Temporary Car Insurance in North Carolina: The Cheapest Options and What You Need to Know

Most major insurance companies in North Carolina offer car insurance that lasts at least six months. If you need a shorter policy, MoneyGeek analyzed the different ways to get temporary car insurance, whether you own a car and need a temporary solution or you don’t own a car and are only driving temporarily.

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Last Updated: 8/15/2022
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Drivers who own a car can create temporary car insurance by buying a policy and canceling it early. You can typically cancel your policy before the term ends and get a refund for the remaining duration. A three-month policy in North Carolina costs an average of $210.

If you’re visiting North Carolina or don’t own a car but need to drive in North Carolina, rental car insurance might be your best option.

MoneyGeek looked into the different scenarios where you might need temporary car insurance, such as when you’re a rideshare driver or when you’re buying non-owner insurance to reinstate your license.

Can You Get Temporary Car Insurance in North Carolina

Temporary car insurance in North Carolina and in other states can have different meanings and could vary depending on certain factors. Drivers who don’t own a car can choose between acquiring rental car insurance or non-owner car insurance, depending on the situation. Car owners are advised to get a full car insurance policy and cancel it early.

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HOW TO FIND TEMPORARY CAR INSURANCE IN NORTH CAROLINA TO FIT YOUR NEEDS

Since there is no single way to get temporary car insurance in North Carolina, MoneyGeek researched the different ways you can get short-term car insurance based on your needs.

Buying a Six-Month North Carolina Insurance Policy and Canceling It Early

Reputable car insurance companies in North Carolina and elsewhere only sell policies with a six-month minimum. In North Carolina, the average cost of a six-month car insurance policy is $421.

To get coverage for shorter time periods, you can cancel your car insurance early since almost all major insurance companies will refund your premium for the unused term.

A North Carolina car owner who gets a six-month policy and cancels it early to have a three-month policy will only need to pay half of the cost of the former, which is about $210.

However, MoneyGeek recommends that you avoid having a lapse in insurance coverage if you use this strategy since that may lead to hundreds of dollars of extra charges later on.

Cheap Temporary Car Insurance in North Carolina

MoneyGeek calculated the cost of car insurance in North Carolina for the standard six-month policy. Based on this, three-month and one-month policy costs were also calculated.

On average, the cheapest car insurance in North Carolina for a 90-day policy is:

  • Nationwide: $150 per 90 days
  • State Farm: $163 per 90 days

MoneyGeek’s calculations excluded these cancellation fees since almost all major insurance companies do not charge cancellation fees and offer a full refund for the duration the policy wasn’t used.

Annual Cost of Car Insurance in North Carolina by Policy Length

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Altering North Carolina Car Insurance Temporarily Depending on Your Needs

If you already have car insurance in North Carolina but need to add or remove coverage, your best option might be to alter your existing policy. Most drivers ask questions about short-term car insurance that involve storing your vehicle, knowing what to do if a teenager goes to college or knowing what happens if someone borrows your car.

When You Should Alter Your Policy Temporarily

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If you are going to store your vehicle, ask your provider if you can remove everything but your comprehensive insurance. If you are in the military, you can utilize USAA’s car storage discounts.

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If your child goes to school elsewhere in North Carolina, you can ask for a discount or temporarily remove them from your policy.

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If you let someone borrow your car, only add them to your policy if they drive it regularly.

Cheap Temporary Car Insurance for Students in North Carolina

If you live in North Carolina with your child, you will have to add them to your car insurance policy. This can be expensive. MoneyGeek found that in North Carolina, adding an 18-year-old to a policy costs around $1,603 per year. To save money, you can either keep them on your policy, ask for discounts or remove them from your policy if they live 100 miles away.

MoneyGeek calculated that adding a student to your policy for two months during the summer costs $267, which is significantly lower than the ​​$1,603 cost if you keep them for an entire year.

With a potential savings of $1,592, Progressive can provide the biggest savings in North Carolina for temporarily removing a student from a policy.

