Insurance for students, military personnel and tourists

If you’re just driving in B.C. as a tourist, you can drive with your existing insurance for up to six months — as long as you have a valid out-of-province driver’s licence and your vehicle is properly licensed in your home jurisdiction.

You may be eligible for an exemption from licensing and insuring your vehicle in B.C. if:

  • you are a member of Canada’s armed forces stationed in B.C. for training for up to six months OR  
  • you are a student enrolled full-time at any recognized B.C. post-secondary institution and/or Government of Canada designated educational institutions AND
  • your vehicle is properly registered, licensed and insured in your home jurisdiction. You’ll need to apply within 30 days of arriving in B.C.

To apply for the exemption:

1. Contact ICBC’s specialty licensing department to request the exemption package (1-800-665-4336).

2. Contact your insurance provider and ask that a representative send a completed B.C. Financial Responsibility Certificate (MV23) to ICBC that verifies your ongoing coverage.

3. Start collecting the documentation you’ll need to send in with your application package:

  • An official letter of enrollment from your academic institution (stating you are a full-time student with the start and end date of school year or semester) or, for military personnel, a letter from your Commanding Officer indicating you’re on temporary assignment in B.C.
  • A copy of your vehicle registration and/or certificate of title showing the current expiry date.

4. Once you receive the exemption package, you’ll fill out these forms:

  • Application for Exemption from Autoplan Insurance (MV1520).
  • Combined Certificate of Registration of a Non-Resident Motor Vehicle and Insurance Certificate (APV97).
  • A credit card authorization form for $30 filing fee.

5. Mail the package (5 pieces of documentation) back to ICBC.

6. Once processed and approved, we’ll mail you your B.C. permit and decal.

Once you receive the exemption, whenever you’re driving here:

  • Carry the permit, plus your driver’s licence and proof of vehicle registration, and
  • Have the windshield sticker affixed to the lower right corner of your windshield.