Riders in North Carolina must have motorcycle insurance, and there are many options to choose from. After collecting hundreds of quotes from across North Carolina, we found that the cheapest annual rate for motorcycle insurance is $655.
Compare Motorcycle Insurance Quotes from Providers in North Carolina
We compared motorcycle insurance companies in the Tar Heel State by looking at policy offerings and customer service scores along with average premiums. Read our analysis of the state's best motorcycle insurance companies or use the quote box above this article if you're ready to connect with providers near you.
Best motorcycle insurance for most people: Progressive
We found that the best motorcycle insurance for most people in North Carolina is Progressive. It stands out from its competitors due to its affordable prices and the variety of coverage included in its basic policy. The average yearly price of motorcycle insurance from Progressive is $713, about 7% cheaper than what's typical in North Carolina. You can reduce your premiums by qualifying for a number of discounts, too. You could save by:
- Requesting a quote before your policy is scheduled to start
- Bundling with another form of insurance
- Having a motorcycle endorsement on your license
- Completing a safety course
- Transfering from another motorcycle insurance agency
- Paying your bill on time or in full
Standard motorcycle insurance from Progressive comes with many perks that you can only get with other companies by submitting to an additional charge. For instance, you receive replacement cost coverage with any policy, as well as $3,000 of custom parts protection.
In North Carolina, Progressive has above-average customer service. The complaint index, maintained by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), reveals that Progressive receives fewer complaints than what's typical for its market share.
Best for affordable motorcycle insurance: GEICO
GEICO's balance of cheap rates and effective coverage make it a good choice for many North Carolinians. On average, we found that GEICO has the cheapest affordable motorcycle insurance in North Carolina of the companies we surveyed: GEICO's $655 price tag was about 15% cheaper than the typical cost of coverage in the state.
GEICO doesn't allow its customers the most opportunities for reducing their premiums with discounts; still, if you're already a car insurance customer with GEICO or are looking to insure more than one bike, you may be able to make the most of the offered discounts. You may qualify for savings if you:
- Bundle your policy with another form of coverage
- Insure more than one motorcycle
- Complete a safety course
- Are an older experienced driver
- Renew your policy with GEICO
- Switch from another provider
Despite the typically affordable price of GEICO's motorcycle insurance, customers don't need to worry about trading affordability for customer service. Although motorcycle-specific data aren't available, we found that the company's auto insurance business as a whole has a 0.72 complaint index. This means that it receives about one-quarter fewer complaints than expected for its market share.
Best for touring: Dairyland
People who like to drive long distances with their motorcycles should look into Dairyland for motorcycle insurance. It's more expensive than the average cost of coverage in the state, but we believe the coverage from Dairyland is catered best for those looking to protect touring bikes from perils that could disrupt a trip. In any case, we recommend obtaining a personal estimate from Dairyland to confirm that its price would work for you. You can purchase trip interruption protection for damages you encounter after you're 100 miles from home, including assistance if you:
- Run out of gas or oil
- Have a dead battery
- Lose your keys
- Get a flat tire
- Need a tow
Dairyland's endorsements allow you easily to reinforce your bike's security. You can also elect to add replacement cost coverage to your motorcycle insurance policy if your bike is three years old or newer. Dairyland's physical damage plus and optional/special equipment endorsements are both ways to ensure all your bike's damaged parts are returned to like new.
The main downside of Dairyland's motorcycle insurance is its customer service reputation. With a 2.12 complaint index, the company has the worst customer satisfaction among customers we surveyed. However, Dairyland has a market share of only 0.05%, meaning a small number of complaints can disproportionately affect its index. In fact, it only received 17 complaints nationally and zero in North Carolina in 2018.
The best reviewed motorcycle insurance companies in North Carolina
It's a good idea to investigate the customer service reputation that an insurance company has before committing to a policy. To help you find the motorcycle insurance company with the best customer service, we consulted the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' (NAIC) complaint index. The company with the best customer service was Nationwide with 0.36.
We've visualized this information in the following table:
|Insurer||NAIC score||A.M. Best (financial stability)|
Cheapest motorcycle insurance in North Carolina
The cheapest motorcycle insurance in North Carolina comes from GEICO, which provides effective coverage for an annual average premium of $655. This is about $100 less expensive than the statewide average price of insurance.
The average cost of motorcycle insurance in North Carolina is about $767 per year. It's only slightly more expensive to purchase insurance for your motorcycle here than in the rest of the country, where we calculated the national average cost of insuring your motorcycle to be $702.
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What are North Carolina's motorcycle laws?
Whether you live in North Carolina or are just cruising through, you should make sure you understand the state's laws for motorcyclists. If you don’t comply with local regulation with regards to gear, insurance and licensing, you may face fines or other penalties. If you have a moped or scooter, your vehicle will be subject to a different set of laws.
North Carolina's motorcycle license requirements
North Carolina requires you to have a motorcycle learner's permit or endorsement on your regular driver's license. Fortunately, it's fairly straightforward to get certification. If you just need a learner's permit, you must pass a motorcycle knowledge test, road sign identification test and vision test.
To obtain an endorsement on your license, you have to pass a motorcycle knowledge test and an off-road skills test. Both types of certification require that you already have a regular license.
Helmet laws in North Carolina
Whether you're driving a motorcycle or riding with someone else, you must wear a helmet. Helmets in compliance with the state's safety standards are marked by a Department of Transportation sticker stuck permanently to the back. Helmets that are in compliance will have a lining of foam that's at least one inch thick.
Sometimes it's possible to find novelty-style helmets with facsimiles of the Department of Transportation's sticker. However, these aren't actually compliant with North Carolina's regulations.
Motorcycle insurance requirements in North Carolina
North Carolina motorcycle owners are required to carry a minimum level of liability insurance. This coverage is meant to protect the policy holder from damage they may cause to other motorists if they were involved in an accident.
We've listed the legally mandated coverage minimums below, but we recommend that you purchase enough insurance to adequately protect your assets — even if it exceeds the state's minimum requirements.
|Coverage type||Required minimum insurance|
|Bodily injury liability||$30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident|
|Property damage liability||$25,000|
Motorcycle insurance costs: city-by-city breakdowns
Our analysis allowed us to break down the average cost of motorcycle insurance in North Carolina by city. We found that the most expensive city for buying motorcycle insurance is Fayetteville, where annual premiums average $1,104, almost $400 more than the state's typical cost. There were three cities that tied for the state's lowest rate of $669 per year. These were: West Jefferson, Bryson City and Sylva.
|City||Average cost||% from statewide average|
We collected hundreds of quotes for addresses in different ZIP codes across North Carolina. Our survey uses rates generated for a 45-year-old married homeowners who drives a 2019 Harley-Davidson FLHX Street Glide. Our rates reflect higher levels of protection than what's legally required in North Carolina — we always recommend that you purchase enough insurance to protect the full value of your assets and property. Your own quotes may vary. The quotes we collected were based on these coverage limits:
- Bodily injury liability coverage: $100,000 per person/$300,000 per accident
- Property damage liability coverage: $50,000 per accident
- Collision coverage: Included/$500 deductible
- Comprehensive coverage: Included/$500 deductible
- All other coverages: Not included
The amount of time you've been riding your motorcycle and your driving history can affect the price of your rates. However, no variables affect the price of motorcycle insurance as much as the amount of coverage you select.