Cheap Rental Car Insurance

The cheapest rental car insurance costs $12/day in the US. If you have personal car insurance, it may be cheaper to buy rental coverage from your car insurance company.

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UPDATED: Jun 2, 2022

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Written By: Laura BerryReviewed By: Joel OhmanUPDATED: Jun 2, 2022Fact Checked

Here's what you need to know...

  • You don’t always have to purchase rental insurance for your rental car
  • If your coverage is low, or you do not own a car, then purchasing rental insurance is a must
  • Some credit card companies offer incentives to purchase rental cars through them

Cheap rental car insurance is not mandatory, although it has its advantages. There are instances when this type of coverage is unnecessary. Every situation is different, and the choice is up to the individual.

The best time to rent a car is on the weekends. This is when most promotional deals are available. For around $12 to $15 per day, a rental car can be picked up or delivered to you on Friday and returned on Monday. At this rate, cheap rental car insurance may be worth the extra expense.

Sometimes credit card companies offer incentives to use your credit card to rent. In exchange, they will offer to cover the rental insurance for free.

When renting a car, it seems there is a charge for every little thing, which seems to add up pretty quickly. It is a good idea to jump on a good rate when you can because prices go up as your date of travel or need approaches.

During the week, business travelers take advantage of the wider choice of available cars, so as the weekend approaches it is important to the rental agency to promote what is left over.

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Do I need rental car insurance?

If you do not have a car, you could be responsible for 100 percent of the damage to the rental if rental car insurance coverage is not purchased. To protect yourself, there is such thing as non-owner car insurance that you can purchase to supplement or replace cheap rental car insurance coverage.

If you do have a car that is insured, your policy may offer liability and personal injury, as well as comprehensive coverage.

If there is a deductible on your personal policy, it must be met first. You can also add rental car coverage as a rider to your existing coverage if you find there is none.

In the case where an insured driver rents a car and purchases additional rental car insurance coverage anyway, the rental car coverage supersedes personal car coverage. In essence, your rental insurance kicks in first in the event of an accident.

Cheap rental car insurance is not needed unless there is not enough coverage on the personal vehicle. However, if you use the rental coverage and do not have to file a claim on your personal policy, you don’t have to worry about your rates being raised as a result of the accident.

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Is rental car insurance the same as personal car insurance?

Rental car insurance is slightly different from your current policy. The rental car insurance agency usually offers coverage slightly above the average state required minimum.

Otherwise, there are strong similarities. The rental agency offers coverage in different terms than what the driver is used to, such as:

Although different terms are used, they basically cover some of the same things with limitations in terms and conditions.

What is covered by cheap rental car insurance?

CDW normally covers around $35,000 to the vehicle for loss of use. LDW covers around $35,000, while PAE is available with $1,000,000 to $2,000,000 worth of coverage.

For as little as $9 extra dollars, you could relieve the stress of the possibility of being responsible for damages, death benefits, or other expenses.

Other options are also available for specialty vehicles, trucks, and exotic cars such as SDW (super damage waiver) for those major fees associated with damage and loss.

Can I get cheap rental car insurance in a foreign country?

With an international driver’s license, you can rent and drive a car anywhere in the world.

This benefit comes in handy for business travelers who want to be self-sufficient while traveling abroad. Comprehensive car insurance for driving abroad may have different provisions although the basics are the same.

When an accident happens abroad, many rental agencies try to have the driver pay for damages up front with the promise to reimburse the driver later.

This can be a nightmare for some. Because laws differ from one country to another, there may be slight differences in what is offered. Most personal car insurance companies cover the rental and the driver abroad, although it is best to ask before the assumption is made.

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Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

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Written by Laura Berry
Former Insurance Agent Laura Berry

Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP® Joel Ohman

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