Ironically the smallest city in the contemporary Tri-City area of Southwestern Ontario is the oldest. Mennonite settlers first congregated around the mills of Abraham Erb, in what is now downtown Waterloo. The settlement took the name Waterloo in 1816, to commemorate the defeat of Napoleon the year before. German immigrants soon overtook Mennonites and started another village nearby, called Berlin to recognize their origins. Later, that settlement changed to Kitchener, echoing patriotic sentiment during World War I.
Waterloo and Kitchener now abut. Without signs, a motorist wouldn’t know they were entering another city. For years, the area is known as K-W, or Kitchener-Waterloo, though each community retains its own municipal government. Waterloo’s growth in the last 30 years is strongly tied to technology. Leading the way is RIM, creator of the Blackberry smartphone. Their success built on the two universities already in the city and attracted more tech firms to the area.
How Much is Car Insurance in Waterloo Ontario
The average cost of car insurance in Waterloo is $1,322.
*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 the city of Waterloo 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 Waterloo
The best auto insurance rates come from comparison shopping as well as carefully matching needs to coverage. Every driver in Ontario starts with the minimum mandatory auto insurance policy. All cars must have at least this minimum to use roads in the province. This mandatory coverage is augmented by most drivers. Basic third-party liability coverage doesn’t protect adequately against accident settlements for serious incidents. Ontario retains the right to sue at-fault drivers for damages. Most drivers purchase coverage beyond the $200,000 minimum.
Due to legislative changes designed to reduce overall insurance costs, accident benefits in the mandatory policy may not provide adequate coverage for all insurance consumers. Additional coverage for this insurance class is also available.
Many motorists don’t realize that collision, as well as comprehensive insurance coverage, are optional. In some cases, agencies loaning money for car purchases might require collision and comprehensive, but there’s no legislative need for these. Since these options assist a driver with the cost of repair and replacement after an accident, most opt for some level of coverage.
Controlling the Cost of Waterloo Car Insurance
Those motorists who add collision and comprehensive endorsements can alter the cost of coverage by adjusting deductible amounts. High deductibles place more financial responsibility on the car owner after an incident. This results in lower premiums while low deductibles cost more. Insurance companies take on increased risk and so they respond with more expensive terms.
Qualifying for discounts reduces the total cost of auto insurance coverage. Each insurance company has its own list of discounts, and not every type may be offered by all insurers. The most common discount type comes from multiple policies held with one company. This could be both home and auto coverage with the same company. Households with more than one car and more than one driver may also realize savings.
Other discounts include milestones, whether it’s reaching a certain age or maintaining consecutive years of claims-free driving. New drivers may receive discounts for successful completion of driver’s education or for maintaining excellent grades in school. Anti-theft and telematics devices may qualify for further discounts.
It’s important to know that most insurance companies only add discounts when requested by the motorist. In a few cases are discounts added automatically upon qualification.
The best way for a motorist to assure paying the lowest premiums is through maintenance of an accident and claims-free driving record. Traffic tickets and previous claims do come off your record, but only slowly over time.
Driving in Waterloo
- The Conestoga Parkway provides a high volume, controlled access route through Waterloo. It runs roughly northwest to southeast, from St. Jacobs in the north to King Street at Montgomery Road in Kitchener.
- The southern terminus of Conestoga Parkway merges into Highway 8, King St., toward the 401, so once on the Parkway, a driver has controlled access to the 401.
- The Parkway continues west as Highway 7/8 toward Stratford. It remains controlled access until the Wilmot Centre Road exit near New Hamburg.
- Highway 7 leaves Conestoga Parkway at the Wellington St. exit and continues east to Guelph along Victoria St. Tentative plans are in the works for potential 400-series highway development between Guelph and Conestoga Parkway.
- The Grand River forms a geographical barrier for development on the east side of Waterloo. Only Bridge St. crosses the Grand near Waterloo.
Road Information for Waterloo
- The Weather Network provides weather forecasts for Waterloo online, as well as through local broadcasts.
- The City of Waterloo has an online listing of road closures and other traffic-related news for the city.
- The Region of Waterloo includes similar road closure information for roads and projects maintained on a county level.
- AM570 News Radio in Kitchener provides traffic information updates on its website, as well as round-the-clock broadcasts.
- Winter road conditions for Southwestern Ontario including Waterloo and the surrounding area are found on the Ministry of Transportation site for Waterloo.
- The nearest DriveTest driver examination center is at 1405 Ottawa Street North in Kitchener.
Driving Facts for Waterloo
- Due to the tilting of local traffic grids, some north-south and east-west street names are only marginally accurate. Kitchener is the biggest culprit. For example, Lancaster Street East and West run geographically north and south. While not as extreme, east-west streets run northeast and southwest, while north-south routes tip southeast to northwest.
- North of Waterloo, toward St. Jacobs, Mennonite horse-drawn buggies may still be seen. Motorists should use caution when driving near a buggy using area roads.
- Waterloo shares most major north-south routes with Kitchener, while the major east-west arteries are mostly within Waterloo city limits.
- Downtown Waterloo is called “Uptown” by local residents. “Downtown” refers to Kitchener’s city center for most Waterloo natives.
Getting the best rates for car insurance in Waterloo means shopping around, and Ratelab’s car insurance calculator is the best tool to speed your search. Simply enter your home postal code to start a search through over 50 car insurance partner companies.