Car vs Motorcycle Insurance Review: Comparison of Costs and Endorsements

If you’ve been driving for a while but are still new to driving, you can assume that motorcycle insurance and car insurance are quite similar. But in fact, bike insurance is often structured in a completely different way to car insurance, which results in different premiums and different types of coverage.

Knowing these differences is essential for new cyclists; you need to be aware of which potential situations your insurance covers and (perhaps more importantly) which ones it does not. You will also want to have an idea of ​​what your insurance sands cheaper – and if there is a way to find better insurance cheaper.

Well, wonder no more! As the saying goes, we’ve got you covered (just an expression, mind you, we’re happy to tell you all about motorcycle insurance below, but you’ll still have to buy your cover yourself). Let’s dive into it.

What is motorbike and car insurance for?

The first big misconception that many cyclists have is that car insurance and motorcycle insurance serve the same purpose. This is only true insofar as both types exist to provide financial compensation after certain unforeseen incidents.

The Typical Solution However, the incidents you are more likely to encounter on a bicycle are different from those you are likely to encounter as a car or truck owner. And since the whole concept of insurance is based on risk assessment, the coverage for each type of vehicle reflects these differences.

We’ll discuss exactly how car and motorcycle insurance are structured differently in the next section, but before that, it’s essential that you know why . Or, to put it another way: What kind of problems do car and bicycle insurers expect their customers to encounter when designing policies?

The purpose of auto insurance

Since cars offer more protection to drivers than bicycles to cyclists, basic car insurance tends to focus more on covering potential damage to the vehicle itself and to property it might hit in the event. accident. And because cars are designed with the ability to carry groups of people at a time, many car insurance policies available also include some form of passenger coverage.

The purpose of motorcycle insurance

Because motorcyclists ride solo most of the time and don’t have four walls around them to protect themselves, motorcycle insurance tends to put more emphasis on compensating for injuries sustained in an accident. . Many policies also emphasize protection against theft or vandalism, as motorcycles are more likely to be targets of these crimes than most four-wheeled vehicles.

Road blurring while motorcyclist rides down highway at speed

By Pexels / Sourav Mishra

How motorcycle insurance differs from car insurance

The minimum auto insurance in most US states and Canadian provinces usually consists of some form of liability coverage. This type of coverage protects the policyholder if they are found guilty of causing damage to another person or to another person’s property.

Motorcyclists must also carry minimum liability insurance. However, this tends to be more expensive, especially if you buy through your regular car insurance provider. Indeed, motorcyclists are statistically more likely to be victims of accidents and to make claims than motorists (and more than 29 times more likely to die in an accident). This type of risk makes insurance companies more cautious, and as a result, they charge higher premiums.

Additionally, while many drivers can get away with minimal liability coverage, it is highly recommended that motorcyclists purchase additional coverage, including collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and passenger liability insurance. guests.

We’ll go into more detail on these later, but right now you’re probably wondering how much your insurance company is going to charge you for all these add-ons. Do not worry; this is where we have good news for you.

Insurance agent shaking hands with client after agreeing on policy

By Pexels / sora shimazaki

Should you use the same insurance company for your car and your bike?

It turns out that you don’t have to buy your motorcycle insurance from the same company that provides your car insurance, not even in Canada, where all car insurance is handled by a single crown corporation in some provinces. A number of smaller Canadian insurers (like Megson Fitzpatrick in British Columbia) actually offer motorcycle insurance at considerably lower rates than the government.

It’s a different story south of the border, though. American drivers are used to shopping for auto insurance. While it’s easy for drivers to find a relatively cheap policy with comprehensive coverage, it’s not so simple for those of us in the two-wheeler camp.

Most US motorcyclists will be limited to buying coverage from major providers and there are a few motorcycle specific providers (such as Harley-Davidson) but the best way to save money if you are riding in the US is to be strategic about the exact coverage. you buy.

Next, we’ll take a closer look at some of the add-ons we recommend for your motorcycle insurance and what you need to know about them.

What motorcycle insurance endorsements and conditions should policyholders know?

Not sure what to add to your font? Here are a few runners we don’t recommend going without (especially for new runners). Note: These runners may have different names depending on the provider you choose. Always ask your insurance broker or agent for a detailed description of what each endorsement covers and read the fine print!

Collision coverage

While liability insurance covers damage you cause to other people and their property in the event of an accident, collision insurance will protect your vehicle. Collision coverage tends to cost less if you have a cheaper bike, and may also be cheaper in some places depending on your driving record.

Full coverage

Comprehensive coverage insures your vehicle against incidents that occur while you’re not riding – such as theft, fire damage and vandalism. In colder locations you can also find a cheaper type of cover for these incidents if they happen while your bike is in storage during the winter months (often called a lay-up cover or something similar) .

Personal Injury Protection

Because you are much less protected on a bike than in a car, you are much more likely to be injured if you are involved in an accident. Riders in countries with universal healthcare (Canada, UK, etc.) won’t have to purchase additional coverage in case that happens, but riders in the US definitely, really, definitely want some form of medical coverage in case the worst happens and hospital bills run high.

Liability of guest passengers

Finally, you’ll want to buy a rider that provides coverage for any passenger you’re carrying on your bike. This is another place where car insurance is different – it tends to cover your passengers, whereas bike insurance generally assumes you’ll be riding solo and covers you accordingly. Also note that your passenger’s coverage can only apply to accidents for which you are not at fault. Talk to the specific provider you have chosen to find out if this will be the case for you.

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