The benefit of having car insurance in Calgary
Having proper car insurance is an important part of driving in Calgary. Of course, it’s against the law to drive without insurance. If you're caught, you can face severe fines and even jail time if you don't pay your fines on time. And multiple instances of being caught without insurance can snowball into much larger fines while making it more difficult to find affordable insurance in Calgary. There are many reasons it would be unwise NOT to purchase car insurance if you own a car.
The law isn't only protecting other drivers. It's also helping to protect you.
Explaining mandatory car insurance in Calgary
Car insurance is mandatory everywhere in Canada, and that includes Calgary. Thus, if you want to drive in Calgary, you will need to purchase a valid auto insurance policy in Alberta. An Alberta insurance broker at BrokerLink can explain how mandatory coverage works in the province to ensure your policy complies with local laws. Using an insurance broker also has other benefits, such as cost savings and convenience. A broker can unlock auto insurance discounts for you and save you time by shopping around on your behalf.
Here are a few great benefits to having car insurance in Calgary
Coverages below depend on the type of coverage you choose:
You're in compliance with the law
You never have to worry about being charged for a lack of insurance as long as you're covered and have valid proof of insurance with you.
You're protected in case of an accident
Car accidents can happen any time and you don't have to be at fault. After all, another driver might make a mistake that you have no control over and that can lead to damages. A good car insurance policy will help you repair your car or replace it so that you don't find yourself having to cover the costs on your own.
You're protected in case of an injury
Your medical insurance will likely cover a great deal of any medical costs. But you might need therapy or have costs related to an injury that your medical insurance doesn't cover. Your auto insurance can provide help in these cases.
You're covered in the event of theft
What happens if someone steals your car? Car insurance can help you replace the car.
You're covered in the event of damages from nature
A tree falls on your car or a flood causes major damage. It's no one's fault but it can be costly to repair. Your car insurance would cover this type of damage.
You can access a replacement vehicle while yours is being repaired
Some policies offer an allowance so that you can rent a car while your car is being repaired.
What factors affect the cost of affordable car insurance in Calgary?
Not all policies have the same premiums. There are a number of factors that can affect the cost of your car insurance rates. At BrokerLink, we go through a customer's individual information to make sure they receive all of the possible savings offered for their circumstances.
Here are some factors that will impact your car insurance rates:
A good driving record can help you save money because insurance providers see you as a good risk. A bad driving record or filing many claims can make your premiums go up significantly.
Young drivers usually have a higher premium because they're in a demographic with more accidents. Often rates will go down as you age, providing your driving record is good.
The area where you live impacts the premiums for your car. Calgary's rates are slightly higher than in other areas of Alberta, so your premium may be higher here than in other areas.
Type of coverage
The amount of coverage you have on the vehicle will impact the premium.
The make and model of the car
Some cars are more costly to insure than others. There are many reasons for this. For example, some types of cars tend to be in more accidents or are more prone to theft.
Safety and security features
Having a car with safety features that protect the driver or improve driving can lower your rates, as can features that protect your car from theft.
What types of car insurance coverage are compulsory in Calgary?
Four types of car insurance coverage are mandatory for Calgary drivers, and we provide a brief breakdown of each below:
Third party liability coverage
Third party liability coverage protects drivers that are involved in a collision that they caused. Under this portion of your policy, your insurance company can reimburse you for the cost of legal fees and any relevant medical or property damage repair bills associated with the accident. Drivers in Alberta are required to carry no less than $200,000 in third party liability coverage at all times, though many drivers opt to carry more.
Accident benefits coverage
Accident benefits coverage is intended to reimburse policyholders for medical expenses if someone involved in an accident needs medical attention. Accident benefits coverage can be claimed regardless of whether you caused the accident or not, and it can be claimed for yourself or someone else who suffered injuries in the accident, such as a passenger, pedestrian, or another driver. Accident benefits can pay for medical costs not covered by standard health insurance, which could include rehabilitation, physical therapy, prescription medications, and more.
Direct compensation - property damage coverage
Direct compensation - property damage coverage offers financial protection for policyholders if they get into an accident with another driver who was at fault, and the accident results in property damage. For example, if you are involved in a collision that damages your car and the other driver caused the accident, you can be reimbursed for any necessary vehicle repairs according to the direct compensation - property damage portion of your Calgary car insurance policy.
Uninsured automobile coverage
Uninsured automobile coverage is also mandatory in Alberta, and it protects drivers if they get into a collision with another driver who does not have any car insurance or does not have adequate insurance coverage. Uninsured automobile coverage can also be claimed if you are involved in a hit-and-run accident.
Optional Calgary car insurance coverage
Why mandatory car insurance in Alberta is just that - mandatory - it isn’t the only kind of coverage available to Calgary drivers. In fact, many insurance companies give Calgary motorists the option of adding several types of additional coverages to their policies. A few popular optional car insurance coverages in Calgary are as follows:
Collision coverage is optional coverage that can be claimed if you get in an accident that results in property damage. It can be claimed whether you get into an accident with another car on the road or a grounded object. Further, collision coverage is valid whether you caused the accident or not.
