Rental Car Insurance: What You Need To Know

Rental Car Insurance: What You Need To Know

Rental Car Insurance: What You Need To Know

Rental cars are surging in popularity. With the increased competition has come a dramatic decrease in rental rates across the country. This equates to many more people choosing to rent a car for anything from a short drive out of town to a cross country trip. That being said, insurance has become a major consideration. Not only do you have potential vehicle damage to worry about, you want to make sure that any potential injury to yourself and your passengers are covered as well. With all of the conflicting information floating around out there regarding rental insurance, it is important to set the record straight. Here is what you need to know when it comes to rental car insurance.

Take A Look At Your Personal Insurance Policy

If you are like a majority of American drivers, you own your own personal car. With that comes mandatory personal insurance that will typically cover any damage to a vehicle that you rent. This is certainly good news, as it takes the guesswork out of worrying who is financially responsible when an accident does occur. That being said, it is important to note that there may be other damages associated with an accident involving a rental car that your personal insurance policy simply does not cover.

There are various types of personal auto insurance, so it is important that you know which type your have. If you have a new car, or your car is financed or leased through a bank, then you likely have comprehensive insurance. This will provide you with the best all around protection, but you do pay for that in the form of higher premiums. Many people opt to lower that to collision only once their car ages a bit. That will just cover you when your rental car collides with another object or vehicle, while comprehensive coverage will go much further and take care of other incidences such as vandalism and theft.

The key is to know what your personal policy covers and what it does not. It comes down to peace of mind. If you are driving in area of the country that has a high rate of vehicle theft, for example, you will not want to be without this coverage when renting a car. If your personal policy covers pretty much everything under the sun, you would likely just be responsible for your deductible. This is the best you could hope for, in which case you might do without rental coverage. There are other items to take into consideration. Let us briefly examine those.

Rental Insurance Does Offer Convenience

There is a perceived advantage to having rental insurance coverage taken out at the time of getting your vehicle. If you were to be involved in an accident, you would not need to file any claims with your personal insurance company. The rental car company would take care of this for you. In essence, you would be off the hook in many cases, aside from any traffic violations you might receive if the accident is deemed to be your fault. This is an advantage for many people, as it takes the guess work out of the equation. You will not have to worry about what your personal insurance company will cover and what they will not.

There may also be limitations in the rental car coverage that you need to be aware of. Usually this involves coverage being denied in the event that you use the vehicle in a way that it was not intended to, such as driving an economy car on dirt roads in the middle of nowhere. In the end, rental car coverage may be worth taking out just to give you the peace of mind that you are covered in the unfortunate event that an accident were to occur.


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