We, as consumers, assume because we have a Personal Auto Policy that we are covered in the event of an accident with a rental car. Become familiar with your Personal Auto Policy and rental agreement for the vehicle you are renting before even approaching the rental company.
The below tips for renting a car were provided by our Personal Lines Account Manager, Amanda Schultze:
1) If you are renting a car with two or more people, put all those you expect to drive on the rental agreement. In the event of any occurrence where someone NOT listed is driving, that rental vehicle is considered stolen.
2) If you have a credit card that offers various coverages when it comes to renting a car, READ THE FINE PRINT! Some cars/SUVs are excluded from these programs. Make sure to find out from your credit card carrier if they exclude certain vehicles.
3) As irrational as it may sound, be aware that valet parking a rental vehicle can be risky. The vehicle is also considered “stolen” while in the care of a valet. Typically, the valet company will have their own insurance and you as the insured will be protected in terms of liability. This situation can quickly become a sticky one. If you can, avoid valet parking with a rented vehicle. The valet is ultimately not an authorized driver as he/she is not included in the rental agreement.
4) Be aware that when damage occurs, the rental company may charge you a set amount until the damage can be assessed. This charge can, and may be, immediate.
5) According to IIABNY (Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, Inc.), if you rent a trailer, such as a U-Haul truck, your personal coverage is typically limited to under $1,500. In this case, purchasing the Collision Damage Waiver (“CDW”) and/or Loss Damage Waiver (“LDW”) is highly recommended, if not necessary.
6) Remember to take photos of the vehicle you are renting (interior and exterior) BEFORE leaving the lot!
Stay tuned for Part 2 of our Car Rental Tips next week!
If you have any car rental questions, please feel free to contact us:
Personal Lines Account Manager