IF you’ve signed a work contract abroad, there are a number of administrative tasks to sort out.
In addition to visas and accommodation, you’ll also need to think about how you’re going to get to and from work.
Will your company provide you with a car, will you take public transportation, or will you need to find a vehicle for the duration of your contract? Is it more cost-effective to lease or buy a company car?
Another factor to consider is insurance. Most countries have mandatory car insurance regulations, whether you’re hiring a car or purchasing a vehicle. It’s best to compare all of your options carefully to find the coverage that will be best for you.
Taking your own car abroad
If you plan to take your existing car with you as you work abroad, you may be able to get away with keeping your existing insurance as well.
For example, if you travel from the UK to work elsewhere within the EU, your normal insurance will suffice to meet the minimum legal requirement in any EU country.
However, you may want to purchase separate breakdown cover, and may need to extend your cover for the duration of your contract.
When venturing outside of the EU, you’ll need a “Green Card” issued by your insurance company that provides minimum cover in your destination country. To find out what your options are, speak to your insurance company well before you depart.
Hiring a car abroad
Minimum car insurance may be included in your car hire contract, but always read the fine print to find out what’s provided and what you’ll need to arrange on your own.
Generally, there are three main types of basic insurance that tend to be included: cover for vehicle damage, cover for theft, and cover for third party injury. It’s best to read carefully before signing any contract, ensuring that these three types of cover are included.
Find out what the excess is as well, as many car hire companies will charge a high fee even for small damages. If the excess is too high, you can purchase excess reimbursement insurance to claim this back should you get charged.
Purchasing a car abroad
For long term work contracts or if you will be travelling long distances, it is usually better to simply purchase a car abroad.
For example, when working in Australia many expats will purchase cars due to the long distances and high cost of shipping a car from the UK. In this case, you’d have to shop around to find affordable coverage. In Australia, motorists are required to pay a government tax or Registration fee, which automatically covers basic third-party insurance.
However, non-personal injury costs are not covered in this fee, which means it still is worth considering purchasing fire, theft, or comprehensive insurance.
In this case the type of car you drive for work would impact the cost of insurance, so if you’re shopping around for a car you’ll want to take this into consideration.
If you need a practical city car for work, you may need to brush up on the latest Ford Focus or Nissan Dualis Motoring review to find out what taxes and insurance will look like, for the bigger financial picture.
Insurance cover and fees will vary from country to country, so it’s best to find out what your options are in advance to decide whether it’s best to lease, buy, or bring your own car abroad.