Comprehensive coverage is centred on protecting Calgary drivers from the financial consequences of non-collision-related incidents. For example, if your car is stolen while parked on the street, your insurer may compensate you for the cost of replacing it if your policy has comprehensive coverage. Comprehensive coverage only protects your vehicle from damage caused by specified perils. You can select which perils you want to include in your policy, with some of the most common options in Alberta being fire, wind, falling objects, theft, water damage, and vandalism.
Accident forgiveness coverage
One final type of optional car insurance coverage popular among drivers in Calgary is accident forgiveness. Accident forgiveness is additional coverage that can be added to your car insurance policy as an endorsement, to protect your driving record and to help prevent your insurance premium from increasing if you have an at-fault accident claim. Note: coverage varies by province.
Find cheap Calgary auto insurance with these money-saving tips
Calgary drivers should never pay more for car insurance than they have to. At BrokerLink, we make sure of that by comparing quotes and unlocking discounts on your behalf. We also let our customers in on the industry’s best-kept secrets for saving money on auto insurance. A few of our top tips can be found below:
Increase your deductible
A general rule of thumb in the insurance industry is the higher your deductible, the lower your premium. So if you’re looking to save money on auto insurance, one way to do that is by increasing your deductible. The average car insurance deductible in Alberta is $500. By raising your deductible to $1,000 or more, you could reduce how much you pay for Calgary car insurance. To find out whether increasing your deductible is right for you, contact BrokerLink. We can explain what a deductible is, as well as the pros and cons of increasing yours.
Choose annual over monthly payments
One simple but effective way to save money on Calgary auto insurance is by paying for your policy annually rather than monthly. Paying monthly may cost more in the long run as insurance companies could add administrative fees for each monthly payment. Therefore, the fewer payments you make, the cheaper your policy will be.
Insure multiple vehicles together
If your household has more than one vehicle, insuring them together can make you eligible for a discount. So if you’re looking to insure your car, as well as your spouse’s car, insure them both at the same time with the same insurance company, and you may save between 15% and 20% on each policy.
Bundle insurance policies
Bundling insurance policies together is another way to save money on Calgary auto insurance. The more insurance you buy from one company, the more likely they are to give you a discount. So if you’re also shopping for home insurance, business insurance, or insurance for leisure items like a cottage, boat, or ATV, look for an insurer that sells multiple kinds of insurance and purchase all your policies from them. Bundling multiple insurance policies together can save you up to 15% on each policy.
Install winter tires on your vehicle
Alberta winters are no laughing matter. Ice, snow, and sub-zero temperatures all make winter driving infinitely more dangerous. But installing winter tires on your vehicle, which are known for their superior capabilities in cold weather, can make driving safer. Insurance companies recognize this, which is why they offer discounts to drivers who install winter tires on their vehicles. Snow tires aren’t mandatory in Alberta, so if you choose to buy them, your insurer may reward you with savings of up to 5% on your car insurance policy.
Enroll in driving school
Enrolling in an approved driving school in Alberta can save you money on auto insurance. Insurance companies recognize that driving schools produce skilled and knowledgeable drivers who know the rules of the road and are more likely to obey them. Thus, they offer discounts to young drivers who can prove they completed professional driving lessons. Since new drivers tend to have the highest insurance premiums, the insurance discount you receive from attending driving school can be a major benefit.
Work with an insurance broker
One last way to save money on your Calgary auto insurance policy is by working with a trusted insurance broker. BrokerLink has been in business for over 30 years, and during this time, we have helped countless Canadians find affordable car insurance policies. We understand that every person’s financial situation is different and are dedicated to finding our customers the best policies, no matter their budget. Our expert insurance advisors can make you aware of discounts you didn’t even know you were eligible for. When you work with a BrokerLink broker, you’ll have someone by your side every step of the way, ensuring you find a policy that suits you and your family. Therefore, one of the most effective methods of saving money on Calgary car insurance is by getting in touch with BrokerLink.
What factors impact Calgary auto insurance rates?
Many factors impact car insurance premiums in Calgary. A BrokerLink insurance broker can discuss these factors in more detail, but for now, here is a list of the most common details that an insurance company will consider when calculating your Calgary auto insurance rates:
- Where you live (and where you regularly commute)
- Model, make, and year of vehicle
- Past claims
- Average mileage
- Driving experience
- Driving record
- Insurance history
- Deductible amount
- Regulatory bodies
- How you use your vehicle
To learn more about which factors impact Calgary car insurance premiums or if you have questions like, “Does insurance cost more for a newer car?” or “How many car insurance claims per year?”, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a BrokerLink insurance advisor.
Tips for new drivers in Calgary
New drivers are often nervous. Like any skill, driving takes practice to fully master. If you have a new driver in your home, pay attention to safety features in your car and ask about them when you purchase a new car.
Your new driver will need a lot of practice behind the wheel. If their parent makes them nervous, it might be a good idea to have someone else drive with them to help them learn better. It's also an excellent idea to take drivers’ education courses. You might even have your young driver take the course a second time to provide them with more instruction and practice before they're on the road on their own.
