O' Canada! Ottawa, our Nation's Capital
Boasting a population of 934,243, and that number jumps to 1.3M for the Ottawa-Gatineau Census Metropolitan Area (CMA). As the political epicentre of Canada, Ottawa is home to the famed Parliament Hill, the Fairmont Château Laurier, and a host of foreign embassies and popular museums (including the National Gallery of Canada, the Canadian War Museum, the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum, and the Canadian Museum of History).
Aside from its rich history and political might, Ottawa is a desirable location for young families looking for a safe and lively city. Drivers in Ottawa are used to the numerous bridges that span the Ottawa River, and the many highways that criss-cross the region. Despite Ottawa’s relatively safe streets, car owners still need auto insurance that meets their driving and budgetary needs.
At Surex, that’s exactly what you’ll find!
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At Surex, our three-step process will ensure that you end up with the best car insurance available in Ottawa. Here’s how it works:
- Personalized car insurance quotes: Surex will capture some of your basic information — either by phone or online — and then shop the market for you. In under 10 minutes, you’ll have up to 10 personalized car insurance offers to choose from.
- Customize your offers. Once you receive the initial car insurance quote, you can edit your information and compare quotes to find the best overall value.
- Purchase and manage 24/7. Once you’ve selected a quote & reviewed the policy with your dedicated assistant, you can electronically sign documents to receive instant proof of car insurance. If you’d rather speak with someone we will connect you with a Dedicated Insurance Assistant to walk you through all the options and answer any questions you might have. Once finished, your documents will arrive in the mail and you can manage your policy 24/7 with our ‘My Surex’ login feature.
Learn the bridges. Between the Ottawa River and the Rideau River, there are over 30 bridges that Ottawa drivers use daily, including the Champlain Bridge, the Portage Bridge, the Laurier Avenue Bridge, and the Alexandra Bridge. The bridges are often under various states of repair, with the number of lanes changing regularly. Always plan your bridge trip in advance, avoid rush hour if possible, and be mindful of construction workers and route changes.
Prepare for snow. Ottawa’s winters are notorious for bitterly cold weather and exceptionally heavy snowfall. Expect limited parking in the downtown core during snowstorms, and prepare your vehicle for poor driving conditions with winter tires, an emergency kit, a now scraper, a fully charged mobile phone, and winter-rated windshield washer fluid.
French language signs. If you’re planning on driving into neighbouring Gatineau, be prepared for French-only street signs. Luckily, if you don’t speak French, the province of Quebec has begun switching these signs to pictograms, ensuring that all drivers can navigate the roads safely.
Watch for cyclists. Ottawa has emerged as a national leader in cycling infrastructure, with separated bike lanes popping up all over the downtown and beyond. If you’re driving in downtown Ottawa, be mindful of cyclists navigating the city on two wheels: never park in bike lanes, be careful when opening your door, and only make turns once you’re sure there isn’t a cyclist in danger.
Shop around. By comparing car insurance options online, you’re opening yourself up to a range of different rates and discounts from various car insurance companies. Finding an even slightly lower auto insurance rate can mean significant annual savings, so instead of simply renewing with your current insurance provider, it’s important that you take a few minutes to find the best coverage available at the best price possible.
Safe Driver Training. Taking a driver’s education course is not only a great way to reduce your chances of being involved in a vehicle accident, it’s also a common way to lower your auto insurance premiums. For their first three years of driving, graduates of an approved safe driver training typically qualify for auto insurance discounts of $1,000 to $1,500 annually.
Winter tires. One of the most common ways for Ottawa drivers to lower their auto insurance premiums is by installing four approved winter tires during the winter months. To ensure the tires qualify as certified winter tires by the Rubber Association of Canada, look on the sidewalls for the symbol of the snowflake inside of a mountain. This means the tire is made of a soft rubber compound that allows for better braking and more traction in cold weather.
Don’t pay for what you don’t need. If you have an older car, you may not require certain optional coverage. Collision and comprehensive, for instance, might not always be worth adding to your policy; if coverage has a $1,500 deductible, and your car is only worth $1,000, it probably doesn’t make sense to add, as the cost to replace the vehicle is lower than the cost to repair it. Speak with your Dedicated Insurance Assistant to learn what coverages you do and do not need.
- Britannia Park and Beach
- Jacques Cartier Park
- Mooney's Bay Park and Beach
- CF Rideau Centre
- Bayshore Shopping Centre
- St. Laurent
- Canadian War Museum
- Parliament Hill
- Rideau Canal
Questions to ask your Dedicated Insurance Assistant:
Protecting yourself and your vehicle can be costly. Luckily there are a number of ways to lower the amount you pay for car insurance. First and foremost, always compare your options before purchasing a policy; rates can change, and coverages are different between providers, so shopping around is a must. On top of this, there are many ways to get the lowest rate possible, including taking a safe driving course, bundling your policies with the same company, installing approved winter tires, and asking your Dedicated Insurance Assistant about what discounts you qualify for.
Remember that getting a car insurance quote is not the same as speaking to a Dedicated Insurance Assistant and finding out exactly what your insurance will cost. Also, different quote providers will ask different questions — some more detailed than others — so the price you’re quoted can vary. Different companies also have different policies around how long a quote is valid for; some lasting up to 90 days before you’re required to re-quote. The most important thing to remember is that a quote is an estimate, so it’s best to call your Dedicated Insurance Assistant as soon as you’re serious about finalizing your policy.
Yes. Instead of paying for your annual car insurance premium in twelve monthly installments, you can request to pay the full premium at once. Opting to pay once yearly usually results in a lower annual premium, as you will be avoiding the monthly administrative fees that most insurance companies charge.
Auto insurance rates in Ottawa are determined by a range of factors — some of which are in your control, some of which are not. Some of the factors used to determine risk (ie. the likelihood you are to make a claim, and what that claim will cost the insurance company) and calculate premiums include make and model of vehicle, driving history, frequence of vehicle use, purpose of vehicle, driver’s area of residence, driver’s age, driver’s gender, coverage type, and government regulations.
Yes, you can transfer your auto insurance to a different car. Simply let your insurance company know that you’ve purchased an additional vehicle and would like to add it to your policy. Remember: adding a vehicle means your premium could change, depending on the vehicle details and the coverages added or removed. And it’s important to double-check that your old vehicle is no longer on your updated policy.