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Summer Tips on Home & Auto Insurance From Mercury Insurance: Plan Now and Then Relax on Vacation.


At the rental-car counter: Do I buy the auto insurance offered?

Rental car insurance can be expensive, but driving either uninsured or under-insured could be financially catastrophic.

   1.  The coverage you have on your own vehicle may insure you while you
       drive the rental car.  First, talk to your auto insurance agent or
       broker or with your auto insurance company.  Provided you are not on
       a business trip, the coverage and deductibles you have on your
       personal auto may extend to the rental car.  But double check with
       your agent and be clear on exactly what coverage you need.  If anyone
       else intends to drive the rental car, please discuss whether your
       coverage will transfer to other drivers of your rental car.  Agents
       and brokers representing Mercury Insurance are always pleased to
       answer questions and offer related advise (800-579-3467).

       If you do not have comprehensive (theft) and/or collision coverage to
       consider transferring to the rental car, you will have to purchase
       this coverage through the rental car agency.  If your personal auto
       insurance policy will cover you, keep in the rental car your proof of
       auto insurance certificate and contact information for your agent,
       broker or Mercury Insurance.

       Being prepared will payoff; at $10 per day, the Damage Waiver sold by
       rental car companies is a big profit item for the rental car industry
       that is equal to an annual premium of $3,650 for comprehensive and
       collision coverage.  That's as much as 10 times what your auto
       insurance company charges!  Check with Mercury Insurance if you have
       any questions.

       Some auto rental company contracts may stipulate a "loss of use"
       clause, which deals with the loss of use of the vehicle you are
       renting if it is damaged while in your possession.  Check with your
       auto insurance agent or broker and the rental car company to make
       sure where you stand on this issue.

       Some rental car companies combine personal accident and personal
       effects coverage as one type of auto insurance, while others sell it
       individually.  Check with Mercury Insurance if you have any

   2.  Your credit card company may provide coverage at no charge when
       using their card to pay for the rental car.  If so, establish exactly
       how you will be covered while driving the rental car -- and for how
       much.  You may have full coverage, or you may only need to purchase a
       specific type of coverage from the rental car company to bring your
       coverage to a level with which you are comfortable.  It is always
       safe to double check with Mercury Insurance if you have any

   3.  Once you have established that you are already covered or that you
       will need to purchase auto insurance from the rental car company --
       either way, clarify the following: Establish the status of specific
       coverage for Collision Damage Waiver (damage you cause to another's
       vehicle(s) you hit with your rental car), Liability Insurance (damage
       you cause to other people or property), collision (damage you cause
       to the vehicle you rented) and comprehensive claims (stolen vehicle,
       weather-related damage like that caused by hail and flooding and
       collisions with animals), Personal Accident (medical/ambulance
       bills), and Personal Effects (theft of personal items in the car).
       Also, before you even get in the rental car, be sure to take the time
       to closely inspect it for existing damage.  If you find any, note it
       on the rental form and have an employee of the rental company initial
       it.  Call Mercury Insurance with any questions.

SOURCE: Mercury Insurance

CONTACT: John Brice, +1-858-456-3855,, for
Mercury Insurance; or Ted Huntington of Mercury Insurance, +1-661-291-6469,

Web site:

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