Cheap Temporary Car Insurance Solutions

Motorists may need auto insurance for a short period of time for various reasons and depending on their requirements and circumstances they may have several options. Reputable car insurers usually offer policies for a six month period and they don’t sell anything for a shorter term but most of them don’t charge any fees for cancelling a policy early and refund unearned premiums back to the policyholder. So, buying a standard policy from a traditional provider and cancelling when you don’t need may be the easiest to arrange and cheapest solution for many occasions. There are other options available whether you want to insure a vehicle or driver or whether you own the car or not, as explained below.

There may be posts or advertisements on the Internet for a one day, week or month automobile insurance but they are usually click-baits to get people to come to their sites or call them. Then, they would tell you what we said above and try to sell you a 6 month policy. There may be some companies offering short-term vehicle insurance. They are most likely to be expensive, don’t offer full coverage and offer for a special situation like taking the car home from the dealership after you purchased it.

There is of course rental car insurance if you rent a car but there may be better or cheaper solutions even for it depending on your current arrangements. Here are some of the reasons you may need temporary automobile insurance and it may be easier to explain the solutions for individual situations;

Young girl with car keys

  • You bought a vehicle for a road trip and planning to sell it after

If you bought a car for a couple of months long road trip you will take with your mates, you may be looking for coverage for two months only. Be aware that you may come across something called month-to-month car insurance and think it is great for you and you can just arrange it for two months. Often some people re-phrase policies that allow you to pay monthly hence month-to-month. They are typical 6 month policies allowing you to pay the premium in monthly installments. You will still need to cancel them once you sell the car and settle with the insurer.

  • You don’t live in the US and want to drive during your visit

If you are going to hire a vehicle from the rental company, it may be a good idea to get your insurance from them as well. Rental vehicle insurance is usually expensive so you might want to do your research before coming over and find the best rental package.

  • You are visiting friends or family and want to be insured to drive their car

If they already have auto insurance, they can easily add you for the duration of your stay to their policies as a listed driver, especially if you are staying with them. Most companies accommodate such requests and charge an additional premium but this would be the cheapest option and you can reimburse your friends for the cost. You don’t need to make any arrangements if you are only borrowing the car for a short errand as long as the owner gives you permission and their policy covers permissive use drivers.

  • You are on a vacation and want to hire a car there (within the US)

If you have insurance coverage for your own auto at home, it usually covers rental cars as well, as long as it is not for a business trip and not a sports or luxury car and something similar to yours. So, you may not need to buy an expensive policy from the rental company and save your money.

  • You want to drive to Canada or Mexico and wanting short term coverage for this trip

Most auto insurance policies may already cover short journeys to Canada but most of them don’t cover trips to Mexico. However they offer additional coverage for such trips to Mexico. Check with your current carries for the availability or possibility of adding.

  • You won’t drive your car for a while but need something to tie you over

You own a car but you drive it on and off and it may stay in storage for a long while after you finish driving it this time around. Then, it may still make sense to buy a 6 month vehicle insurance policy and reduce the coverage to Comprehensive only by dropping the driving related Liability and Collision when you put the car in storage. Many companies will allow you to do that. This way you can reduce your premium up to 80% when it is in storage and keep your continuous coverage discount. This may require you to fill an off-road declaration with the DMV each time and keep it in the garage.

  • You’re a college student need coverage during summer break only

If you are the parent of the student who will be at the college during the semesters and back during summer and winter break, you may save a lot of money by dropping the child when they are away and putting them back on your policy for the duration of their stay in the summer. You just have to make sure that they don’t drive before they are insured again. A few companies offer large discounts when your child’s college is at least 100 miles away but still may not be comparable to the savings you get by dropping the child when they are away and putting them back on.

  • You don’t own a car but you often drive cars belonging to others or hire

Non-owners auto insurance can be helpful in such situations and it can build your insurance history at the same time. Non-owners policies offer liability and other state required covers when you drive cars belonging to other people and provide the same coverage to rental cars. It is usually sold for 6 or 12 months but you don’t have to look to make insurance arrangements each time you borrow someone else’s car or hire. This policy offers secondary liability coverage when the owner of the vehicle has insurance already and it is the primary policy in case of hired vehicles. And you may want to buy additional Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) or Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) from the hire firm.

  • You just bought a car and want to take it home and arrange coverage for it later

If you have a policy for another car already, it usually covers the car you just bought up to 30 days in some states and long enough in many other states to take it home and decide how you will insure it. So, you don’t need to buy an expensive policy from someone the dealer knows. Also, some dealers may actually have short-term vehicle insurance arrangements for the purpose of taking the car home but it is unlikely to be cheap and you may not need it anyway.

  • Short-term driving needs on vacation homes

If you bought an auto to keep in a vacation home and registered it in the vacation home state you will now need to comply with the minimum requirements there. But this can be tricky and costly if you don’t do it right. These automobiles are used only when you are there. But it may not be allowed or practical to place them on risk only when you operate them, especially if family and friends use the home and vehicle as well. Pay-per-mile policies can be very effective in these kinds of situations. If the vehicle isn’t driven, it doesn’t increase your premium much when it is based on mileage.

As demonstrated above there are a few cheap and even free solutions for your temporary auto insurance needs. So, first check your current arrangements if you have coverage already before searching for other short-term products that may or may not be available anyway.