To Buy or Not To Buy Car Rental Insurance

When you rent a car, the same coverage you have on your NNI auto policy automatically extends to your rental car. But in some cases, it still makes more sense to buy the extra insurance the car rental company offers. We have a few questions that can help you find out what's most cost effective for your situation:

  1. Is the rental car worth more than the cars listed on your policy? Say you drive a Toyota Corolla and you want to rent a Corvette. The coverage for your Corolla is probably not going to cover a claim on the Corvette in the event there's a total loss- the Corvette is most likely more valuable. So if you are renting a luxury car, it's usually better to purchase the extra coverage offered through the car rental company. Ask the car rental company for the monetary value of the car you're renting or look it up yourself.
  2. What are your out-of-pocket expenses? As we said, the same coverages from your NNI auto policy extend to your rental car, including limits and deductibles. Be sure to read the fine print on the rental car company's insurance policy and it might even be smart to refer to your independent agent for sound advice here too.

  3. How long is your vacation? How long you will be renting a car can have an effect on whether or not it makes more sense to purchase rental insurance with the car rental company. Remember, the same deductibles from your personal auto policy also apply to the rental. For example, if you have a $1,000 deductible under collision coverage on your personal auto policy and you hit a pole in the rental car, your deductible is still $1,000. Typically, you can purchase the CDW (Collision Damage Waiver) from the rental car service for around $16.99  per day. So purchasing the waiver for a 7-day trip is definitely more cost effective than paying a $1,000 if you have a collision claim.

We hope these questions help you determine the best decision for you when renting a car this summer. If you don't have insurance through NNI, consult your own insurance for how rental car coverage works.  

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