Best Card For Cash Back
- Secondary coverage within the U.S.
- Primary coverage internationally and to uninsured drivers in the U.S.
- Rental periods of up to 31 consecutive days
- Earn 5% cash back on rental cars and other travel booked through Ultimate Rewards
The Chase Freedom Unlimited® is the best card for cash back on rental cars because it earns 5% cash back on rental cars and other travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
So you can fill up your rental car to earn additional cash back. There are $0 annual fees, so all of the cash back that you earn is not reduced by paying fees.
Not All Car Types Are Covered
If you stick to the standard categories of car rentals such as compact, intermediate and full-size your credit cards car rental policy should apply. However, most policies exclude specialty-class vehicles, including large passenger vans, pickup trucks, antique vehicles, RVs and motorcycles.
In addition, many policies exclude leases and micro-leases, and most exclude rentals through person-to-person car-sharing companies such as Turo.
Related: Are Turo car rentals covered by credit card insurance?
Top Car Rental Credit Cards Of 2022
If youre searching for a credit card for renting a car, the ideal card includes rental car protection, the ability to earn rewards on your reservation, and includes additional car rental perks.
Rental car insurance costs can really add up. Those daily charges can be as much as the rental car in some cases. Finding a credit card with rental car protection benefits is so important because it can eliminate those fees, while still protecting your vehicle in case of damage or theft.
To make it easier for you, we researched the cards available through ValuePenguin, as well as top cards offered by major issuers to pinpoint some of the best options for renting a car. Here are our top picks based on benefits and insurance policies.
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Ink Business Cash Credit Card
The Ink Business Cash® Credit Card is currently offering its best offer yet: $900 bonus cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. That’s an incredible bonus for a $0-annual-fee credit card.
This is one of the only no-annual-fee credit cards that offer primary rental car insurance. Simply charge your rental car to this card, and you’ll be covered against theft and damage. However, it comes with the same catch as the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card you’re only covered when renting a car for business purposes. If you use the card to rent a car during a personal trip, you’re not covered.
The Ink Business Cash® Credit Card delivers the following return rates:
- 5% cash back at office supply stores and on internet, cable, and phone services
- 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants
- 1% cash back on all other purchases
This card is marketed as a cash-back card, but in reality, it earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points. For example, the card earns 5 Chase points per dollar at office supply stores which you can redeem for cash back at a rate of 1 cent per point.
This is critical to understand because you can unlock excellent value from your rewards if you also hold one of the following cards:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
United Club Infinite Card
- Primary rental car protection in the U.S. and abroad
- Earn 2x miles on rental cars
- Complimentary enrollment in Avis President’s Club, including complimentary two-car class upgrades, guaranteed car availability, expedited rental service and more
The United Club Infinite Card offers similar benefits as the United Explorer Card including primary car rental insurance but it is for frequent travelers on United.
It carries a higher annual fee, but it has higher earning power, includes a complimentary United Club membership and accelerates United elite status. Cardholders also qualify for another sweet car rental perk: automatic enrollment in Avis President’s Club.
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Ensure Your Rental Is Eligible
You must read your cards policy carefully to understand what isnt covered. If you have any doubts about your insurance, you can call the customer service number on your card. Doing so will allow you to get more information and confirm that your policy covers your rental vehicle type in the country youll be visiting.
The Difference Between Primary And Secondary Coverage
For starters, its worth mentioning that most offer secondary insurance for rental cars. This means that the cards insurance will pay only the amount not covered by another policy the driver has. Therefore, you would have to file a claim with your other insurance first. As anyone who has dealt with insurance companies will know, this can be a time-consuming process.
On the other hand, with primary coverage from a credit card, personal car insurance is immaterial. As the name suggests, the primary insurance applies first, no matter what other coverage the renter has. Conveniently, this means you can start the process of submitting a claim by calling the number on the back of your card.
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How To File A Claim
Filing a claim for your American Express car rental insurance is easy to do. Visit americanexpress.com/protectionbenefits or call 1-800-338-1670. If you’re outside of the United States, you can call collect at 1-303-273-6497. This should be done as soon as possible, but you have within 30 days of the loss.
If you’re sent a claim form, be sure to complete it and answer all questions. If you don’t receive one within 15 days of filing your claim, you can write to them, explaining your covered event and the details of your claim.
