• Advantages & Disadvantages of International Car Insurance

    If you are planning a trip abroad and are driving a vehicle yourself, you need to consider purchasing international car insurance. Insurance is something we all dislike paying for, but are happy we have it when we need it. You need to have auto insurance at home; being in a foreign country is not any different. There are always things to consider when traveling.

    Advantages of Purchasing International Car Insurance

    If you are driving your own car, or a borrowed one in another country you will need to consider purchasing auto insurance. With full coverage, you will have similar coverage to what you have at home; liability, personal property, medical, collision and comprehensive insurance. With this coverage, almost any situation regarding an accident will be covered.

    In some cases it is even more important. If you are driving your own vehicle, it will be visible with a license plate from a different country. If there is a criminal element in the area you’re visiting, theft or intentional accidents can occur. Many times, cars with foreign license plates are vandalized or criminals may watch local food stops and break into the car while the driver is away from the vehicle.

    There is also the chance of apprehension by local law enforcement officials for an at-fault accident. If you are visiting, any financial obligations not paid may cause your exit from the country to be restricted. Good international insurance coverage will cover any financial constraints.

    Most international auto insurance can be bundled with additional coverage types such as trip insurance, medical, hospitalization, personal property loss and even legal representation. Many will also assist in money or credit card replacement in case you are robbed.

    Disadvantages of Purchasing International Car Insurance

    Some insurance policies will cover you for driving a borrowed vehicle in a foreign country. It might have limitations such as time in the country. It is best to check with your insurance carrier before purchasing any additional coverage.

    Many times international auto insurance will be much more expensive then you would have to pay back home. There can be restrictions or other fees imposed by the country you are visiting. One restriction imposed by the insurance companies is that coverage is only for personal driving and not business related transportation. This type of insurance is only valid for a borrowed vehicle, since rental car companies may require you purchase auto insurance as part of the rental agreement. Without actual proof of insurance coverage, they might disallow outside insurance policies when renting.

    When visiting a foreign country, driving habits, laws and even which side of the street to drive on can be different. Plus with different laws, if you do not need to drive your own vehicle, it might be best to use public transportation, taxis or hire a vehicle and driver. This way you can relax and enjoy your trip. Most hotels and tour agencies can arrange for cars and vans with drivers for a few hours or a few weeks.

    If your plan is to visit and drive to multiple countries, many have different restrictions and might require you purchase insurance in their respective country. With the restrictions and costs, again it might be advisable to hire a driver.