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Expat car insurance

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Learn how to save money on your car insurance with our special guide...

What is expat car insurance?

There are a few reasons why someone may need to get a specialist international or expat car insurance policy.

The three main circumstances where you would find you may need expat car insurance are:

  • Expats returning to the UK
  • Taking a UK car to Europe
  • Keeping your car in the UK while you live abroad

All of these occasions would require something a bit different to a standard car insurance policy, which is where expat car insurance comes in.

More specialised expat and international car insurance policies are designed more around the needs of expats, providing cover features and policy options that suit your individual circumstance.

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Expats returning to the UK

Returning to the UK after living abroad can involve a lot of complicated processes. Thankfully, expat car insurance means you shouldn’t have to worry about making sure your vehicle is covered.

One of the potential problems for expats returning to the UK is finding an insurance company that will take into account their foreign no claims bonus. So it is important to find insurers that will recognise international NCBs and transfer it to your new UK policy.

If you are an expat returning to the UK then it is important to shop around and look around for insurers that will provide a quote based on your personal driving circumstances and history that you built up while living abroad.

Taking a UK car to Europe

The number of UK drivers taking their car out of the country is increasing, mainly due to the ease of international travel – particularly in Europe.

Emigrating can be a stressful experience, but a dedicated expat car insurance policy can help give you that peace of mind that your car insurance is not something you need to worry about.

If you are planning to travel, or migrate to Europe for a limited period of time, then there is the option to get insurance via the green card system. However, this only provides a limited period of insurance and only offers very basic road traffic accident cover. If you wish to get a more comprehensive car insurance policy then you will need a dedicated expat insurance policy.

Keeping your car in the UK while you live abroad

While you are living overseas without your vehicle, you will need to arrange insurance for your car while it stays in the UK.

Although it won’t be driven on UK roads, if you leave the car uninsured or declare it ‘off the road’ via a SORN then you leave it at risk of being damaged by fire or theft.

If you wish to arrange an insurance policy for your car, then you will find that a standard car insurance policy won’t be applicable as they are usually only available to UK residents. As you will be living in a different country you will need to organise a more specialist expat car insurance policy.

Temporary car insurance for non-UK residents

If you have emigrated but return to the UK to visit family or friends, then you usually have no other option than to hire a vehicle during your stay or to borrow a car from a friend or family member – which means being added to their policy as a named driver.

This can prove difficult if you are not a UK resident, and also puts the car owners no claims bonus at risk.

A simpler solution is a temporary car insurance policy, which can be a better way for people who do not live in the UK to get covered for the short period of time they are here.

Temporary car insurance for non-UK residents can be bought for most UK registered cars, vans and even motorhomes.

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