Renting a Car – How to Avoid the insurance trap

You might be going on vacation and looking forwards to seeing a new country or city and thinking about all the nice things that go along with that. Unfortunately renting a car is usually not one of the enjoyable things of the vacation. Anyhow for me the car rental process can be quite unpleasant since the rental companies have so many catches you need to be aware of and one too often reads about people being or at least feeling they got scammed by a rental company.

How to get excess insurance at an affordable price

Usually, your car hire will include basic insurance such as CDW (Collision Damage Waiver) especially in Europe but there will be an excess up to an amount stipulated in the contract. For example for me renting last time I was in Spain the excess for a small car was 1200€. Naturally, it varies between different companies and between different car sizes.

Considering that the rental price was quite low I think the probability if you don’t buy excess insurance is quite high that the rental company will find a scratch that they say wasn’t there when the car was given out and they charge you for it. Or of course, someone could make a dent in your car in the parking space, etc. other things could happen.

The car rental company will give you an option of getting an extra excess insurance from them but in some cases that doubles the cost and what looked like a tempting 100€ for a week becomes 200€ for a week.

However, there is an option of getting excess insurance from a third party. That’s what I have done in recent years. I first learned about this from – you can check out their article on the topic here.

I visited Spain in June 2019 and rented a car for a week in Malaga. I used the Moneymaxim insurance comparison site to find appropriate excess insurance for the rental. I have chosen for the last two trips the deluxe option from and paid £16.10 for the insurance for a weeks rental so that’s only £2.3 per day. That’s a lot cheaper than any other option offered during the car booking process. And the cost is so low that I don’t really see the point of not getting the extra insurance for the peace of mind and the occasional event of something actually happening where you need it.

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