You must submit proof of loss within 60 days of filing your claim. You may be asked to provide documentation, such as a copy of your:
- How do I submit a car rental claim with Amex?
You can file your claim at americanexpress.com/protectionbenefits or by calling 1-800-338-1670. You need to file a claim as soon as possible and within 30 days of the loss. If you’re sent claim forms, be sure to fill them out. If you don’t receive claim forms within 15 days of filing your claim, you can submit written communication explaining your claim. You must submit proof of loss within 60 days of filing. You may be asked to provide documentation such as: copies of your rental agreement, repair bill estimates, the rental charge slip, car insurance coverage, driver’s license, or an applicable police report.
The Best Credit Cards With Primary Rental Car Insurance In 2022
Insider’s experts choose the best products and services to help make smart decisions with your money . In some cases, we receive a commission from our our partners, however, our opinions are our own. Terms apply to offers listed on this page.
You probably already know that most travel credit cards offer some form of rental car insurance. It’s a great benefit because it can save users significant money in the case of damage or theft to your rental.
But you may not know how dramatically different these coverages can be, depending on the card. Having the right insurance can be the difference between reporting an accident to your personal insurance and handling it with a third party who will never tell your insurance provider.
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Amex Platinum Rental Car Insurance: A Complete Guide
The American Express Platinum Card has multiple benefits, including travel credits, lounge access, elite hotel status, and rental car benefits. While it comes with a premium price tag, it offers excellent advantages you may want to take advantage of when renting a car.
Apart from the American Express car rental Privileges Program, you can enjoy car rental privileges from some major car rental companies such as Avis, Hertz, and National Car rental. This article will explore everything about the Amex Platinum card and how it affects your rental car insurance purchase.
How Does Credit Card Car Rental Insurance Work
First and foremost, when renting a car, you must pay for your rental with the specific credit card that offers car rental protection. And, if there are multiple drivers on the rental contract, the primary renter must be the card holder. Additionally, for the credit card coverage to take effect in the unfortunate case that an accident occurs, you must decline the Collision Damage Waiver sometimes called Loss Damage Waiver in your rental agreement. You might find that some car rental companies automatically include this extra insurance and cost into your agreement, so youll want to double-check your paperwork.
Once you rent the car, youll then be covered if your rented car incurs theft or damage from a collision. This coverage will protect you from the financial responsibility of covering the cost. However, the included policy will not protect you from the cost of damage or injuries to another car if youre found at fault. Typically, your personal car rental insurance will cover you in these situations or you can purchase separate policies from the car rental company.
Youll also notice that there are two different types of credit card car rental coverage: primary and secondary. Primary coverage means that if theres a covered accident, the claim will go directly through the credit card company, allowing you to avoid the hassle of involving your own auto insurance policy. This will not only save you time but will also avoid any premiums to your own policy.
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What Does Amex Rental Car Insurance Cover
Complimentary credit card rental insurance does a pretty good job when it comes to coverage, but keep in mind that what’s covered depends on the card you hold.
Heres what American Express rental car insurance generally covers for premium cards, such as the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card and the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card:
Theft of a covered rental car.
Physical damage to the vehicle.
Accidental death or dismemberment.
Coverage for other cards is less comprehensive and includes:
Theft of the rental car.
Physical damage to the vehicle.
Youll find this type of insurance on cards such as the American Express® Gold Card and the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card. Terms apply.
To receive coverage for your rental vehicle, youll need to:
Pay for the full rental using your eligible AmEx card.
Note that you can still receive insurance if youve used your American Express Membership Rewards to pay for the car, but not if you used any other reward programs.
Rental car insurance is valid for rentals of up to 30 consecutive days only. Terms apply.
» Learn more:What your credit card rental car coverage doesnt include
Best Credit Cards For Car Rental Of 2022
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is the best credit card for car rental because it provides primary rental car coverage and earns unlimited 3x points on all travel purchases. Plus, it covers countries that are often excluded, like Ireland and Jamaica.
Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the authors opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more. Citi is an advertising partner.
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Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offers 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. This bonus is worth at least $1,275 in travel and significantly more if you know the best ways to use Capital One miles.
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is another rewards-earning monster when it comes to car rentals. Not only will you receive primary rental car insurance, but you’ll earn 10 miles per dollar on rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.
