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  1. #1

    Default 2 UK students wanting to hire and insure vehicle

    Hello everyone,

    I'm a new member to the forum and am living in the UK. Me and a friend of mine are currently in the beggining stages of planning a gap year road trip in the USA for the summer of 2011.

    We are trying to find out if it is possible for 18 year olds from a foreign country (the UK) to buy and insure a vehicle (preferably camper/RV), we may get international driving permits if necessary. The trip would probably take in about 15 states over roughly 3 months, would this coverage have an effect on the insurance? We also don't have anyone with US residancy we could use.

    Is there actually a way to do this? If so we would greatly appreciate and advise!

    Many thanks, Huw

  2. #2


    Hi just to let you guys know that I'm the second UK student!

    Any help appreciated guys, it seems a real minefield!



  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default tough to impossible

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Sorry to tell you that your plan will be extremely difficult to pull off.

    Virtually no one will rent a car to someone under age 21, and the few places that do will charge at least $50 per day for a surcharge.

    Purchasing a car or RV is not going to be much easier. Without a US address and/or a long term visa, it will be very very difficult to get any vehicle licensed, registered, and insured. I'll also note that even if you get beyond the red tape and could come up with the rather huge upfront expense of buying an RV, your ages and lack of driving experience and the desire to drive an RV will mean your insurance costs will be astronomically high. I wouldn't be surprised at all if you had to pay $1500 or more just for a minimum liability insurance policy.

    I wish we had a better answer, but there really is no great way for a non-resident of the US who is under 21 to do a roadtrip here without either using the mediocre mass transit options availabe or having a massive bankroll to make it happen.

  4. #4


    Thanks for a speedy response!

    admittedly thats a catastrophic blow to the both of us! but thanks for being so upfront!

    I have family in america (who admittedly i haven't met, nor do i know which state they live in) if I could get them to agree that we could use their address then would there be a solution or not?


    Last edited by AZBuck; 12-01-2009 at 04:21 PM. Reason: Quote of entire previous post removed

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    Toby, face the fact. It is impossible for a non resident to purchase a vehicle in the USA. I have been pursuing this for more than 8 years now, and have not yet found a way. And I am not 18.... I'm probably old enough to be your grandmother.

    The only other way is to ask your relations to purchase one for you, and carry the insurance. This is a huge risk, and since you do not know them, doubt that they would.

    In the US, in case of an accident, it is not the driver, but the owner carries all the costs, and that includes possibly being sued by an injured third party. Multi million dollar settlements are not uncommon, but even tens of thousands could place a huge burden on the owner.

    You two need to ask yourselves, would you feel comfortable placing this burden on another, especially a relative.

    Best you work hard, set up a great savings plan, and plan for 2014.

    Lifey who would also like to purchase a vehicle

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    If you have that US address to use, you could pull it off if you get a long-term student or work visa and a US driver's license, that's about the only way. You are still looking at a substantial expense to buy and insure a RV that will make it across country without breaking down every other day.


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