Temporary car insurance – what you need to know

Sometimes getting an insurance policy for a whole year just isn’t right for your needs. There are a number of scenarios where you would be better off with a shorter (and MUCH more accessible) policy.

Temporary auto insurance policy is not easy to find, but there are several ways to get the coverage you want.

What is temporary car insurance?

There are many ways to get the results of a temporary auto insurance policy, depending on your situation. Most insurers require minimum six month autopolis. You may often see websites advertising short-term insurance, but they are usually lead magnets trying to get your contact information in order to sell you regular car insurance.

While there is no specific “temporary car insurance” that you can apply for directly, you can use certain add-ons instead. and features to get the coverage you need in the perfect amount of time.

Read more: What type of auto insurance do you need?

Who needs temporary auto insurance?

A temporary car insurance policy can help you in a variety of situations. Here are some situations that may apply, as well as the best type of temporary coverage for each.

you are coming from the country

Your primary auto insurance may not cover outside the US, depending on your policy. Therefore, if you are planning a trip to Canada or Mexico, you may need short-term international car insurance.

Check your current policy for your exact country of destination. Some insurers may let your US policy cover you in Canada but not in Mexico. You can get coverage on a daily basis for short visits across the border, or an extended policy if you plan to stay there for several months.

You are home from college and driving during your break.

Temporary car insurance can be a way to save money if you don’t drive during college but drive when you’re at home on vacation.

Since young drivers can be expensive to insure their parents’ policies, there is potential for big savings. Your parents can temporarily remove you from the policy while you are out of school and then re-add you when you get home and drive again.

Read more: Should you bring your car to college?

Your friend borrows your car

You don’t need a temporary auto insurance policy when a friend borrows your car for half a day. But it can be helpful if you have a friend or relative who uses your car regularly, such as a nanny who picks up your kids from kindergarten a few days a week.

Instead of buying a separate automatic policy, you can simply add that person to an existing policy. Your premium may be affected depending on their driving history. You can always delete them as soon as they stop using your machine.

Do you rent a car for business

Upon receipt car rental for personal use, you can usually insure either your own personal policy or a credit card (you can also insure rent car insurancebut this is not always the most affordable option).

Unfortunately your personal standard car insurance or credit card resources often run out when you rent a car for business purposes.

If you work for a company, find out what coverage they offer. If coverage is not available or you run your own business, call your insurance company to get a temporary commercial car insurance policy.

You start a joint fuss

Using your car for ridesharing through a company like Elevator or Uber may require additional insurance on top of your standard auto insurance policy. This is because you are using your vehicle for commercial purposes and not for personal use.

Depending on the insurance company, you may be able to replace your current policy with one that includes travel sharing coverage so that you only have one premium. Also, check your state’s laws to see if there are any special coverage requirements for rideshare drivers.

Read more: Do you want to become a driver? Check These 5 Insurance Companies First

You put the car in long-term storage

Even if the car is in storage, you still need to have some kind of insurance on it. If you don’t drive at all, you could potentially remove collision coverage and leave only full coverage. This will protect you from damage or theft.

However, if you have a car loan for a car, you may be required to maintain a certain coverage threshold whether your car is in storage or not.

You buy a car for a short period of time

If you’re buying a car for the short term and plan to resell it soon, you probably shouldn’t buy an annual policy. If you have a different car, consider temporarily adding the new car to the same insurer’s plan to get a discount on multiple policies.

Pros and cons of temporary auto insurance

The advantages and disadvantages of temporary car insurance can help you decide if it’s right for you.


  • Pay for the right level of insurance. There are times when getting a standard auto insurance policy means paying more coverage than you really need. Finding the right temporary car insurance policy will give you protection without overpaying.
  • Work through an insurance company. Your current insurer may offer a discount on the coverage you’re looking for, whether it’s temporarily adding another person to your policy or extending your coverage to travel to Mexico or Canada.