Annual Cost of Adding an 18-Year-Old to Car Insurance in North Carolina

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  • Company
    Adding 18-year-old for two out of 12 months
    Adding an 18-year-old for the full year
    Difference
  • $1,229
    $205
    -$1,024
  • $1,377
    $230
    -$1,148
  • $1,581
    $263
    -$1,317
  • $1,786
    $298
    -$1,489
  • $1,911
    $318
    -$1,592
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WHAT IF I CAN’T GET A DISCOUNT?

However, if your child attends school in North Carolina but does not meet the 100-mile minimum distance requirement, it is best to shop around for providers so you get the best rates. To help you save money, MoneyGeek gathered the cheapest car insurance companies for teens.

What to Do About Car Insurance if You’re Storing Your Car in North Carolina

You have two options if you’re temporarily storing your car in North Carolina and want to save money. You can either modify your policy to include comprehensive-only coverage or ask your provider for a vehicle storage discount.

When your car isn’t on the road, switching your policy to comprehensive-only and removing liability insurance coverage might help you save some money. Comprehensive and collision insurance with a $1,000 deductible costs an average of $278 per year in North Carolina. Meanwhile, comprehensive and collision with minimum liability insurance costs an average of $701 per year.

What to Do If You Let Someone Else Drive Your Car

If someone in your household regularly drives your car, you will have to insure them under your policy. Otherwise, if you let someone outside your household drive your car, your policy will cover them automatically without you having to adjust it.

Buying Rental Car Insurance in North Carolina

If you are temporarily renting a car in North Carolina, you don’t need to buy a car insurance policy. Instead, you can get car insurance from the car rental company. Almost all car rental companies offer basic liability insurance in the policy as well as the option to add collision damage waivers, supplemental liability insurance and personal accident insurance.

Depending on the company, the average cost ranges from $42 to $57 per day. Based on your needs, you can also mix and match coverages to save money.

Finding Cheap Rental Car Insurance in North Carolina

MoneyGeek collected data from Charlotte, North Carolina and found that, depending on the company, rental car insurance can range from $42 to $57 per day. On average, Enterprise costs $42, Avis costs $55 and Hertz costs $57 per day. These rental car insurance policies include supplemental liability, collision damage waiver and personal accident insurance.

You may not need to purchase all these coverages if your auto insurance policy already has liability collision and medical payments coverage. It might also be possible to save money if you can get collision damage and waiver coverage for rental cars from your credit card provider.

Cost per Day of Rental Car Insurance in North Carolina

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  • Rental Company
    Total Insurance Cost
    Supplemental Liability Cost
    Collision Damage Waiver Cost
    Personal Accident Insurance Cost
  • Enterprise
    $42
    $13
    $23
    $6
  • Avis
    $55
    $14
    $31
    $10
  • Hertz
    $57
    $16
    $34
    $7

Buying Non-Owner Car Insurance in North Carolina

For those who don’t own a car but need proof of insurance coverage to get their license reinstated, non-owner car insurance is a good option. A non-owner car policy in North Carolina costs an average of $414 per year.

How to Get Temporary Rideshare Car Insurance for Rideshare in North Carolina

You may know that if you work for a rideshare company in North Carolina, you are covered by insurance when you accept a fare or transport a passenger. Otherwise, there is a temporary car insurance coverage gap.

Not all rideshare insurance policies are available in all states. MoneyGeek compared companies that offer this kind of policy so you can find the best rideshare insurance in North Carolina.

Frequently Asked Questions About Temporary Car Insurance in North Carolina

There are various ways to acquire temporary car insurance in North Carolina, so it’s best to shop around if you want to find a policy that fits your needs.

Methodology

MoneyGeek collected car insurance and non-owner car insurance quotes in North Carolina in collaboration with Quadrant Information Services. A sample driver profile of a 40-year-old male with a clean driving record and a full coverage policy was used to calculate average policy costs. Costs for a student represent the average costs of adding an 18-year-old driver to a policy.

One-month and three-month costs for temporary car insurance were computed by MoneyGeek on a prorated basis with the assumption of a full refund from the insurance provider.

MoneyGeek manually gathered rental car insurance costs in North Carolina using the online tools of Avis, Enterprise and Hertz.

About the Author


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Mark Fitzpatrick is a senior content manager with MoneyGeek specializing in insurance. Mark has years of experience analyzing the insurance market and creating original research and content. He graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts and Johns Hopkins University with a Master of Arts.