Insurance Advice When Renting A Car

If you’ve ever rented a car, you have likely heard the common question that agents must ask:

Would you like to purchase additional renter’s insurance with this vehicle?

Some people assume this is a waste of money and opt not to do so. Others claim that rental car insurance is money well-worth spending and that they can enjoy driving the vehicle as a result. So, which strategy is best? This guide contains everything you need to know about rental car insurance.

Check Your Credit Card

Many people decide on rental insurance without first doing research. To begin investigating, you should start by checking for rental car insurance coverage in the cardholder’s agreement of the credit card that you’ll use to book the reservation. Some credit card companies will offer free rental car insurance, including:

• Chase
• Citibank
• American Express

However, these companies tend to change the terms and limits of these policies frequently. We’ve heard from many people who said that they assumed their credit card company covered rental car insurance, only to later find out that this was not the case. Discover, for instance, recently scrapped its rental car insurance program altogether.

If your credit card does offer coverage, this could be your best avenue for insurance. Consumer Reports Money Editor Octavio Blanco says that by allowing your credit card to handle the claim, your personal auto rates won’t change.

Check Your Personal Auto Insurance

You’ll also want to make sure that you check your personal auto insurance plan to find out what is or isn’t covered. For instance, you may find that your personal plan does not have a policy that protects against collision coverage. In this case, it could be worth your while to purchase collision coverage from the rental car agency.

This could save you money, as you won’t have to purchase their entire insurance package. Collison coverage costs roughly $20 per day, but you’ll receive full liability protection for any damage that you cause to the vehicle.

What About Rentals Overseas?

If you are planning to rent a car during an international trip, you should be much more inclined to purchase renter’s insurance. That’s because your credit cards and personal auto insurance policy likely will not transfer overseas. Again, you should do your research before going on the trip. Don’t hesitate to contact your insurance agent for further clarification. But you should not be surprised if they inform you that the policy is not valid internationally.

Read The Terms And Conditions

If you do decide to purchase rental car insurance, be sure to read the terms and conditions carefully. You should ensure that the insurance policy covers your plans for the trip. If not, you may need to discuss additional strategies with the agent handling your rental. This is especially the case overseas, where you may not have much familiarity reading the foreign language. It never hurts to be diligent when asking questions.


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