HappyJack
HappyJack Reader
3/13/17 6:31 p.m.

This year for my 50th birthday I am driving Route 66. The original plane was to leave from home, Ontario, Canada, drive to Chicago, drive the route, then beeline it back home.

Now one of my travel mates has latched on to the idea of flying to California, buy something, and driving home. It has some appeal. Just not sure of the logistics. Nevermind getting back into Canada with a car we bought in the U.S., I think we got that covered.

My question is how to buy a car in California and drive it back? In Ontario you can get a 10 trip permit when you buy a car. Is there something like that in California? Are there restrictions? In Ontario to get a trip permit, that car to have been last registered as "fit". Someone in California enlighten me about how possible it is to buy a car and drive it home.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ SuperDork
3/14/17 2:02 p.m.

I have done this, Route 66 and all- but I have no idea how you do it legally. We drove on the seller's plates the whole way, which I'm not sure would work for a border crossing. Maybe something on this page is the correct option?

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
3/14/17 2:24 p.m.

In CA, plates stay on the car (unless the PO has personalised plates). So you could buy it, insure it and drive back essentially on the POs registration. Just make sure the registration is current, plus they're supposed to give you a smog cert that's not older than IIRC 90 days.

They'll send in part of the title to the DMV there as a notification that they sold the car, you keep the rest and a bill of sale.

Most of the trip permits are only good for a day or two and aren't needed if the car you have is registered when you buy it. The only time I needed one was when I bought the 996 from a dealer, because that had neither plates nor current registration. In that case the one-man band I bought it from actually got me a trip permit. But TBH you don't want to spend a day at the DMV to get one.

MulletTruck
MulletTruck Reader
3/14/17 2:49 p.m.

Where in Ontario?

Do you have a spot in mind for California? Gonna start at the Pier in Santa Monica?

Just drive it on the current plates as others have said.

APEowner
APEowner Reader
3/15/17 9:04 a.m.

I've done fly and drives where I've handled all of the payment and paperwork ahead of time and just registered the car to me before leaving home but that was working with a reputable dealer with a third party vehicle inspection. You'll want to make sure that you have appropriate insurance coverage whatever registration solution you use.

Cooter
Cooter HalfDork
3/23/17 3:17 p.m.

I drove back on the Cali Plates both times I bought out there (fly and drive, and train and drive). As said, plates stay with the car.

Was only bothered once, in Nevada, because the sticker was expired (by 2 years) on the D100. I tore the sticker off and wasn't bothered the rest of the way.

If you set it up beforehand, you can register it before you pick it up. I was never good about thinking that far ahead.

crewperson
crewperson Reader
3/24/17 8:08 a.m.

I did this last year. Anaheim CA to London Ontario in a motorhome I bought on E-bay. The plates expired six years before so I went to the DMV and got a transit tag. Came in handy when I was pulled over in Oklahoma for expired tags. The transit tag was in the window above the plates and I got a "have a safe trip" and went on my way. Good luck with your trip.

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