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Is the rental company's insurance necessary?

If you are in the process of planning a summer vacation, or are going on a spring break adventure, chances are that you are going to rent a car. When you pick up the car, it is likely that you will be offered a number of temporary insurance policies. They include collision damage waivers, personal effects coverage, general liability coverage and supplemental health coverage.

To the uninitiated, these coverages can help in the event of an accident, but they are offered as money making opportunities for the rental car company. So you may not need them. 

Why is this? Depending on what you have for insurance coverage, you may just be purchasing redundant coverage. After all, comprehensive collision and damage insurance should follow you to the rental car you are driving. However, you may want to check with your insurer to be certain of this coverage, as well as whether it will cover any additional fees imposed by the rental company for the car being out of service.

The same reasoning applies to the supplemental health coverage and the personal effects coverage. If you have health insurance, chances are that it will cover accident related injuries. And if you damaged your laptop or cell phone in an accident, you are covered if you have insurance through the retailer you purchased your machine (e.g. Target or Best Buy).

Either way, it is possible that you can avoid wasting money on coverage that you don’t need when you rent a car.

The preceding is not legal advice. 

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