What Policies You Actually DO Need When Renting A Car

By: Mary Schwager GALTime.com Consumer Watchdog

Have you ever read the fine print on your car rental agreement? I'm guilty of saying NO! I mean come on, you know the scene: You have to find the car rental place at the airport. Then you wait in a long line and some clerk hands you a form written in font size 6! If you stopped to read the entire thing, everyone behind you would start complaining! But, are you missing anything by just signing on the dotted line?

If you rely on your own personal auto insurance or credit card to cover you for car rental insurance --- be sure to check to see if they pay for these little terms you many find buried in the fine print on rental agreements:

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LOSS OF USE: If you get in an accident, most contracts say the rental company will charge you for the TIME it can't rent the car while it's being fixed. So, your own insurance or credit card will pay for the actual repairs, but don't always pay for the "LOSS OF USE"! Some customers have gotten bills for more than $2,000.00!

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DIMINISHED VALUE: This one is a shocker and could cost you huge!

As much as I hate to say it, chat with the car rental agent at the counter. If you have personal or credit card insurance, ask if you can just buy coverage for 'LOSS OF USE' and 'DIMINISHED VALUE.' That way if you get into an accident, your bank account won't be dented, as well.

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