Don’t ‘Double Dip’: How to Save on Car Rental Insurance

Are you squeezing in one last family road trip before the school year starts? If your vacation includes renting a car, here’s what you need to know about insurance, before you sign on the dotted line:

Rental company options

  • Liability: This coverage is usually a low figure, offering the minimum required by the state for liability insurance.
  • Loss damage waiver: Technically this isn’t an insurance policy; it relieves you of responsibility if the car is damaged or stolen, and is usually voided if the damage is a result of speeding or driving under the influence.
  • Personal accident insurance: This covers medical bills for injuries sustained by the driver and passengers in a car accident.
  • Personal effects coverage: This policy protects you if items are stolen from your rental car.

Other options: Do you own a car? Is it insured? Typically, the coverage and deductibles you have on your own car apply when you rent one. This can make rental car insurance an unnecessary expense, as you’d be duplicating coverage. For example:

  • Your standard auto policy includes liability.
  • Comprehensive coverage usually covers rental car damage.
  • Your car insurance usually covers medical expenses.
  • Your homeowners or renters policy often includes protection against theft away from home.
  • If you charge the rental, your credit card company may also offer automatic protection.