You’ve booked a flight, reserved accommodation and now it’s time to find the car that will take you along your journey abroad. Finding the best car hire deal isn’t just about getting the cheapest rental car. The extras you might be charged at the rental desk can add substantially to the cost and almost double the price. There are many extras such as additional driver, GPS, child car seat. The most expensive of these extras is car hire excess insurance (also known as car hire excess waiver insurance and excess waiver insurance). Car rental excess waiver insurance can cost as much as €25 per day, depending on the hire firm and the location.
So, what is Car Hire Excess Insurance Policy?
When you rent a car, it usually comes with basic insurance included in the price, also know as Collision Damage Waiver (CDW), so that you won’t have to pay the full cost of replacing a stolen or damaged car. But the basic coverage is subject to an ‘excess’ meaning that you could have to pay towards repair or theft costs, regardless of who is at fault.
Let’s take a simple example: If we take a car collision that results in a €2,500 cost to repair the damage, and your excess was €900, as an example, under the terms of a car rental agreement you would have to pay an excess of €900 to the car rental company, and the car rental company would be liable to pay the remaining amount.
This is where car hire excess cover comes in as it is there to prevent you from having to pay these hefty excess fee charges and to give you peace of mind should something go wrong.
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Car Rental Super CDW Is Ridiculously Overpriced
Car rental companies sell Super Collision Damage Waiver (SCDW), allowing you to reduce your excess to a very small amount, often zero. This cover has many different names, including excess waiver coverage, Super Cover and Excess Protection. But it’s not cheap and can double the price of the rental.
The SCDW that reduce the excess to zero might cost from €15 to €30 per day. One major advantage of paying the car hire company for SCDW is that the company will not require a large pre-authorisation on your credit card. Pre-authorisations can be as high as €2,500 with some of the low-cost rental companies.
Third-Party Car Rental Excess Waiver Insurance
To avoid having to pay a massive excess and not to double the price of the rental, you can take out an Excess Reimbursement Insurance (ERI) policy from a third party insurance company. This is normally far cheaper, and often more comprehensive than the cover offered by car hire companies, as it will cover tyres, wheels, undercarriage, roof and windscreen. You can buy a daily or annual policy.
By buying excess insurance from CarInsuRent, you’ll be covered against excess charges of up to US$4,500. CarInsuRent offer annual insurance policies much cheaper than rental agencies. With European car insurance excess waiver annual policies starting from $89.90, this can easily be more cost-wise especially if you are making multiple bookings over a year.
We recommend to take out excess waiver insurance. This means that if you have an accident you would have no excess to pay. The car rental companies offer this cover at the rental desk but it’s a lot cheaper to get it here BEFORE you travel from a specialist provider. We provide coverage for European Car Hire Excess Insurance, USA & Canada Car Hire Excess Insurance, Australia Car Hire Excess Insurance, UK Car Hire Excess Insurance.
Car Hire Insurance Explained
Here are some of the commonly used terms relating to car hire insurance:
Collision damage waiver (CDW) – Provides cover in the event of damage or theft of the vehicle, and is usually included as standard if you are hiring a car in Europe or Australasia. In the USA it may have to be purchased separately. However, CDW is not complete protection. All it means is that you will not have to pay the full cost of any repairs, but you will have to pay a contribution to repair costs up to an agreed level of ‘excess’ which can be as high as €2,500, regardless of who is at fault. In addition, CDW generally does not cover certain areas of the car, such as the windscreen, tyres and the undercarriage. You will not usually be covered for damage caused while you were breaching the rental agreement, or caused by negligence or using the wrong fuel. You will not usually be covered for damage caused while you were breaching the rental agreement, or caused by negligence or using the wrong fuel.
Theft protection (TP) – This covers you against the full cost of replacing the vehicle if it is stolen while in your possession. Like CDW, this insurance is normally included in the price, and like CDW it does not cover everything. For example thefts as a result of negligence, such as leaving the car keys in the ignition, will not be covered. And there will still be an excess to pay.
Personal accident insurance (PAI) – You may also be offered extra cover for any injury to you or passengers while you are driving the car. However, this would normally be covered by your travel insurance. In the same way, you may be offered cover for personal belongings in the car. This is known as personal effects protection (PEP). Again, this may be covered by your travel or home insurance.
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What does excess reduction mean?
Car rental basic CDW coverage is subject to an ‘excess’. If you have car hire excess waiver insurance, in the event of damage to or theft of the vehicle your financial liability is reduced to zero.