Liability insurance is required in California, but we recommend riders consider full coverage policies.
Need motorcycle insurance in California? Learn about your best options in this review. We’ll explain California state insurance and licensing requirements and recommend the top insurers in the state.
Our review team has covered the best motorcycle insurance companies countrywide. For this review, we considered local average rates and customer satisfaction scores when choosing our recommendations for California motorcycle insurance.
Of course, the best insurer is not the same for every person. Use the free tool below to reach out for individualized motorcycle insurance quotes from several of our top recommended providers.
In this article:
- 5 Best Motorcycle Insurance Companies In California
- California Motorcycle Insurance Requirements
- Cost Of California Insurance
- What To Know About Riding In California
- Final Thoughts: California Motorcycle Insurance
5 Best Motorcycle Insurance Companies In California
The following companies typically offer the best motorcycle insurance coverage in California based on customer satisfaction scores, local rates, and coverage options.
|Best Motorcycle Insurance in California||RideApart Rating||Customer Service||Affordability||Coverage|
|1. Geico Motorcycle Insurance||4.5||4.0||5.0||4.5|
|2. State Farm Motorcycle Insurance||4.5||4.5||4.0||4.0|
|3. Progressive Motorcycle Insurance||4.5||3.5||4.5||4.5|
|4. Dairyland Motorcycle Insurance||4.0||3.5||4.0||4.0|
|5. Nationwide Motorcycle Insurance||4.0||3.5||3.0||4.0|
Geico is a good choice for any rider in any state. It is one of the cheapest insurers countrywide, including in California. The company has a good customer reputation and an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
J.D. Power conducts a satisfaction survey for car insurance every year. While there is no motorcycle insurance satisfaction study, the J.D. Power auto insurance study can be a good indicator of an insurer’s customer service reputation. After all, claims for auto and motorcycle policies are handled through the same claims department. In the J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Auto Insurance Satisfaction StudySM, Geico scored 828 out of a possible 1,000 points in California. This is above the regional average of 821 points.
Some Geico motorcycle insurance policies start at under $70 per year, and Geico offers a range of insurance products, meaning you can bundle your Geico motorcycle insurance with car or homeowners insurance to save further. Learn more in our Geico motorcycle insurance review.
#2 State Farm
State Farm is another national insurer that offers a range of insurance coverage options and bundling discounts. State Farm scored even higher than Geico in the J.D. Power Satisfaction Study for California, placing third overall with 836 out of 1,000 possible points.
Unlike Geico, State Farm is sold through local agents. While this means that you will work with a dedicated specialist to find the best policy for your needs, rates may be somewhat higher. Still, our cost research indicates that State Farm rates are affordable and may even be the cheapest option for motorcycle insurance in California for some drivers.
In addition to standard motorcycle insurance coverage, State Farm offers special coverage options for sidecars and protective equipment, which can be expensive to replace after a crash, especially if you don’t skimp on safety—which you shouldn’t. Learn more in our State Farm motorcycle insurance review.
Progressive scores above the regional average in the J.D. Power Satisfaction Study for the California region. It doesn’t score quite as well as Geico and State Farm, but nonetheless, it is one of the better-regarded insurers in the state.
Progressive advertises rates as low as $75 per year for minimum-coverage policies, though you may want to purchase more comprehensive coverage. Still, in our insurance cost research, we found Progressive rates to be competitive with Geico.
Motorcycle riders can find many discounts with Progressive, including accident forgiveness programs and a discount for switching from another provider. Read our Progressive motorcycle insurance review to learn more about this provider.
Dairyland specializes in motorcycle insurance. If you already have an auto or home policy, it’s usually cheaper to bundle motorcycle insurance with your existing coverage. If you don’t, then consider a policy with Dairyland.
Our cost research found that Dairyland prices tend to be similar to Progressive. Policies are offered for as low as $75 per year, but full coverage motorcycle insurance can cost up to $1,000 per year. Prices for high-risk riders are especially good with Dairyland.
Diaryland has a solid customer service reputation, with an A+ BBB rating and a 4.5 out of 5.0 customer score on Trustpilot. Learn more by reading our complete Dairyland motorcycle insurance review.
Nationwide is another great pick for motorcycle insurance in California. While Nationwide rates aren’t quite as low as those offered by Geico or Dairyland, it is a well-regarded insurer offering several motorcycle insurance discounts, such as:
- Multi-policy discount
- Homeowner discount
- Multi-vehicle discount
- Pay-in-full discount
- Motorcycle safety course discount
- Anti-lock brakes discount
- Riding association discount
- Theft-recovery device discount
The insurer offers especially good rates for low-risk riders with standard bikes. While Nationwide’s customer service reputation isn’t quite as high as the other insurers on this list, it’s still generally a well-regarded insurer and worth consideration for California motorcycle insurance. Read our Nationwide motorcycle insurance review to learn more.
California Motorcycle Insurance Requirements
California law mandates that all motorcycle riders maintain at the very minimum a liability insurance policy with the following limits:
- $15,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $30,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $5,000 property damage liability
As riding a motorcycle is inherently more dangerous than riding a car, we recommend that riders purchase medical coverage and make sure to wear full riding gear (helmet, gloves, boots, pants, jacket) on every ride. Other than medical and liability coverage, riders have the option to purchase underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage, collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and more.
Cost Of California Insurance
According to Business Insider, the average cost of motorcycle insurance in California is $696.92, which is a bit cheaper than the national average of $1,173. Your individual rates will depend on a number of factors and may be higher or lower than this average. Motorcycle insurance rates depend on:
- Your age
- Your driving record
- Your experience
- Your motorcycle
- Your city
- Your coverage and deductibles
If you purchase only the minimum required amount of motorcycle insurance in California, you’ll find the lowest rates. However, you may want to consider adding collision, comprehensive, and personal injury protection policies to your coverage.
What To Know About Riding In California
You are required to have a motorcycle license to operate a motorcycle in California. According to the California DMV, a motorcycle is defined as: “A motor vehicle with a seat or saddle for the rider designed to travel on not more than three wheels.”
You do not need a specialized motorcycle license to operate a motorized scooter, moped, or electric bicycle.
The requirements for obtaining a California motorcycle license vary depending on your age. Riders between the ages of 15 and 17 must complete a driver education course before they can obtain a motorcycle permit. All riders under 20 must complete the California Motorcyclist Safety Program (CMSP) training course and hold a motorcycle permit for at least six months.
Every rider—including riders above the age of 20—must do the following before obtaining a motorcycle license:
- Complete a driver license or identification card application
- Pass a vision exam
- Submit to fingerprinting
- Pay required fees
- Pass a knowledge test
- Pass an observation road test
Once you are licensed, be sure to wear a helmet at all times as it is required by California state law.
Final Thoughts: California Motorcycle Insurance
Even though motorcycle insurance in California is relatively inexpensive compared to other states, anyone would want to lower their rates as much as possible.
While Geico is generally the best option for low-cost motorcycle insurance in California, this may not be the case with every rider. The only way to find the best option for you is to compare personalized quotes from multiple riders. Use the tool below to request free quotes.