No, you do not need rental car insurance in Connecticut. As is the case in most states, rental car companies in Connecticut provide the minimum state-required liability insurance coverage as a part of their basic contract. Specifically, they provide $25,000 in bodily injury liability insurance per person ($50,000 per accident) and $25,000 in property damage liability coverage per accident. Connecticut generally requires drivers to carry uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance too, but you can legally drive a rental car without this additional coverage.
If you have an existing personal car insurance policy that includes other types of coverage, like collision or comprehensive, or liability limits that are higher than what your state requires, the extra protection will extend to your rental car. But if you don’t have auto insurance coverage of your own, it may be a good idea to purchase additional coverage from the rental company if you’re concerned about having enough protection in an accident.
For example, you can purchase a collision damage waiver, which provides coverage comparable to collision and comprehensive insurance. This type of coverage may even apply automatically if you pay for your rental with the right credit card. You can also purchase supplemental coverage that adds to the existing liability and medical payments limits from your personal policy.
Third-party rental car insurance is coverage provided by a company other than the rental car vendor. Major third-party rental car insurance companies include Allianz and Bonzah, though online travel agencies and travel insurance companies usually offer third-party rental car coverage as well.
If you need rental car insurance, buying from a third party is normally much cheaper than buying additional coverage directly from the car rental company. Buying enough coverage is very important, too. Although the mandatory minimum liability insurance is automatically included when you rent a car in most states, this bare-bones coverage is probably not enough to protect you if you get into a serious accident.
On that note, Bonzah is the only major third-party rental car insurance company that offers supplemental liability insurance. The other insurers offer the equivalent of comprehensive and collision coverage, along with some other benefits.
Third-Party Rental Car Insurance Companies
What It Covers: Damage to or theft of rental car; Trip interruption; Loss, damage, or theft of personal effects; 24/7 travel assistance
Coverage Limits: $40,000 for the rental car; $1,000 for baggage; $1,000 for trip interruption
Pricing: $9 a day ($7 a day for Florida residents)
What It Covers: Damage due to collision, theft, vandalism, windstorm, fire, hail, flood, and any cause not in your control; Personal effects; Option to add liability coverage
Coverage Limits: $35,000 for the rental car; $500 total for personal possessions (or $250 per item); Option of primary liability coverage (state minimum) or supplemental liability coverage up to $1 million total
Pricing: $7.99 a day; $14.88 extra per day for primary liability; $11.90 extra per day for supplemental liability
Insure My Rental Car
What It Covers: Damage to or loss of rental car; Option to add coverage for personal property, flat tire expenses, misfuelling fees, towing charges, and lost key reimbursement
Coverage Limits: $100,000 for the rental car
Pricing: Varies by state, but often $9.75 a day
What It Covers: Damage to or theft of the rental car; 24/7 travel assistance
Coverage Limits: $40,000 for the rental car
Pricing: $9 a day ($7 a day for Florida residents)
What It Covers: Damage to the car due to collision, theft, or vandalism; Lost key reimbursement; Loss of use fees
Coverage Limits: $35,000 for the rental car
Pricing: $12 a day
What It Covers: Physical damage to the vehicle or personal property; Flat tire expenses, misfuelling fees, towing charges, lost key reimbursement
Coverage Limits: $100,000 for the rental car
Pricing: Varies by location and driver information
Even if you have car insurance that already covers rental cars, buying coverage from a third-party rental car insurance company can keep you from paying a deductible or from driving up your rates if you need to file a claim. Frequent car renters can also buy annual rental car insurance from Insure My Rental Car and P’teet.
What to Look For When Buying Third-Party Rental Car Insurance
If you plan to buy third-party rental car insurance, be sure to check coverage options and restrictions. Third-party companies often exclude unusual vehicles like limousines or motorhomes, or the coverage may be geographically limited. The many credit cards that offer rental car insurance have similar restrictions, by the way. Some also require you to file a claim with your normal car insurance company first.
Finally, if you are looking for a wider variety of coverage for an entire trip, travel insurance companies like Generali and Travel Guard offer rental car coverage in certain packages.
Yes, AAA offers discounts on rental cars from Hertz, Budget, Thrifty, and Dollar Car Rental. The exact amount of a AAA rental car discount depends on factors such as the type of car and the length of the rental period, but AAA customers can save up to 20%. In order to get a discount, you will need to provide the rental car company with your AAA policy number.… read full answer
AAA Rental Car Discounts
AAA Customer Discount
Up to 20%
Can I Use AAA’s Insurance for My Rental Car?
If you have liability, comprehensive, or collision coverage on your AAA policy, they will transfer to your rental car. Your rental car will have the same coverage limits as your personal car. As long as the car you’re renting is of similar value to your own, you can probably skip the rental company’s coverage. You’ll also want to pass on rental insurance at the counter if you plan to use a credit card as secondary coverage.
The Connecticut new-car insurance grace period is 2 to 30 days in most cases. The new-car grace period is how long insured drivers are allowed to drive a newly purchased vehicle before adding it to an existing car insurance policy. If you don’t have a current policy, you’ll need proof of uninsured/underinsured motorist and liability coverage before you can legally drive or register your car in Connecticut.… read full answer
When you buy a new car in Connecticut, the time you have to notify your insurer can vary because there are no state laws guaranteeing how much time insurance companies must give you to switch your existing policy to a new car. Each insurance company sets its own grace period. That’s why it’s important to find out how much time you have to contact your insurance company and how much coverage your new car will have according to your specific policy details.
When You Need Insurance to Buy a New Car in Connecticut
If you’re financing a car, you will probably be required by your lender to have proof of insurance before driving off the lot. You can get the information you need for a policy, like the car’s VIN, from the dealership before completing the purchase. If you do have an active policy, your current proof of insurance should be all you need.
If you’re paying cash or buying a car outright from a private seller, you probably won’t be asked to provide proof of insurance to take possession of the vehicle. Either way, you still have to meet minimum financial responsibility requirements to drive legally in Connecticut: $25,000 in bodily injury liability coverage, up to $50,000 per accident, along with $20,000 in liability coverage for property damage.
If you lease or finance a car, you'll probably also need collision and comprehensive coverage to protect the lender's investment. Collision policies average $359 per year, and comprehensive policies average $131 per year in Connecticut. You can expect a premium of around $1,535 for a full coverage policy consisting of liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage.
Because you have to provide proof of insurance before you can take possession of a newly financed car, some insurers extend comprehensive and collision coverage to existing customers in good faith, regardless of whether their current policy has those types of coverage. If that’s the case, your grace period will be shorter—2 to 4 days instead of 7 to 30.
How New Car Insurance Grace Period Works in Connecticut When You’re…
Replacing your old car with a new car. Most insurance companies offer a 7 to 30 day grace period if you replace a covered vehicle on your policy. The same type and amount of coverage that applies to the car you’re replacing will apply to the new one. If you have multiple cars on your policy, Connecticut requires that your new car is covered by the highest level of coverage on the policy.
NOT replacing your old car with a new car. If you aren’t replacing your car when you purchase a new one, you should confirm you have at least minimum liability coverage for the car you are buying in Connecticut. Not all insurance companies extend coverage if you are adding a new vehicle to your policy—for example, if you’re going from two to three cars. If they do, it will be for a shorter time, usually 2 to 4 days.
Although you probably have a grace period if you’re already insured, it’s best not to depend on it. Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to let them know about changes to your policy, especially when it comes to confirming coverage for a new car.
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