Do I Need Insurance on Rental Car?

While it’s easy to charge regular auto insurance policies on rentals in some states, others require that you purchase coverage from the rental car company.

If you are renting a car at the airport, chances are you will need to purchase insurance. The cost of the rental fee includes basic collision coverage for theft or damages that result from an accident that happened with the rented vehicle. However, most credit card companies only cover rental vehicles up to $50,000 per incident.

We recommend purchasing the additional insurance if you are renting a car at an airport. It’s because it will cover damages above basic collision coverage; or if your liability limit with your credit card is too low. The cost of this type of insurance is usually around $8-$14 per day. And it covers damages up to $1 million per incident.

Does my car insurance cover rental cars?

If you have comprehensive or collision coverage, as well as a liability limit that exceeds your credit card’s threshold, the policy will probably cover your loss in a rental car accident. The amount of coverage depends on the state where you live and the terms of the policy.

In some states, only liability coverage exceeds a certain dollar amount; whereas in others, it doesn’t matter whether you have comprehensive or collision coverage since these are considered “covered” accidents.

In either case, look for an excess of $1 million per incident. Many insurance companies limit liability to much less in order to exclude stolen vehicles from being covered. How to file a claim with your insurance company

Before you file a claim with your insurance company, keep the following tips in mind:

What to do if you are in an accident while on a rental car vacation?

Unfortunately, even the most careful drivers can run into trouble when they rent a car. While it’s easy to charge regular auto insurance policies on rentals in some states, others require that you purchase coverage from the rental car company.

Additionally, even if you have regular auto insurance, it will not cover losses such as personal injury or damage to personal items that are inside the rental vehicle. If this happens (whether your own fault or not), contact your auto insurance company and file a claim immediately.

How to avoid being charged for damaged or lost items when renting a vehicle?

You may want to purchase additional insurance that covers the cost of these items if you are renting a car with limited coverage that isn’t suitable for loss protection, such as a compact car or mini-van.

Also, rental car insurance are limited to liability for your damage to the rented vehicle, not for your own damage. If you are involved in an accident and you have damage to the rental car that can’t be repaired before your flight, contact your insurance company.

Most insurance companies will provide some sort of coverage to cover the damage or replace the damaged parts for you. Mention that your agent recommends that you purchase additional loss of use coverage (often called “damage waiver” on some plans) so that you can get replacement parts and avoid having to buy a new car on top of any repair costs.

How does rental car liability insurance work?

Insurance on rental car

When you rent a car, you are not only renting a vehicle. But you’re also renting the liability coverage that covers the rental car. This helps to protect the rental company if something happens to your vehicle while it is in their care. It is important that you have adequate liability insurance. It is in order to make sure that your belongings are protected in an accident and recovered.

All policies include specified limits on damage coverages and limitations on who can be made liable for damage caused by a covered incident, if any coverage applies at all (if the policy excludes certain people, this exclusion will typically appear in the policy). In addition, policies may have various exclusions and limitations that apply to specific coverage classes.

Property damage, loss of use and coverage limits

Property Damage includes damage to your rental car, such as dents and scratches.
The base limit for property damage is typically $500 but the cost may be much more depending on location and other factors. However, if you have collision or comprehensive coverage, the limit will likely be higher than that.

Loss of Use refers to a rental car being out of service for an extended period of time due to an accident.

The base limit for loss of use is typically $200, but the cost may be much more depending on location and other factors. However, if you have collision or comprehensive coverage, the limit will likely be higher than that.
Rental cars are not covered for personal injury or death if the damage is caused by your error or carelessness.

If you operate a rental car without liability coverage, you will be responsible for all damages to the vehicle and injured parties may sue you.

Boiler damage does not count as property damage under most policies and therefore it does not usually qualify for coverage under personal injury protection (PIP).
Personal items in a rental car are covered under certain classes of policies such as collision and comprehensive.

Recommended: About car insurance companies

To conclude,

In short, you can be held liable for more damage than you have coverage for.
If you are involved in an accident caused by another person’s actions, your own policy will cover any damage to the rental car, but it will not cover any injuries or damages due to your carelessness or mistakes.

Most rental companies will offer a “damage waiver” plan that covers most damages, usually at a reduced rate. This is often a good idea if you don’t have the additional coverage and you aren’t sure how long it will take to fix the car after an accident occurs.

FAQs about rental car insurance:

1. What is rental car insurance?

Rental car insurance is insurance that protects the renter in case of damage to a rented vehicle while it is being used. It protects the renter in case of damage to the rented vehicle that results from an accident or theft. But it doesn’t protect them from injuries due to carelessness or from property damage that occurs from other causes.

2. What does rental car insurance cover?

Rental car insurance will cover expenses for repair and replacement of your rental car if it is damaged during use, including any personal injury liability you would incur if you were involved in an accident and whose fault was determined by a court of law. This includes injuries caused by third parties such as thieves and other hit-and-run drivers.

3. How long does the rental car insurance last?

The duration of the policy depends on your specific coverages. The more comprehensive plans are the more expensive ones; but they cover many more things. Whereas, basic plans that only cover physical damage may only last as short as one week at a time.

4. What is not covered by rental car insurance?

Damage to the rental car caused by theft, vandalism or negligence on your part is not covered by most policies.

5. What should I do if the rental car has been stolen?

Contact the police and report it as theft. Then contact your insurance provider and file a claim, which will deduct any applicable deductible for a physical damage claim. Then, file another claim with the rental car company. So that the company can provide you with appropriate alternate transportation if necessary.