Article
New!
Rental car insurance is a hotly debated topic that's always controversial. Some people swear by the idea
of signing up for the extra insurance when renting a vehicle, and another camp claims it's all a huge mistake.
Who's right? NASCAR Car Wash considers both sides of the argument.

Determine Your Need for Rental Car Insurance

The only way to decide if you should opt-out is to be confident your auto insurance policy already
provides the coverage. If they do, it's redundant and wasteful to pay more for insurance at the car rental agency.

However, many policies don't automatically extend this benefit, so confirm eligibility before saying no.

Generally, people with comprehensive and collision insurance coverage can skip picking up optional rental car insurance. However, if you have an older vehicle and don't carry extra coverage, you may want to pick up the optional insurance policy offered by the car rental agency.

Do You Need Supplemental Liability Insurance?

Supplemental liability insurance is generally worth passing on because most states require drivers to carry insurance coverage. If your current policy limits fulfill the legal requirements in your locality, you most likely won't need to purchase more coverage from the car rental agency.

How Is Your Health Insurance Coverage?

In some cases, your health insurance policy might provide medical expense coverage in the event of getting involved in a vehicular accident when behind the wheel of a rental car. Some policies may cover your costs, as well as anyone else injured in the crash.

Your Credit Card May Also Include Coverage

Some credit cards provide accident insurance as one of their ancillary benefits. Check your accounts to see if you are eligible and check the card issuer's website to learn more about their offer, if applicable.

This type of coverage has specific limits, so be aware of them if you use this instead of supplemental insurance. However, after doing sufficient research, you may find that one method of insuring rental cars is significantly less expensive than others.

It's worth doing a cost analysis before renting the vehicle. You may not need extra insurance in many cases because you already have coverage in place. It takes just a few minutes to review your various policies to check for existing coverage.

What Happens if I Damage or Have an Accident in a Rental Vehicle?

Getting involved in an accident or returning a damaged rental vehicle without insurance coverage in place is a nightmare situation. The rental agency will most likely attempt to charge you for the damages, and in some cases, they may even try to pursue legal action against you.

If you don't have insurance coverage or money to spare, this could result in having your credit score damaged by the delinquent account reported to the credit bureaus. To avoid this issue, purchasing rental insurance coverage is a sound decision.

In Summary

It's easy to understand why people have many questions and concerns when considering whether to purchase extra insurance from a car rental agency. Do you need it? What happens if you're involved in an accident? Is there anything else you can do to avoid renting with extra insurance?

It's also easy to understand why some people refuse to pay for this coverage. To many, it seems like another way for the rental agency to make more revenue from their customers.

Understanding that there is a valid argument on both sides of the coin, NASCAR Car Wash thinks the best option is to research and decide what will work best for you.

When opting out of buying extra insurance from a car rental agency, it's imperative first to confirm that your current auto policy provides coverage while you're renting a vehicle. By doing so, you'll have greater peace of mind knowing you have a safety net in place should something unfortunate happen.