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Check with auto insurance company before getting a rental

Posted On Fri, November 27, 2009

Many people who are traveling during the holiday season may find that their trips will involve renting a car.

As a result, travelers may face the option of purchasing additional auto insurance for their rental cars. A recent report from the Insurance Information Institute notes that consumers should contact their own auto insurance company to make sure they actually need the coverage.

"Faced with a number of choices, some renters either purchase all of the coverage or they decline the insurance without knowing if they are covered by other policies," Jeanne M. Salvatore, senior consumer spokeswoman for the III, said. "This can result in either wasting money by purchasing unnecessary coverage or having gaps in coverage, making the driver dangerously uninsured."

The III notes that rental companies may offer a variety of additional insurance options. For example, they may offer liability protection in the case that a renter gets sued by someone they have an accident with. However, people should check with their auto insurance company to see if the coverage they already have is adequate.

A number of other insurance policies a consumer already has may cover the same incidents that protection offered from rental companies does. For example, some home insurance policies will cover items stolen from a rental car, while auto or health insurance may cover injuries sustained in a car wreck.

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