The rental car industry is the United States is quite different to most other countries. For starters, in the US insurance for damage, loss and theft are normally not part of the rental price. Whereas in Australia or Europe, the rental car is fully insured, however there is a deductible (or excess) charged to the renter in case of damage or theft. Therefore in the US, if you damage the rental you could be up for a huge bill i.e. the entire cost of the car. That’s why the car renters damage insurance offered on the Bonzah.com site covers up to $35,000.
Additionally, when traveling overseas insurance for damage, theft and third party liability are generally included in the car rental price. There is almost always an excess (also referred to as CDW, Super CDW, Non-Waiver or Deductible) on the damage and theft insurance portions of the rental. The car rental damage insurance policy offered on Bonzah.com provides coverage up to $35,000.
If you rent often you will be acutely aware of the awkward feeling you get when the rental desk staff try to sell you their collision damage waiver (CDW) Note: the rental companies offer you a waiver, it’s not insurance. In effect, the rental company waiver (which can be more expensive than the rental itself) cancels the risk of you being charged for damage or loss (provided your drive within their terms and conditions), whereas rental car damage insurance transfers the risk from you to the insurance company. i.e. if the rental company charge you for damage to the car, the insurance company will either refund you or pay the rental company directly. The rental car damage insurance offered on Bonzah.com starts at just $7.99 per day, so finally you can get the desired coverage, at just a fraction of the cost compared to the rental desk.
We recommend using your laptop or smart phone to purchase a policy via Bonzah.com, just before you pick up the rental car, from just $7.99 per day. So when the rental car agent tried to sell you their CDW, you can simply say “no thanks I already have insurance”. If they ask who the insurer is, say Arch Insurance. If you forgot to purchase the car rental insurance policy from Bonzah.com prior to arrival at the rental car lot, don’t worry - just purchase you a policy before you start driving or take control of the rental, otherwise the policy unfortunately won’t cover you if you have already taken control of the rental car.
Because most rental car companies are self insured, if the rental car is damaged they would have the vehicle in the repair shop as soon as possible. Therefore, generally the rental car company would send Arch Insurance Company the invoice and photos for payment. If the claim is a payable claim Arch Insurance will work directly with the rental car company to issue payment.
There are occasions, for example with minor damage where the rental car company may debit your credit card to cover that damage, you then file a claim with all supporting documents to Arch Insurance Company for reimbursement.