Are you planning on renting a car for your next vacation? Before you head to the rental counter, checking if your credit card covers rental car insurance is essential. Major credit card companies like Chase, Capital One, Citibank, Bank of America and Wells Fargo all offer various levels of rental car coverage. 

To know if your credit card covers rental car insurance, you’ll need to check with your issuer and read the terms and conditions of your policy carefully. 

Doing your research ahead of time can save you a lot of money and stress. Check whether your credit card covers rental car insurance before heading out on your next adventure.

Key Highlights
  • Many credit card companies offer rental car insurance coverage as a cardholder benefit.
  • You must charge the entire rental cost to the credit card to use the car rental insurance benefit.
  • If you decide to use your auto policy’s coverage, you should still consider paying for the rental on your credit card to ensure you have the option for secondary coverage. 
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Written by:
Katrina Raenell
Contributing Researcher
Katrina Raenell is a writer, editor and educator with 20 years of experience in content and communications for international organizations, nonprofits and start-ups. In her previous roles, she was a communications manager for study abroad, content project manager for higher education and finance websites, reported on arts and culture, and was a managing editor for an online health and wellness publication.
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Reviewed by:
Laura Longero
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Executive Editor
Laura is an award-winning editor with experience in content and communications covering auto insurance and personal finance. She has written for several media outlets, including the USA Today Network. She most recently worked in the public sector for the Nevada Department of Transportation.

Do credit cards cover rental car insurance?

Many credit card companies and networks — Visa, Mastercard and American Express, for example — offer some form of rental car coverage as a cardholder benefit. However, coverage varies from card to card and according to the insuring bank. It’s important to know if your card offers primary or secondary coverage. 

With primary, your credit card company will be the first insurance option on your rental and will pay an accident claim directly, skipping over your auto insurance coverage. However, it’s more common for credit card companies to provide secondary insurance — covering what your auto policy doesn’t. 

The following sample highlights some popular credit card companies’ car rental insurance benefits. Contact your issuer directly to discuss the benefits you have on your account. 

Capital One rental car insurance

Most Capital One credit cards offer an Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver that provides the following coverage for cardholders:

  • Reimbursement for damages caused by theft or collision — up to the actual cash value of most rental cars, but doesn’t cover other types of loss
  • It only covers the cardholder as a driver
  • Rental periods of 15 consecutive days within the country of residence
  • Rental periods of 31 consecutive days abroad 
  • Some vehicle rental exclusions 

Annual fees vary from $0-95 annually. For elite members, Capital One offers a travel rewards card with rental car insurance protection and rental benefits. 

The Venture X Rewards credit card has an annual rate of $395 and protects against theft or collision for card members. It also partners with Hertz President’s Circle, which provides card members complimentary status upgrades through its car-rental loyalty program. 

Chase rental car insurance

A secondary Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver benefit is offered through Chase credit cards. This provides the following coverage to card members:

  • Reimbursement for damages caused by theft or collision up to the actual cash value of most rented cars, towing charges, and loss-of-use rental car company charges
  • It covers rental periods of up to 31 consecutive days in the U.S. for cardholder drivers only
  • If renting a vehicle outside of the U.S., the benefit coverage becomes primary and will reimburse theft, damage, service charges and towing fees

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card offers cardholders primary insurance coverage for up to 31 consecutive days for an annual rate of $95. The insurance benefit provides the following coverage:

  • Reimbursement up to the actual cash value of theft and collision damage in the U.S. and abroad, as long as the cardholder is the driver
  • There are some vehicle exclusions, including high-value, antique and recreation vehicles and cargo vans 

Citibank rental car insurance

Citibank doesn’t offer rental car insurance coverage for most of its cards. It does have worldwide rental car coverage with the Costco Anywhere Visa Card and the Costco Anywhere Visa Business Card. If you have a current Costco membership, there is no annual fee for your credit card and the rental car benefit offers cardholders the following benefit:

  • Repair costs up to $50,000, or the cash value of the car, whichever is less from damages from an accident, theft, vandalism or natural disaster
  • It covers rental periods of up to 31 consecutive days
  • Towing charges 

Contact Citi directly or log in to your account to learn about rental car insurance coverage. 

Bank of America rental car insurance

An Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver is available for Bank of America cardholders to cover accidents, damages and theft. This secondary insurance coverage provides cardholders with the following benefits:

  • Reimbursement for damages caused by theft or collision in the U.S., up to the actual cash value of most rental cars 
  • It covers rental periods of up to 31 consecutive days 
  • Provides coverage for any driver listed on the rental agreement

Most Bank of America cards have an annual fee of $0-95.

Wells Fargo rental car insurance

Wells Fargo credit card holders often have no annual fee and a secondary rental car insurance coverage option under the Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver. If an accident occurs during the rental period, cardholders will receive the following coverage:

  • Reimbursement for damages caused by theft or collision, up to the actual cash value of most rental cars
  • Loss-of-use charges and towing services are covered 
  • Coverage for rental periods of 15 consecutive days within your country of residence and 31 consecutive days abroad
  • Any driver listed on the rental car agreement is covered

Must I pay for the car rental with my credit card?

Yes. If you plan on using your credit card’s rental car insurance as primary or secondary coverage, you must pay for the car rental with your credit card. You must also decline the rental car company’s CDW. 

Your credit card’s insurance option also often requires you to pay for the rental on one card, or the coverage option is unavailable. If you decide to use your auto policy’s coverage, you should still consider paying for the rental on your credit card to ensure you have the option for secondary coverage. 

Guide to credit cards and car rental insurance

Resources & Methodology

Sources

  1. Bank of America. “Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver and Emergency Assistance Services.” Accessed May 2023.  
  2. Capital One. “Visa and Mastercard benefits.” Accessed May 2023.
  3. Chase Credit Cards. “Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver.” Accessed May 2023. 
  4. Costco Anywhere Visa Card. “Does my Costco Anywhere Visa Card By Citi include rental car insurance?.” Accessed May 2023. 
  5. District of Columbia Department of Insurance (DISB). “Things to know about car insurance and rental insurance before starting your road trip.” Accessed May 2023.
  6. Enterprise Rent-A-Car. “Rental car insurance and other protection products (US).” Accessed May 2023.
  7. Hertz. “Hertz optional protection plans.” Accessed May 2023.
  8. Insurance Information Institute. “Rental car insurance.” Accessed May 2023. 
  9. Wells Fargo Credit Cards. “Wells Fargo Visa Consumer Credit Card.” Accessed May 2023.  

Methodology

Why you can trust CarInsurance.com

The CarInsurance.com editorial team bases its reporting on data it commissioned Quadrant Information Services to gather on average auto insurance rates for more than 34K ZIP codes across the United States. Typically, averages are based on rates for a single, 40-year-old male, with no violations who commutes 12 miles to work each day and has a full-coverage policy with limits of 100/300/100 and a $500 deductible for collision and comprehensive coverage.

Laura Longero

Ask the Insurance Expert

Laura Longero

Executive Editor

Laura is an award-winning editor with experience in content and communications covering auto insurance and personal finance. She has written for several media outlets, including the USA Today Network. She most recently worked in the public sector for the Nevada Department of Transportation.

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Contributing Researcher

Katrina Raenell is a writer, editor and educator with 20 years of experience in content and communications for international organizations, nonprofits and start-ups. In her previous roles, she was a communications manager for study abroad, content project manager for higher education and finance websites, reported on arts and culture, and was a managing editor for an online health and wellness publication.