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Thunder Bay had almost 300 years of history behind it when, on January 1, 1970, it came into being after the amalgamation of the towns of Fort William and Port Arthur. This ended years of disputes and bickering between the smaller municipalities and players such as the Canadian Pacific Railway. It also marked the turn away from a resource-based economy beginning with the fur traders who established a post near the city. Later, logging and mining took over. Today, a more diversified economy that includes education and medical research, while remaining an important transportation hub.

Thunder Bay serves as the hub for a wide area of Northwestern Ontario, an area with heavy dependence on motor vehicles for effective transportation between the widespread towns throughout a sparsely populated area. Though a motorist living in the Lakehead area may drive more kilometers than their cousins in Southern Ontario, the low population density means fewer chances for traffic incidents.

How Much Does Car Insurance Cost in Thunder Bay

The average cost of car insurance in Thunder Bay is  $1,203.

Quote DateAverage Auto Insurance Cost in Thunder Bay*

*Methodology: We used a sample profile for a male driver aged 30 years with his own vehicle having mandatory coverage. He drives a Honda Civic 2012 car with an average mileage of 5000 – 8000 km per year to commute to work. He has a clean driving record history of 5 years with no accidents or collisions.

We surveyed the car insurance prices in Thunder Bay for the purpose of illustrating the range in quotes based on driving record, location, and other criteria. To get a customized quote, enter your postal code above.

Affordable Car Insurance in Thunder Bay

Though Thunder Bay drivers already start with low auto insurance rates, there are tips and tricks to further economize on car insurance. The key is in understanding how Ontario’s auto insurance market works.

The auto insurance industry, while highly regulated, remains competitive. Every insurance company has control over its underwriting rules — as long as these rules gain approval from the Financial Services Commission of Ontario. So while many statistics regarding drivers, cars, and accidents are common to all companies, how each insurer uses those figures is up to them. This could mean hundreds of dollars difference for some motorists.

Mandatory Provincial Auto Insurance

Ontario requires a certain amount of basic auto insurance. All cars on the road must carry this amount. The mandatory policy is very much a minimum. Some of its provisions are so bare bones that most drivers purchase additional coverage. If a driver is at fault in a serious accident, the statutory third-party insurance amount may not be enough to cover a settlement.

Extending third-party liability coverage beyond the provincial minimum of $200,000 is the most common extension. While accident benefits coverage can also be enhanced, more drivers choose to extend liability to amounts of $500,000, $1 million, or beyond.

Vehicle protection through collision and comprehensive insurance remains optional. If a driver is in the position to repair or replace their vehicle without an insurer’s assistance, dropping this coverage saves money on premiums. Motorists wanting protection and lower prices can raise insurance deductible limits. While the driver will pay more after some incidents, there is still a point where the insurance company takes over. Higher deductibles mean lower premiums.

Discounts can further reduce premiums when a driver qualifies. The discounts on offer vary between insurers. A motorist must usually ask before an insurance company adds a discount. Discounts are rarely applied automatically.

Driving in Thunder Bay

  • Thunder Bay Expressway is a section of Highways 11 and 17 running concurrently. It’s a four-lane highway with limited access. The Expressway starts east of Amethyst Harbour. At Harbour Expressway, Highways 11 and 17 continue west as the Trans-Canada Highway and Thunder Bay Expressway turn to Highway 61, continuing south toward Thunder Bay Airport.
  • Highways 11 and 17, north and south arms of the Trans-Canada Highway to the east, join west of Nipigon, and run together until Shabaqua Corners. Each continues designated as the Trans-Canada.
  • Golf Links Road, a north-south route east of the Thunder Bay Expressway, is currently undergoing widening to four lanes along its length.
  • Memorial Avenue and Fort William Road also run north-south, changing to May Street and Simpson Street at the Neebing McIntyre Floodway.
  • River Street, Red River Road, Oliver Road, Harbour Expressway, and Arthur St. are the major east-west arteries. Each connects with the Thunder Bay Expressway, which has level grades and stop lights throughout the city.
  • Summertime flash flooding is occasionally a traffic issue in the area. In particular, roads outside the city are susceptible to water coverage. Bike paths and pedestrian walkways can be effected within the city.

