A Look at Excess Insurance

excess insurance

As the name hints, excess insurance is an additional vehicular policy put in place to cover a customer financially in the event that a rental car is damaged or stolen. As an insurance company may not pay the entire cost in such an instance, excess insurance will compensate for the remainder. Of course, there are a few key factors to consider when choosing such a policy.

Policies Offered by the Provider

It is not uncommon for the car hire company in question to offer excess insurance as an addendum to their original plan. The main benefit when working through the company is that while no third-party fees are involved, rates can be as low as five or ten pounds per day. From a financial perspective, this should not be overlooked.

Parts Covered

It is critical to determine which vehicle parts are considered compulsory under a certain insurance plan. While the aforementioned policy provided by the care hire company is economical, it may not cover items which are the most susceptible to damage such as the windscreen, undercarriage and tyres. Depending upon the length of time that the car will be rented and the driving conditions, this is an obvious factor to take into account. More robust plans will naturally include these items at little additional charge.

Terms and Conditions

As excess insurance is not as understood as more common policies, certain underwriters may charge hidden fees alongside a nominal rate. So, it is wise to carefully read through the terms and conditions before committing to any one plan. Some areas to examine are the ultimate levels of coverage, the ability to renew a policy on a daily basis and whether or not the excess insurance will cover a vehicle when it is abroad (as opposed to solely within the United Kingdom). Most reputable providers will make these factors quite clear and if there are any discrepancies, it is best to seek another company.

Once again, some of the primary points to consider when seeking excess insurance are:

  • The overall cost of the plan.
  • The circumstances and parts which are covered.
  • Any "fine print" within the terms and conditions.

Excess insurance is an extremely useful amenity to be enjoyed when using a car hire service. Understanding these few variables will enable the consumer to make the correct choice at the appropriate time.