Is towing covered by your car rental insurance?
Insurance coverage for rental cars sometimes includes roadside assistance, which could cover towing services if needed. In this article, we’ll discuss the types of insurance that include tow coverage for your car rental. We'll outline all the critical information car renters need to know before reaffirming their insurance protection when renting a vehicle.
Potential Scenarios in Which Tow Coverage Could Be Beneficial
Tow coverage helps cover the cost of towing services when your vehicle has been damaged or disabled. It can help protect you from the high costs associated with towing and storage fees.
Tow coverage can be beneficial in a variety of scenarios. If you’re in an accident and your car needs to be towed away, tow coverage can help cover the costs of retrieving it and getting it back in working condition. It can also be useful in cases where a vehicle is stranded due to mechanical failure or breakdowns that occur while on the road. In these situations, tow coverage will reduce your out-of-pocket expenses for the necessary repair work so you can get back on your way as soon as possible.
Having tow coverage may even qualify drivers for discounts on certain types of auto insurance policies as some providers view this as an extra layer of protection against expensive repairs and other related expenses.
Overall, having tow coverage is an excellent way to protect yourself financially if ever faced with costly repair bills due to vehicle damage or breakdowns while on the road. It’s always wise to research different insurers and compare prices before making any decisions so that you know exactly what kind of protection you are getting and how much it will cost.
Rental Car Insurance and Tow Coverage
If you rent a car, you should be aware of the different insurance and tow coverage options that are available. Insurance is typically required by law, but additional types of coverage may be needed depending on personal circumstances:
Comprehensive coverage can provide protection from damage due to theft, vandalism, fire, hail, and other perils.
Collision coverage can help with repairs if the rental car is damaged in an accident.
Liability insurance provides financial protection for damages caused by renters to property or persons; and medical payments can help cover medical bills for injuries to occupants of the rental vehicle.
Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) covers medical expenses, lost wages, and death benefits for occupants of the rented car as well as accidental death and dismemberment benefits for passengers in the rented vehicle.
In addition to insurance coverage, renters should consider adding tow or roadside assistance coverage which can help pay for emergency tows or services in case there is a mechanical issue with the rental car. This type of coverage often comes at an additional cost but is usually worth it if you are traveling in an unfamiliar area. It's important to make sure your rental car company has updated contact information on file so they can be reached easily if you need any assistance while driving their vehicle.
When does auto insurance cover towing?
Short answer: It depends on the specific car rental company and the type of damage insurance you have purchased.
If you have personal comprehensive auto insurance, there’s a good chance that it provides roadside assistance and towing coverage. In general, these policies will cover towing if the vehicle has been damaged in an accident or if it experiences a mechanical failure. It also may provide roadside assistance such as jump-starts and flat tires if your vehicle needs attention due to a breakdown or other issue. It's important to review the details of your towing coverage to understand what is and isn't covered, and what the limits of the coverage are.
It’s a different story if you don’t have personal auto insurance or have limited coverage. In this case, you have the following options:
- Add towing coverage to your existing damage insurance policy
- Avail of third-party towing coverage (ie. from AAA)
Add towing coverage to your existing damage insurance policy
Adding towing coverage to an existing damage insurance policy is a smart and cost-effective way of protecting yourself when renting a vehicle. Tow coverage is usually cheap and should’nt cost more than a dollar a day. You also get to decide the level of coverage you want, which ranges from $25 to $75 per incident. Considering that the actual cost of vehicle towing varies anywhere from $35 to $100 for the hook-up fee plus $2.50 to $5.00 per mile towed, having the coverage saves you not only a lot of money but also stress.
When choosing a towing coverage plan, it's important to know what types of services are included. In most cases, it will cover the cost of having your car towed back to a repair shop if it becomes disabled due to an accident or mechanical failure. It may also offer reimbursements for other services such as labor charges, storing fees, and jumpstarts while stranded. Additionally, if you have roadside assistance included in your policy, it may provide additional benefits like flat tire changing and fuel delivery.
Take note that you need to have an existing damage insurance policy, such as the one you can get from Bonzah. Once you do, you can avail of an optional emergency roadside assistance service that includes:
- Towing Assistance
- Battery Services
- Flat Tire Assistance
- Fuel, Oil, and Water Delivery Service
- Lock-out Assistance
- Collision Assistance
Avail of third-party towing coverage (ie. from AAA)
If you travel frequently or often drive to remote areas, you’ll find it valuable to have third-party, stand-alone towing coverage. You can avail of this from roadside assistance providers like AAA, Good Sam Roadside Assistance, National General Motor Club, Allstate Motor Club and Better World Club.
