Getting Rental Car Insurance – Some Useful Advice

Published: April 2, 2018

Updated: May 15, 2018



Many people do not consider insurance when renting a car – this is one thing they don’t think about. Many will go for purchasing insurance from the rental car company instead of what they actually need. Some others either do not get enough coverage or they choose more than what they actually need.

Decisions about rental car insurance should be made ahead of time to avoid being pressured into making last minute decisions. We will aid you in preparing yourself when renting your next vehicle so that you will take the right decision about the insurance you need.

Before deciding to rent a car, you need to understand that most provinces in Canada, and States in the USA will have a minimum age requirement for renting a vehicle – between the ages of 21 and 25 years. Also, some rental companies examine the credit history and driving record of a potential renter before they grant permission to rent a vehicle.

In some cases, you do not need to purchase additional insurance for your rental car. There are a couple things to consider when deciding what insurance you need for a rental car;

If you have a personal auto insurance cover, you need to first of all check if your policy covers a rented car– it would in most instances, in Ontario this coverage is known as OPCF 27, Liability to non-owned vehicle. Put a call through to your insurance broker to confirm this if you have any doubts. You need to understand that the kind of insurance that you have will reflect the coverage on the rental. For example, do not expect any coverage ifthe rented car is stolen if you do not have comprehensive coverage on your personal auto insurance.

Secondly, insurance benefits are offered by many credit card companies. These normally cover only loss or damage of the rented car and not liability for bodily injury or property damage caused by you.

If you use more than one credit card, call each of the credit card companies to confirm what they offer as insurance benefits. If you choose to use their benefits to cover your rental car, request that the credit card company send you their coverage details in writing. Also keep in mind the rental car typically must be booked with the credit card in full, in order for the coverage to be in effect.

If actually you need to purchase rental car insurance, bear in mind that it is regulated by the authority in your locality, as the extent of coverage and the cost of coverage may differ from one jurisdiction to the other.

If you are going to travel abroad in your rented vehicle, it will be also a good idea for you to contact your travel agent to make sure you are given a proper insurance cover while travelling.