  • Limited options for a simple temporary car insurance policy. It is difficult to find typical coverage for less than six months. You will need to choose a strategy to meet your specific needs rather than looking for a policy that lasts for a short period of time.
  • Early cancellation can cost you money. If you take out a six-month or one-year policy and then cancel it, you could lose some of your change. Insurers usually require at least a monthly down payment. If you cancel your policy before then, you will forfeit that money.
  • A grace period may limit your coverage. It’s also difficult to use the new standard policy in the short term because insurers tend to limit your ability to make claims within the first 30 days.

How to get temporary car insurance

Depending on the reason you want to get temporary car insurance, look for insurers for some of the following features.

Define cancellation fee

The easiest way to get temporary car insurance is to get a standard policy and then cancel it when you no longer need it. To do this, find a car insurance company that does not have cancellation fees. As long as premium payments are not inflated, you can save money and use the policy at the time you choose.

Find out the cost of adding a driver

Start by figuring out the type of temporary car insurance you need to narrow down your search. For example, before adding a driver for a short period of time, compare offers to find the best insurer.

Check out flexible international coverage

If you plan to drive to Canada or Mexico (or transport it overseas), compare the rules to find coverage for your destination country. Some standard policies may already include coverage in Canada. Also, look for policies with flexible schedules so you don’t pay more than you need to.

Compare discounts on multiple vehicles

Look for insurers that allow you to add a car to your existing auto insurance policy. So you can drop this vehicle whenever you need without changing your original policy.

Evaluate ridesharing coverage

Many major insurance companies offer rideshare insurance, but availability varies greatly by state. Don’t just look for suppliers offering this type of coverage. Make sure you enter your location details to find the most accurate list of car sharing rules based on where you live.

Look at the reputation of the insurer

No matter what type of temporary car insurance you are looking for, research the company’s reputation before moving on. First, make sure they actually offer the type of short term insurance policy you are looking for. Some companies have set up websites that advertise temporary car insurance and then simply use your contact information to try and sell you a six-month or a year policy.

Also pay attention to customer satisfaction ratings. This gives you an idea of ​​the claims process and how quickly you will receive a refund when you actually use your policy.

Use the online comparison tool

Simplify this process for yourself by using the insurance comparison tool, for example Gaby. Gaby is an insurance broker licensed in all 50 states and you can find the exact coverage you are looking for online.

Temporary car insurance alternatives

If the options above do not help your situation, you may want to consider additional alternatives to temporary car insurance.

Responsibility not of the owner

Non-owner liability insurance is for individuals who do not own a vehicle but need auto liability insurance for a specific reason. A common situation is when you frequently rent or borrow cars and want to protect yourself from financial liability for any damage or injury you cause with the car.

Another reason is that you have been convicted of driving under the influence and must complete an SR-22 form in your state. Alternatively, if you’ve recently sold your car and don’t want your insurance coverage to end (which could result in a higher premium later), then a non-owner’s liability policy can keep your insurance active until you’re ready for full coverage. policy. . Non-owner liability is generally a little less expensive than a standard car policy.

Use-based car insurance

Purchasing a usage-based car insurance policy can save you money if you own a car but don’t drive often. The insurance company tracks your mileage either through your vehicle’s telematics system or through a separate device installed in your vehicle. In most cases, you are not penalized for excessive driving. Instead, you get a discount if you don’t drive much.

In addition to mileage, usage-based insurance also analyzes your other driving habits. Speed, acceleration and braking may also be tested to determine if you qualify for any discounts. Hence, this type of policy is ideal for people who do not have long commutes and do not have aggressive driving habits.

Long-term coverage and payment plan

If temporary car insurance doesn’t suit your needs, consider taking out a regular auto insurance policy and canceling it when you no longer need it. Make monthly payments rather than yearly payments so you don’t have to worry about the refund process. Also check if there is an early cancellation fee. This may be charged by the insurance company and the broker if you have used it.

When replacing an old policy with a new one, aim for them to overlap for a day or two. This protects you in case of any administrative failure on either end.


While you usually can’t buy temporary car insurance for days or weeks, there are many strategies to cover your needs. Give yourself time to research different policies and compare insurance providers to make sure you don’t overspend.

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