A rental vehicle is just like any other car or truck on the road in the US that requires auto insurance. You may use your own insurance or supplement it to insure a rental car. Before you consider renting a vehicle, you will need to understand the types of coverage available, how it works, and if having your insurance is indeed necessary.
Types of Supplemental Coverage by Car Rental Companies
Each rental company has their types of supplemental coverage, but most of them fall into the following four categories.
Basic Liability: This boosts the amount of liability present for the coverage available, sometimes up to $1 million. While liability is required in almost all states, the minimums are often not enough to cover the damage caused in most accidents.
Collision Damage Waiver: Sometimes called a Loss Damage Waiver, this covers you in case the vehicle is damaged or stolen if you obeyed the law.
Personal Effects Coverage: This applies to the theft of your personal items stored in the vehicle. It’s cheap, but if you already have homeowners or renters’ insurance, this policy is not necessary.
Personal Accident Insurance: This is medical coverage for ambulances, treatment, and hospital stays. If you have good health insurance, this is probably not necessary.
How does Insurance Work on a Rental Car?
It works the same for rental vehicles as it does on your own. The principles are all the same if you are involved in an accident, if the car is stolen, damaged, or vandalized. What is not covered comes out of your pocket.
The question of can I rent a car without personal insurance is answered with a “yes” if you have other types of auto insurance. A non-owner auto insurance provides you with good coverage at low rates and covers rental vehicles. So, while renting a car without insurance Enterprise, Hertz, Budget, Avis, and more will not allow you to do, you can have your non-owners’ policy or purchase additional insurance from the company if yours is inadequate.
Do you Need Car Insurance to Rent a Car?
The answer is yes; you cannot rent a car with no insurance. In fact, many rental companies will not rent you a vehicle unless you have adequate insurance on your car or truck. You will need proof of insurance to rent a car. It also means that having the minimum amount of insurance as required by your state may not be enough if it lacks either comprehensive or collision. Your insurance will not be sufficient if your rental vehicle is stolen or damaged in an accident that you caused.
In that case, you will need to purchase rental car insurance that provides adequate coverage for the vehicle. Quite often, it is sold as part of the rates you pay to rent the vehicle or truck.
Since driving a rental car without insurance is not only prohibited, it is against the law, you will need to consider insurance policies before going to the rental counter.