By Steve Sherlock
Arriving at your vacation destination after a long flight can provoke feelings of relief, excitement and anticipation. However, before you can sink your toes in the water and you-know-what in the sand, you need to figure out the situation with your rental car. While this should be an easy process, the rental companies don’t always make it that simple, especially when they’re insistent that you purchase their overpriced car rental insurance.
Like most people, you may think that you don’t need additional rental coverage and assume that you’re already adequately insured, but how do you know if you’re actually going to be covered in the event of an accident? Before turning down car rental insurance coverage, you need to make sure you’ve asked your insurance company a few questions about your current coverage so they can help you determine your potential risk level.
It’s a Rip Off – I’m Already Covered
If you already own an insured vehicle, your auto insurance company should be the first place you should check to determine what kind of coverage you already have in case you damage a rental vehicle. It’s important to note that coverage can be different for rental cars and a car that you own, especially if your vacation destination is in another country. If you’re looking for a short list of questions to begin a conversation with your auto insurer, try a few of these:
- 1. Will my auto insurance coverage protect me if I’m traveling to another country?
- 2. Will my current auto insurance policy cover damages to the rental car, my property and my family in case of collision?
- 3. Will it cover the cost of the damage if the car is lost or stolen?
- 4. Will it cover windshield, tire and undercarriage damage or single vehicle accidents?
- 5. What things might not be covered by my auto insurance policy during my car rental?
- 6. Will, I incur a deductible if I claim on my auto insurance coverage, and how much?
- 7. If I claim on my auto insurance policy will my monthly premium increase as a result and by how much?
If you know the answers to these basic questions, you should be able to determine if you will need additional car rental insurance before you set out for your trip. Next, you should check with your credit card company, which typically carries minimal coverage for rental cars, provided that you purchased your rental on the credit card. In many cases though, this coverage turns out to be insufficient for traveller’s needs.
It’s a Rip Off – I’m Purchasing Travel Insurance Instead
After assessing your current auto insurance and credit card coverage, let’s assume that you’ve determined that your current protection is inadequate. This leaves you with a couple of options: you can either buy travel insurance from your travel agent, which will protect a lot more than just your car rental while you travel, or car rental insurance. Either option should provide you with peace of mind knowing you’re covered for your upcoming car rental.
While purchasing travel insurance to protect your entire trip sounds like a great option, policies often cost between 4% and 8% of your total trip cost, which is a lot more than most people wish to pay if they’re only looking for car rental protection. On the other hand, if you should opt for the extra rental car insurance, you‘ll be able to pay a certain fee for each day of your rental for very specific coverage.
It’s a Rip Off – It Costs Way Too Much
Even though car rental insurance costs much less than a more comprehensive travel insurance policy and provides peace of mind, it’s still outrageously expensive! Some rental companies such as Avis and Hertz charge between $25 and $40 per day for car rental insurance, which is sometimes more than the cost of the rental. To avoid these ridiculous insurance prices, there are other online alternatives that cost just fraction of the price, often for the same or better coverage. With bonzah.com you can get primary car rental insurance, meaning that it will replace your current auto insurance policy during your trip, starting at $7.99 per day covering up to $35,000 in car rental damage or theft and $500 for your personal belongings. That’s an incredible coverage ratio (for one day rental) of 4380 times! ( e.g. $35,000 / $7.99) For more information on covering your next car rental visit bonzah.com to get your quote, so you’ll be prepared to simply decline the rental company’s insurance offer without compromising your peace of mind.