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Is Rental Car Insurance Necessary?

It is always a tense moment while renting a car when the agent asks whether or not you would like to purchase rental car insurance. If you have ever been in this situation and looked back at the agent with that deer-in-the-headlights look, you are not alone. Many car renters are unsure as to whether the extra expense of purchasing a rental car insurance policy is necessary or if they should just forgo the car insurance altogether. Fortunately there are other options, and it is good to be aware of them beforehand in order to make an informed decision.

If you already have a car insurance policy on a vehicle of your own and are renting for pleasure use within your own country, your coverage should carry over to the rental car. To avoid hassles and speed up the rental process, be sure to carry your insurance ID card. The time to consider purchasing rental car insurance is if you are renting outside your country. Most policies will not this. To stay ahead of the game, the next time you are calling for a car insurance quote, be sure to ask about coverage details when it comes to travel and rentals.

Another car insurance option is to look into possible coverage provided by your credit card company. Many major credit cards include this benefit as part of their card's package. If you are considering this choice be aware that there are usually some specific guidelines for making use of this rental car coverage. This may include paying for the entire cost of the rental with the credit card. Also, it should be noted that the coverage offered by the card might only be for the amount not covered by your own personal car insurance policy. It is a good idea to call the credit card company to get an exact description of what rental car coverage is offered and what is excluded.

If neither of these options is available to you, or you hold only the bare minimum property damage liability on your own car insurance, you may want to consider purchasing the collision insurance offered by the rental company to ensure that you are completely covered should you damage the rental vehicle. The excess liability insurance may also want to be considered if you do not carry rental car insurance; because the minimum provided by the rental company may not be enough if you are involved in a serious accident. There are a few other offerings to consider, including Personal Accident Insurance and Personal Effects Coverage, but overall this is a basic overview of your rental car insurance options.

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