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Have you just filed a car insurance claim? If you have rental reimbursement coverage, it can help you pay for a rental car while your own car is in the shop being repaired. Here's how it works.

Rental reimbursement is an optional coverage on an auto insurance policy, which means you need to add it to your policy and pay an extra premium for it. If you're not sure whether your policy includes rental reimbursement, call your rental agent and ask.

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It's important to note that rental reimbursement does not apply if your car is in the shop for routine maintenance work or if you need to rent a car on vacation. It is also not to be confused with the car rental insurance benefit that allows you to decline the collision damage waiver (CDW) at the rental car counter. Rental reimbursement only kicks in if your car is in the shop for repairs after an accident and the damage is covered by a claim.

 

Make the Most of Rental Car Reimbursement

 

If your auto insurance policy includes rental reimbursement, here is how to make the most of it:

Choose the right rental company. With rental car reimbursement, you can typically choose where you are going to rent a vehicle. That said, some insurance companies have arrangements with specific rental car companies, where the car owner does not have to pay out of pocket because the rental car company bills the insurance company directly. If you go with a rental car company that is not in your auto insurance company's network, you'll pay upfront for the rental car and then get reimbursed by your insurer.

Know the limitations. Rental reimbursement coverage is not unlimited. There will be a daily limit and a maximum number of days that it can be used. For instance, let's say your coverage provides up to $30 per day for a maximum of 30 days. If you choose a rental car that costs more per day, or if you end up needing the rental car longer, then you would pay for the surplus. It's important to read your policy so you know the limits of your rental reimbursement coverage before you rent a car. Also, be aware that some expenses, like the cost of gas, will likely not be covered by rental reimbursement.

Find the best car rental deal you can. You might think that getting a great deal on a rental car is not as important when the your insurance company is paying for it. But remember, you'll likely be working within a per-diem limit. If you get a great deal, you might be able to get a better car for the same price.

As soon as you know when you need a rental car, ask AutoSlash for a quote. We will scour the internet for the best coupons and discounts, and we'll apply all of your memberships—AAA, AARP, Costco and so on—to make sure nothing is left on the table. This is how AutoSlash can save you not only money but hours of research time.

Next, as soon as you make a reservation, let AutoSlash track your booking. Car rental prices go up and down, so there may be a price drop between when you booked your car and when you pick it up. We'll monitor your booking and let you know if a better price surfaces. Then you can cancel your reservation and rebook at the lower price.

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