Last Updated on May 8, 2023 by Nico
For some people, driving a car is a rare occasion. Others do not own a car but drive frequently when they travel. These drivers still need coverage, so what are the options? Non-owner car insurance can be a great way to get affordable coverage for drivers who don’t have their own car, but rent often enough that over-the-counter car rental insurance costs add up.
What Is Non-Owner Car Insurance?
Non-owner car insurance is a specific type of insurance that protects you if you don’t own the car that you’re driving. If you get into an accident or otherwise causes damage to property or injures others, this coverage kicks in to help cover the cost of hospital bills and repair costs.
The average cost of non-owner car insurance is less than $400 per year according to Insurance.com, which has a great tool that allows you to explore average costs by state. Your personal rate can vary from that average based on how much liability insurance you want, your personal driving history, and the state in which you live.
What Does Non-Owner Car Insurance Cover?
These policies typically include the minimum required coverage mandated by your state, though most plans allow you to choose options with more coverage. These minimums apply to liability coverage for property damage and injuries you cause while driving, uninsured/underinsured motorist protection that protects you if you’re injured by another driver with inadequate liability coverage, and general medical payments or personal injury protection.
Non-owner liability coverage can also be used as secondary coverage if you are borrowing another driver’s car. The owner’s personal insurance policy will be the primary coverage.
Very importantly, non-owner car insurance typically does not cover the following:
- Comprehensive coverage that helps pay to replace or repair a vehicle stolen or damaged in an incident that wasn’t a collision
- Collision coverage that helps pay to replace or repair a vehicle that was damaged in a collision
- Towing reimbursements
- Rental reimbursements
Where Can I Get Non-Owner Car Insurance?
There are lots of options out there for non-regular drivers looking to get necessary coverage. Most large insurers offer non-owner car insurance. Some may have special qualifications or require that you are an existing customer (an example is Progressive).
Your best bet will be to shop around at different insurers to find the best policy and rate for your personal situation, depending on how much coverage you need and where you live.
To buy non-owner car insurance, all you’ll need is your driver’s license number and a credit or debit card.
What Are My Other Options?
While non-owner’s car insurance is a good investment for frequent renters, there are other options that give you adequate coverage if hopping behind the wheel is a rare occurrence.
- Collision Damage Waiver (CDW): CDWs, either bought from the rental counter or through a credit card benefit, are an insurance offering that cover losses from theft of or damage to a rental car. Importantly, these policies don’t cover personal injury.
- Third Party Offerings: Companies like Sure provide many different options for rental coverage, including collision and liability insurance.