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Car insurance quotes for newcomers to Canada: What you need to know.

For newcomers, there can be a lot of paperwork and planning to prepare for a new life in Canada. But finding the best deal on auto insurance doesn’t have to be complicated.

With so many companies offering insurance it can be tough to pick where to start, and it can seem pricey. Newcomer car insurance rates are often above average because the insured lack a Canadian driving history. That’s not a guarantee, however. Some companies may take prior driving history from other countries into account, and some offer discounts that can offset higher rates.

The way to find the best auto insurance for new immigrants is by comparing rates online. By using our online tool you can compare rates from more than 50 auto insurance companies almost instantly. Within three minutes of entering your information, you’ll receive newcomer car insurance quotes online to review.

Looking for cheap car insurance for newcomers? Read on to learn more about getting Canadian car insurance that fits your needs and about how you can reduce your insurance premiums. You can also use our comparison tool now to start shopping around.

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See how our customers in save big on auto insurance.

CustomerLocationVehicleLowest rateAverage rateSaved
Quote from March 23, 2023
Male, 23 years old
Lowest Rate
Average Rate
Quote from March 23, 2023
Female, 20 years old
Lowest Rate
Average Rate


Your questions about car insurance for newcomers, answered.

Is car insurance mandatory in Canada?

Yes, in Canada, car insurance is mandatory in every province and territory. Driving without insurance can result in penalties, which may include fines or the suspension or loss of driving privileges.

Auto insurance falls under provincial and territorial jurisdiction. This means depending on where you live in Canada there may be different minimum requirements and prices

At a minimum, you’ll be expected to have third-party liability coverage. This protects you against losses caused by accidents, including death or injury of another person. It will also cover repair costs for vehicles which get damaged by yours. Liability coverage doesn’t cover the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle. Be sure to research the minimum requirements for your province or territory online before purchasing a policy.

While car insurance is mandatory, in provinces with private insurance markets there are many options on who to purchase from. To get a better idea of how much new immigrant car insurance costs check out our online tool and get results within minutes.

What are the steps to getting car insurance as a newcomer to Canada?

First, you’ll need to get your Canadian driver's licence. 

Some countries have reciprocal license exchanges with Canadian provinces and territories. This means you can easily exchange the license from your previous country of residence for a new Canadian one. You’ll want to check your provincial or territorial government’s website to see if your license will qualify for an exchange. If it doesn’t, you’ll need to take written and road tests to get your license.

Next you’re ready to start shopping for an insurance policy. There are many companies in Canada that offer car insurance to newcomers, but rates can vary widely. This depends on a variety of factors including your age and gender, the age and model of your vehicle and where you live. The best way to make sure you find the cheapest car insurance policy for immigrants is to shop around.

All drivers — including newcomers — can find premiums that best fit their budget and needs when using the auto insurance calculator to compare policies.

What kind of car insurance do expats in Canada need?

Car insurance for expats in Canada has the same basic requirements as insurance for newcomers. If you continue to be insured under another auto insurance policy in your home country, you should ask your insurer what your policy covers while you live abroad. This helps ensure you have adequate Canadian coverage and that you aren’t paying extra for coverage you may already have.

Like newcomers, expats generally pay more than average for car insurance in Canada. The best way to save money is by comparing multiple quotes. An online tool like lets you do so in minutes.

How much does car insurance cost for newcomers to Canada?

New immigrant car insurance estimates are generally higher than average. The Insurance Bureau of Canada calculates average yearly costs of auto insurance across the country. This ranges from a low of $717 in Quebec to a high of $1,832 in British Columbia. In large part this is because of a lack of Canadian driving history. Newcomers to Canada generally pay more than these average rates, until they start to develop driving history in Canada.

Some insurance companies accept driving records outside of the country, and this may help lower costs. But other companies don’t. This difference alone can have an impact on how much you pay annually.

Otherwise, car insurance rates for newcomers are calculated largely using the same factors as anyone seeking insurance. These include their age and gender, the age and model of the vehicle being insured and how frequently they drive.

There isn’t a single company which offers the cheapest insurance for new immigrants. This is why comparing newcomer car insurance quotes to ensure you’re getting the best possible deal is essential.

Keep in mind that your international drivers license in Canada is only valid for a certain length of time (about three months), otherwise you’ll need to apply for an International Driver’s Permit (IDP) from your own country, or get a license in the province or territory you’re visiting.

Want to find the best car insurance for newcomers? can help. Enter your postal code and click “Get Started,” to launch the process and get car insurance estimates from 50+ Canadian providers.

What can newcomers do to get cheaper car insurance in Canada?

If you’re preparing to move to Canada, you’ll want to set up complete proper insurance, rather than a temporary policy. Be sure to let your provider know that you are planning a move to Canada, and the date that your policy should take effect.

Your choice of automobile plays a big role in what you pay. By purchasing a simple or pre-owned model you can reduce your rates. Vehicles that are unattractive to thieves or which lack costly to repair options tend to have lower premiums than new high-performance or luxury models.

Making consistent payments helps you save, and companies offer a range of discounts which may help further reduce your bill. Attending an accredited driver training program in Canada may also help you reduce your rates. Depending on your needs, you may choose not to purchase optional insurance coverage as part of your policies. For example, if you own your car, not adding on extra collision insurance can reduce your costs.

By comparing rates with the comparison tool, only a few minutes separate you from finding cheap car insurance for newcomers that suits your needs.

Where can newcomers to Canada purchase car insurance?

This depends on where you live, as some provinces only have one insurance option. For example, in British Columbia and Manitoba you have to buy your insurance policy from a single insurance provider, which you can start by visiting their webpage.

But in the majority of Canadian provinces or territories you’ll be purchasing a policy from a private insurance company. The best place to start purchasing newcomer car insurance is using an online comparison tool to get quotes from multiple companies.

Because each insurer has different considerations when calculating quotes, shopping around is essential to get the best price. At you can use our online tool to find dozens of affordable car insurance options quickly and easily.

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