Does My Auto Insurance Cover a Rental?

Determine whether you need additional coverage when renting a vehicle. 

You’re renting a car for the week on vacation and you’ve managed to secure a great deal on a vehicle. When you’re at the desk getting the keys, the attendant asks if you would like to purchase auto insurance coverage. Suddenly, you don’t know what to do. Here is your chance to be prepared at the rental car counter so that you can be on your way faster.

I have car insurance. Do I need to buy their coverage, too?

This is the most common question when it comes to renting a car for domestic travel. The answer really depends. You want to make sure you’re covered, but you also don’t want to pay for unnecessary, duplicate coverage.

The first step is to check your auto insurance policy. If you carry comprehensive and liability coverage on your personal car, then coverage will typically extend to your rental car within the United States. If you’re renting a domestic car of the same value to your personal car, the insurance coverage may be adequate for the rental. If you’re renting a luxury vehicle that is of a higher value than your personal car, you should consider the extra coverage offered.

You should also be aware that your policy will cover repairs, and not the “lost rental days”, or any other fees and penalties that may apply from your rental contract when you do not choose their insurance coverage.

It is also important to know that your insurance will only cover your rental car in the United States and Canada.  If you choose to rent cars internationally, as well as in Mexico, you will need the rental insurance offered.

Check with your credit card company

This may sound a bit strange, but it’s wise to check with your credit card company if they offer coverage. The credit card that you’ll be using for the rental pay provides secondary coverage on the rented vehicle.


When you’re ready to get started on auto insurance for your needs, we can help. Contact Lou Aggetta Insurance Services in Pleasant Hill, CA. We will work with you to ensure you have the right policy at the right price.