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How does Quebec auto insurance work?

Auto insurance in Quebec operates under a unique system that combines public and private insurance components – this means that you'll receive some coverage from the Société de l'assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ), but you'll also need to purchase additional coverage from other insurers. Here's a basic overview of how it all works.

Public auto insurance in Quebec

As mentioned, the public insurance component is managed by the Société de l'assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ). It covers personal injury resulting from automobile accidents, meaning that if you are injured in a car accident, your medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, and income replacement benefits are covered by the insurer.

Private auto insurance in Quebec

The private insurance component covers property damage and liability. This includes damage to your own vehicle, damage to other people's property, and liability if you are responsible for causing injury or damage to others in an accident.

Why is car insurance cheaper in Quebec?

Quebec consistently ranks as the cheapest province in Canada when it comes to auto insurance. This is due to various factors, including the hybrid auto insurance system and lower mandatory coverage limits. For instance, while drivers here only need to purchase a minimum of $50,000 in civil liability coverage, all other provinces require at least $200,000 for third-party liability claims (or $500,000 in the case of Nova Scotia).

The Quebec government also regulates auto insurance rates to ensure fairness and affordability for consumers. Insurers must submit rate proposals to regulatory authorities for approval which helps prevent excessive rate increases across the board. And while other provinces, such as Ontario, also have regulated rates, various external factors – including auto insurance fraud (often linked to organized crime) – only widen the large gap in pricing between the two provinces.

Quebec also runs on a no-fault auto insurance system, but this doesn't mean you won't be deemed at fault in any given accident. Instead, under the no-fault system, anyone injured in a motor vehicle accident in Quebec is covered by the SAAQ – regardless of whether they were the driver, passenger, pedestrian, or cyclist – and regardless of who was at fault.

Plus, under the direct compensation for property damage (DCPD) system, if your vehicle needs to be repaired or replaced after an accident, you'll only be handling claims with your own private insurer – again, regardless of who was at fault. This streamlines the claims process and ensures that you can receive prompt service from your provider.

When you register your vehicle with the SAAQ, you automatically enroll in the public insurance plan. The registration fees include the premium for personal injury coverage. You must then purchase private insurance from a licensed insurance company. It's advisable to shop around and compare rates and coverage options across all different providers to make sure you're selecting the best option out there.

Mandatory types of car insurance in Quebec

The following types of car insurance are mandatory in Quebec – it is standard for all auto policies across the province to include these coverages.

Civil liability

Accident benefits (provided by SAAQ)

Optional types of car insurance in Quebec

Here are a few optional coverages you can add to your Quebec auto insurance policy to increase your protection, as well as your peace of mind.



Specified perils

All perils

Emergency roadside assistance

Quebec endorsement forms

How much is car insurance in Quebec?

According to Groupement des assureurs automobiles (GAA), the average cost of Quebec car insurance in 2022 was $796. Could you be paying less? Find out more by comparing free, personalized quotes with us today.

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The average cost of car insurance in Quebec over time

Below is a table outlining the average cost of auto insurance in Quebec over time, according to data from Groupement des assureurs automobiles (GAA). The average premium was $796 in 2022, with an average annual increase of 4.9% over the previous ten years.

To break down the cost of Quebec car insurance in 2022, the average premium by coverage type is as follows: civil liability insurance at $360, collision insurance at $331, and comprehensive insurance at $180.

How to get the cheapest car insurance in Quebec

While market factors play a big role in the cost of your auto insurance, there are still many steps you can take to ensure you're getting the best rate possible. Here, we cover eight different tips for cheap auto insurance in Quebec.

  1. Shop and compare

    Research which auto insurance companies offers the cheap premiums. While rates may change overtime, comparing Quebec car insurance quotes with us is free.

  2. Stay loyal

    Quebec auto insurance companies tend to give discounts to drivers who remain an active customer for years – especially if there's family members and multiple vehicles on the policy.

  3. Bundle your policies

    If you use the same insurance company for both your home and auto insurance needs, your insurer will often thank you with a dip in premiums.

  4. Get a multi-car discount

    If you have multiple drivers and vehicles in the same household, putting them all on one policy can save you money.

  1. Ask about discounts

    If you’re a member of a large corporation, union, or a school alumnus, you could b eligible for cheaper car insurance – just ask your broker or agent for group rate options.

  2. Pay annual premiums

    Paying auto insurance premiums monthly adds administrative costs to your insurer, so if you’re able to pay annually, you can lower your rate. It also shows the company you're planning to stay loyal.

  3. Maintain a good driving record

    If you’re a safe driver, you can reduce your chances of an accident. Car crashes stay on your insurance record for years and can result in higher premiums.

  4. Take a course

    Completing an accredited defensive driving course can qualify you for a discount, as it demonstrates your commitment to safe driving.

Factors that impact your Quebec car insurance quote

There are many individualized factors auto insurance companies look at, in order to determine your personalized quote. Generally speaking, the more risk you bring, the more expensive your Quebec car insurance policy will be – here are a few factors you should be aware of.

  • Age

    Young drivers tend to pay the highest rates. So while most people don't look forward to growing old, at least cheaper premiums come along with it.

  • Gender

    Men are more commonly involved in car accidents, so they tend to pay higher insurance rates. It might not be fair, but insurers like to limit their risk.

  • Location

    Living in busy, populated cities, such as Montreal, can impact your insurance rate negatively – you're more prone to collision and theft.

  • Vehicle type

    Vehicles that cost more to repair and replace inevitably come with increased auto insurance rates. The same goes with highly-stolen cars.

  • Driving history

    Traffic convictions will impact your insurance rate negatively. Insurers like to minimize their risk, so drive safely for the best rates possible.

  • Driving behaviour

    More time on the road increases your chances of having to make a claim. So driving less can actually lower your auto insurance rate.

  • License class

    Graduating through the Quebec licensing system – and obtaining your full license will lead to cheaper auto insurance rates due to the added experience.

  • Vehicle use

    If you use your vehicle for business purposes, you'll most likely need to pay more for insurance. Pleasure-use cars tend to come with cheaper rates.

Are you getting the cheapest car insurance in Quebec?

In just a few steps, you can view customized car insurance quotes from the province's top providers – find your lowest Quebec auto insurance rate with us today.

Frequently asked questions about Quebec auto insurance

How do I get the cheapest car insurance in Quebec?

What are the best insurance companies in Quebec?

Can I get Quebec car insurance with an Ontario license?

Who can drive my car under my insurance in Quebec?

Do I need auto insurance in Quebec?

Does my insurance cover me if I drive for Uber or Lyft?

Do I need winter tires in Quebec?

Is roadside assistance required in Quebec?

How do I file a car insurance claim in Quebec?

How long do driving offences last on my driving record in Quebec?

Can I bundle my car insurance with home insurance in Quebec?