International Student Blog
Should an International Student Buy a Car

Should an International Student Buy a Car?

Nomad Credit Car Auto Loan

Automobiles in the United States

As an international student in the United States, it may be recommended, or even necessary, to purchase an automobile with the help of an international student auto loan. The United States is built around a system of highways and driving a car is a big part of life there. The average American drives an average of almost one hour per day commuting. Many large universities in the United States are located in rural, non-metropolitan areas. Therefore, international students at those universities need to find a way to get from place to place and purchasing a car with the help of an international student car loan is one of their best options.


Out of all transportation methods, owning your own car is by far the most convenient. It allows the international student to leave and arrive on their own schedule and also makes it easier to move bulkier items that would be a nuisance on public transportation. This makes daily life for the international student better, as they can run errands and get back and forth to classes much easier with a car.

Finding a Car

Because automobiles are such a big part of life in the United States, there are many options for an international student to find a car. A good place to start is for the international student to decide if they want to purchase a new or used automobile. A newer car will have less repair costs in the long run but may cost more money upfront. International students can go to car dealerships in the United States to find a new or used car in person but there are also many online options. Online services such as TrueCar and AutoTrader are sure to make any international student’s car search much easier. It is important to compare prices and shop around to find the best deal. Another important factor to consider in an international student’s car search is functionality. If the university that the international student plans to attend is in a heavily populated metropolitan area, a smaller car may be ideal for them. Likewise, if the university that the international student plans to attend is in a remote or rural area, they may want to look for a vehicle that would have good gas mileage or could handle roads that are not in good condition.

Paying for a Car

One of the most difficult parts of the process of an international student’s car purchasing process can be figuring out how to pay for it. Auto financing can be a complicated decision already and being an international student without a driving or credit history in the United States does not make it easier. International students should seek out car loans for individuals without social security numbers or credit histories. These lenders exist and offer international student auto loans for individuals attending college in the United States with no driving record or credit score. When looking for an international student car loan it is important to compare options, much like when searching for a car itself, to find the best deal with the best interest rate. Car loans for international students work the same way as car loans for most people who wish to buy a car

After Purchasing #1: Insurance

Congratulations, you’ve purchased a car. What comes next though? There are two main steps that an international student will need to take to make sure they are able to drive their car legally in the United States. The first of these two is finding car insurance. There are different levels of coverage available for an international student to choose from at different price points but almost every state in the U.S. requires some level of insurance. Like car loans for students with no credit, there are options that are suitable for international students’ auto insurance needs and unique characteristics.

After Purchasing #2: Registration

Like auto insurance, registering your car with the state department of motor vehicles where an international student resides is a necessary requirement for that international student to drive their car legally. This process can usually be completed online but sometimes requires the international student to go to their local department of motor vehicles office. International students will usually be asked to provide a valid driver’s license and proof of insurance to register their car.

International student car financing is a difficult process and requires many careful considerations. At Nomad Credit, we can help you find auto loan options as well as answer any questions or concerns you may have while studying abroad in the United States. For more information, visit Nomad Credit. In addition to international student auto loans we will happily help you find the best option for international student education loans or study loans as well. If you have any questions, send an email to and we will happily help!


John Romanucci

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