The battle that almost broke us...
Last time we wrote about trying to get insurance, to cover our temporarily imported vehicle with British plates, we’d hit a dead end. Neither of us much liked the idea of driving uninsured but also knew we wouldn’t let it stop us going. Thankfully we managed it just two weeks before we were due to leave!
While we’d searched every google variation of “auto insurance for a British car in Canada” and spoken to every specialist car insurance company inside the UK, what we hadn’t done was look into US insurance. Because...well, we had no ties to the USA! We didn't have visas and the car wasn’t even arriving there. But after googling "insurance for a temporarily imported car into USA” we realized that this is a much more common question. Which, when you think about it, makes sense. America has more borders than Canada (1 more to be precise), but it also has much more tourism (no offense Canada), plus more lax laws around auto insurance to begin with.
The US government website lists brokers that cover temporarily imported vehicles. I knew we would need an address in the US for the insurance and so my friend Dave, who we’d be visiting in San Jose, kindly let us use his. I called the first broker on the list and explained truthfully that we’d be importing the car into Nova Scotia, and travelling for 2 months, before arriving at the California address... This didn’t go down well, and they said they couldn’t insure us, since we weren’t going to be in one state for the majority of the time and their minimum coverage was 6 months.
The next broker, State Farm, got an adapted version of our plans "were shipping the car to Nova Scotia and driving it straight to the address in California, where we planned on staying for 6 months…" - Don’t judge us, at least we’d be insured! We got our email documents, and Dave got our welcome pack.