Temporary Car Insurance in Virginia: What You Need to Know (2024)

A standard car insurance policy in Virginia lasts for six months. Auto-Owners provides the cheapest six-month policies in Virginia.

A.M. Steinbach
Written byA.M. Steinbach
A.M. Steinbach
A.M. SteinbachInsurance Writer
  • Full-time writer for 5+ years

  • Two-time Emmy Award nominee

A Harvard graduate, Mark has worked as a freelance personal finance and tech writer. He’s also written for Saturday Night Live.

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Sarah Archambault
Sarah Archambault
  • Experienced personal finance writer

  • Background working with banks and insurance companies

Sarah enjoys helping people find smarter ways to spend their money. She covers auto financing, banking, credit cards, credit health, insurance, and personal loans.

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Updated June 12, 2024

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Cheapest recent rates in Virginia

Recent Virginia car insurance prices for Mazda, Subaru, Toyota , and more.

*Quotes generated for Insurify users from Virginia within the last 10 days. Last updated on June 12, 2024

Rates shown are real-time Insurify user quotes from 100+ insurance companies and Quadrant Information Services data. Insurify’s algorithm excludes anomalous quotes and anonymizes personal details, then displays refined quotes by price, date, and insurer popularity up to 10 days ago from June 12, 2024. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer’s unique driver profile.

*Quotes generated for Insurify users from Virginia within the last 10 days. Last updated on June 12, 2024

Rates shown are real-time Insurify user quotes from 100+ insurance companies and Quadrant Information Services data. Insurify’s algorithm excludes anomalous quotes and anonymizes personal details, then displays refined quotes by price, date, and insurer popularity up to 10 days ago from June 12, 2024. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer’s unique driver profile.

Some Virginia drivers may be looking for temporary car insurance, which provides coverage over shorter time periods. For instance, you might want insurance coverage for a weekend road trip or a weeklong business trip. Finding temporary auto insurance isn’t always simple, but luckily, drivers have options.

Standard car insurance policy terms usually last six months to one year. Drivers pay an overall average of $131 per month for standard car insurance policies in Virginia, which is cheaper than the national overall average of $160 per month.

Here’s what you should know about comparing quotes and finding affordable temporary car insurance in Virginia.

Quick Facts
  • Hugo offers temporary car insurance in Virginia, and you can purchase coverage for as little as three days.

  • Virginia drivers pay an average of $93 per month for liability-only car insurance.

  • Auto-Owners, State Farm, and Mercury have the cheapest standard liability coverage policies in Virginia.

Is temporary car insurance available in Virginia?

Most reputable car insurance companies don’t allow drivers to purchase policies for shorter than a six-month term. Insurers may worry that shorter terms increase the likelihood of a driver having a lapse in coverage. Additionally, renewing or finding new insurance every few months might be inconvenient for most drivers, which is why many insurers don’t offer it.

The only reputable company that currently offers temporary insurance is Hugo, a relatively new entrant to the field. Since 2021, Hugo has allowed policyholders to purchase insurance for as little as three days. Hugo customers can also pause their policies without a fee. Hugo is currently available in only 13 states, including Virginia. But Hugo isn’t for everyone. You won’t be able to use it if you’ve financed or leased your car and have to carry continuous full coverage.

But you have other options if you’re looking for temporary insurance in Virginia. Depending on your situation, you can purchase non-owner insurance, cancel a policy early, or purchase rental car insurance if you’re looking for short-term coverage.

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Getting non-owner car insurance in Virginia

You can purchase a non-owner car insurance policy if you frequently drive a car that you don’t own. For instance, maybe you’re borrowing a friend’s car for a couple weeks and need temporary coverage.

Most standard non-owner insurance policies include bodily injury liability coverage and property damage liability coverage. If you get in an at-fault car accident, non-owner car insurance covers the other driver’s medical expenses and vehicle repairs, which can quickly add up.

