I'm moving to Canada and have an international driver's licence. How do I get auto insurance?

We often receive emails asking specific insurance-related questions. Here are some of the most common questions, with responses from our licensed insurance representatives.

I'm moving to Canada and have an international driver's licence. How do I get auto insurance?


Most Canadian insurance companies will not offer coverage to holders of international licences. As a result, finding insurance before you get your Canadian licence will likely be difficult. If you choose to exchange your licence for a Canadian one, the following sites will tell you how: When it comes to insurance, many providers will consider you a new driver even with your new Canadian licence. However, there are some exceptions where driving conditions are similar to those found in Canada. A couple of examples are:
  • You have emigrated from the United States. All the insurance providers featured through the Kanetix® quote comparison service will credit you for your previous US insurance experience.
  • You have emigrated from the United Kingdom. There are some insurance providers featured through the Kanetix quote comparison service that may be able to credit you for some of your UK experience provided you can present them with proper documentation from your UK insurer.
If driving conditions are similar to Canada's, getting a letter from your current insurer that includes details of your claims experience for the past 6 years and a copy of your Driver's Abstract (you should be able to get this from the institution that issued your current licence) will be required. Having these documents will also help you get the best rate possible. You should also note, that if your previous insurer is also operating in Canada, it might be advantageous for you to contact them directly. It is possible they may be able to credit you for your previous insurance experience if you purchase a policy with them. If you would like to get a rough idea of the rates you could expect to pay once you get your Canadian driver's licence, complete the Kanetix car insurance quote comparison tool. If moving to British Columbia, Saskatchewan or Manitoba, contact the government insurance provider in that province. Lastly, you should also give the Kanetix article, "New to the country? How to get car insurance in Canada" a read. It contains additional helpful information. Return to Questions Library

* Kanetix is an online insurance and mortgage shopping service and, more specifically is not an insurance company or brokerage. This response is believed to be accurate at the time of publication, but keep in mind that each person's situation is unique so may not apply in your particular situation. In addition, this information is subject to change and Kanetix is not responsible for any damages caused as a result of the information included in this response. As such, always check with an insurance provider, or the proper authority, for terms and conditions that may apply to you specifically as the information may vary depending on your insurer, geographic location, and particular individual circumstances.

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