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Another Car Rental Insurance Question

I read the following in a recent post, "Be very careful with credit card coverage as there has been frequent reports horrid stores with the credit card company denying coverage or not stepping up."
Has anyone had a problem with Visa?

they tout this as a great benefit.

Posted by
16888 posts

If you are renting a car in Italy, check the fine print in your VISA plan very carefully before you rely on credit card coverage. Most will have an exclusion for Italy and a few other countries.

Most rental companies won't let you waive CDW ain Italy anyway.

Posted by
2876 posts

Visa won't cover you in Israel, Ireland, Northern Ireland, or Jamaica.

You will see 1,000 opinions on this board on the subject of car rental insurance overseas. My own preference is to get 100% coverage from the rental car company itself. It costs more, but it is the only guaranteed-no-hassle coverage.

Posted by
49 posts

Thanks for the replies. I know that Visa will cover you in Italy. It just seems to be a waste to pay 200.00 for the zero deductible when Visa says it will cover it. But I also know how valuable "peace of mind" can be.

Posted by
23465 posts

I am the one that posted that comment. About a year ago or someone posted a terrific story dealing with Visa in Germany. They were back in the states trying to deal with a problem in Germany. As the renter of the car you are primarily responsible to the car rental. AND the insurance company is responsible to you and not the car rental company. You are in the middle. And often times the credit card insurance is secondary and not primary. The car rental company does not have to deal with your insurance company and if the rental company chooses to be less than cooperative, you are stuck with the bill. Beyond the actually damages to the vehicle the rental company can claim lost of revenue or business damage and the credit card mostly likely will not cover that. I believe the cc company was refusing to pay because they did not like the documentation forwarded by the German rental company.

Our son in Chicago does not own a car and therefore and does not have primary coverage. He thought he could rely on his Visa credit card coverage. He had hit and run damage to an unattended vehicle in a parking lot and Visa refused to pay citing a very technical reason dealing with how the rental contract was written. It was an Enterprise contract and the contract was the same for all of their rentals. It was Enterprise's opinion that Visa was just looking for a reason not to pay so they split the cost with him. Still cost him over a $1000. I don't trust any credit card to still forward if the damage is large.

Posted by
2297 posts

You need to read the fine print of YOUR visa card agreement. I can tell you that MY visa doesn't cover anything, but my husband's CIBC visa DID cover 100% of the dammage we caused to a rental car in Italy without deductible or us laying out any amount of cash.

Posted by
49 posts

Thanks guys. Sure do appreciate the information.

Posted by
49 posts

Most companies include the basic CDW, which has a 1000 collision deductible and a 1700 theft deductible.

It's the "super coverage, that has zero deductible, that is expensive.
Visa would only have to pay the deductible amounts, as the insurance that is included in the rental fee covers everything else.

Posted by
1170 posts

I would purchase all the insurance and insurance upgrades that the car rental agency offers and use that as your primary coverage. Use your credit card coverage as your secondary. It might be OK to use the credit card coverage at home, but you will be in a foreign land (with it's red tape) and probably using a foreign rental company where our laws and regulations don't apply. Cover your ass!

Posted by
9 posts

Just back from Rome. Rented 2 cars from Hertz and Europcar, using mastercard. I got just what was the minimum required, granted I didn't have an accident (knock on wood). The horror stories you hear are smiliar to ones in the U S, if you're in accident hope that you have the most coverage and it is not your fault. I would agree with the other posts, get the most coverage you'll need. My opinion is that is a foreign country and it's their rules. Driving in Rome was the worst, especially during rush hour. One last suggestion is let them blow their horns, it's what they do best.

Posted by
49 posts

James, you are much braver than I am.
Rome is the last place in the world that I would want to drive. It's dangerous walking there.
Hope you enjoyed Rome, other than the driving.