Travel Tips: Do I Need Car Rental Insurance?

With the holiday season coming upon us, this means many of us will be traveling more frequently and thus renting cars for our long destination trips. With that comes the one thing that always runs through our minds when at the rent a car counter, “am I covered for rent a car with my own policy or should I say yes to rental car insurance?”

Whether you buy coverage from a rental agency or use your own car insurance, it is wise to make sure you have enough coverage to pay for costly repairs just in case of an accident and damages to your rental car. Before renting, familiarize yourself with all your insurance options. If you already have car insurance, call your insurance agent and find out if you will have enough coverage under your existing policy. You could also call your credit car company: Many offer coverage when you charge the rental car on your card. In either case, these two options may be cheaper than purchasing insurance at the rental counter.

Which insurance is better?... your auto insurance. If you have car insurance, the type of coverage you bought, along with deductibles, usually applies to rental cars as well. So before you rent a vehicle, check your auto and homeowners or renters policy to get an idea of what coverage you have while in the rented vehicle. And while at the rental car company, take some time to find out exactly what they offer. Compare those coverages to the ones you already have. That way, you can avoid buying coverage you don’t need.