Rental Car Insurance – What You Need To Know…..

The kids are out of school and vacations are on the horizon. It is important to understand how your auto insurance policy covers rental cars.

Most policies afford the same coverage you have on your personal vehicle to a rental vehicle. So, if you have high deductibles and damage the rental car you could be out of pocket for a significant cost.  You also have to wade through the red tape with both the rental car company and your insurance company.

My years in claims taught me how to explain rental cars and insurance to my family and friends. Typical rental car insurance provides coverage for damage to the rental vehicle.

Rates on rental cars and rental car insurance vary by location and vehicle type. I called the local rental location at the Portland International Airport. During that discussion, they termed the coverage offered – “Loss Damage Waiver.” The Loss Damage Waiver pays for damage to the rental car vehicle if damaged while in your possession.

The cost given before taxes was less than $15 a day for the Loss Damage Waiver. If you damage the rental car and have the Loss Damage Waiver you avoid involving your insurance. This will prevent your rates from increasing.

You need to consider a few things given this information. How many days will you be renting the car? What coverage do you currently have on your own auto policy?

So should I get the Loss Damage Wavier or not?  I have often looked at it this way;  $15 a day for how many days I am renting the car.  So if I rent the car for 5 days my out of pocket cost for the Loss Damage Waiver is $75.  Much less than the customary $500 deductible for comprehensive and collision on an auto policy.  Some people will still say it won’t happen to them.  Well, if it never happened insurance would not exist and the earth would still be flat.

Another thing to consider when traveling and renting a car is the location of your trip. Most policies, in the Pacific Northwest, will not provide coverage for a rental car driven in Mexico. Some may provide coverage in Canada. I have not seen a policy that covers a rental car in another part of the world.

You should ask the rental car company in the foreign country about the situation and see what resolutions they may be able to provide. You can also see what Google can do for you.
Due to recent changes, we can help with cross-border rental car coverage!

Call us at 971.303.8508