Can i buy a car to road trip across the USA?

Can i buy a car to road trip across the USA?

i really want to road trip across the usa next year once i graduate university.i was thinking about buying a cheap car to do so... am i being silly thinking this would be the best and cheapest thing to do? i am from Australia, so would buy one once i get there, but i dont know about insurence and rego and all that. i understand i would have to have it registers but do i need to get insurence, i know here our cars must have insurence so i am guessing that is the same in the usa??so would it work out cheaper doing it this way rather than hireing a car.im looking at about 2 months.

Roger

Good question.Most, maybe all, rental car companies will only rent for a max of 30 days at a time, so you would need two 30 day rental periods, or a bit more, and plan where you will drop off the first car and pick up the second. Not hard to do, though, I'm sure.I looked at one random 30 day period in July of this year and found the least expensive rate was about USD1,800 for that month. That included all taxes and fees (but no additional insurance), and the one way drop off fee. Prices are unpredictable for a year from now. But, minimum, you would be looking at somewhere in the vicinity of USD 3,600 to 4,000 for the rental option.However - if you contact some of the rental car companies directly and explain what you want to do, they may be able to make a longer term rental/lease available for you. Worth asking about.It also occurs to me that they may require that you buy their insurance, which could add 30% or more to the total cost. When I rent a car, then want to know who my auto insurer is, because if I do not buy the rental company's liability/collision coverage, they want to know that they can recover costs from my insurance company. No idea what happens if the renter is from out of the country.It is certainly possible to purchase a used car for a lot less than that. You would have to purchase insurance as well. I have no idea about the legal issues of a non-resident, presumably with a non-US driver's license buying a car. I imagine that people must do that sometimes.My suggestion would be to look at the motor vehicle department web site of the state from which you would start your trip. For example, the New York DMV is here: http://www.nydmv.state.ny.us/index.htm The pages for other states should be easily found by an internet search. That site may have information on how to make that kind of a purchase. If not, there is usually an email address to which you could send a query.I would also contact some insurance companies in the US, like Geico, Amica, Allstate, Nationwide, Progressive and there are loads of others, and see if they can offer a short term auto insurance policy for the duration of your stay.The purchase and insurance are sort of procedural issues. The main thing I would be concerned about is the car itself. If the purchase of a car, plus insurance, registration and so on is going to be less than the USD 3,600-4,000 rental cost, then you might be talking about an initial purchase price of USD 2,500 - 3,000 or so. That means a high mileage car. Higher mileage means more likely hood of something serious breaking down. That would be a big problem.No idea how to resolve that issue, though. Reliability and higher cost of a rental, versus the lower cost and possible lower reliability (not to mention just the whole hassle of actually doing the purchase) of buying a car... Sounds like you have a lot of e-mails inquiries to start sending out.Good luck!

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