Is optional insurance needed when you're renting a car?
Is optional insurance needed when you're renting a car
You're standing at the car rental counter waiting to start your vacation when you're asked a tricky question. Do you want to buy damage waivers, also known as car rental insurance? How will you answer?
"Knowing if you need to buy rental insurance can save you money and give you peace of mind," says Lucas Ziegler with Texas Prime Insurance. "Optional insurance could nearly double the cost of the rental. Do your homework and know before you leave to rent that car."
Here are some pointers:
Review your policy with your Texas Auto Insurance Agent. Your agent can evaluate your personal car insurance policy to find out if you are covered in a vacation rental car.
Check with your credit card company. Some credit cards provide coverage at no charge if you use their card to pay for the rental. However, some restrictions may apply. Be sure to ask for an exact description of what's covered.
Take your insurance policy "Declarations Page" with you to the rental counter. You may be asked a question that these papers can answer. If you're not sure of an answer, you'll have your agent's name and phone number readily available.
With most Texas Auto Insurance Policies, coverage automatically extends to a rental car. For example, if you only have liability insurance on your Texas Auto Insurance Policy, then the coverage will extend to the rental cal for up to the policy liability limit. If you have comprehensive and collision coverage on your Texas Auto Insurance Policy, this coverage will automatically extend to you rental car. Remember policy deductibles will also apply.
Beware! There are some limited auto insurance policies sold in Texas which don't extend coverage to a rental car. These type of policies are named limited policies or named driver policy. These type of policies are usually sold with overall limited coverage, so be careful. When you are purchasing, take this into account.
Advantages about buying insurance from the rental car place;
The only advantage found on buying the insurance product from the rental car place is that in case of an accident, a lower or not deductible may apply and any claim reported on this rental car will not affect your claims record with your personal auto policy (only if you purchase the rental car insurance). The entire claim is left to the car rental place and you get to have peace of mind. If you file a claim under your personal policy, you will have to directly be involved the claims process until the claim is settled.
"Generally, if you have comprehensive, collision and liability coverages on your personal car insurance policy, there's a good chance you'll be covered in a rental car," says Lucas Ziegler. "Check with your agent to be sure. If you are covered, you would be liable only for the deductible on comprehensive and collision coverages, just like your personal vehicle."
Bottom line, contact you agent to verify if you are covered on a rental car, at the end of the day, it is your decision and being informed can save you money.
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