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Old 29-05-2010, 06:35   #1
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Insurance on Car Rentals

So now that we live on our boat, sold the house and pickup trucks, and gave away all our guns, how do we rent a car without paying an outrageous daily insurance fee. They sometimes come out to more than the car itself.
Does boat insurance cover the occasional car rental?
Can you get car insurance without owning a car and having a land address?
To give you an example, I was at a Home Depot and wanted to rent their truck for an hour to get some plywood to the boat and without personal car insurance they couldn't do it.
Has anyone out there figured out a solution?
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Old 29-05-2010, 06:49   #2
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Many credit cards will include insurance as part of their services if you use that card to rent the car. Check with your credit card company to see what they will cover.

One caution, ask the rental company what charges you might incur if the car is damaged. Many rental car companies, in addition to the costs of repairs that would be covered by my credit card company, also want to charge for lost revenue while the car is not available for rental. The credit card company said that would be covered only if the rental company submitted proof that their cars were all rented and business was lost. The rental company said they derived income which they would not document or define even if the car was not actively rented and I would be charged regardless. #$!#@$!!!!!
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Old 29-05-2010, 07:19   #3
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The credit card insurance does not cover liability, only damage to the rental car.

Our solution is a beatup pickup parked at my brother's, which we maintain insurance on for $300/yr and drive around when we visit.

There is also the issue of getting insurance when you do buy a car again--if you don't have continuous coverage, the insurance companies want to put you in the assigned risk category, which you share with all the drunk drivers and road racers.
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Old 29-05-2010, 09:08   #4
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I can understand selling your home.
I can understand selling your trucks.
But I sure as hell can't understand giving away your guns!
Some things are just too precious to part with.
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Old 30-05-2010, 14:33   #5
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just back from Dutch Antilles Caribbean where I almost rented a car for the afternoon yesterday in St Maarten.

At least out of the country, I don't think you need to own a car in the states or have a land address. I just tried to rent a car outside the country and wasn't asked any questions except to initial next to the line that listed the deductible for the liability insurance.

I was thrilled that the liability insurance was only $8 per day - then found out it had a $600 deductible before it would pay.....stopped me dead in my tracks.

A tropical depression had just settled on top of St Maarten and the rain was predictably torrential. Can you imagine trying to navigate around the island in that weather from the Dutch side airport over to Oyster Pond, never having been there before and renting just for the afternoon and getting in a wreck? I could see the whole movie in techni-color in my mind. No way was I going to hang myself out for $600 risk for an afternoon drive in lieu of the 7 hour layover in the airport.

I declined the rental, and, between downpours, slogged back to the airport.

Just for the record, in Florida at least, it's my understanding that the individual's own regular car insurance will not provide liability insurance for rentals. I always have to purchase it at the time I rent the car. It's typically about $28/day. I always get it. I've never read the fine lines on the deductible before, but now I always will forever more!!

BTW if you are ever stuck in the St Maarten airport on the Dutch side, at gate A2, there is a business class lounge, for $20, that has complimentary wine, snacks, coffee, water and internet wifi. It also has a full bar that costs money. It's mostly quiet (there was a very agitated female customer in there gesticulating and speaking - loudly unfortunately - in a foreign language into the phone at the front desk when I arrived, but mercifully she left quickly and the place was very quiet for the next 2 hours). The cushy lounge chairs in there are far more comfortable than the seats at the gates.

There's a Dollar rental car place next to the one I went to. Maybe it has liability insurance that can purchased at a higher price with no deductible at all, but the one I went to, which was a local firm, really, essentially, had no liability insurance.
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Old 30-05-2010, 17:08   #6
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"Marine" depot may have different rules

