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Car Rental in Italy--incredibly basic question

Car Rental in Italy--incredibly basic question

Aug 12th, 2010, 02:44 AM
  #1  
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Car Rental in Italy--incredibly basic question

I have just arranged to rent a car in Italy, through AutoEurope. There is a deductible of 1000 Euro in case of damage, and 3000 euro in case of theft of the vehicle. The AE person told me that I could buy "super CDW" that would eliminate this deductible; this can be purchased at the rental counter (EuropCar).

Is this something I should buy, or is this an instance when one should decline all insurance? I am using Amex to pay for the car; will they cover me in case of damage or theft?

Thank you for any help.


BTW: As I reported on another thread, the price for the rental on the AE Italian site was LESS THAN HALF of the price on the US site.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 03:10 AM
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ek, I've no idea what Amex covers... but can perhaps help on whether an insurance is advisable or not. This is the rental car for Puglia, right? You are going to Lecce and the Alberobello-Martina Franca area, right? Which car did you rent? The latter is perhaps the most important question.
franco is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 03:13 AM
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eks, in the past AmEx didn't cover in Italy. I don't know if that's still true. Here's a basic discussion of the rackets:
http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/tips/carrental_cdw.htm
Marija is online now  
Aug 12th, 2010, 03:14 AM
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Call Amex to check first...coverage in Italy and Ireland is a bit ambiguous.
lizziea06 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 03:21 AM
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If Amex or other cards don't cover Italy (many don't), and you don't want to buy Super CDW from Europcar (around $10 to $15 a day), Auto Europe often offer their own cover for deductible for around $5 a day (but you have to pay first and apply for refund later), or there are a couple of standalone policies with www.insurance4carhire.com and www.icarhireinsurance.com.
Alec is online now  
Aug 12th, 2010, 04:04 AM
  #6  
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Yikes--this is truly a MEGO (my eyes glaze over) topic!

Is it common to have such a high deductible, or is this a case of too much information making me anxious....?? I am not sure I ever looked at these details before when renting a car..

Franco: I booked a Peugot 407 4-door automatic. This was the least expensive automatic on the site.

The price on the AE Italian site was LESS THAN HALF of the price on the AE US site. After a lot of chatter about the company having different prices for different markets (all of which I protested vehemently while on the phone!) he agreed to match that price. But I am totally flummoxed by the insurance issues..will call Amex later today..

Thanks to everyone for helping out on this topic..
ekscrunchy is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 04:06 AM
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Sometimes credit card auto insurance won;t even cover liability but in the case of Super CDW...you need to know what it covers..

if it drops the deductible to zero and there is no OTHER insurance that does the SAME THING for any lesser amount and that is as theoretically hassle-free as getting it from the rental agency then I would strongly consider buying it. Be aware that sometimes that "deductible" can be even more.

I always get super CDW so i can walk away from anything and on a couple of occasions that was exactly what i was able to do without calling my credit card issuer, worrying about whether or not my own insurance would change as a result, calling some third party, making a claim to some other insurance carrier, etc., etc.

Yes, they ARE making money on it...most ALL of your insurance that you have IN LIFE is a money-maker for somebody else besides you and you are buying peace of mind and good luck with your decision.
Dukey is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 04:14 AM
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We've always decided to "bite the bullet" and accept the coverage from autoeurope even though we have never had a problem with rental vehicles on any of our trips.

We simply don't want to risk any problems that might result if anything happened to our vehicle. I can't picture the disruption to your travels in the case of theft or extreme damage that disables the vehicle, or the prolonged negotiation over damages to a car which could very likely continue well beyond the conclusion of your (so far happy) trip.

Can anyone speak to this issue? Clearly the rental companies want their customers to be somewhat fearful in order to sell their coverage.

I do know of several incidents, from friends, where cars were damaged or stolen and the rental company provided a replacement car within hours, at the most the same day, to customers with their coverage.

I'm not sure coverage from a third party would match this service.

Any thoughts?
portiaperu is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 04:17 AM
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Dukey, thanks. So, to be clear, you think I should buy the CDW from the rental agency when I pick up the car, if I find that Amex will not cover the deductible gap? (Please forgive my clue-less-ness on this issue...).

Even if it does cost 15Euro or so per day (for a week-long rental) I think that I would like to have the peace of mind..)
ekscrunchy is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 04:23 AM
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Well, if I were to rent this car, I would hinge it on the price of the super CDW. If it's 5 $ per day, fine. Otherwise, if you really don't go anywhere else (and more specifically, not to Bari, Bitonto, Trani, Brindisi), I - personally! - would forego the additional insurance. I never worry about damages (I even forewent the CDW in Jordan, where the roads are really disastrous, and it was the right thing to do since the CDW would have cost a fortune, and of course, I had no damage). I would just worry about car theft, in Puglia. But if you stick to Lecce and the Martina Franca area, the Peugeot should be unchic enough not to get you into troubles. (Lancia and Alfa Romeo are really extremely endangered species in southern Italy, and in Bari or Bitonto, I would even fear for the Peugeot.)
franco is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:17 AM
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Franco you are a mine of information!

