Temporary Car Insurance for Young Drivers

Temporary car insurance for young drivers covers you for up to 30 days in a borrowed or rented car. To qualify for temporary car insurance for young drivers, you must have a clean record.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Jan 26, 2021

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Here's what you need to know

  • Drivers under 21 are a high-risk group and are not covered by some companies.
  • Short-term car insurance is useful for young drivers who don’t own a car.
  • To qualify for an insurance policy, a person must prove he/she has a clean driving record.
  • You may not be required to carry insurance yourself until you have your license or even a car.
  • Temporary insurance may be a good option when you are in transition from your parents’ plan.
  • Make sure you have the state mandatory requirements for car insurance before driving in your state.

Young people who are new to the road may benefit from short-term car insurance for under-21 drivers. Temporary car insurance for young drivers under 21 can provide interim coverage.

Many young people are not at the point where they need or can afford a car. Perhaps you have an expired learner’s permit, and it’s time to take on the responsibility of driving alone. Or maybe you’re just finishing high school and have not started a job or college.

Or maybe you just need transportation for a short outing a few times per month. Perhaps you’re not yet able to take on the expense of an annual car insurance premium.

Temporary car insurance coverage will help cover the gap period until a permanent policy is purchased.

No matter the young driver’s situation, short-term coverage may be a necessary and smart expense to take on for protection.

To get car insurance rates on temporary or permanent coverage, use our free tool above to compare rates and plans.

The Availability of Temporary Car Insurance for Young Drivers

Drivers under 21 are a high-risk group. This is a time when energy levels and a sense of adventure are high. It’s also a time in life when drivers may not make the best and most responsible decisions.

Insurance carriers base their rates on the level of risk they perceive a driver to be based on extensive research. Although short-term car insurance for under 21-year-olds is available, it can be expensive.

Many carriers don’t even offer short-term car insurance for this age group. Some of the major car insurance providers are in the position to accept the risk, but they only offer it at rates that protect them as well. Other carriers find this risk to be more than it’s worth in expenses.

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The Purpose of Temporary Car Insurance for Young Drivers

There are many young drivers who do not own a car. They may intend to borrow or rent a vehicle. In this case, short-term car insurance would be a good choice.

They may also ask to be added to their friend or relative’s policy to save money. The temporary car insurance company should be notified of the intent to lend a car to anyone not currently on the existing policy.

If a parent’s policy will be too expensive with a young driver on it, a temporary fix or a non-owner’s car insurance policy will be a lot cheaper for those specific times of need.

How to Qualify for Temporary Car Insurance

To qualify for a policy, a person must prove he/she has a pretty clean driving record:

  • If there is an incident of a DUI or accident, coverage may not be available again for five years.
  • Good grades may be an indication of responsibility. This may impact the premium offered.
  • The type of car driven also makes a difference in what the premium will be. The premium for a young male driver behind the wheel of a red Ford Mustang is going to cost more than one behind the wheel of a white Ford Taurus.

Several pieces of information will be gathered to determine car insurance rates:

  • ZIP code
  • Age
  • Make and model of the car
  • Where the driver intends to drive
  • The duration of the term (one to 28 days)

Most short-term policies will cover liability if nothing more. If there’s a lien on the car, the lender may require full coverage anyway. In this case, collision and comprehensive may be included in the amount required by the state.

Cost and Conversion

The cost to buy short-term car insurance for under-21 drivers can be a little or quite a bit more than regular car insurance. However, there are benefits:

  • The flexibility of converting to a long-term policy
  • Fewer obligations to long-term premiums
  • The ability to cancel and pick it back up at a later time
  • Modification capabilities

A short-term car insurance policy for under-21-year-old drivers usually lasts one to 28 days.

If there are no incidents and you’re interested in converting the short-term car insurance policy to a long-term one, you may be entitled to discounted rates.

Most companies will offer a conversion without a deposit or with a less expensive one.

To get quick-rate car insurance quotes today, enter your ZIP code now!

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30-Day Car Insurance Coverage: Under 21-Years-Old

  • You may not be required to carry insurance yourself until you have your license or even a car.
  • Temporary insurance may be a good option when you are in transition from your parents’ plan.
  • Make sure you have the state mandatory requirements before driving in your state.

Are you in need of temporary insurance coverage? Have you ever heard of temporary insurance?

