August 18, 2011

Getting Car Insurance That Will Cover A Car Rental

Most drivers will eventually need to rent a vehicle, and it's helpful to understand how standard car insurance coverage protects a rental car or truck. All drivers should understand the car rental coverage built into their policies and optional coverage add-ons that might be helpful when renting a vehicle.

The first question that most drivers ask when renting a car is whether their primary vehicle's insurance policy will extend to the car rental. In most situations, car insurance is transferable, and a reputable car rental company won't allow a driver to leave the lot if valid proof of insurance hasn't been provided. Car rental coverage is a standard part of most car insurance coverage, even if it isn't specifically outlined in an insurance policy. Standard car insurance coverage types such as comprehensive coverage, collision coverage and liability coverage usually transfer to any vehicle that a driver lawfully operates, including rental cars. Of course, the value of a rental car might be higher than the value of a driver's primary car, so it's always important to make sure that a vehicle is sufficiently protected. Some drivers decide to buy extra coverage when renting a car for better peace of mind.

Many car insurance companies also offer an insurance add-on that covers the cost of a car rental when a driver's primary vehicle is inoperable due to an accident or other claim. This add-on is often referred to as rental reimbursement. Rental reimbursement usually costs a few extra dollars a month and is usually not included with comprehensive coverage. As the cost of a rental car can easily exceed $30 per day in some areas, it's a worthwhile coverage to consider. However, all drivers should note that reimbursement coverage does not include the cost of rental insurance, so the extra coverage offered by car insurance companies needs to be purchased separately and will not be reimbursed by an insurance provider.

The average driver will rent a car at some point, either when traveling or after a major accident, theft or other event. Planning for a car rental makes sense, and adding rental car reimbursement to a car insurance policy can give a driver some extra breathing room after a major accident, car theft or other serious claim. Likewise, keeping a car insured is always smart, and it's helpful to know that a standard car insurance policy will extend to a rental car. Even so, drivers should consider the extra insurance offered by car rental companies, and drivers with questions about rental car insurance should contact their insurance providers for up-to-date, policy-specific information.