Final Summer Getaway

Don't forget the financials on your next adventure! Are you overpaying for rental car insurance?

Many Canadians will be embarking on the last of their summer getaways, and whether you’re hopping on a plane to a new country or just hitting the highway for a road trip, one thing that shouldn’t be overlooked is insurance – it can mean the difference between saving or losing out on hundreds of dollars.

Matt Hands, Senior Business Unit Manager of Insurance at wants you to think of this scenario: 'You’ve landed in a new airport and you're at the car rental desk. You’re being asked about whether you need insurance, you’re tired and at this point, you just want to get to your final destination. Without a second thought, you’re saying yes. The thing is, rental car insurance is almost always unnecessary.'

This type of insurance is offered to you at the counter when you pick up your car rental and on average it can cost you an extra $35-$40 per day depending on the different coverages. It’s not a product you can compare and buy before hand and unfortunately, this forces Canadians to make a quick decision on the spot. But, by doing a little research and being aware of coverage you already have access to – you can make an informed and financially savvy decision.

Matt asks you to consider what coverage you may already have access to and how to avoid paying more than you need when renting a car.

  • Check your wallet. There’s more to credit cards than just rewards, they usually come with lesser-known perks – like rental car insurance. Most premium travel credit cards have collision and damage coverage that will protect you in the event your rental vehicle is damaged or stolen. Coverage will vary from card to card and you’ll have to be mindful of things like coverage amounts, time frames and conditions.
  • Your personal auto insurance policy. You’re probably thinking, doesn’t insurance follow the car, not the person? And this is true, but in the case of car rentals – your personal auto insurance will cover things like collision and damage as well as the liability portion of the rental car agreement. It’s important that you check what you have included on your insurance policy, and if you’re unsure, call your provider.
  • Your home insurance policy. When it comes to your personal items in your car, your home insurance has you covered. The biggest thing to note here is that there are limitations to your coverage so ensure you check what your coverage amount is to ensure your valuables are covered.

For a handy guide to determine if you're covered, check out this infographic.