How to get same-day car insurance

Getting car insurance instantly is possible with many auto insurance companies, including Progressive. In some states, you only need your driver's license number, vehicle identification number (VIN), and at least the first month's payment to activate an auto insurance policy. You can purchase a policy online or over the phone and your coverage can often begin immediately, if you choose. However, most major auto insurers don't offer "temporary" car insurance, which means you can't buy a policy for a day, week, or any time period less than six months.

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How long does it take to get car insurance?

You can get an online quote for car insurance in minutes with Progressive and many other auto insurance companies. If you like the quote, you can often purchase the policy and have immediate coverage. Whether you buy auto insurance online, over the phone, or through an agent, here's what you typically need to start a policy:

  • The vehicle identification number (VIN): Located on the vehicle's dashboard or the driver's side door, the VIN is necessary for all cars on your policy
  • Your driver's license number: You need a valid driver's license to start a policy, and your insurer will ask for the driver's license number for all drivers listed on the policy
  • The first month's payment: You can also pay for your policy in full, but be prepared to pay something upfront to start your policy. There's no such thing as "no money down" auto insurance.

How does immediate car insurance work?

With many insurers, including Progressive, your auto insurance coverage is typically effective once the payment is processed — assuming you choose to have the policy start immediately. Within minutes of purchasing a Progressive policy, an email will be sent to you with a link to your insurance card so you have proof of insurance.

Depending on the insurance company and your situation, there may be times when obtaining same-day auto insurance coverage isn't possible. Always ask your insurer or agent exactly what day/time the policy will become effective.

If an insurer requires a waiting period for your policy to begin but you need immediate coverage, you can shop around for a quicker option. Not all insurance companies will have the same restrictions when it comes to activating a policy.

Are you covered for an incident that happens on the day that the policy goes into effect?

You won't have coverage for an accident that occurs prior to the purchase of your insurance policy. Your insurance will cover an accident only if it happens after your coverage becomes effective.

Most states require some level of car insurance coverage, so make sure you're covered before you hit the road.

Is same-day coverage more expensive?

Obtaining same-day coverage may result in paying a higher premium. Progressive and other insurers may offer discounts for quoting a certain number of days in advance.

Find out additional ways to get cheaper auto insurance.

Can you get car insurance online without talking to someone?

Most notable auto insurers offer the option to buy online without talking to someone. If you have questions during your online quote with Progressive or simply prefer to finish the quote over the phone, you can call 1-800-776-4737 to speak to a licensed representative for your state.

Learn more about the process if you're buying car insurance for the first time.

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