Than a car rental company....after all you are renting a truck that is going to be used....well....to haul God Knows what.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lorenzo b View Post
So now that we live on our boat, sold the house and pickup trucks, and gave away all our guns, how do we rent a car without paying an outrageous daily insurance fee. They sometimes come out to more than the car itself.
Does boat insurance cover the occasional car rental?
Can you get car insurance without owning a car and having a land address?
To give you an example, I was at a Home Depot and wanted to rent their truck for an hour to get some plywood to the boat and without personal car insurance they couldn't do it.
Has anyone out there figured out a solution?
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Old 30-05-2010, 17:15   #7
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In BC , Canada I go to ICBC ( government based insurance company) and get insurance for $10 a day. That was last year. Don't know if it went up this year. I get good coverage for cheap. It would have cost $36/ day from the car rental company.
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Old 30-05-2010, 18:38   #8
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Inside the USA it makes send to keep an old car at a relative's place so you can maintain an "auto policy" that includes liability and damage. But in a lot of foreign countries your USA insurance is not valid so you just have to bite the bullet and buy the rental insurance. I wish I did last month when a car I rented had its front bumper scratched - they are plastic now - while parked in a grocery store lot and it cost me an extra US$100 to get out from under. The insurance would have only been US$50 for the rental period.
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Old 01-06-2010, 16:25   #9
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Quote:
Does boat insurance cover the occasional car rental?
The answer is no- they will not cover any motorized vehicle that is subject to motor vehicle registration. (So a beach ATV that isn't licensed for road use would be OK)

If you are lucky enough to have USAA and some other policy with them - for example if you have stuff in storage, you might have a renter's policy, or even a floater policy for personal property, they will write you a non-owner's car policy really inexpensively. I don't know if any other companies will do that or not.
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Old 01-06-2010, 20:20   #10
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You can purchase an insurance policy that covers your car rental insurance, worldwide. It is a yearly policy. We have friends who cruise (on Liward) who have an annual policy that covers them wherever they are.

BUT, our daughter is a bigwig at Enterprise. Yes, they make money on the renters that pay for that policy. BUT, if you pay for the policy and have a problem, you just toss them the keys and walk away. They don't make THAT much money on it.
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Old 01-06-2010, 22:13   #11
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All car rental companies including the trucks you can rent from Home Depot will have optional insurance you can purchase through them, it isn't cheap, but will cover you for liability and physical damage to their vehicle. Liability is fairly cheap, but they ding you for the physical damage.

Insurance is attached to the vehicle not the driver. In North America, I can't comment on other countries. And not all policies are the same so make sure if you decide to buy a junker and just keep minimum insurance on it, you clearly confirm your coverage for rental cars. Some policies will exclude damage to non owned vehicles, and put limits on the amount of coverage.

But the rental companies will have insurance for all their vehicles or they may self insure. You are only responsible for damage if you are at fault or liable for the damages.

You can purchase a umbrella liability policy through the company that holds your boat insurance, which would extent to protect you if you rent a car.

Depending on how frequently you plan to rent vehicles it may be an option. If this is a once in a blue moon thing, just buy their insurance, if anything happens drop the vehicle back off and say have a nice day. No fuss no muss.

Been in the industry in Canada for almost 20 years, The simple solution is usually the best one.
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Old 07-06-2010, 17:02   #12
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Quote:
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. . . If you are lucky enough to have USAA and some other policy with them - . . .
When I left to sail down island a few years back I specifically asked USAA if their auto policy (I still have an insured car back in the USA) covered car rentals outside the USA. The 3 page letter of legalize boiled down to No. Rental car coverage is only available for USAA members while in the USA and its posessions (Puerto Rico, etc.) and Canada.
- - To quote USAA they said "If you travel to Europe or any other foreign location except Canada, you must purchase local coverage."
- - So unless you can find an "umbrella" coverage like "bstreep" mentions you will have to buy the local - on the spot - coverage or take your chances.
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Old 07-06-2010, 18:27   #13
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If you are lucky enough to have USAA and some other policy with them - for example if you have stuff in storage, you might have a renter's policy, or even a floater policy for personal property, they will write you a non-owner's car policy really inexpensively. I don't know if any other companies will do that or not.
We have a non-owner's car policy with Geico for $200/yr.

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Old 07-06-2010, 19:26   #14
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We use the collision insurance available with our credit card and we have a non-owners liability policy purchased through our State Farm agent. We've not owned a car since 2002 and this works well for us when renting a car 3 or 4 times a year. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:54   #15
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In a former life I worked for a car rental company. You've gotten good (i.e. correct) advice above. Just a quick thought. With a company like Home Depot or Lowes it might be less of a hassle to have them deliver your order. Depending on what you are getting they sometimes have free delivery (although a few sheets of plywood probably wouldn't qualify). It's at least worth looking into.
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