Top 10 Best Credit Cards For Rental Car Insurance Coverage
The top ten best credit cards for rental car insurance coverage include all of the following:
Chase Sapphire Preferred: Chase Sapphire Preferred credit cards have some of the best rental car insurance available in the United States. The biggest advantage is that Chase Sapphire Preferred and Reserve cards offer primary rental car insurance coverage. The second advantage is that there are no country restrictions with any Chase cards.
Chase Sapphire Reserve: The Chase Sapphire Reserve card has all of the same advantages as the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. You get primary rental car insurance coverage and no country restrictions.
United MileagePlus Explorer: The United MileagePlus Explorer card offers primary rental car insurance, which means you can avoid making a claim on your own car insurance policy if something goes wrong.
United MileagePlus Club: Rental car insurance on the United MileagePlus Club credit card works in a similar way to the Explorer card. You get primary rental car insurance coverage on all vehicle rentals.
Ritz-Carlton Visa Infinite Card: The Ritz-Carlton Visa Infinite card offers primary rental car insurance coverage, allowing you to enjoy full rental car protection without touching your ordinary car insurance policy.
J.P. Morgan Reserve Card: Like the five cards listed above, the J.P. Morgan Reserve card offers primary rental car insurance coverage, allowing you to avoid making a claim on your ordinary car insurance policy.
Best For Leisure Travelers
- Chase Sapphire Reserve : Provides loss-of-use coverage plus primary coverage on up to $75,000 of damage due to theft or collision, as well as a 50% points bonus when you redeem rewards points for car rentals and other travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal.
- United Explorer Card : For a modest annual fee, this card provides primary coverage up to the full value of the covered vehicle with no country-based exclusions for up to 31 days.
- Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card : This card is one of the few we could find that comes closest to covering medical payments, although it only pays out between $5,000 and $200,000 for accidental injuries, dismemberment, or death. It also covers loss of use plus $1,000 towards loss of personal property.
- The Platinum Card from American Express : This card offers the same car rental insurance benefits as the Hilton Honors card, and it comes with all of the other premium benefits youd expect from one of the ritziest travel cards.
All American Express cardseven the luxury onescome with secondary coverage. But you have the option to purchase a primary coverage policy for $12.25-$24.95, depending on where you live and the amount of coverage you want. You sign up in advance, so when you do rent a car, the cost of the policy is automatically charged to your card.
Some card issuers, including Discover, dont offer car rental insurance with any of their cards.
What To Look For In Your Credit Cards Rental Car Insurance
The first thing to know about is that it typically only provides a collision damage waiver , sometimes also called a loss damage waiver . This coverage can protect you if the car gets damaged, vandalized, or stolen during the rental period.
It doesnt, however, provide liability insurance, which would protect you if you cause an accident and damage the other vehicle or injure other people in the process. As a result, adding that coverage may be worth considering for peace of mind.
Every credit card has some differences when it comes to its rental car insurance coverage. The biggest feature youll want to look for is whether the insurance is primary or secondary.
When the rental car insurance is considered primary, that means it will be your primary coverage if you need to file a claim. You dont need to worry about involving your personal insurance company.
If you have secondary coverage, however, and you have an auto insurance policy for your car back home, youll need to file a claim with your primary insurer first. Then the credit cards protection will kick in to cover your deductible and anything else your primary policy doesnt cover.
Note: If you dont have a personal auto insurance policy, secondary coverage on a credit card often becomes primary coverage.
As you consider which credit card has the best car rental insurance, here are some other features to look for and compare:
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How Do I Claim Rental Car Insurance On My Credit Card
If youve paid for your rental car with a credit card that offers car rental insurance, then you may be wondering how to make an insurance claim in case of an accident. The way you file a claim will depend on the card issuer and the particular credit card that you have.
The easiest thing to do is to on the back of your credit card. The customer service agents can let you know how to proceed when filing an insurance claim.
Usually, there will be an online portal of some sort, and you will be asked to upload a series of forms and other documentation. This will include your rental agreement, any pictures you may have, or other information that is relevant to the insurance claim.
Remember too that, if your card only provides secondary insurance, then you will have to first contact your primary insurance carrier. In this case, the car rental coverage that comes with your credit card will only kick in for anything that is not covered by your primary insurance coverage.
Can I Drive A Rental Without Insurance
In most cases, you can drive a rental car without showing any proof of insurance at all. Each rental car is insured by the rental car company to at least the state minimum requirements. However, depending on the state or states where you are traveling or renting the car, those minimums may be quite low.
