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B.C.’s vehicle insurance rates now among cheapest in nation: report

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B.C.’s vehicle insurance rates now among cheapest in nation: report
WATCH: ICBC’s gotten a lot of negative PR as of late, mostly from people who feel burned by no-fault insurance. And now, the crown corporation is out with a report it commissioned showing it in a positive light – Dec 9, 2022

Bring Cash. It’s a common aphorism of British Columbia, and how expensive Canada’s westernmost province is compared to life on the Prairies.

While that adage certainly rings true for gas and housing, when it comes to vehicle insurance, a new, 42-page report says B.C. actually has among the nation’s best rates.

Read more: ICBC filing for 15% decrease on basic car insurance rates to prepare to switch to no-fault

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On Thursday, ICBC released the results of the report by Ernst and Young, which compared rates in B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.

The report included comparisons of prices in various cities, along with age-related drivers, their vehicles, average daily commute and annual kilometres driven.

The first example listed was an 18-year-old male student with a Stage 2 learner’s license and a 2012 Honda Civic LX.

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Click to play video: 'Senior injured in car crash worried about compensation from ICBC'
Senior injured in car crash worried about compensation from ICBC

In B.C., there were four prices listed for the teen’s insurance rates:

  • Abbotsford ($2,994)
  • Nanaimo ($2,067)
  • Prince George ($2,139)
  • Vancouver’s West End ($3,044)
  • West Kelowna ($2,311)

The rates in B.C. were considerably cheaper than the prices listed in Alberta, but still not as cheap as Saskatchewan:

  • Calgary ($6,140)
  • Edmonton ($6,471)
  • Grande Prairie ($5,576)
  • Red Deer ($5,557)
  • Esterhazy ($1,130)
  • Saskatoon ($1,128)
Click to play video: 'Crash victim says ICBC is giving her the run around over support services'
Crash victim says ICBC is giving her the run around over support services

The same price differences were generally mirrored across 30 different driver profiles, with B.C. coming in with lower prices than Ontario and the Atlantic provinces.

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Example: 30-year-old male, married, employed, 14 years driving experience with a 2019 Ford F350 SD XLT crew cab:

  • Abbotsford ($2,413)
  • Nanaimo ($1,689)
  • Prince George ($1,911)
  • Vancouver’s West End ($2,385)
  • West Kelowna ($1,928)
  • Calgary ($5,042)
  • Edmonton ($4,480)
  • Grande Prairie ($4,701)
  • Red Deer ($4,939)
  • Esterhazy ($1,417)
  • Saskatoon ($1,416)
  • Winnipeg ($1,150)
  • Toronto ($5,294)
  • Saint John ($4,483)
  • Charlottetown ($3,023)
  • St. John’s ($6,828)

Example: 35-year-old female, single, employed, 19 years driving experience with a 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan:

  • Abbotsford ($1,492)
  • Nanaimo ($1,043)
  • Prince George ($1,137)
  • Vancouver’s West End ($1,495)
  • West Kelowna ($1,178)
  • Calgary ($2,639)
  • Edmonton ($2,701)
  • Grande Prairie ($2,264)
  • Red Deer ($2,546)
  • Esterhazy ($1,075)
  • Saskatoon ($1,073)
  • Winnipeg ($1,359)
  • Toronto ($1,876)
  • Saint John ($1,889)
  • Charlottetown ($1,386)
  • St. John’s ($2,255)
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Grieving relatives shocked by ICBC’s handling of claim

Example: 50-year-old female, married, employed, 34 years driving experience with a 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SE:

  • Abbotsford ($1,108)
  • Nanaimo ($782)
  • Prince George ($767)
  • Vancouver’s West End ($1,163)
  • West Kelowna ($847)
  • Calgary ($1,497)
  • Edmonton ($1,504)
  • Grande Prairie ($1,164)
  • Red Deer ($1,247)
  • Esterhazy ($878)
  • Saskatoon ($877)
  • Winnipeg ($1,001)
  • Toronto ($1,034)
  • Saint John ($1,083)
  • Charlottetown ($686)
  • St. John’s ($1,346)
Click to play video: 'Deadly 2021 crash shines light on B.C.’s no-fault auto insurance'
Deadly 2021 crash shines light on B.C.’s no-fault auto insurance

“(Ernst and Young) found that auto insurance in provinces with publicly owned care-based models is more affordable than in provinces with private insurance models,” ICBC said in its press release.

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Notably, the report came approximately 16 months after the province changed its insurance model, with ICBC claiming that B.C. drivers saved an average of $490 when renewing their insurance for the first time.

That reduction in price, said ICBC, came from removing “the adversarial approach of suing drivers and the hundreds of millions that were being spent on legal fees under the previous litigation-based system.”

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ICBC continued, saying “it’s a lower cost model that passes those savings onto customers through lower insurance rates and sees more money going directly towards the care and recovery of British Columbians injured in crashes.”

ICBC’s new model, called Enhanced Care, does have its critics, though, and Global News has covered several stories on that topic.

ICBC issued an enhanced care customer report last January touting its benefits. That report can be accessed on their website.

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To view this week’s 42-page report, click on this link.

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