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Q: How does American Express rental car insurance work? Are there any fees or charges to pay?
A: You use your AMEX rental car insurance just like you would your regular automobile insurance, EXCEPT that you use it INSTEAD of your regular automobile insurance.
In other words, if you have paid the flat fee of $24.95 (it’s $17.95 if you are a California resident) for the entire time you have your rental car—this is NOT a per-day fee—and you are involved in an automobile accident while using your rental car, you make the claim on this insurance policy, not your regular insurance policy. While you are using the rental car, you consider this policy your primary auto insurance policy.
This prevents you from running the risk of having your regular automobile insurance rates raised or even being in danger of having your regular auto insurance cancelled because of the accident. (Some companies do this even if the accident was not your fault.)
The coverage on AMEX rental car insurance is quite sufficient. It includes payment of up to $100,000 if your rental car is damaged or stolen; up to $100,000 of accident coverage if accidental death or dismemberment occurs; and up to $15,000 for excess medical expenses.
You don’t pay a deductible, and it doesn’t cost anything to enroll. In addition, you won’t have a premium charge until you have used your enrolled AMEX card to rent a car.