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Car Hire Excess Insurance - Explained

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What is "excess"?

You most likely would have come across the term 'excess' when taking out car insurance on your own personal vehicle. In simple terms, the 'excess' is the voluntary amount you would have to pay your rental company if your car is damaged or stolen.

What is Car Hire Excess Insurance?

Car Hire Excess Insurance is an additional insurance coverage that can be added to general rental car insurance. This type of cover will insure you against the aforementioned excess you'd be liable to pay should you get into an accident, or if your vehicle is stolen. In short, you'll be covered against these excess charges.

How does Car Hire Excess Insurance work?

For example: If you hire a car (available with Holiday Extras here) more often than not the vehicle itself will come with standard insurance, known as a collision damage waiver. In most cases the insurance provider will have written into the clause a voluntary excess that you will have to pay up front, should the vehicle become damages or stolen.

In cases like this, you could be paying into the hundreds of pounds for something as minor as a scratch.

So, say you had a voluntary excess of £500, even with something as minor as a scratch, you'd have to pay that amount before anything else was covered. That's where car hire excess insurance comes in. Taking out car hire excess gives you that all too important peace of mind that you'll be protected from these excess charges, should something untoward happen to the hired vehicle while it's in your possession.

Car Hire Excess: a summary of cover*

Limit (up to)
Excess / Deposit reimbursement
£7,500 (£10,000 within the policy year)
Misfuelling cover
£500 (£1000 within the policy year)
Rental car key cover
- Lost, stolen or damaged keys
- Lock out

£500 (£2,000 within the policy year)

*This is a summary of the main cover limits. It is advised to read the rest of the policy for the full terms and conditions

European and Worldwide cover

Our excess insurance for car hire abroad covers both Europe and Worldwide**, so regardless of where you're travelling, you'll be able to rent a car with the peace of mind that, no matter where you are, if something should happen, we've got your excess covered. Holiday Extras also provides travel insurance for your entire trip, or car hire excess cover as an add-on to your comprehensive travel insurance cover, should you need it.

Confused by Car Hire Excess jargon?

Excess reimbursement insurance? Loss damage waiver? Collision damage waiver? Have you encountered these phrases when researching insurance for car hire excess? Do they slightly confuse you? Do you just want to make sure your car insurance covers you and your family for all every eventuality? If you've been looking into insurance for Car Hire Excess you will no doubt have come across a lot of Car Hire Excess jargon you don't quite understand. To help you figure out what Car Hire Excess is all about we have explained the most common terms below in normal language:

Excess Reimbursement Insurance (ERI) - means if your car is damaged during the hire period this insurance will refund any excess you are charged by the rental company. This is applicable to rentals in the UK and Europe.

Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) - is the same as the above only it is mainly applicable in the USA. LDW will refund any excesses you have paid if your vehicle suffers any physical damage or loss such as theft, fire damage or vandalism.

Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) - is sometimes confusingly also known as the above LDW and may or may not come included in the rental price of a hired car. Basically it covers some damage to your vehicle but may not always cover you for fire, theft or damage to the tyres and windscreen of the car. LDW is a more comprehensive level of cover.

**The only countries excluded from our cover are Afghanistan, Belarus, Congo, Iran, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Liberia, North Korea, Burma, Sudan and Zimbabwe (as well as any destinations to which the government advises against travel).

Holiday Extras Cover Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Holiday Extras Cover Ltd 05058680 is registered in England and Wales. Registered address: Ashford Road, Newingreen, Kent CT21 4JF.

Holiday Extras Cover Ltd is underwritten by Travel Insurance Facilities plc which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered address: 2nd Floor, 1 Tower View, Kings Hill, West Malling, Kent, ME19 4UY. Company number 03220410.