Do I Need to Purchase Rental Insurance When Renting a Car?


Road trips have become very popular as they open endless opportunities to learn more about new countries. Of course, if your route goes through several locations, the best solution, in this case, would be to rent a car and travel with maximum comfort.

Besides, renting a car can also save you a lot of money as you will avoid buying tickets and paying local taxi drivers. But do not forget to get an insurance policy to protect yourself from additional expenses.

Can I Drive a Rental Car Without Insurance?

An insurance policy is compulsory for driving a rented vehicle. If you already have your personal car insurance, you probably will not have to buy additional coverage when renting a car. Note the third party liability is compulsory in Europe and that your policy may not be valid in all foreign countries.

If your travel for business, it will not work either. So if you plan a trip abroad, it is better to check these details with your insurer. It is crucial to understand that whatever is not listed in your insurance plan, will have to be reimbursed directly from your pocket with no further compensation. And the sums can be disastrous.

How Does Car Rental Insurance with a Credit Card Work?

In some cases, credit cards can be used for rental car coverage. This method will work only if the rental agreement is in your name. This option works practically everywhere if it is offered by your card provider. But such coverage is usually secondary.

However, credit cards do not normally compensate for medical costs and have a lot of restrictions on expensive car models.

Buying at the Rental Car Counter

Most often, rental companies include insurance in the rental price. But you will be offered the most common types of policies to keep your rental costs as low as possible. And all of them come with a deductible (or excess).

If you want to buy rental car excess insurance from the same company, be ready that it will be expensive – almost the same as the rental cost. To avoid high prices, you can order annual car hire excess waiver insurance from CarInSuRent. It will fully protect you from unexpected costs in case of car damage and other incidents.

Best Car Rental Insurance

As a rule, travelers buy the following policies when renting a car:

  • CDW or LDW (Collision or Loss Damage Waiver) – a rental car is insured against damage caused in the accident but excludes theft. The deductible is paid by the client, and the insurance company pays for everything that is charged beyond this amount.
  • TP or TI (Theft Protection or Theft Insurance) – provides insurance against car theft by third parties. In a safe country, this policy is not mandatory. But it is better to have it in locations with a higher risk.
  • Third-Party Liability Insurance (TPI or TPL) – includes coverage of third-party vehicles that were damaged through your fault.

Basic insurance does not usually apply to windshield, underbody, and tires – you will need to look for details in your documents as the terms may vary in different agencies. Besides, in all the above cases, you still remain responsible for the amount of the deductible specified in your policy.

But you can reduce it to even a zero once you get so-called excess or deductible insurance.

Rental Car Excess Insurance

It is a personal decision of the driver whether to take out super coverage for the period of car rental. This policy is always optional but it really gives you peace of mind, especially if you travel abroad in a rented car.

The thing is that the deductible amount in many agencies is unbelievably high. And you can find yourself in a situation that you will need to pay a fortune for even a tiny scratch.

These rip-off charges can be successfully avoided if you have the right policy – car hire excess insurance. If you travel a lot, it is reasonable to purchase annual car hire excess insurance, and for a one-time trip, you can use a policy with a daily rate.

Final Thoughts

Car hire insurance is a very important thing that saves you from financial losses in emergency situations. It is vital to carefully study the policy terms before signing a car rental agreement. A clear understanding of all the points will enable you to behave correctly in the event of a traffic accident, car theft, or breakdown. Plan your trip wisely and stay safe!

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