Third-party towing coverage is a great way to protect yourself in the event of a roadside emergency. With third-party coverage, you get a certain amount of towing every year (this varies based on the coverage plan you purchase), so you can rest assured that you’re covered for any costs associated with towing services. With the AAA, for instance, your benefits include 24/7 roadside assistance and up to four tows per year at no extra cost. AAA also offers competitive rates and discounts for members who qualify, making it an attractive option for those looking for peace of mind on the road.
Is Towing Included in the Roadside Assistance Protection Add-on?
Rental companies often provide basic roadside assistance services for free with their vehicles. Take note, however, that BASIC often means having access to the 24/7 hotline. You often have to pay for the services that you may actually need, such as flat tires, dead batteries, and lockouts.
None of the major rental car companies provide towing coverage as part of roadside assistance:
Rental Car Company
Roadside Assistance Coverage
Cost Per Day
Roadside Assistance Protections (RAP) allows Enterprise customers to waive financial responsibility for chargeable roadside incidents such as lost keys, lockouts and fuel outages.
Renter may purchase Roadside Plus (RSP) from Owner for an additional fee. If Renter purchases RSP, Owner agrees, subject to the actions that invalidate Collision Damage Waiver, to contractually waive Renter’s responsibility for the cost to provide 24/7 roadside assistance (where available) which includes replacement of lost keys (including remote entry devices), flat tire service (if no inflated spare is available, the vehicle will be towed. Cost of a replacement tire is not covered by RSP), lockout service (if the keys are locked inside the vehicle), jumpstarts, and fuel delivery service for up to 3 gallons (or equivalent liters) of fuel if Vehicle is out of fuel. Roadside Plus services are only available in the United States and Canada. If Renter does not purchase RSP, or RSP is invalidated as set forth above, roadside assistance will be available, but standard charges will apply. RSP does not apply in Mexico.
24/7 service for issues like flat tires, dead batteries and lost keys. Sometimes these things happen and with Extended Roadside Assistance, we’ve got you covered.
Renter may purchase Roadside Plus (RSP) from Owner for an additional fee. If Renter purchases RSP, Owner agrees, subject to the actions that invalidate Loss Damage Waiver, to contractually waive Renter’s responsibility for the cost to provide 24/7 roadside assistance (where available) which includes replacement of lost keys (including remote entry devices), flat tire service (if no inflated spare is available, the vehicle will be towed. Cost of a replacement tire is not covered by RSP), lockout service (if the keys are locked inside the vehicle), jumpstarts, and fuel delivery service for up to 3 gallons (or equivalent liters) of fuel if Vehicle is out of fuel. Roadside Plus services are only available in the United States and Canada. RSP does not apply in Mexico.
Hertz knows things can go wrong on the road, so we offer our Basic Emergency Roadside Assistance with each rental - which covers the mechanical defects of the vehicle only. Basic only allows access to 24/7 Hotline. Hertz Premium Emergency Roadside Assistance is an optional service which, if accepted, reduces your financial liability for services required to remedy non-mechanical problems of the vehicle and/or problems resulting from an accident or collision. To add Premium Emergency Roadside Assistance to your rental, ask your Hertz counter representative to add the service to your reservation.
Plan ahead for peace of mind. With Extended Roadside Assistance you can travel with peace of mind. We understand things can go wrong – it is the real world – and we take care of you to provide you with roadside services, including:
Lockout Service - Gain entry when keys are locked inside the vehicle. Get replacement keys or locksmith assistance.
Flat Tire Assistance & Replacement - We'll replace a flat or damaged tire with the spare, or get the car towed to the nearest service facility.
Jump Start - If your vehicle experiences battery failure, we'll provide a jump start.
Fuel Delivery - if you run out of gas/fuel, we’ll deliver 3 gallons (in US/CA) or up to $10 fuel delivery (in AU/NZ) to your location.
For the ultimate safe driving experience, add Extended Roadside Assistance to your reservation.
Make sure you’re covered
When it comes to protecting yourself while out on the road, having the right coverage is essential. No one wants to think about getting stuck on the side of the road but if it happens, being covered by a towing policy may just save your wallet—and possibly your life!
Towing coverage allows you to rest assured that your vehicle will be taken care of should you ever need roadside assistance. From minor breakdowns to major car trouble, having towing coverage can provide you with important financial protection.
Regular maintenance and safe driving can help minimize your roadside emergencies, but, for those times when you find yourself stuck on the side of the highway, it helps to have the coverage you need.