Credit Cards

How can I tell if my credit card issuer's auto insurance covers will primarily cover rental car damage?

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  • Feb 3rd, 2017 12:36 pm
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[OP]
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Apr 21, 2004
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How can I tell if my credit card issuer's auto insurance covers will primarily cover rental car damage?

What kind of wording in the insurance contract should we be looking at to confirm that the credit card covered will cover any damages before our own auto insurance kicks in?

Would anyone know of any particular credit card in Canada that will cover the damages primarily and leave our auto insurance untouched? I will have to read my RBC Gold Visa and CIBC Dividend Platinum Visa pamphlets (or maybe the latest ones online) if the insurance will cover the damages and not be secondary to my auto insurance policy.

Thanks.


https://www.allstate.com/tools-and-reso ... rance.aspx

If you have extra rental car insurance through a credit-card issuer, call the toll-free number on the back of your card and have them explain your options in detail before you reserve your car. The card issuer's insurance is typically "secondary," meaning that it may pay your deductible and expenses that exceed what your primary insurance company will pay, according to the III. Be sure to check before you rent.
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Mar 30, 2004
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Read the certificate of insurance. If the coverage is secondary, it will explicitly state that.

RBC Visa's policies are primary. No experience with CIBC.
[OP]
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Thank you.

Yeah, I will be reading the certificates of insurance available online, since they keep changing the terms and conditions.

I was also told to check if the insurance coverage from the card covers liability since most of them only cover comprehensive and collision but to me the point is moot since if they are secondary, there's no point using them.

Edit:

The Gold Visa is no longer offered but looking at what's available online, it seem the only mention of "secondary" is found below, which likely means it isn't secondary, as you had already mentioned. :)
http://www.rbcroyalbank.com/credit-card ... ooklet.pdf

If the covered person does not decline the rental agency’s CDW option or its equivalent, this Certificate of Insurance is secondary coverage and will cover the deductible amount in the event of a claim.
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Jan 16, 2016
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Hamilton, ON
alanbrenton wrote: Thank you.

Yeah, I will be reading the certificates of insurance available online, since they keep changing the terms and conditions.

I was also told to check if the insurance coverage from the card covers liability since most of them only cover comprehensive and collision but to me the point is moot since if they are secondary, there's no point using them.

Edit:

The Gold Visa is no longer offered but looking at what's available online, it seem the only mention of "secondary" is found below, which likely means it isn't secondary, as you had already mentioned. :)
http://www.rbcroyalbank.com/credit-card ... ooklet.pdf

If the covered person does not decline the rental agency’s CDW option or its equivalent, this Certificate of Insurance is secondary coverage and will cover the deductible amount in the event of a claim.
Friend had to make a claim for self-sustained damage to his rental vehicle and had no trouble claiming through his RBC Visa Gold as primary insurance so don't worry about any hassles.
[OP]
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Good to know. I've been getting the brush around when I sent an inquiry through secure messaging. It seems the credit card department employees didn't want to read through the insurance certificate, the link of which I shared with them. :) Usually, I get intelligent responses but this time I got two duds. They won't even confirm the link I shared contains the latest insurance certificate, with the Visa Gold product no longer offered to new applicants. :)

First response:

My name is Kim, your credit card advisor, and I would like to thank you for writing to us today.

Because I am not a licensed insurance specialist, I am unable to provide you with the information requested. To ensure that you are given all the details about your insurance, I would like to invite you to speak with one of our Insurance Specialists at 1-800-533-2778. They will be able to provide you with all the details.

Please accept my apology as I was not able to assist you personally.


Second response:

My name is Brad, your banking advisor and I will be pleased to continue the conversation my colleague Kim began with you.

As credit card specialists, we're not best placed to interpret the insurance certificate. Instead, please call number Kim provided--unfortunately, the insurance department doesn't have an inbox.
Deal Guru
Aug 14, 2007
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They both gave you fair responses. Call the number provided.

Why were they fair responses? Because if they gave you wrong info and something happened then you'd be screwed so you should be happy one of them provided a direct contact number so you can get the answers you need.
[OP]
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XtremeModder wrote: They both gave you fair responses. Call the number provided.

Why were they fair responses? Because if they gave you wrong info and something happened then you'd be screwed so you should be happy one of them provided a direct contact number so you can get the answers you need.
The question pertains to a credit card feature. The insurance is probably not even covered by RBC insurance just like extended warranties or airline travel protection.

If all CSR's pointed to different departments just because they are too lazy to read the link I gave them or escalate to their manager, what fun this world will be...


I'm going with the pamphlet and what the earlier two helpful people had confirmed. I just thought RBC would provide a definite answer so I can share it here.
Deal Guru
Aug 14, 2007
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alanbrenton wrote: The question pertains to a credit card feature. The insurance is probably not even covered by RBC insurance just like extended warranties or airline travel protection.

If all CSR's pointed to different departments just because they are too lazy to read the link I gave them or escalate to their manager, what fun this world will be...


I'm going with the pamphlet and what the earlier two helpful people had confirmed. I just thought RBC would provide a definite answer so I can share it here.
See I went off an RBC employees "definite answer" for years and it screwed me over in the end.
[OP]
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Apr 21, 2004
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XtremeModder wrote: See I went off an RBC employees "definite answer" for years and it screwed me over in the end.
I try to get it in writing so I use secure messaging. :)

Audit trail can be powerful especially if corporations are to make exceptions.

I don't try to get people into trouble of course but hey, I want to protect myself as a client too.
Newbie
Mar 7, 2011
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Ontario
The insurance policy will state whether it is primary or secondary.

For the RBC Gold VISA, on page 9, it says:
"This coverage is primary insurance, except in the following circumstances:
- if the covered person decides to purchase the rental agency’s CDW option or its equivalent; or
- in such circumstances where the applicable government insurance legislation states otherwise"

I actually have the RBC Gold VISA myself and have claimed previously without any problems.

AFAIK, the car rental insurance on Canadian credit cards are primary (of course, check your policy), whereas it may not be the case for US-issued ones (my friend's US credit card is primary insurance only when renting outside of the States).

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