Car insurance can seem daunting, but getting it right will help you to relax and enjoy your holiday. Follow this guide before you head out on the highway!

Car Insurance – Are You Covered?

Car insurance is always included in the total price of the car for all European-based customers travelling to any global destinations. You don’t need any additional insurance in order to collect the car.

Although insurance is included, you will have to pay an excess of as much as or more than £1000. The excess will be refunded upon return if the car is in the same condition.

Some car rental companies will give you the option to buy supplementary insurance at the counter. These polices will allow you to reduce your excess to zero, but it’s not compulsory.

What Happens in Case of an Accident?

In the case an accident does happen and you don’t have supplementary insurance, the rental company will keep the amount held for excess on your credit card.

If you purchased supplementary insurance from the car rental company, then no additional fees should be required.

On the other hand, if you got supplementary insurance from an independent provider, the car rental company will keep the amount held for excess – and you will need to claim back that amount with your provider.

In all cases, a police report documenting the accident is needed to process any insurance claims.

Does Buying Direct Get the Best Price?

Hiring a car direct through the car company won’t always get you the best price.

Expedia does not add any extra fees to hire a car through our website, and we can often offer better care hire prices when you book together with a flight or hotel (i.e. flight + car or hotel + car) or all three combined.

Fees to Watch out for:

There are certain fees to be aware of when hiring a car, so be sure to carefully check the company’s Terms & Conditions when booking.

In places like Spain or Portugal, you may be asked to prepay for the fuel supplied at the time of collection and there may be a fuel service fee. In most cases, you’ll have to return the car with a full tank of petrol.

Special equipment such as child seats and GPS navigation systems will be added as extra fees charged by the rental company upon collection.

For certain destinations, companies will apply additional fees. These may include compulsory winter fees (mandatory fees in some countries when hiring a car between November – March) and airport fees upon collection.

Age can also play a big part. Car rental companies generally require that the driver must be at least 21 years old.

If you’re 21 to 25 years old, you can hire a car but you might have to pay an underage surcharge. This fee is normally payable directly to the car rental company and can be anywhere between £10 and £35 per day.

Certain rental companies in certain countries have an upper age limit of 70 years old.

In all cases, check the Terms and Conditions. They’re not thrilling reading, but it’s vital to know where you stand.

The Expedia Difference:

Expedia will show all fees upfront as part of the quoted price, so you will know exactly what you’re paying.

We’re also one of the few companies that allow you to cancel car hire bookings online without a penalty up until the day before you pick up the car.

If, following your booking through Expedia, you feel as though your car company has subjected you to unfair change, just reach out to us and we’ll do what we can to help.


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