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I have rental coverage on my auto, so I can rent a car...

You know the dot dot dot means there's more to come. And here it is... This is another misconception in regards to your auto insurance. Yes, you may have rental coverage on your policy, but that doesn't get you a rental car anytime you want/need. I know, I know! The in's and out's of all these coverages. But let me explain how rental coverage works.

When people ask about "rental" coverage, they are usually talking about 1 of 2 different things. The first one is "I'm going on vacation and I'm renting a vehicle. Does my auto insurance cover the rental?" In short, yes. But we know there aren't many short answers in insurance. So, here's the long version. The coverage you carry on a vehicle on your policy is the coverage that will apply to a rental vehicle. So if you have liability only on your vehicle(s) on your auto policy, then that is all that will extend to that rental. If you have comprehensive and collision coverage on your auto(s) then that will extend to that rental. If you are ever in doubt, please give us a call! Before you head off to Guam and thinking you are covered, think again. This coverage is only valid in the United States, small part of Mexico and Canada - depending on the company. So before you hop on that plane, check with your agent.


The second one is in regards to when your vehicle is disabled. So, your driving home and your vehicle starts sputtering and smoking. You pull over, get the tow (do you haver towing/road side coverage?) and find out you've blown an engine. (I don't know if a blown engine causes your vehicle to sputter and smoke, I'm just assuming.) Then you call us and ask how to use your rental coverage. Sorry! That's not how rental coverage works.


The only way your insurance is going to pay for a rental vehicle is in the event of a loss. You hit a deer, car goes in the shop to be fixed and you have rental coverage, then it's covered. You slid on black ice, hit a guard rail - car goes in the shop, need a rental? Rental coverage will cover that. Rental will not pay for a rental vehicle for routine maintenance, mechanical failure, etc.


And one last note on rental coverage. It is limited! So if the shop you bring your vehicle to takes 6 months to fix, chances are you are not covered that long with a rental. Check your policy! Call your agent! A simple phone call to us could save you out of pocket expenses.

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