Temporary insurance is insurance that, as its name implies, is not meant to serve as permanent insurance.

Temporary insurance is insurance that only covers you for one to 30 days and can fulfill the need for coverage if you need it temporarily or if you’re in the process of changing your insurance carrier.

If you’re looking for the best temporary auto insurance rates, start comparison shopping by entering your ZIP code above.

Why change your car insurance?

There are some specific reasons as to why you may need to change your insurance.

Moving from your parents’ house

If you are under 21 but in the process of moving from your parents’ house to your own home, you may need temporary coverage.

Chances are, you’ve probably been under your parents’ insurance up until this point, but now you feel the need to have your own insurance.

Having temporary insurance can satisfy the need to be covered while you’re shopping for permanent insurance.

Changing your state of residence

If you’re in the process of changing your state of residence, you might need to use temporary insurance while you’re shopping around for a more permanent solution.

During this time, you will want to look for permanent insurance that reflects the mandates of the state that you plan to move to as soon as possible.

You don’t own your own car

If you do not yet own a car and are under 21 years of age, you may be in a position where you sometimes drive your parent or another family member’s car, for example.

You are leasing a car

If you’re leasing a car, you will be under the jurisdiction of the lease company’s insurance. But if you have an accident while driving the leased vehicle, they may only have basic coverage.

Gap coverage may be a temporary solution to cover unforeseen circumstances while you’re renting a car.

You are in transition

If you’re under 21 and in transition between residences, jobs, or vehicles, temporary insurance may temporarily solve your problem of not having insurance while you shop for something permanent.

A Temporary Solution

Keep in mind that, no matter how good gap insurance or temporary insurance may seem to be, your goal should be to get full coverage as soon as you have left your parents’ house or turn 21 and are on your own.

While you are under 21, you may be living in your parents’ house and may be covered by their insurance. But once this situation changes, you will have to find your own insurance.

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Types of People Who May Want Temporary Insurance

Below is a list of the types of individuals who may want to get some temporary insurance coverage to handle the state requirements for insurance while looking for permanent insurance.

Young Drivers

As mentioned above, drivers under 21 may need temporary or gap coverage to cover the costs of minimal insurance while shopping for a more permanent solution.

These type of drivers include people moving out of their parents’ home and coming off of their parents’ insurance plan.

Classic Car Enthusiasts

Classic car owners who only take their car to special car shows or cruise around town occasionally may want temporary coverage since they won’t be driving enough to necessitate a full policy.

Learning Drivers (Permit)

Drivers who are still driving under a permit may only need temporary insurance to satisfy the state’s mandatory requirements for insurance as they make the transition to full-time driver.

Check with your parents’ insurance company to see if it covers drivers during the learning period.

One-Day Insurance

Some people get insurance to cover them for only one day due to special circumstances such as moving home with a car or taking care of an emergency situation.

Such people need not get full coverage just for one day, but they do need to make sure they’re covered with the state mandatory insurance.

Good News for Young Drivers

There is some good news for young drivers who either still have their learner’s permit or are now licensed drivers.

You may qualify for a variety of discounts.

Some of the discounts you could qualify for include:

  • Good student discount – If you maintain around a “B” average at school, you may be rewarded by some insurance companies for your efforts. Check to see if the insurance companies you’re considering have this discount.
  • Good driver discount – The best thing you can do if you want to save money on your insurance premium is to have a clean driving record. A clean driving record is the single most important factor that you can control regarding your insurance premium.
  • Moving out of state – If you are relocating to a school or college in another location away from home, you may qualify for an insurance discount on your premium.

If you’re under 21, you’re entering a time when you must decide what type of car insurance you will carry into your adulthood. You can always change, but it’s important to start off right.

So keep your driving record clean by observing safe and defensive driving, shop and compare many companies before deciding, and keep your eyes on the road!

Start comparison shopping today for temporary car insurance quotes and better auto insurance rates by entering your ZIP code below.


  1. https://www.nationwide.com/cheap-car-insurance-young-drivers.jsp
  2. https://www.geico.com/save/discounts/moving-out/
  3. https://www.statefarm.com/insurance/auto/resources/new-teen-drivers
  4. https://www.esurance.com/info/car/how-a-dui-affects-car-insurance-premiums
  5. https://www.statefarm.com/insurance/auto/discounts

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