Published on August 15th, 2020 | by Bibhuranjan


Can You Buy A Car Online Or Do You NEED to See It In Person?

Getting a new car can be an agonizing process. There are so many options to consider such as make and model, new or used, to buy or to lease. Moreover, there are countless dealerships, private sellers, leasing options, and now, online companies, to choose from.

Compared to in-person dealerships, the digital car-buying & selling marketplace is relatively new and not everyone is comfortable with buying a car the same way they would buy new kitchen utensils.

Although it has become incredibly easy to purchase a new or used vehicle online, the question is, should you? Continue reading below to learn the benefits and drawbacks of getting a car through the internet or in person.

Buying in Person

When getting a new vehicle, most people head to a dealership to choose one. At least, this is the most common first thought when you decide to purchase or lease a car. However, this is not the ideal option for everyone.


One of the best and worst parts of getting a new car in person is the haggling process. Both parties want to get the best deal: you want the lowest price while the seller wants the highest price, and you both have different ideas about a vehicle’s worth.

If you enjoy the haggling game, buying in person may be a good option for you as online car prices are usually fixed. Additionally, the salesperson is not part of the equation when buying online. Thus, you will be paying the exact price that a vehicle is listed for when buying online, even if you don’t agree with it.

Test Driving

A perk of visiting a car dealer in person is being able to test drive a car. Many buyers find this to be a crucial aspect of the car buying process: if you don’t test drive a car, how do you know if you even like it?

This is not an option when you buy online. Even if you are purchasing the same vehicle you had before, it could still drive differently, have a certain weird smell, or simply not feel right. For many motorists, the test drive is the tipping point as to whether they will purchase a car or not.


Purchasing a vehicle through a new or used car dealership often requires making an appointment. For some drivers, this is a good thing, but for others, it is a nuisance.

Depending on how busy a dealership is and your schedule, you might have to wait several days or weeks for the right appointment. This can be especially frustrating if you need a new car fast.

Buying Online

You can purchase pretty much anything online these days. Now, you can even get a used car with just a few clicks.

This isn’t a process that many car buyers are used to. Who wouldn’t want to see what the car looks like up close before committing to a purchase? What if there is something mechanically wrong with it? What if you just don’t like it after purchasing?

These are all valid concerns. Read below to find out how online car sellers address them.


Prospective online car buyers are hesitant about shopping for a vehicle through the internet because they believe that the likelihood of getting scammed is higher.

Fortunately, buying a car through a trustworthy company is not like purchasing through Craigslist or any other private seller.

Online car buying companies are subject to thousands of reviews and testimonials. To stay in the car game, they have to be reliable, honest, and transparent. If they were selling junk cars without disclosing all of the vehicle details, you would know about it through reviews.

Consequently, online car vendors must maintain stellar reputations and they do so by being fully transparent about the state of the vehicles they are selling.

Easy to Compare

When you are looking to purchase something online, you can easily compare prices among hundreds of sellers in a short amount of time. The same is true when buying a car virtually.

An online car seller will have thousands of listings and you can quickly narrow down your options and decide which vehicle is the best choice for you. Most online car sellers have a larger inventory than dealerships.

Additionally, online car prices are typically fixed. As a result, you know exactly what you’re paying for it.

Access to Information

Unlike at a dealership, you have access to an array of information about a vehicle online.

If you want more details about a particular car such as any accidents it has been in, if it has been damaged by fire or flood, or if it has ever been stolen you find this information by researching its VIN.

While you can look up the history of a vehicle when purchasing from a dealership, it just isn’t as easy or accessible as when you do it online to look for all specification, reviews or anything about Toyota Avanza.

Ultimately, it’s up to you whether you feel like you need to see or test drive a vehicle before purchasing it. Now that you are aware of the pros and cons of each option, you can make a more informed decision and choose the option that best suits you and your situation.

Photo by Dan Smedley on Unsplash

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Editorial Officer, I'm an avid tech enthusiast at heart. I like to mug up on new and exciting developments on science and tech and have a deep love for PC gaming. Other hobbies include writing blog posts, music and DIY projects.

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