Can I drive without insurance in Calgary, Alberta?
No, you cannot drive without auto insurance in Calgary or elsewhere in Alberta, as driving uninsured is against the law. If caught driving without a valid, up-to-date car insurance policy, you could face serious consequences, ranging from hefty fines to jail time.
For example, an uninsured motorist can be fined between $2,875 and $10,000 for a first offense in Alberta. Failure to pay this fine can result in jail time ranging from 45 days to 6 months.
For a second offense in Alberta, the minimum fine for driving without insurance is $5,000, and the maximum fine is $20,000. Again, failure to pay the fine can result in jail time lasting anywhere between 60 days and 6 months.
Therefore, driving without insurance in Alberta is not worth the risk. So if you are currently driving without insurance or if your existing policy is set to expire, do yourself a favour and contact BrokerLink. One of our expert insurance advisors will be happy to help you find a competitive policy that complies with Alberta’s minimum coverage requirements.
Why purchase Calgary car insurance?
Beyond car insurance being mandatory in Alberta, there are many reasons Calgary drivers choose to buy auto insurance. Namely, car insurance offers financial protection in a wide range of circumstances. From collisions to bodily injury, your car insurance policy can safeguard you against some of the most common risks of driving. Keep reading to discover the top four reasons Calgary drivers purchase car insurance:
You are protected in case of bodily injury
Car accidents can easily lead to injuries. Thankfully, most standard car insurance plans in Alberta include bodily injury coverage, so if you require medical attention following an accident, you can seek compensation from your insurer to help cover the cost of medical expenses. Specifically, car insurance coverage can pay for medical expenses not covered by health insurance, such as prescription medications or rehabilitation.
You are protected in the event of an accident
Car insurance offers financial protection should you get into a collision on the road. Auto accidents happen every day, even to the safest of drivers, and they may result in costly damage to your vehicle. But if you have car insurance in Calgary, your insurance provider can help pay for the cost of repairing or replacing a vehicle damaged in a collision.
You are protected in case of theft
If you choose to include comprehensive coverage in your Calgary auto insurance policy, then you and your vehicle may be protected in the event of theft. This means that your insurance provider will help pay for the cost of replacing your vehicle if it is stolen. This type of coverage may also protect your car against vandalism, fire, and water damage.
You are in compliance with the law
Last but not least, purchasing Calgary auto insurance means you are in compliance with provincial law. Getting behind the wheel without insurance in Alberta can have serious consequences, financially and otherwise. For example, if caught driving uninsured, you could temporarily lose your driver’s license and be fined up to $20,000.
We’re in your community
BrokerLink puts the community first. We think of ourselves as a key part of the Calgary community, which is why we love supporting our local customers in any way we can. Whether you need help finding the right car insurance policy or simply want advice on Calgary auto insurance, the BrokerLink team is here.
Local Alberta insurance links
If you’re a member of a group or association, you may be eligible for more discounts.
At Calgary BrokerLink, we’re here to help you with any insurance needs you may have. Whether it’s insuring your home, car, business, recreational items, travel plans, or pets, let us help you find the best coverage possible.
You can reach us by phone, email, or in person at any one of our locations throughout Alberta. No matter how you choose to get in touch, a BrokerLink insurance advisor will be happy to assist you. We also encourage you to take advantage of our free online quote tool that can provide you with a competitive quote in minutes.
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FAQs on Calgary auto insurance
Should I purchase Calgary car insurance from an insurance broker or agent?
This depends on your needs and preferences. Many customers wonder about buying car insurance from an insurance broker vs agent
, and the reality is there are pros and cons to both.
Can I put my Calgary car insurance on hold?
“Can I put my car insurance on hold
?” is a common question among drivers. Some insurance companies will let policyholders put their auto insurance policies on hold. However, to do so, you must notify your insurance provider and ensure you meet the criteria for doing so. In doing this, you may reduce your coverage to comprehensive only, this offers protection against fire, theft and vandalism giving you peace of mind if something happens while your vehicle is parked.
How can I renew my Calgary car insurance policy?
Renewing car insurance is relatively simple. Many policies even renew automatically. However, if yours doesn’t or you prefer not to have your coverage renewed automatically, all you have to do is contact your insurance company. Many insurance companies allow policyholders to renew their policies online, which can be done in a matter of minutes. Note that letting your car insurance policy expire and continuing to drive is the same as driving uninsured, and doing so can have serious consequences if caught. Such consequences may include hefty fines, the suspension of your driver’s licence, your car being impounded, and even jail time. Not to mention the fact that a gap in coverage can lead to higher auto insurance rates in the future. An insurance professional can offer further advice on expired car insurance renewal
I am buying my first car insurance policy in Calgary. Do I need a valid Alberta driver’s licence to do so?
Yes, to purchase a car insurance policy in Calgary, you will need to hold a valid Alberta driver’s licence. Without one, you will be refused a policy. Please note that if you wish to add other drivers to your policy, you will need to provide proof of a valid driver’s licence for each driver as well.
If you have any questions, contact one of our local branches.
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