The List of Driving Schools in Thunder Bay Ontario

driving school

Transport Training Centres Of CanadaThunder Bay, Thunder Bay, ON P7E 3R2613-244-3955
Taranis Training1485 Rosslyn Rd, Thunder Bay, ON P7E 6W1807-476-1746
Young Drivers204-1000 Fort William Rd, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 6B9807-623-6109
Progressive Driving School615E Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3Z3807-343-9291
DriveWise266 Algoma St S, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3C2807-344-3821
TheDrivingSchool270 Windsor St, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 1V61-855-412-3211
Drive Test2-1186 Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5K5807-623-2213

Road Information for Thunder Bay

Driving Facts for Thunder Bay

  • A scenic lookout dedicated to cancer activist Terry Fox is on Highway 11/17 northeast of the city. This is near the spot he was forced to abandon his run due to the return of his own cancer. A portion of the Trans-Canada/Thunder Bay Expressway is called the Terry Fox Courage Highway.
  • Fort William Historical Park, at the end of King Road, is a re-creation of the Fort William fur trading post. It’s one of the leading tourist destinations in Thunder Bay.
  • The marina in Port Arthur, on Sleeping Giant Parkway, is another popular spot.  It overlooks the peninsula on which Sleeping Giant Provincial Park sits or rather, lays.
  • Thunder Bay’s protected harbor remains the largest outbound shipping port on the St. Lawrence Seaway, as well as being its westernmost Canadian port. Duluth, Minnesota, and Superior, Wisconsin, at the western tip of Lake Superior, sit southwest of Thunder Bay.
  • There is no intercity passenger rail service to Thunder Bay, nor has there been since 1990, when VIA discontinued service.

The List of Insurance Brokers in Thunder Bay Ontario

Gillons Insurance Brokers Ltd214 Red River Rd MN Flr, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 1A6807-345-3611
Allstate Insurance Company of Canada2A-1186 Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5K5807-333-0369
Aon Reed Stenhouse Inc100-1205 Amber Dr, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 6M4807-346-7450
Willport Realty Limited1301 Victoria Ave E, Thunder Bay, ON P7C 1C3807-623-4848
Robinson Douglas Insurance Agency Ltd321 Bay St, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 1S2807-346-6720
Johnsen Eric Insurance Agency Ltd206-1139 Alloy Dr, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 6M8807-624-2620
Dewhurst Insurance Limited384 Fort William Rd, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 2Z3807-345-1411
The Co-Operators592 Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3Z2807-707-4581
The Co-Operators220 Edward St S, Thunder Bay, ON P7E 2G8807-707-4583
Desjardins Financial Security Independent NtwrkC-1204 Roland St, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5M4807-623-6400
Jones & Associates Insurance521 Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3Y6807-343-9444
Kowal Insurance Brokers Ltd400-905 Tungsten St, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5Z38076235470
BrokerLink800 Victoria Ave E, Thunder Bay, ON P7C 0A2807-623-9022
SurNet Insurance Group Inc955 Cobalt Cres, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5Z4807-623-1965
Andy Morrow Financial Services522 Strand Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5B1807-767-4664
Smith & Associates Insurance920 Tungsten St, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5Z6807-345-6369
Youngs Insurance Brokers946 Cobalt Cres, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5W3807-344-9999
Glendon Insurance Services Ltd947 Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 4A1807-344-1314
Mike Wrenshall Insurance Agency103-1151 Barton St, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5N3807-346-1600
Unison Benefits Corp250 Algoma St S, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3C2807-346-1632
Lifestyle Insurance226 Van Norman St, Thunder Bay, ON P7A 4B81-844-706-0893
Thunder Bay Insurance Services Limited121 May St S, Thunder Bay, ON P7E 1A9807-623-2222
Bonin-Dobie-Jackson Limited268 Red River Rd, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 1A88073457309

Thunder Bay residents can confirm their own low rates or discover additional savings using Ratelab’s car insurance calculator. Simply enter your home postal code in the space provided below to start the process. Your car insurance needs are shopped with dozens of car insurance industry partners to find the best match at the lowest price.

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