Excess insurance from car hire companies a 'rip off' say consumers
Hiring a car and taking out excess insurance from the rental company is a rip off say over one in five (22%) consumers who have hired a car in the UK or abroad.
New research conducted by YouGov, on behalf of iCarhireinsurance.com, a leading provider of stand-alone excess car hire insurance, has revealed the extent of dissatisfaction among travellers with many saying excess insurance is expensive, a hidden cost and is sprung on them at the car rental desk.
If excess insurance is not purchased by a hire car customer they could be liable for up to £1500 if the car gets damaged or stolen, even if it’s not their fault. Even a small chip on a windscreen can cost hundreds to fix.
Excess insurance can add over 40% again (see iCarhireinsurance.com website [news section] for research) to a traveller’s car hire cost, so it is not surprising that almost a fifth of respondents (17%) felt it was a hidden cost “sprung” on them when they were picking up their hire car.
The YouGov survey also found that:
22% would have bought if from another provider if they had known before travelling that they could save
14% were shocked at how expensive it was at the rental desk;
And over one in ten people (11%) had not budgeted for this cost
“The ‘excess’ in rental company excess insurance should really be referring to its cost,” says Ernesto Suarez, founder and chief executive of iCarhireinsurance.com. “A traveller could be looking at up to £20 (see iCarhireinsurance.com website for research) a day for excess insurance, which is a massive chunk from peoples’ holiday spending money”.
Almost one in five people (19%) polled did not know that they could shop around for excess insurance believing they had to buy it direct from the rental company.
Research by iCarhireinsurance.com found that the five leading car hire companies surveyed charged an average of £15 a day for excess waiver car hire insurance, with the highest being an eye watering £20.50p a day with Hertz (see iCarhireinsurance.com website for research).
However, policies from iCarhireinsurance.com can be bought online for only £2.99 a day or £39.99 for an annual policy. They also include cover for vulnerable parts of the vehicle, which are frequently excluded by the rental companies’ policies.
“The car hire companies make good commission selling excess insurance to tired, disgruntled travellers who just want to be on their way,” said Ernesto Suarez, founder and chief executive of iCarhireinsurance.com.
“We want travellers to know that they can buy an excess policy from a third party provider which not only costs a lot less, but is often more comprehensive than those offered by the car rental companies. We urge all consumers to ‘buy before you fly’ to give you absolute peace of mind on your trip. It’s a no brainer really!”