Research carried out by Opinium – on behalf of iCarhireinsurance.com, a provider of standalone car hire excess insurance – found that 42% of rental car drivers don’t fully understand the insurance they have and what it covers.
This is especially concerning since the amount drivers might have to pay if the hire car is damaged or stolen – also known as as excess liability – is now over GBP 2,000 (USD 2,643) in some locations.
The research said that there is a lot of misunderstanding around hire car insurance, with three fifths (60%) of drivers saying they have been confused by the jargon and a seemingly endless number of options used by car hire companies use to explain their insurance policies.
“We try to cut through the jargon”
Ernesto Suarez, founder and CEO, iCarhireinsurance.com, said, “There can be a lot of jargon when it comes to car hire insurance, but it’s important that drivers do their best to find out what cover they have. If they are liable for the excess, a policy from iCarhireinsurance.com could save travellers approximately GBP 150 a week compared to those sold at the rental desk, and includes damage to windows, tyres and undercarriage, and often a lot more. We try to cut through the jargon and give customers peace of mind.”
Excess liability for car rentals
A third (31%) of hire car drivers said they are not aware that excess liability can be up to GBP 2,000 and two in five who hired a car in Europe (41%) said the last time they hired a car, they only become aware that they were liable for the excess at the rental desk.
When it comes to excess insurance, the confusion continues with two in five (40%) admitting to buying excess insurance without being sure exactly what is covered.
Nearly half (44%) mistakenly believe that only excess policies sold by rental companies are valid, when the truth is that insurance from independent insurance companies may sometimes be cheaper than the policies sold at the rental desks.
There is further confusion still when it comes to deposits. Over a third (38%) did not know that rental companies can hold excess liability on a credit card, and two fifths of those who hired in Europe (42%) said that the information they received about the deposit they have to leave on their credit card (if they do not purchase the rental company’s excess waiver) was confusing.