Non-owner insurance is optional and aimed at drivers who don’t own cars. Typically, non-owner car insurance is liability-only coverage at state minimums, which means it’s often cheaper than most standard auto insurance policies. Rates can still vary based on several factors, including your age, amount of coverage, ZIP code, vehicle, driving history, and more.[1]

The exact details of non-owner policies vary from company to company. For example, State Farm offers “Personal Mobility Insurance,” which covers policyholders who drive cars they don’t own, as well as rideshares, car rentals, and other means of getting around, like bikes.

Important Information

A non-owner policy is a good option for drivers who frequently borrow cars from friends or rent cars on a regular basis. You might not need this kind of policy if you’re borrowing a family member’s car. Standard policies usually cover family members of those named on the policy.

If a friend extends permissive use to you, that means they grant you the right to drive their car. Some car insurance companies cover drivers under permissive use. In that case, you also won’t need non-owner car insurance.

Canceling your policy early in Virginia

If you need car insurance for less than six months, you can always purchase a standard policy and cancel it before the end of the term. Most car insurance companies require you to call your insurance agent to cancel your policy, though it’s occasionally possible to cancel online. Visit your insurer’s official site to see what steps you need to take to cancel your policy.

Cancellation terms vary from company to company. In many cases, you’ll face an early termination fee or have to pay a percentage of your remaining monthly premiums. This fee is still often cheaper than paying for the rest of your policy term in full. Ask your agent about any fees beforehand.[2]

If you plan on driving your vehicle after you cancel your insurance policy, be sure to line up your next policy right away. Driving without insurance in Virginia can result in a fine of $500 and make it harder to get approved for a policy in the future. You should have your next policy lined up before canceling your current one.

Getting car insurance for a rental car in Virginia

Drivers who are renting a car can purchase rental car insurance to cover them for the duration of the rental. In some cases, you can get rental car insurance through the credit card you use to book the rental, but check your terms closely or call your credit card issuer to make sure you’re adequately covered.

If you already have car insurance for your own vehicle, that coverage will usually extend to any rental cars you drive. Your same coverages will apply, so if you don’t have comprehensive coverage or collision coverage on your own vehicle, you won’t have those coverages when driving a rental car either.[3]

You can even purchase coverage right at the rental car counter when you pick up your rental. Technically, this coverage is a collision damage waiver, which limits your liability in the event of a covered accident. Again, this coverage may be available through your credit card. Check your card issuer’s benefits document for a better idea of what’s covered.

Best car insurance companies for short-term car insurance in Virginia

Virginia drivers have many quality car insurance companies to choose from. Costs will vary based on your age, driving record, credit score, vehicle, ZIP code, and more. Comparing quotes from several companies is a good idea if you’re looking for affordable rates.

Auto-Owners is the cheapest coverage option in Virginia, with an average rate well below the state average. State Farm is close behind — and with a high IQ Score in addition to low rates, it might be the best all-around option for drivers in Virginia.

The table below lists the cheapest short-term car insurance policies in Virginia.

Insurance CompanyAverage Monthly QuoteIQ Score
The Insurify Quality (IQ) Score uses more than 15 criteria to objectively rate insurance companies on a one-to-five scale. The Insurify editorial team researches insurer data to determine the final scores.
Auto-Owners$534.3
State Farm$544.6
GEICO$724.4
USAA$724.7
Chubb$803.2
Clearcover$813.4
Mercury$824.0
Erie$834.6
Safeco$904.2
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers and quote estimates from Quadrant Information Services. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

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Car insurance for students in Virginia

If you’re a student heading off to college in Virginia and you plan on driving, be sure to contact your car insurance company. Ask if your current insurer offers policies in Virginia. If so, you don’t have to do anything — your existing car insurance policy will travel with you to your new location.

If your current insurer doesn’t offer policies in Virginia, you’ll need to look for a new car insurance company. Finding a car insurance company that offers student discounts is a good idea. Many companies offer discounts for students who maintain a high GPA or are moving more than 100 miles away for school and not bringing their car with them.

You also should look for a policy that you can easily cancel at the end of the semester. Try to find a company that has no cancellation fee or a minimal fee. Nationwide and GEICO are two examples of companies that allow you to cancel free of charge.

