It's that time of year when insuring your ride is on your mind. We here in the great white north have been suffering from PMS - Parked Motorcycle Syndrome, we have indulged in SOS - Shiny Object Syndrome to try and assuage our needs through the various motorcycle shows but NOTHING replaces our ride...

Having said that there have been a number of emails circulating where in people are "Bit#hing, grousing and grumbling" about insurance. It's cost, it's coverages and the companies and brokers who sell it.

A number of provinces have government insurance and unfortunately if you choose to live there and you want to ride you are going to pay through the nose - literally - I am referring to Quebec predominantly.

Hubby and I had toyed with perhaps moving back to Chomedey QC or back to Mara Lake BC and both got vetoed once we discovered the insurance costs and costs of owning a home there. Just not in our financial futures...

Insurance is an important purchase and I want to have some honest discussion - I do not want company bashing - I want discussion on the kinds of insurance you have, the cost, the coverage.

We need insurance reform in Canada - we ALL know that. How do we do it is the biggest question. Each province has its own set of rules and laws...But perhaps if we start some thoughtful and honest discussion, solutions and ideas will present themselves that will help you, me and every rider out there get a better bang for our buck and ensure that when an accident happens we have the help and funds we need to look after ourselves.

Richard Spinz started some major discussion with Bruno from Ryder's Roost and has agreed to have his thoughts printed here - he is from Ontario -


I have been looking around for years for a company that will give me 2nd bike insurance at lower than the full price success. Every company I have queried has asked for FULL PREMIUM for a 2nd bike even though I argue that I am the only rider and can only ride one bike at a time. Though I am in my 60`s with an excellent driving-riding record and NO CLAIMS, no matter. Full fare is demanded by every company. It makes me believe there is collusion and price fixing in the insurance industry. How to prove that, who knows. What to do about it, who knows. I know the prov. govt. is not going to do a damn thing about it. One never bites that hand that feeds you...and insurance companies, undoubtedly financially support political parties in power during every election campaign. Chris Hedges, an American Pulitzer Prize winning author writes a superb book, The Empire of Illusions, about the conspiracies behind every scene in the United States...TV, media, govt, oil, welfare support, health financing, and he would likely agree, in the insurance industry.

The only ``out`` for me with the insurance would be to take ``strictly liability`` coverage and even then the premium of $1200 a year drops by a mere $100...great deal !!! Ask me if I am discouraged. Ask me if I am upset. Almost makes me want to consider whether riding is worth all the cost. At the moment, I can still afford this luxury...for how long.

It is sad that the little man really has no recourse to the Bull Shit behind the insurance industry. I guess if they really jacked up premiums for those who make claims or push for big time health compensation, the companies wouldn't make enough profit to satisfy their shareholders. So instead, lets just bash everyone with little bumps to premiums. There is nothing those poor slobs can do about it except pay. That`s me baby !!!

Richard Szpin

So let's talk about insurance, your needs, your coverage and the costs...hopefully I will be able to get some brokers from the various provinces to weigh in on this discussion!

If you wiegh in on the discussion I want to know:
Where you live - province..
What you ride...
What you are covered for...
What kind of driving/riding record you have - don't need details just...speeding tickets, clean record etc...
How much you pay... and then your thoughts on this touchy and volatile subject!

In the news today:
The Second Gear Club has changed the venue for this weekend's ice race...
The Canadian Stunt Riding Championship's Calendar is out and up for sale - help these guys out and buy a calendar!

Deeley Harley-Davidson is at the Quebec Motorcycle Show this weekend...

And if you like comedy and live in Grande Prairie AB and area...Mike the Party HOG is performing here from the 15-20th of February...
If like me you can not ride - the Beat the PMS Blues on Line Show 'n' Shine is a good place to go and day dream - vote on some bikes and  help someone win some prizes. We did have a couple of kinks with the voting - you can only vote once per picture in a 24 hour period...

If you feel you got cheated out of some votes on the 3rd because of the little hiccups we experienced when we kicked off the voting, have your friends email our web mistress to tell her which picture and class and she will add the vote from the admin screen - we can't have anyone upset - this is supposed to be fun! (

If you are fortunate enough to be riding today - I don't want to hear about it but I do want you to ride like everyone around you is blind and can not see you.

Have an incredible day...
Belt Drive Betty
National VP - Alliance of Injured Motorcyclists Canada

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  1. This post struck a nerve. I too am in my 60's. Riding for 40+ years. No claims (on anything, ever). No moving violations. Ontario resident.

    HD Low Rider with standard coverage is $1100/year. 1982 Honda Ascot, liability only, $700 per year. And that's if I also give them all my other business.

    When I compare our insurance rates to those of our fellow riders in the supposedly more litigious US I have to wonder why we are paying so much more, for a riding season that in some cases is only a 3rd as long. So yeah, I'm pissed.

    And then I find cases like an acquaintance who dropped his bike avoiding a cager who pulled out in front of him. He was fine. The bike was fine except for a slightly bent crash bar and chewed up left saddlebag and hand grip. He rode it home. Then he made the mistake of making a claim. His insurance company wrote the bike off and gave him a $10K check! For a perfectly good, brand new Sportster that needed maybe $200 in repairs. That's simply criminal IMO.

    The problem is our government requires us to have insurance yet provides no alternative but to deal with these bloodsuckers. Do I think there's collusion? Not really, but there's no incentive for any of them to get aggressive with rates because we have nowhere else to go.