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UK car insurance for ex-pats

(19 Posts)
jomidmum Sun 06-Dec-15 06:22:23

Hi,
We are living overseas but still own a car in the UK, which is kept on a relatives driveway. We use the car when we visit the UK.
Our insurance company has said they will no longer insure us as we are not UK residents. Has anyone found a company which will insure expats?
Also, is my UK driving license still valid when we visit the UK?
These things hadn't even crossed my mind!
Thank you!

Jenijena Sun 06-Dec-15 06:48:15

My sister lives in Italy and for several years insured her car out there. It meant driving it to/from the uk each year for mot...

She found an insurance broker who would cover her, so avoid the car comparison sites and ask someone to do it for you...

MarmiteAndButter Sun 06-Dec-15 07:05:08

- it's a nightmare and the reason we didn't keep a car.
- no, you need to drive on your license from where you are resident.

It is slightly easier if you own your own home in the uk and don't rent it out to get insurance through a broker. But otherwise, I have found it impossible.

SofiaAmes Sun 06-Dec-15 07:09:17

I have USAA for insurance and they are totally set up for owning cars in different countries regardless of where you are based with really great prices. You have to be in the military or a dependent/spouse or ex-dependent of someone in the military to qualify. If your one of your parents was in the military and is still alive, you can set them up with a small cheap policy ($23 a year) and then you can qualify too. I had a car in the UK and a car in the USA with me living in USA and my husband (now an ex) living in the UK.

SofiaAmes Sun 06-Dec-15 07:10:49

Sorry, forgot to add that USAA is for American based military personnel, but spouse and/or dependents can be non-americans. They also have great free online banking.

jomidmum Sun 06-Dec-15 08:17:59

Thank you for the replies so far.
I can't drive in the UK on a licence of the country we are resident in, as they don't issue driving licences to women here in Saudi Arabia. I'm wondering about an international driving licence, I'll look into that.
We've no military members in our family.
Hmm, I'll have to carry on searching re insurance. We really don't want to get rid of the UK car, as rental cars and insurance are so expensive in the UK.

eternalopt Sun 06-Dec-15 08:21:41

Could you insure the car in the relatives name with you as a named driver?

MarmiteAndButter Sun 06-Dec-15 11:24:49

I think you'd be better off asking on expat woman for specific knowledge, but I do know your uk license is not valid as you are not resident. That will make any insurance null and void in an accident, whether hire car or a relatives car.
Whether there is any way round that through something like the British embassy, I don't know.

MyFriendsCallMeOh Sun 06-Dec-15 17:05:11

Can you get an international driving license? Do they still issue those? Can you put the car in your relative's name and gave them name you on the insurance policy or just add you when you visit?

MyFriendsCallMeOh Sun 06-Dec-15 17:06:40

Sorry eternalopt, x post!

Goztepe Sun 06-Dec-15 17:10:09

Your UK driving license is valid in UK until the date stated on the license.

specialsubject Mon 07-Dec-15 10:06:06

how often do you come back to the UK? The car costs you money just sitting there - is that really more than you would spend on rentals? Any chance of getting round by public transport?

another alternative is to see if you can be a named driver on a relative's car. If someone lets you do this and loans you the car, it also gives you some no-claims should you return.

MarmiteAndButter Tue 08-Dec-15 06:39:52

goztepe I really, really wish that was the case but unless you become resident again in the UK, and change the address accordingly, no it's not valid.

jomidmum Tue 08-Dec-15 17:35:15

Thank you for all the comments.
Good news is that the DVLA have replied to an email I sent them: my driving licence is indeed still valid in the UK, even if I am out of the country for long periods of time.
Still trying to sort the insurance. Being added to someone elses as a names driver isn't an option as you still need to be UK resident.
We do need to keep the car, rather than hire one when in the UK, as hire cars are way too expensive for us.It's not the hire charge but the massive excess on insurance policy. Not worth the risk!

ottothedog Tue 08-Dec-15 17:49:47

Is it still more expensive to just buy insurance excess cover (not via the car hire people but from a broker)? Just an idea. Interested to know more as we have relatives from overseas who have a similar problem when visiting

bikingintherain Tue 08-Dec-15 17:56:21

It is possible, but expensive. None of the main insurers will touch you, I'll look up the name of the broker we used.

SingingTunelessly Tue 08-Dec-15 22:08:18

We had this recently with a relative visiting for 6 weeks when we were going to loan him our car. He has a full UK licence and only been living in Oz for 12 months (although going back but not permanently) but insurance company out right refused. Said he's not a UK Resident so won't insure.

mrsmortis Wed 09-Dec-15 12:50:07

If it's just the extra insurance cover that is the problem with a hire car have a look at: www.confused.com/car-hire-excess-insurance

I've used them for a couple of years for when I need to hire a car with work. I've claimed twice (flat tyre and chipped windscreen) and there's not been an issue. I did have to pay the damage out of pocket but I had the money back within 2 weeks.

bikingintherain Wed 09-Dec-15 14:08:07

I can't find the emails of who we went with, but having a quick google search I think we used this broker. www.keithmichaels.co.uk/specialist-car-insurance/expat-car-insurance/living-abroad-with-a-uk-car/

I hope that's some help. We were insured on DH mother's car as non residents.

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