and model are essential in determining the price of motorcycle insurance. The more CC and higher the performance, the more it costs to insure. A sports motorbike will not have the same rate as a standard motorcycle. Similarly, if the CC is low enough your ride may classify as a moped or scooter meaning less stringent insurance and licensing requirements

Good to know

Need an example? Our team was quoted $730 a year or $60.83 per month minus taxes and fees for a 2020 HONDA CMX300A REBEL in Ontario with a 35-year-old male rider. The policy included $1 million in bodily injury and property damage, uninsured motorist, accident forgiveness and all perils coverage with a $500 deductible.

Since motorcycle coverage pricing depends on so many factors, request an individual quote at the top of this page to get an accurate price for you.

How much is motorcycle insurance for a new rider?

Inexperience and age are two of the biggest risk factors for insurance companies, so young drivers without a record should expect to pay a lot for their insurance.

In Ontario, motorcycle insurance may start at as little around $50 per month and range up to $300 per month for high-risk drivers. That works out to $1,500 to $3,600 per year.

Good to know

Sign up for a class and save! Many insurers give lower rates to riders who have completed a motorcycle training course recognized by their province. Students come away with better skills in handling their bikes so they are seen as less of a risk.

What is seasonal motorcycle insurance?

Getting insurance just for the warm months may seem like a good idea, but most policies are annual policies. You should maintain coverage throughout the year on a motorcycle and other vehicles even if you aren't using them. This provides a few advantages:

  • It prevents gaps in insurance coverage something that can drive up your costs when you reinsure.
  • It avoids early cancellation fees
  • You are still insured against theft, vandalism and weather damage.
  • You are still covered if you want to use the bike on an unseasonably warm day or in an emergency.

Finally, motorcycle insurance is often seasonally rated. The insurer prices the policy assuming that you won't be riding much off-season.

How to get cheap motorcycle insurance?

To get cheaper motorcycle insurance quotes, you can use the comparison tool at the top of this page. Here are some tips to save.

  • Don't buy more motorcycle than you need: Expensive, powerful bikes come with correspondingly pricier insurance rates.
  • Keep a clean driving record: Avoid speeding or committing other road violations. They can quickly drive up your insurance costs. By keeping a clean record, insurance companies will consider you a lower risk. This is especially important if you are under the age of 25.
  • Mind where you park: avoid leaving your motorcycle outside where it may be more exposed to theft and opt for using a parking garage. A theft or vandalism claim may drive up your rates.
  • Bundle your motorcycle insurance with your car insurance: many providers offer insurance bundling and it is cheaper and simpler to insure multiple vehicles under one insurer than under several. If you have several motorcycles, you may also be able to bundle.
  • Get multiple motorcycle insurance quotes: compare fees and coverage from a few insurance companies. Sometimes there is a big difference.
  • If you are part of a motorcycle club, check and see if they have any discounts on insurance companies.
  • A rider-training course may bring down your premiums. In Ontario some insurance companies even require it. You may pay several hundred dollars, but these usually pay for themselves quickly in premium savings.
  • Pay your motorcycle premium on time and in one shot! - Paying your insurance all at once may mean a significant discount over spreading the payments out over 12 months.

Remember, that even if motorcycle insurance feels expensive it protects you from the worst. Coverage may pay for damage to the motorcycle itself, injuries to you and your passenger and other third parties. Not convinced? The fine for getting caught without insurance starts at $5000 to $25 000.

What types of motorcycles can be covered by motorcycle insurance?

  • Standard motorcycles
  • Motor scooters
  • Mopeds
  • Motor-assisted bicycles
  • Trikes/tricycles, such as Can-Am Spyder, Harley Davidson Tri Glide or Freewheeler
  • Vintage motorcycles
  • Maxi/touring scooters with engines ranging from 250 ccs up to 839 cc

Watch out!

Sport motorcycles used for competition are not insured by all insurance companies.

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Alexandre Desoutter

Alexandre Desoutter has been working as editor-in-chief and head of press relations at HelloSafe since June 2020. A graduate of Sciences Po Grenoble, he worked as a journalist for several years in French media, and continues to collaborate as a as a contributor to several publications.