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Can a foreigner buy a car in USA

Travel Forums North America Can a foreigner buy a car in USA

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1. Posted by PeTeRgO (Budding Member, 2 posts) 16 Aug '13 08:27

Hello I will be travelling to Canada in March then flying to Las Vegas with a mate of mine I have a 6 month re-entry Visa into the united states but was wondering if I'm able to buy a car there as I plan on doing a 5-6 month road trip so it is much more practical for me to buy rather then rent. If anyone has prior experience and knows the process that would be well appreciated.
Regards
Peter

2. Posted by samk9in2002 (Budding Member, 10 posts) 16 Aug '13 08:44

Hope this helps :): Link removed

I know the poster was trying to be helpful, but because he was directing this question to another, similar travel Q&A site, the link has been removed. (We can answer this question here, and do not need to link to other sites for this information).

[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. Link to Forum Rules added. ]

3. Posted by Calcruzer (Moderator, 1862 posts) 16 Aug '13 14:11

The answer is yes, but you need a US address. We have a member on here "vegasmike6", who helps people with this, but may or may not depending upon his opinion of you (whether you will avoid getting traffic tickets or getting in an accident and have this end up with him getting stuck for your bad conduct). Otherwise, you can attempt to get a post office box, but it takes a period of time (usually a few days to get this) and you may end up being without a car for at least that period of time--plus some (most) states won't register a car to a PO box address, since the police like to know where to find you if you have a car (because of the ticket/accident thing mentioned earlier).

Be aware that car registration is a state-by-state thing here in the US--and for this reason, the requirements differ. For example, in California you need $30,000 of car insurance for bodily injury, but it may be a completely different requirement for a car registered in New York, or South Dakota, or Arkansas.

[ Edit: Edited on 16-Aug-2013, at 14:16 by Calcruzer ]

4. Posted by PeTeRgO (Budding Member, 2 posts) 16 Aug '13 21:33

Thankyou for your help I might try the post office way first I will be landing in Las Vegas and plan to spend a week there before I travel so even if I have to hire a car for a week that's no issues. I might send vegasmike6 a message asking if the laws allow a post office box address in Nevada.

I found out that progressive car insurance my Australian provider has a branch in the US and covers foreign visiters in the US so hopefully my premiums wont be too high..

Thanks for the advice it has been a great help.

Regards Peter

5. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru, 3527 posts) 16 Aug '13 22:02

Gary,
I sent Peter a reply. I wish I had been a little better judge of character as several of the TP members that I have helped got multiple tickets! Not really a big deal as I print "moved" on the envelope and send it back to state where the infractions took place.

Post 6 was removed by a moderator
7. Posted by sherrie.melton (First Time Poster, 1 posts) 30 Aug '13 02:09

Yes. You can own a car in USA. Then you need to get driver’s license through any online traffic school to know the traffic rules and to have a safe driving in USA.

8. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru, 3527 posts) 30 Aug '13 09:43

Quoting sherrie.melton

Yes. You can own a car in USA. Then you need to get driver’s license through any online traffic school to know the traffic rules and to have a safe driving in USA.

I have helped 20 different TP couples with buying vehicles here in Vegas. All used their home country's DL. NV requires you to get a NV DL after being here 30 days. Of course all those I helped are long gone before that 30 day requirement kicks in. You don't need a US DL, your home country DL will be enough while here as a tourist.

9. Posted by LasseMR (First Time Poster, 1 posts) 25 Sep '13 04:47

Me and my friend are going to NY in a week. We have just received visas, and are going to go cross country to LA. We are seriously considering buying a car, so if anyone has any good advices that would be great!
An just to make sure, is it legal to register the car at a Post office box or at eg my uncle's (who lives in NY)?

10. Posted by Daawgon (Travel Guru, 1940 posts) 25 Sep '13 09:13

It would be cheaper to buy that car in a much cheaper state (New York happens to be one of our richest/most expensive states). Perhaps you should try Michigan or California (California prices would probably be the lowest since the Los Angeles area probably has more used car dealers than many states). Don't forget that you also need insurance, and it will be expensive for a young foreigner.