GEICO says: Know what's covered in a rental car policy

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2018 – The call of the open road is never as loud as it is in the summer.

Many will opt to take their weekend getaway or summer vacation in a rental vehicle. Picking your car may not be the toughest decision you'll have to make at the rental counter. You'll be faced with the obligatory choice of whether to buy or pass on rental vehicle insurance coverage.

Before you make that choice, GEICO recommends that you first reach out to your auto insurer and then contact your credit card company. Your insurance company can tell you what types of rental vehicle coverage are already included on your personal vehicle policy. Also, many credit card companies offer some form of rental car coverage.

If you decide to err on the side of caution and purchase additional coverage at the rental counter, know what you are buying.

Liability coverage is a basic component of most car insurance policies. You may be able to pass on this if you have adequate liability coverage on your own vehicle. Your insurance company will be able to tell you for sure.

Personal accident insurance, which covers your medical bills in the event of a crash in a rental car, is another coverage that may not be necessary to purchase if you have personal injury protection or medical payments coverage on your auto policy and reliable health insurance. Your insurance carriers can tell you if this duplicates coverage that you already have.

Collision Damage Waiver (CDW)/Loss Damage Waiver is not insurance, per se, but a waiver that transfers financial responsibility from you to the rental car company in case of damage or theft.

Personal Effects Coverage covers your laptop, cell phone and other items if they are stolen from a rental car. But if you have a homeowners, renters or condo policy, your personal items will generally be covered even if they are stolen from a rental car. Again, your insurance company can help you decide if this coverage is necessary.

GEICO (Government Employees Insurance Company) is a member of the Berkshire Hathaway family of companies and is the second-largest private passenger car insurance company in the United States. GEICO, which was founded in 1936, provides millions of car insurance quotes to U.S. drivers annually. The company is pleased to serve more than 16 million private passenger customers, insuring more than 27 million vehicles (car & cycle).

Using GEICO's online service center, policyholders can purchase policies, make policy changes, report claims and print insurance ID cards. Policyholders can also connect to GEICO through GEICO Mobile, reach a representative over the phone or visit a GEICO local agent.

GEICO also provides insurance quotes on motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), boats, travel trailers and motorhomes (RVs). Coverage for life, homes and apartments is written by non-affiliated insurance companies and is secured through the GEICO Insurance Agency, Inc. Commercial car insurance and personal umbrella protection are also available.

For more information, go to www.geico.com.