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Car Hire & Transportation Discuss the best way of getting around Florida.

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Old 28 Feb 21, 11:10 PM  
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cismwynn
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Buying a car in Florida

We are thinking of going to Florida for up to 6 months at some point in the not too distant future. I guess that the cheapest way to have a car over there for that length of time would be to buy a second hand one and then sell it before we leave.

I have no idea how to go about this process - does anyone have any experience of doing this?

Some questions...

Can you use a British licence for that long?
Do they have car tax like us
Do cars need an MOT
Do you add tax on to the purchase cost or is it 0% because it is second hand

I think I have read somewhere that the licence plates are assigned to a driver (not the car), if so how does that work?

Thanks in advance for any answers.
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Old 1 Mar 21, 12:47 PM  
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nick.66
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Hi, just a thought perhaps you could look at doing a short term lease (6months). Buying would be the easy bit, but do you with the car when it's time to come home, could you make a quick sale or would you be stuck with it. Also personally I'd want something newish for the reliability so the cost would be quite high to buy. Local dealerships may offer 6 month lease agreements, give google a try.
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Old 1 Mar 21, 01:17 PM  
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Mr Tom Morrow
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Gryff a Villa Owner on here looked at it and they worked out it wasn't financially viable.

Maybe PM her as she rarely comes on this part of the Dibb but she does sometimes.

I do know the rear 'tag' is their road tax type of thing and you would need to take a Florida driving test so would have to factor that in. I doubt an Insurance Company would accept a holiday Villa etc as your 'home'

Best of luck
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Old 1 Mar 21, 04:16 PM  
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plastic orange
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I think it's more the insurance for a non resident that's a problem. I do know folk that have taken their own car for a trip across America and they had to arrange insurance here in the UK.
Be aware that there is no mot test etc, and a lot of cars are driven until they can't anymore, so only buy if you are confident with what you see in front of you.

Pete
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Old 1 Mar 21, 04:34 PM  
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DonnaD
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I can't answer all your questions as I moved back to the US 3 1/2 years ago on a full time basis and was already a US citizen.

Buying a car is easy as is registering it in your name and getting a new licence plate. Your are correct that the number changes with a new owner.

There are no car inspections (MOT) in Florida. As mentioned not a good thing IMO.

It is no longer easy for non US residents to get a US licence. You can't just take the test without proving you have the right Visa/Greencard. Not sure if the one allowing a 6 month stay is enough. The test itself is easy.

The main issue is insurance. Costs in Florida are very high. It costs me $1200 for a 2015 Prius. I am the only driver, over 50, have a Florida licence with no tickets and now have a 3 1/2 year no claims history (your UK one doesnt help).

I am not sure the idea of a 6 month lease through a car dealer would work. You would still have the insurance issue and leasing without residency or a US credit history might be impossible.
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Old 1 Mar 21, 04:40 PM  
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Gryff
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For us it wasn’t financially viable
The car was cheap to buy compared to here it was new but insurance was a nightmare
Around $3500 and that was the cheapest we could get with Progressive
It may be different for a 6 month trip and buying a second hand car
I can actually get my car hire for our 3 months for any less than the insurance cost
alone
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Old 1 Mar 21, 05:19 PM  
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cismwynn
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Thanks for all the replies. It would seem that this may be a non starter :-(

Are there any hire companies that specialise in longer term rentals?
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Old 1 Mar 21, 07:33 PM  
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I can usually get my supplier to drop the price on long rentals so worth dropping me an email when you have some dates... Its also worth considering splitting the rental down in to smaller chunks.. I've had a few customers who have had to abandon their staymidway through and its easy to cancel and refund future unused bookings.. If you were to do it as one rental and needed to end it early, the car rental companies usually refuse to refund unused days. Some companies also don't quote on rentals more than 28 days.
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Old 1 Mar 21, 08:38 PM  
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cismwynn
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@DFCH-Andy - Thanks. There was some good advice there and I will contact you closer to the time.

Sixt look like they may do long term rentals at decent prices.

Th other one I have found that looks interesting is Turo
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Old 1 Mar 21, 09:05 PM  
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Mr Tom Morrow
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It must be 15 years ago at least as we were still using Dollar. Got to the desk and a couple at the next desk were booking in for their 6 Month rental collection

I immediately hated them

However I do remember the desk clerk could only do 3 separate rentals as the car fluid levels had to be checked. They had to take it back every 2 months to any Dollar outlet and swap it out. Makes sense.
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