Many people who have a valid driver’s license do not own a personal automobile since they have access to public transportation (e.g. a bus, subway, taxis, etc.). When life presents the opportunity to drive a vehicle for someone that does not typically drive often, you need to make sure that you at least have a short term car insurance policy. What many people are deciding to get these days is short term coverage for 2 weeks. Instead of buying a policy for a full term, many people want to get coverage for just a couple weeks to try it out and see how they like driving again.
Common Reasons That People Get Car Insurance For 2 Weeks
There are a few scenarios in which getting this type of coverage would make sense for a person without coverage. Take the time to read below and see what you think and whether a short term policy, also referred to as “temporary car insurance,” would be right for you. Keep in mind that there are other types of coverage besides just a 2 week plan, there are short term options ranging from weeks to six months; it all depends on which company you work with.
Borrowing a vehicle
Asking a friend to borrow his pickup for a cross-town move does not seem to be a risk unless the borrower does not have car insurance coverage. A short-term car insurance policy can cover loss without impacting the friend’s insurance policy and costing his money in the event of an accident. The same truth applies when visiting friends and driving their car around town.
Many car rental agencies require proof of insurance in addition to the valid driver’s license. Even if the rental agent attempts to sell the agency’s insurance with the rental contract, the proof that damage will be covered is required. Save the money on the expensive rental car insurance coverage (through the rental car agency), and purchase a short-term car insurance policy before leaving home.
Some city-dwellers own a personal automobile, but the car is stored and uninsured until the owner wishes to drive somewhere. If the planned trip is only one or two days, short-term auto insurance can provide the appropriate coverage.
Specialty car insurance coverage is required in foreign countries because most auto insurance companies will underwrite drivers in certain countries and exempt other countries. Standard auto insurance policies can contain an exemption clause that excludes Canada and Mexico, but a short-term policy for those countries can be purchased for any amount of time less than six months. For more information, read: “car insurance abroad.”
What are the coverage options for short term car insurance?
Typically, standard coverage components make up the short term car insurance policy. The only difference is the length of time that you are going to be covered for as well as (in some cases) the price that you will pay per week. Obviously you’ll want to compare quotes with coverage and think about which company you want to go through for your coverage. Below are some general types of coverage that you should be familiar with if you are going to buy a policy. Each is explained briefly so that you get a basic understanding of what to expect.
Damage to the vehicle that happens apart from an actual collision will be covered under this insurance component. Fire, theft, wind, hail, and flood damage fall under this category and if this component is omitted, the owner of the car would have to pay for repairs.
Actual accidents where one or more vehicles collide with each other or a stationary object are covered under the collision component. Expensive vehicles should be covered with collision insurance since repair bills can be very expensive.
All states require liability coverage to pay for damage to the property and personal well-being of others. Lawsuit settlements are paid from this component so care must be given to set the limits appropriately.
Passengers in both vehicles are covered under the personal injury component of the insurance policies carried by the drivers. Substantial coverage is necessary because multiple injuries can cause the medical bills to add up quickly.
This optional coverage would cover the medical expenses incurred by the driver in the event of an injury in an accident. When medical insurance is not available from another source, this coverage is important.
Possible short term car insurance providers
Every situation is unique so the source of short-term insurance might vary depending on the actual destination and duration of the insurance need. Check all of these possible sources to find the best coverage at the best possible price.
• Existing insurer – Certain situations require short-term auto insurance for foreign travel, and the driver with a standard insurance policy can also have an additional short-term policy to cover driving in a country that might be exempted under the long-term policy.
• Major insurance company – As the need for short-term insurance grows, more of the major insurers are offering short-term policies. Company websites carry up-to-date information about the insurance products each company offers.
• Online specialty insurer – Many drivers have been very happy with the offerings of little-known insurers who specialize in short-term car insurance. These companies are rated by A.M. Best and information can be acquired from third-party sources to determine the validity of their coverage.
• Rental car company – Certain destinations will be insured only by a rental car company that does business in that country. If short-term insurers refuse to write a policy, one option is to rent a car and purchase the agency’s insurance.
How can you get short term car insurance for 2 weeks?
Short term auto insurance is relatively new to the insurance industry. The reason that it is now available by most major companies is due to pressure by consumers. Many people wanted shorter coverage options so that they weren’t “locked in” for a certain (often lengthy) period of time. Now, if you want to get a simple 2 week policy, you can search online and come up with plenty of insurers that will make you an offer. Additionally, you can even go through most major insurance companies and ask them what their shortest term insurance options are. Below are some steps you should consider taking when shopping for your short term policy.
1. Perform the research – The internet, experienced insurance agents, and friends are all excellent sources of information about short-term insurance providers.
2. Investigate the companies – Visit the A.M. Best Company website or J.D. Power and Associates, to find the rating of the insurance company you have chosen. A.M. Best is the insurance industry watchdog that keeps track of all complaints and rates the companies according to their claims payment records and solvency as a company.
3. Purchase sufficient coverage – Be aware of the minimum state insurance requirements and purchase coverage in the appropriate amount and combination of coverage depending on your situation.
Final thoughts on short term coverage
Even though statistics prove that very few claims are actually made under short term car insurance policies, never drive a vehicle that is not insured even for one day. Taking the risk of driving as an underinsured or uninsured driver could get you into a lot of trouble. If you don’t have insurance, you have no business getting behind the wheel of a car in the United States.