The card also earns:
- 10 miles per dollar when booking on Turo
- 10 miles per dollar on hotels booked through Capital One Travel
- 5 miles per dollar on flights booked through Capital One Travel
- 2 miles per dollar on all other purchases
This card incurs a $395 annual fee and comes with valuable travel benefits such as:
What About Liability Coverage
Liability coverage isn’t included in most credit card and/or rental car CDWs, which only cover damage to and/or theft of the rental car . If you’re involved in an accident resulting in injury to another person, you probably won’t be covered.
Full liability protection comes with the rental company’s insurance. You typically have to add it on at the counter and/or at the time of reserving the car, unless you have extended rental car coverage through your personal auto insurance policy. Liability protection is likely more expensive for rental cars than for your own car it runs about $8 to $25 per day. Some countries may actually require that you opt into liability coverage when renting a car.
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Do All Credit Cards Cover Car Rental Insurance
Not all credit cards cover car rental insurance, so dont assume youre covered just because you paid with a credit card. However, there are plenty of cards that do indeed provide rental insurance benefits. Generally, you’ll find that the best travel credit cards have the most robust policies, but many cashback credit cards will cover rental insurance as well.
Amex Car Rental Insurance Recapped
Most AmEx cards come with some form of rental car insurance. This is true of both premium cards with high annual fees and lower-fee cards alike. However, the type of insurance and the level of coverage that youll receive varies based on your card. Terms apply.
To determine how the rental car insurance for your card works, youll want to check out its guide to benefits, where youll find information such as coverage limits and who is eligible for coverage.
To receive complimentary rental car insurance, youll need to pay for the full rental with your eligible card. Youll also need to decline any insurance offered by the rental agency. Once thats done, insurance is automatic and you can drive away knowing that youre covered.
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The Best Cards With Primary Insurance
These are our favorite cards that include primary rental car insurance, though the exact details of their policies can vary somewhat. We’ve included the highlights of what they cover and don’t cover below, but these aren’t exhaustive lists, so be sure to read the details of your card’s agreement.
Where You Rent Might Matter
Some cards provide secondary coverage in the drivers country of residence and primary coverage abroad. As a general rule, secondary coverage abroad will effectively act as primary coverage, since most personal car insurance policies will not be applicable outside the United States. Similarly, if you dont own a car and therefore dont have car insurance, even secondary coverage will essentially act as primary coverage in the U.S.
While renting a normal sedan in most countries will be covered by a credit card insurance policy, there are notable exclusionstypically expensive or exotic cars, vans with a capacity of over eight people and antique cars. Your policy may also not be valid in certain countries , although Chase cards now offer worldwide coverage. Rental duration may be a factor as well rentals longer than two to four weeks may not be covered. As always, check your cards terms and conditions for the precise stipulations.
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To File An American Express Car Rental Insurance Claim
- Log in to the Claims Center.
- Select the American Express card you used.
- Enter the details required such as rental date, incident description and more.
- Provide required Proof of Loss documentation such as the rental car contract, American Express statement showing the rental car charge, police report, itemized repair bill and photos.
American Express car rental insurance claims are typically process within 45 days and paid within 30 days of the filed claim.
There Are Some Things That No Policy Covers
Driving on the beach or through rivers, drunk driving or driving while committing a crime are a few examples of things that will void all insurance coverage including credit card. See the fine print on the policy for details
Fording the Río Agujitas about three km from where the road south of Drake dead ends into Playa San Josecito. The suspension bridge is part of the coast trail that is the only way to get around the region on land in the rainy season.
Other Options | Damage Claims | Fine Print
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The Platinum Card From American Express
The Platinum Card® from American Express comes with a welcome bonus offer of 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $6,000 on purchases in the first six months of card membership. Insider estimates Amex points value to be 1.8 cents each when used for travel, making this bonus worth $1,440.
The card doesn’t offer primary rental car insurance by default. However, you can receive primary premium car rental protection for a flat rate between $15.95 and $24.95 per rental period . It’s not free like the other insurances on this list, but premium rental car benefits may fit your situation better:
- You’ll be covered for up to 42 consecutive days, whereas most other cards won’t allow your rental to exceed 31 consecutive days.
- You’re insured for up to $100,000 of primary coverage against damage or theft a higher number than several other credit cards.
You can enroll your Amex Platinum and automatically be covered whenever you rent a car. You’ll be charged this flat rate whenever you pay for a rental with your card.
The Amex Platinum annual fee is notably high at $695. But the value you can get from this card’s benefits is much greater. Here are some of the best ongoing perks: