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Temporary Car Insurance

In Canada, car insurance is the law. If you want to get behind the wheel, you’ll need to make sure you have insurance first. In Canada, most car insurance plans assume a commitment of a year. But what if you only want car insurance for a few weeks or months? It can be challenging to find temporary car insurance coverage in Canada due to our strict rules around regular car insurance. Don’t despair! There are options for temporary insurance. Keep reading to learn more.

Basics of temporary car insurance

Temporary car insurance is an insurance plan that provides coverage for just a few months, weeks or even days. Traditionally, insurance plans provide coverage for one year when they are renewed.

When do you get temporary car insurance?

Here are a few examples of when you might need temporary car insurance:

When you own a car you only drive a few times a year

Some examples of this might include:

  • A vintage car or motorcycle you only use on special occasions
  • A truck or van you only use a few times a year when transporting things like furniture
  • A vehicle you only use for road trips, such as an RV

You don’t drive your vehicle that often

This might be the case if you are just visiting Canada for a short time, or if you’re a student home from school.

You bought a car and are still deciding on a long-term insurance plan

There’s lots to consider when it comes to car insurance. If you want to start driving before you commit, you might want to look into temporary car insurance.

You have sold or are planning on selling your vehicle

If you won’t have your vehicle for much longer but the sale isn’t finalized yet, temporary car insurance might be a good solution.

What are the rules on temporary car insurance in my province?

In Canada, car insurance is regulated by the provinces. That means every province has different rules about temporary car insurance. Here are a few key things to note in every province:

Ontario and Alberta

We’ll be totally honest: In these two provinces, it is very difficult to get temporary car insurance. A small amount of providers offer six-month terms. An insurance broker can help you find a solution for your needs.

Atlantic Canada

Temporary car insurance options in the Atlantic provinces are limited. Talk to an insurance broker to learn more.


In Saskatchewan, 24 hour and eight day insurance coverage is available. Visit sgi.sk.ca to learn more.

In Manitoba, temporary insurance for up to 30 days is available in certain situations. The Manitoba Public Insurance website has more information.

British Columbia

B.C. has a few options for temporary car insurance. You can purchase a Temporary Operation Permit that is valid for one to 16 days. You can also purchase a Short-term Autoplan Policy for three to 11 months.

Northern Canada

In the Yukon you can obtain a temporary operating permit for up to 10 days. After that, you’ll need a permanent insurance plan.

In the Northwest Territories and Nunavut there are limited options for temporary car insurance. Talk to an insurance broker to learn more.

Tips on getting temporary car insurance

Decide on the duration

You’ll need to let your insurance broker know exactly how long you need insurance for. A few months? Weeks? Days? The more information you can share, the easier it will be.

Consider the pros and cons

Temporary insurance might be cheaper in the short term, but in the long run, traditional car insurance might make more sense. It has other benefits as well: if you have a longer history of insurance, your rates may go down. Carefully consider all your options before you decide.

Read the fine print

Make sure you understand all the details before signing on for temporary car insurance. Your broker can go over everything with you and answer all your questions.

Call BrokerLink to learn more about temporary car insurance

You might be struggling to find insurance to fit your unique situation. You don’t have to struggle alone! At BrokerLink, our licensed insurance experts know how to find insurance for everyone’s different circumstances.

To find an insurance plan that fits your needs, talk to a BrokerLink insurance advisor today. It’s easy to get in touch:

1-855-451-8748 Visit a local branch

Know what to do and what to expect before getting temporary car insurance. Talk to a BrokerLink insurance advisor today.

FAQs on temporary car insurance

What happens if I get a 12-month car insurance policy and cancel it after a few months?

If you cancel your insurance policy early you will probably have to pay a cancellation fee. Talk to your insurance broker about your specific plan to learn what penalties there are for cancelling early – every policy is different.

I’m visiting another province and planning to rent a car. Do I need temporary car insurance?

If you are renting a car, you will need insurance of some kind. If you already have car insurance at home, that policy might cover you while you’re renting out of province. If you have a credit card with insurance coverage, that might suit your needs. You can also purchase insurance from the car rental establishment. Your insurance broker can help you decide what’s right for you.

Does Canada have the same uniform policy on temporary car insurance across all of its provinces?

No, the policies are not the same across Canada. Different provinces have different regulations on insurance, including temporary car insurance.