We plan to pick up and return the car at Brindisi airport. From there, we will visit Otranto and environs, Lecce, Martina Franca, Cisternino, Fasano, and the trulli areas. Each night the car will be parked overnight at the hotels.

No driving into Bari or Brindisi.

I had no idea that Peugeot was unchic! I thought it was quite posh, which goes to show you how much I know about cars!

I had forgotten about the car theft connection to eastern Europe, from that part of Italy! I read that Durres, Albania was once the stolen car capital of Europe..


http://www.nytimes.com/1997/08/16/wo...olen-cars.html
ekscrunchy is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:18 AM
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eks-

I suspect that if you go back and compare the prices from Auto Europe US and Auto Europe Italy, you would find that all or most of the excess is covered in the US version (which would account for much of the difference). I had a similar experience renting from Easyterra.com earlier this year, which is a branch of Auto Europe- the CDW and theft deductables were very high, but the rates were cheap. I solved it buy buying excess insurance from a 3rd party.

I do not think Amex will cover you in Italy- be sure to read the terms of your particular cardholder agreement carefully.
rs899 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:20 AM
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Ask for a Ford Ka- nobody would want to steal that...
rs899 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:23 AM
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Thanks, rs.

The case gets more complicated! What is your opinion of Portiaperu's question above?
ekscrunchy is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:26 AM
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I wish I were as intrepid as some in "not worrying about any damages" but I'm a wimp...especially when that rental agency can charge you for LOSS OF USE OF THE VEHICLE UNTIL those "damages" are repaired.

Yes, I would get the super CDW and as cheaply as I could.

I'll say it again: insurance ALWAYS makes money for SOMEBODY but you want a hassle-free trip
Dukey is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:37 AM
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Ek do the following...

1) Find out if your credit card covers Italy. If so, then you decline all additional insurances. There is basic insurance in Italy that is a legal requirement, so you cannot decline that.

2) Contact your own insurance company, while very few will cover in a foreign country, there are some that will.

3) Bite the bullet and buy the best $0 deductible you can. When I rent cars, regardless of the country or continent I want to make certain that no matter what, I can just walk away when I turn it in.

4) Car Rental Express - a broker, while I do not like the company due to some excess billing they pulled on me once, does provide full coverage insurance on its Italian rentals and the cost was far less than AutoEurope, whom I love.

5) Don't do the extra insurance and keep your fingers crossed. Remember, the deductible is in some cases for EACH incident, not for the entire rental period. Check the fine print because each company is different.

dave

dave
daveesl is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:38 AM
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Our first long driving trip to Italy in 2001, the driver (who shall remain nameless) dented the front bumper, making a sharp right turn into a garage. And broke the tailight trying to get out of a tight parking lot in Montalcino.

We dreaded the moment when we returned this car. (Our only insurance was via our credit card.) But they took it back without a blink. I guess minor damage is the norm in Italy.
Mimar is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 06:51 AM
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Ther are others who, when returning their car in Italy, had it examined almost by a magnifying glass for every nick and hairline scratch, and were charged deductible for every so-called damage. They later protested through their home country branch of the rental company and had the total cost of damage reduced to more realistic levels.
Alec is online now  
Aug 12th, 2010, 08:38 AM
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ek, I had not seen your "peace of mind" post when sending my last one (I had been typing too slowly).
So I'd suggest you first of all, as Dave said, check with Amex whether they cover the deductibles or not. If not, I think calling the rental car office at Brindisi airport will be the best solution, so that you know what their super CDW costs. If you want me to, I can do that for you.
franco is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 08:52 AM
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We declined the CDW and used coverage offered by our VISA Signature a few years ago in N. Italy. After the car was damaged in a parking lot we had a terrible time getting reimbursed by VISA.We had to pay the Avis at Linate what they calculated the the damage would cost to repair would cost and we had to pay them right then. VISA said that we should had gotten estimates done before dropping it off at Linate, and in English!. Even though it looks like a good thing financially, we would never do this again in Italy with all the hassels. Perhaps AmEx would treat you better.
Another time in Italy we ahd some damage and had the CDW. When we returned the car, noting was said or done. Easy.
We rented the same Peugeot, though a manual, in Spain for a month and loved it, handled well, comfortable.
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