Good to Know

Staying on your parents’ current policy is a simple way for young drivers to lower car insurance rates. Parents of students who are heading to college and no longer driving their cars should let their insurers know. In many cases, car insurance companies will lower your rates if you have a student who’s away at school and not driving their car regularly.[4]

Temporary car insurance in Virginia FAQs

If you have questions about temporary car insurance in Virginia, you aren’t alone. Here’s some additional information about it to help you choose a policy.

  • Can you get temporary insurance in Virginia?

    Possibly. Most car insurance policies in Virginia have standard terms, which means they last six to 12 months. But Hugo, a pay-as-you-go insurer, is available in Virginia. You can also purchase a standard policy and cancel it early. Choosing a car insurance company without a cancellation fee is a good idea if you plan on canceling early.

    You might also want to buy non-owner insurance or rental car insurance if you plan on driving a car you don’t own for only a short period of time.

  • Is temporary car insurance legit?

    Drivers looking for temporary car insurance should be careful. Most major car insurance companies only offer standard policies in six- or 12-month terms. Some companies advertising short-term car insurance are scams. If you hear about a short-term policy, do your research. Check the Better Business Bureau (BBB) site to determine if the company is legitimate.

  • Can you drive a car without insurance if you just bought it in Virginia?

    Virginia requires drivers to carry proof of insurance. Drivers who are caught without insurance have their driving privileges suspended, regardless of whether they just bought a new car.[5]

    Virginia’s Department of Motor Vehicles website doesn’t mention a grace period when driving a newly purchased vehicle. Contact your local insurance agent for more information about the penalties that come with driving uninsured and any new-car grace period.

  • How long can you be without car insurance in Virginia?

    In the past, drivers in Virginia could operate their vehicle without insurance if they paid an annual $500 uninsured motor vehicle fee. Drivers who paid the fee are on the hook for any medical bills, vehicle repairs, and legal consequences in the event of a claim. But as of July 1, 2024, Virginia won’t allow drivers to pay this fee and will require every driver to carry the state’s minimum coverages.

    If you drive without insurance, you’ll lose your driving privileges until you pay a statutory fee of $600. You’ll also need to file a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR-22) with the Virginia DMV for three years and potentially pay an additional reinstatement fee.

Methodology

Insurify data scientists analyzed more than 90 million quotes served to car insurance applicants in Insurify’s proprietary database to calculate the premium averages displayed on this page. These premiums are real quotes that come directly from Insurify’s 50+ partner insurance companies in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quote averages represent the median price for a quote across the given coverage level, driver subset, and geographic area.

Unless otherwise specified, quoted rates reflect the average cost for drivers between 20 and 70 years old with a clean driving record and average or better credit (a credit score of 600 or higher).

Liability-only premium averages correspond to policies with the following coverage limits:

  • Bodily injury limits between state-minimum rates and $50,000 per person, $100,000 per accident
  • Property damage limits between $10,000 and $50,000
  • No additional coverage
Full-coverage premium averages correspond to the same bodily injury and property damage limits in addition to:
  • Comprehensive coverage with a $1,000 deductible
  • Collision coverage with a $1,000 deductible

Quotes for Allstate, Farmers, GEICO, State Farm, and USAA are estimates based on Quadrant Information Services’ database of auto insurance rates.

Sources

  1. Insurance Information Institute. "What determines the price of an auto insurance policy?."
  2. Commonwealth of Virginia Bureau of Insurance. "Auto Insurance Consumer's Guide."
  3. Insurance Information Institute. "Rental car insurance."
  4. Insurance Information Institute. "Students."
  5. Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. "Insurance Requirements."
A.M. Steinbach
A.M. SteinbachInsurance Writer

A.M. is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor, and content marketing strategist who's worked with major brands in insurance, tech, finance, and healthcare. He also contributes to The Average Joe, a personal finance newsletter that reaches over 250,000 daily readers. Since 2019, he's written for Insurify, breaking down a diverse range of insurance topics into crisp, readable prose.

Sarah Archambault
Sarah Archambault
  • Experienced personal finance writer

  • Background working with banks and insurance companies

Sarah enjoys helping people find smarter ways to spend their money. She covers auto financing, banking, credit cards, credit health, insurance, and personal loans.

Featured in

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