When Short-Term Auto Insurance Can Help You Out

31 August 2015
 Categories: Insurance, Blog


If you only need auto insurance coverage for a limited period of time, short-term auto insurance -- also known as temporary auto insurance -- may be your answer. The option is available even if you need coverage for just one day. Although most major auto insurance companies sell short-term policies, before deciding whether you want this type of coverage, it helps to know how the insurance works and in what situations it can benefit you.

Key Difference

A short-term policy usually offers you the same coverage options as standard auto insurance, but the coverage isn't automatically renewable. Standard policies renew at the end of the policy term as long as you pay the premiums on time or don't cancel your coverage. No further action is required on your part. Although you can renew a short-term policy beyond the coverage period stated in the contract, you must let the insurer know you want to renew it.

When You Might Need It

Short-term auto insurance policies provide coverage in various situations such as:

  1. You are in the military service, but prior to being deployed overseas, you need auto insurance for a short period.

  2. You will be driving a rental car while on an extended vacation in another country.

  3. You are currently between policies because you allowed your auto insurance coverage to lapse when you sold your vehicle or the car lease ended.

  4. You did not have auto insurance previously, but have purchased a vehicle and need insurance to drive it off the dealer's lot.

  5. You want time to shop auto insurers for the best deal on a standard policy.

  6. You are putting a vehicle in storage for a while.

  7. You own a vehicle, but only temporarily.


The cost for short-term auto insurance is more than you would pay for a regular policy. But like a standard policy, insurers set the final cost of a short-term policy based on factors such as your age, where you live, and your driving record.

In addition to the model, make, and year of the vehicle you are insuring, the insurance company will need an estimate of the number of miles you will be driving during the policy period, as well as whether you will be driving the vehicle primarily to work or for recreation. Many auto insurers also take into account your credit score in determining the rate you will pay.

What It Covers

Short-term auto insurance policies include most of the coverage options you get with a standard policy. You can get collision and comprehensive coverage, bodily injury and property damage liability coverage, and coverage for uninsured and under-insured motorists. If you live in a state that has a no-fault auto insurance law, the state may require you to add medical payments and some level of personal injury protection coverage. You can also add roadside assistance if you want.

For more information, contact Western Insurance Agency or a similar organization.