Can I subscribe to a car as an Expat?

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Dark bblue airplane sat on the tarmac next to a yellow car

Coming to the UK and applying for credit applications can prove very frustrating, as most decisions will be automatically declined if you haven’t got a UK credit history.

Many foreigners come from overseas to work or retirement and expect to apply for a long-term car lease and are accepted as their credit score at home is satisfactory or excellent, but in most cases, the credit score isn’t transferable to the UK.

Why do Car Subscriptions Differ?

With a car subscription, although you will undertake what is known as a credit application, many of the providers have specialist departments that look after Expats and Overseas visitors, with the facilities to credit check you in your home country and verify your documents for work purposes in the UK.

While you may have to jump through a few extra hoops to get accepted, car subscriptions are an ideal way to get mobile in the United Kingdom and they are also excellent for being a low cost set-up fees.

Car Subscriptions are also deemed as hassle-free, one payment covers the motoring essentials of rent, maintenance & servicing, breakdown assistance, manufacturer warranty (where applicable) and road tax. Some of the provides also include insurance but it is quite easy to organise and compare your own insurance for your subscription vehicle (see highlighted link).

Dark bblue airplane sat on the tarmac next to a yellow car

Will I have to pay refundable deposits?

In most cases, yes. You will have to provide a refundable deposit to the car subscription provider, this is for security but can be used for any excess mileage charges or damages when you return your car.

Some of the providers may also charge you a higher set-up charge or documentation fee, this will be to cover the additional systems they have in place to provide credit checking and paperwork.

Before you decide on a company, it is always worth checking them out before signing any contracts or paying any money over. There are quite a few scam companies offering “no credit check cars”. Click the highlighted link for tips on how to avoid these and of course, we always check companies out before we add them to the website.

Is a Car Subscription Worth It?

Yes, we believe a car subscription is an ideal way to run a vehicle in the UK as an Expat. Most providers offer a flexible option, ideal if you doubt whether it will work out if you relocate to the UK.

With most providers all of the motoring essentials are included, this can be maintenance, servicing, warranty, breakdown assistance and road fund licence. In most cases all you need to provide is fully comprehensive insurance and the fuel or electric for the car.

How long will it take to build up a credit history in the UK?

This is a difficult question to answer, but from our experience, most traditional car financing companies like to see 3 years of good UK credit history. This can differ for each provider and the finance product you are looking at.

If you aren’t too sure about your credit status, there are 3 credit reference agencies (CRA) in the UK; Transunion, Experian and Equifax. You can sign up for a free trial or order a statutory credit report from each of the CRA’s.

Where do I start?

Starting to research a car subscription as an Expat is easy, you’re already on the right website. Just click on the button below and see our specialist section on Expat Car Subscriptions. Each provider has its own customer service team who can help you step-by-step on your journey.

Patty Atindehou

Patty is the content writer for and loves her cars and the automotive industry in general. She worked for large dealer groups in the United Kingdom and the USA specialising in high-end and premium vehicles. Her goal is to provide the most interesting information on the vehicle subscription industry.

Article Details

Post Published: November 13, 2023
Post Last Updated: November 15, 2023
Article Categories: , ,
Read Time: 3 minute(s)