Car insurance Waterloo, ON

Part of a series on car insurance rates in Ontario.

Fast facts about auto insurance in Waterloo

Average annual car insurance rate

Regular drivers in the city

Collisions per year (approximately)


Collision rate for the city

Average age

Average household income


Unemployment rate


Understanding car insurance in Waterloo, Ontario

Waterloo just happens to be the home of aha insurance, so we know it pretty well. It’s a budding smart city outside of the GTA, essentially conjoined with Kitchener.

Despite Waterloo’s fairly high collision rate, the city enjoys a medium-low car insurance rate, on average. A big part of that has to do with the fact that Waterloo’s workforce doesn’t need to commute very far, compared to the lengthy day trips that most people experience in Toronto’s bedroom communities.

Balancing out that short commute time to work for most residents are the intra-city highways 7 and 8, which can facilitate a fair number of collisions or instances of car damage. Having a relatively large student population also lends itself to a higher statistical likelihood for collisions to occur, in the eyes of underwriters.

Otherwise, Waterloo enjoys a fairly strong public transit system, complemented nicely by the recent light-rail transit system and a very walkable uptown core.

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Get your bundle on & save!

Want even cheaper insurance? Save up to 50% on home and up to 18% on car insurance when you bundle them.

Busting myths about driving and insurance in Waterloo

Myth: Waterloo’s roundabouts make the city unsafe.

We were going to say “dead wrong,” except that roundabouts reduce fatal collisions by 90%. They reduce everyone’s speed, and the fewer collisions that do occur tend to be sideswipes instead of T-bone collisions. They’re cheaper to maintain, too.

There could be a transitional period with an uptick of fender benders or side swipes as some drivers adjust, but roundabouts are statistically safer—and they’re here to stay.

Myth: Insurance rates are the same in Kitchener and Waterloo.

Wrong. While their average car car insurance premiums are relatively close, they are not the same. Insurance underwriting assesses the risk of variables on far more granular levels than that. You’re more likely to find bigger differences between neighbourhoods than between cities, in fact!

Myth: You’ll have to commute for work because Waterloo is so small.

Nope! Accroding to census data, approximately 49.4% of Waterloo’s workforce stays within the city to get to work.

The next 39.4% commute outside of the city, but remain within the Waterloo Region municipality (driving to Kitchener or Cambridge, most likely). Only 11.1% of the population actually leaves the municipality, and that could include daily commutes as close as Guelph, Woodstock, or Brantford. 

Myth: The student in your family can’t get around without your car.

That’s changed, thankfully. The Grand River Transit bus system has added stops in and around Conestoga College. The campus itself pitched in as well, adding nine new bus bays off of Doon Valley Drive. This is a big win for families with students, letting them reduce overall road exposure on the policy.

How Waterloorates compare to other cities in Ontario

  • North York: $4,261
  • Etobicoke: $4,199
  • Brampton: $4,071
  • Scarborough: $3,825
  • East York: $3,605
  • Woodbridge: $3,603
  • Richmond Hill: $3,579
  • Mississauga: $3,473
  • Markham: $3,389
  • Niagara Falls: $3,321
  • Bowmanville: $3,308
  • Peterborough: $3,259
  • Pickering: $ 3,245
  • Newmarket: $ 3,216
  • Hamilton: $3,201
  • Brantford: $ 3,158
  • Maple: $3,150
  • Whitby: $3,087
  • Ajax: $3,053
  • York: $2,999
  • Toronto: $2,983
  • Barrie: $2,924
  • Thornhill: $2,871
  • Waterloo: $2,867
  • Caledon: $2,780
  • London: $2,765
  • Fort Erie: $2,720
  • Oakville: $2,720
  • Sault Ste Marie: $ 2,713
  • Kitchener: $2,705
  • Milton: $2,680
  • St Catharines: $ 2,550
  • Windsor: $2,536
  • Woodstock: $2,513
  • Innisfil: $2,505
  • Burlington: $2,476
  • Kingston: $ 2,360
  • Cambridge: $2,297
  • Oshawa: $2,295
  • Guelph: $2,268
  • Gloucester: $2,256
  • Stoney Creek: $2,222
  • Nepean: $2,196
  • Ottawa: $2,195
  • Sudbury: $2,005
  • Kanata: $2,002
  • Thunder Bay: $1,973
  • Wasaga Beach: $1,958

Quick tips on driving and insurance in Waterloo.

Pay extra attention around dense areas.

It’s true that Waterloo is making an effort to evolve into a smart city, but this can come with some caveats for your car insurance rates. More expensive infrastructure costs more to replace if you’re involved in a collision that causes property damage.

Think about everything that had to be installed for the LRT alone: rails, barriers, waiting stations, and even the cabs themselves. Be extra cautious around these dense areas with all of that extra infrastructure, or it could cause a rate hike if you cause a collision.

Commuting between the tri-city area? Take boack roads whenever possible.

The 401 runs right between Cambridge and Kitchener, but it’s also famously slow (yes, it’s also bad here, not just around Toronto). You’re less likely to get caught in a traffic jam if you drive around it to get to work.

It’s also worth mentioning that Kitchener-Waterloo’s intra-city highways 7 and 8 see enough accidents to be conisdered dangerous spaghetti junctions. Avoid them on your daily commute to reduce your own chances of a collision, protecting your car insurance rates.

Working inside the city, or even nearby in Kitchener? Take the LRT.

Part of your car insurance rate is calculated by the annual kilometres that you drive, as it directly affects the amount of road exposure your car sustains. More time spent driving increases the statistical odds of being involved in a collision, plain and simple.

With that in mind, look into options to take new LRT into work. It’s connected to two of th elarger work hubs in the area (The Tannery and the Idea Quarter), which could lower your rates.

Sources for fast facts about Waterloo:

  • Statistics Canada, Waterloo 2016 Census Profile
  • Ministry of Transportation, 2016 Road Safety Report
  • TriTag via YouTube, “Where will ION light rail take you?”
  • Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, “Roundabouts”
  • Grand River Transit, “Bus stop improvements at Conestoga College”
  • The aha insurance team’s collective experience driving in and out of Waterloo every day. 😉

Source for average insurance rates by city:

  • Survey of 2,800 auto insurance policy holders in Ontario

Google Rating: 4.8

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