As if how much you should tip a restaurant server wasn’t enough of a point of contention, now there’s something else we can debate about – apparently some restaurants are adding a surcharge to their customers’ bills to help pay for the business’ employees’ health care coverage.
In a previous article, I went over the Collision/Loss Damage Waiver (CDW/LDW) that rental car companies offer, ways you might already be covered and other available ways to purchase coverage. There are three other types of coverage that car rental companies will offer you. These policies cover your exposure to personal liability or medical expenses resulting from an accident with the rental car, and protection if your property is stolen from the vehicle. You may or may not need these types of coverage so it’s important to know what they are and how you may already be covered.
Please note that this information is for a car rented in the United States. If you are a U.S. resident and are renting outside the U.S., your auto, homeowners or medical insurance may not cover you and purchasing these forms of coverage may make sense (or even be mandatory). The same goes for international travelers renting a car in the U.S. Please note that I’m not an insurance agent nor an expert, so I suggest reading the policies including, but not limited to the parts about policy limits, deductibles and exclusions before making any decisions.
Back in February, I wrote about the rental car companies’ sales to get their vehicles back from Florida to the northeast for the Spring/Summer/Fall season. They weren’t particularly good in comparison to the previous year ($24.95, as opposed to $9.95 in 2018), but who knows what’s going through corporates’ minds when they start sales.
Welp, apparently some other car rental companies jumped on the bandwagon because NOW the “good sales” are going on. Take a look:
It’s easy to forget that when you rent a car, you’re “borrowing” a vehicle that costs tens of thousands of dollars from a major corporation. When renting it, you expect the car to be in great condition with no dents, dings or scrapes on it. So what happens when the car is damaged during your rental? Even if it wasn’t your fault, the rental car company is, of course, going to expect you to pay for the repairs. Rental car companies know the fear of getting a large bill for repairs makes you an easy target to purchase the “insurance” they’ll sell you for just a few dollars a day.
We’ve already written about the excessive charges for gas and the markup on tolls that car rental companies charge. Why would we believe that all of a sudden car rental companies will sell you insurance at a reasonable price? It’s not that the coverages they sell aren’t necessary, because they are. It’s moreso you may already have coverage that makes buying their insurance unnecessary. Knowing what coverage you already have allows you make an informed decision ahead of time. I’ll also share a trick that lets you avoid the hard sell at the counter. But first, what is the car rental company trying to get you to buy?
Most of the information listed below only applies to cars rented in the United States. Rentals in other countries have different rules and restrictions. Please note I’m neither an insurance agent nor an expert so I suggest reading the policies including, but not limited to the parts about policy limits, deductibles and exclusions.
The Citi Prestige card. Either you think it’s one of the most valueable cards out there or you don’t understand why people love the card so much. I’d say that I’m in the first camp. I appreciate the unique perks the Prestige provides and keep the card because it’s easy for us to end up making money without much effort or having to change our travel preferences.
In October 2018, Citi announced a major revamp to the Prestige card. Several of the changes went into effect on January 4th. Since many of these changes are major improvements to the card, it has earned a permanent slot back in my wallet. Here’s a list of things that have changed already, what changes are coming down the road and what hasn’t changed.