If you are not using a credit card that offers car rental insurance and your personal car insurance does not cover you, then your rental agreement states that you are on the hook for any damage you cause during the rental. The car rental company will bill you for things including damage to the car, liability for damage to other cars, people, or property, and money from loss of rents by the rental vehicle.
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Where Can I Compare Cheap Car Insurance Quotes Online
While you’re thinking of getting the best car rental insurance benefits, why not do the same for your regular car insurance? You should check a website that collects quotes from the auto insurance companies available in your area. Use a car insurance comparison tool like Insurify to compare up to 10+ real quotes for your combined driver profile and unlock savings and car insurance discounts. Rates can vary based on your driving history and personal profile, but you should be able to find a competitive price. Insurify provides the cheapest car insurance quotes from local companies in just a few minutes.
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Scotiabank Gold American Express
- Rental Car Coverage: Covered up to the vehicleâs actual cash value plus any valid loss of use charges, towing charges, and administrative charges resulting from damage or theft
- Coverage amount: Rental car with an MSRP of up to $65,000
- Coverage period: Up to 48 consecutive days
- Conditions: You must use your card to pay the full cost of the rental vehicle and decline the rental agencyâs damage waiver
- No annual fee
- No foreign transaction fee charged on purchases abroad
- Earn 1% cash back on all purchases, with no limit on the amount you can earn
- The Visa Zero Liability Policy for protection against fraud
- Not available in Quebec
What sets the Home Trust Preferred Visa apart is that it offers 48 days of car rental insurance and cash rewards while not charging cardholders an annual fee. The icing on the cake: itâs one of the few cards that donât come with foreign transaction fees, so you wonât rack up additional charges when using your card to make purchases in a foreign country, like, letâs say, when refilling your rental carâs gas tank while on vacation abroad.
Top 3 Credit Cards For Rental Car Insurance
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is great for both redeeming points and renting a car. This card lets you use Chase Ultimate Rewards points to reserve rental cars, and each point earned on this card is worth 1.25 cents when redeemed for travel. So a $150 car rental will cost around 12,000 points.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, unlike many other credit cards, has primary rental car coverage, which means it will pay for losses before your own primary motor insurance. Most rental vehicles have a coverage limit of up to the monetary value.
Chase Sapphire Reserve Card
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card comes with more features than the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. It includes rental car coverage of up to $75,000. Chase Ultimate Rewards points earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card are worth 1.5 cents each. So you will only need 10,000 points for a $150 car rental.
American Express Platinum Card
A travelers best friend, the Platinum Card from American Express comes with Hertz Gold Plus Rewards and Avis Preferred. Both programs enable you to get a one-car class upgrade and discounts of up to 15% on standard vehicles.
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Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
The popular Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is good for both redeeming points and relying on the rental car coverage.
You can book rental cars with Chase Ultimate Rewards® points and when redeemed for travel, points earned on this card are worth 1.25 cents, meaning a $150 car rental will generally cost about 12,000 points.
Unlike a lot of other credit cards, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card also offers primary rental car coverage, meaning itll pay for damages before your own primary auto insurance. The coverage limit is up to the cash value of most rental vehicles.
Compare Best Credit Cards For Car Rental Of 2022
|Primary for business rentals and for all international rentals, secondary for U.S. personal rentals||$95||3X points|
The information related to the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.
Do You Need Car Rental Insurance
The first thing to know is theres not just one type of car rental insurance. An agent will likely offer you an assortment of options. These two are the most important:
- Loss or collision damage waiver : While not technically insurance, this waiver covers the rental car in case of damage, loss, or theft.
- Liability: This insurance protects against damage to other people or personal property.
Whether or not you need these depends greatly on the personal auto insurance and the credit cards you already have.
1. If youre a car owner with comprehensive auto insurance, you probably dont need to purchase either. Your regular plan will usually cover your rental, aside from loss-of-use and other administrative fees.
How a card could help: Certain credit cards offer primary coverage and allow you to bypass your regular insurer completely, avoiding deductibles and premium hikes. Other cards have secondary coverage, which will at least cover whatever your insurance doesnt.
2. If youre a car owner with liability insurance only , then youd need to purchase the CDW to protect against the costs of damage.
How a card could help: If you carry liability through your regular insurance, a credit card can cover damages, allowing you to decline the CDW.
The Vacationers Final Thoughts
From lounge access to concierge services, travel rewards credit cards can provide lots of benefits that are nice to have. But for travelers, a credit cards Loss Damage Waiver policy may be one of the most valuable benefits offered. Once you understand exactly what this benefit is, and how it works, you can avoid paying for overpriced insurance from the car rental company, while limiting your risk of loss when renting a car. For further reading, see our guide on the best travel insurance companies and other tips on protecting your trip.
Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are the authors alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.
By Phil Dengler
In addition to being a co-founder of The Vacationer, Phil Dengler is also the head of editorial and marketing. Previously, he ran a popular holiday deals website where he was a trusted source for all things Black Friday. With The Vacationer, Phil combines his knowledge of deals with his love of travel to help you plan the perfect vacation.
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What Does Primary And Secondary Coverage Mean
Knowing whether a credit card has primary or secondary car rental insurance is an important distinction. Primary coverage means that you dont have to file a claim with your car insurance company if you damage your rental car. Secondary coverage means that you are covered for whatever amount your personal car insurance doesnt cover. That said, remember that rental coverage covers only the rental car, not any other property or more importantly any medical expenses resulting from an accident, so additional liability insurance may be needed.
How Credit Card Rental Insurance Works The Fine Print
- It might seem obvious, but start by checking if your card actually comes with rental car insurance in the first place, because not all do.
- If your card does offer coverage, get familiar with its terms .
- Your credit cardâs rental insurance wonât apply automatically, and youâll need to: 1. pay for the full price of the rental using your credit card, and 2. explicitly decline the collision/damage/loss waiver insurance from the rental agency for your cardâs coverage to apply.
- While credit card coverage usually applies around the world, that might not always be the case like if youâre visiting a country that has a travel warning.
- Your credit card must be in good standing, otherwise, coverage wonât apply.
- Your credit card insurance wonât cover you in instances when youâre inebriated or carrying illegal goods.
- Coverage is usually intended for rental cars that have been booked for personal use, and wonât apply if youâre using the rental for commercial purposes.
Generally, if youâre renting a sedan or minivan just to get around or for a road trip out of the city, youâll be covered through your card. To be extra safe, consider calling up your credit card company before reserving a rental car.
Last but not least, if youâre in the unfortunate situation where you have to make a claim, time will be of the essence as youâll usually have to report a claim within 24 to 48 hours for it to be valid.
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Our Best Credit Cards For Car Rental Insurance
There are several Canadian credit cards on the market that offer car rental insurance. However, after an intensive study, weve narrowed down our top three picks based on their reasonable annual fees, generous coverage amounts, and attractive perks to cardholders.
In This Article:
Limited-time offer: New cardholders earn up to 25,000 Aeroplan points and a bonus Buddy Pass. Plus, first year no Annual Fee. Conditions Apply. Must apply by March 6, 2022.
The TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card is a top pick when it comes to travel cards in general, but definitely a good choice for those looking for car rental insurance. The coverage amount is valid for up to 48 consecutive days. The additional benefit of this credit card is that cardholders will receive special preferred rates on qualifying car rentals when they use their card to book a car rental with either Avis or Budget. This perk will be a definite money saver for anyone who regularly rents cars during their travels.
Car rental perks aside, you can also take advantage of the welcome offer: earn up to $1,250 in value including up to 25,000 Aeroplan points, no annual fee for the first year and additional travel benefits. Must apply by March 6, 2022.
To receive the first-year annual fee rebate, you must activate your Card and make your first Purchase on the Account within the first 3 months after Account opening and you must add your Additional Cardholders by March 7, 2022.
Best Credit Cards For Car Rental Insurance
The United Explorer Card offers primary rental car coverage, a generous initial bonus offer and plenty of perks that make applying for the card a no-brainer if you fly with United.
Rewards: 2 miles per dollar on dining including eligible delivery services, hotel stays and United purchases and 1 mile per dollar on all other eligible purchases.
Bonus Offer: 60,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months the account is open
Annual Fee: $0 Intro for First Year, then $95
Benefits and Drawbacks: The United Explorer Card doesnt come with quite as many travel benefits as the Infinite version, but youll only pay an annual fee of $0 Intro for First Year, then $95.
If you are approved, youll be eligible for a bonus of 60,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months the account is open. Youll earn 2 miles per dollar on dining including eligible delivery services, hotel stays and United purchases and 1 mile per dollar on all other eligible purchases.
Cardholder benefits include primary auto rental coverage that is good for most rental agreements in the U.S. and abroad for up to the cash value of the vehicle when you pay for your rental with your card. Youll also get up to a $100 credit toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, a first checked bag free when you use your card to purchase your ticket, 25% off in-flight United purchases of food and beverage or wifi, and two United Club one-time passes on your account anniversary.
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