General

Best Car Rental Insurance Credit Cards for October 2022

Best Car Rental Insurance Credit Cards for October 2022

Travel credit cards can enhance your travel experience in a number of ways, from speeding up your transit to earning rewards for your travel expenses. For all types of travel cards — airline credit cards, hotel credit cardsor general travel credit cards — most offer a selection of travel insurance policies aimed at saving you money in unexpected and unfortunate circumstances.

For example, there are a number of credit cards that offer cardholders car rental collision damage insurance or rental car insurance. Rental car insurance can be secondary coverage or the more coveted primary coverage.

Primary coverage means that credit card insurance pays out before any other auto insurance policy you have, while secondary coverage doesn’t take effect until after your personal insurance pays. Primary coverage is also likely to have better terms and cover the full cost of the damage. Secondary coverage may cover less, but still provide some protection.

Best for primary car rental coverage

Intro OfferEarn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after opening an account. That’s $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

April18.24% – 25.24% Variable

Intro Purchase APRN/A

Recommended credit Excellent/Good

Reward rates

  • Purchased 5x on trips through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 3x on dining.
  • 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.

Annual contribution$95

Balance transfer APR18.24% – 25.24% Variable

Balance transfer fee Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

Foreign transaction costs $0

Punishment APR Up to 29.99%

  • Purchased 5x on trips through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 3x on dining.
  • 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.

Our Take

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is one of the best credit cards for general travelers. It has a lot of earning potential and offers a number of travel protections, including primary collision car rental insurance. It has an annual fee of $95.

Plus, it earns 5x points per dollar for travel purchases made through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Cardholders can use Chase Ultimate Rewards to book rental cars, hotels and airline tickets. You can use the Sapphire Preferred to book your rental car and then redeem the points you earn for a 25% bonus when you book a trip through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Or you can transfer them to a hotel or airline partner where you can find an even better value for them.

You can learn more in our Chase Sapphire Preferred review.

Intro OfferEarn 100,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

AprilSee Pay over time APR

Intro Purchase APRN/A

Recommended credit Excellent/Good

Reward rates

  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.

Annual contribution$695

Balance transfer fee N/A

Late Payment Fee Up to $40

Foreign transaction costs No

Punishment APR See Rates and Fees

  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.

Our Take

Conditions apply to the benefits and offers of American Express. Enrollment may be required for certain American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com for more information.

In exchange for a hefty $695 annual fee, cardholders gain access to an impressive collection of benefits and credits. Due to its cost, it should only be considered by travelers who can take full advantage of all that the card has to offer.

One of the many benefits is insurance against loss and damage during car rental*. However, the coverage is secondary, meaning it won’t take effect until your personal auto insurance policy has paid out. While that detracts from the value of the benefit, there are a number of other benefits to having this card, including premium car rental status.

Premium car rental status offers additional benefits with a number of car rental companies, including Avis Preferred®, Hertz Gold Plus Rewards® and/or National Car Rental® Emerald Club Executive. Rental company membership benefits include skipping lines, upgrades when available, and choosing the best rental company vehicles.

Please note that cardholders must sign up for any or all of these memberships through their benefits dashboard.

Check out our The Platinum Card from American Express review for more information.

High-end travel card with primary coverage

Intro Offer: Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equivalent to $750 in travel

April: 19.99% – 26.99% (variable)

Intro Purchase APR: N/A

Recommended credit: Excellent

Reward rates

  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases

Annual contribution: $395

The Capital One Venture X is Capital One’s premier travel card. It offers some strong benefits for the $395 annual fee, including annual travel credit and primary car rental insurance**.

In addition to providing primary coverage, the card also earns 10x miles per dollar for rental cars booked directly through Capital One Travel. It also includes Hertz President’s Circle® membership status, which offers travelers guaranteed upgrades, their choice of rental, and dedicated customer service.

Check out our Capital One Venture X review to learn more.

**Terms and conditions and exclusions apply. Please refer to your Benefits Guide for more details.

Best car rental insurance with no annual fees

Intro Offer: Earn a bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months of opening an account, equivalent to $200 on travel

April: 17.99% – 27.99% (variable)

Intro Purchase APR: 0% introductory purchases for 15 months

Recommended credit: Excellent, good

Reward rates:

  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you get the best prices from Capital One on thousands of travel options
  • Earn unlimited 1.25X miles with every purchase, every day.

Annual contribution: $0

The Capital One VentureOne Rewards offers miles on all your purchases and a surprising number of travel protections for a card with no annual fee. Included in that offer is car rental insurance**.

While coverage is secondary, it still provides an affordable option to get some extra coverage when using a rental car. You can also earn a high 5x miles per dollar on rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, covering the cost with the miles you earn with the card.

It is a good option if you travel occasionally and are looking for a decent return on your travel expenses. You can learn more about the card in our Capital One VentureOne Rewards card review.

**Terms and conditions and exclusions apply. Please refer to your Benefits Guide for more details.

Intro OfferEarn $750 bonus cash back after spending $7,500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

April15.49% – 21.49% Variable

Intro Purchase APR0% Intro APR on purchases during 12 months

Recommended credit Good, Excellent

Reward rates

  • Earn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent on combined purchases at office supply stores and Internet, cable, and telephone services each account anniversary year
  • Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent on combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1% cashback on all other card purchases with no limit on the amount you can earn

Annual contribution$0

Balance transfer APR15.49% – 21.49% Variable

Balance transfer fee Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

Foreign transaction costs 3% of every transaction in US dollars.

Punishment APR Up to 29.99%

  • Earn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent on combined purchases at office supply stores and Internet, cable, and telephone services each account anniversary year
  • Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent on combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1% cashback on all other card purchases with no limit on the amount you can earn

Our Take

The Non-Annual Chase Ink Business Cash is one of the best business credit cards. In addition to its lucrative rewards program, it offers a number of travel protections, including car rental damage waiver.

Coverage is primary when renting for business purposes, making it an inexpensive option if you are looking for rental coverage. The card is also a good choice if you travel for business a few times a year and are looking for a solid return on your spending. The rewards and welcome bonus are its best features, but it adds a touch of travel thanks to its rental car insurance, roadside assistance, and travel and emergency services.

See our full Chase Ink Business Cash review for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best credit card to use for car rental?

The best general credit card for car rental is the Chase Sapphire Preferred. It has an affordable annual fee of $95 and has great potential to be a very rewarding choice. It features primary rental car insurance, meaning it pays out before your personal insurance and negates the need to file a claim with your primary car insurance company. You can use it for car rentals through Chase’s travel portal, Chase Ultimate Rewards, to earn 5x points per dollar.

How do I qualify for the benefit of rental car insurance with a credit card?

To qualify for the benefit of rental car insurance with a credit card, you must decline any insurance offer from the car rental company and then charge your card in full. You will then be eligible for cover against damage or theft, depending on your cardholder’s agreement.

How old do I have to be to rent a car?

Most car rental companies in the US require you to be at least 25, but there are some exceptions. As long as you are 21, you can probably rent a car, although an underage driver fee may be charged.

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card from American Express, click here

*The eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms and conditions and restrictions apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by Amex Assurance Company. Coverage for loss or damage from car rental is provided through American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.

The editorial content on this page is based solely on objective, independent reviews by our writers and is not influenced by advertising or partnerships. It is not provided or commissioned by any third party. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products or services from our partners.