Insurance insurance

Published on March 18th, 2016 | by admin

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What is CDW and SLI Insurance?

Car rental insurance may be confusing, more so if this is the first time you have hired a vehicle. You may hear terms such as rental car excess insurance, CDW excess insurance and SLI. But what do these terms mean and do you need it?

What is SLI?

SLI is a term for supplemental liability insurance and provides you with liability insurance for third parties when driving a rental vehicle.

Typically a policy provides protection for the driver of the rental car against damage to a property and/or injuries to a person, up to the insured sum of money. A general rental agreement may include some liability insurance for third parties; however the limits are generally low. SLI generally works alongside the third party liability insurance included in your car rental insurance and takes over where the included insurance falls short.

What is CDW?

CDW is the term used for Collision Damage Waiver and as the name suggests it offers protection if you were to be involved in a collision in the rental vehicle. A policy typically offers various levels of cover against such as theft and loss and damage, depending on the country in which you hire the car.

CDW excess insurance may be included in with the car rental agreement in some countries, including Europe, however, in the USA and Canada you typically need to purchase it as a standalone policy.

If CDW is included in the rental agreement you may still find that you are liable for paying excess costs, which may be high, if you were to make a claim. Also bear in mind that it is important to check the wording of any policy the rental company includes, as some car parts might not be covered. These may include:

  • the windows of the vehicle;
  • the tyres;
  • the roof;
  • the undercarriage.

Both SLI and CDW insurance may be added on by the rental car company, or taken out with them, however, a policy may typically be more competitively priced if you take it with a standalone insurance provider under the guise of car hire excess insurance.

What happens if you need to claim on SLI or CDW insurance?

If you have taken out SLI or CDW excess insurance with a standalone insurance provider, all that may be needed on your part in the event of a claim is to contact the insurance company. The sooner you do thus, the better, even if you are still overseas.

Generally when making a claim the insurance provider is going to ask you to provide details, and possibly any documentation supporting the claim. Your insurance provider may ask for the following when making a claim:

  • the certificate of insurance for the hired car;
  • the rental agreement of the vehicle;
  • any receipts for the rental car;
  • any copies of documents which confirm how much you paid out to the rental company for the incident relating to the claim you put in;
  • copies of the driving licence of the person who was driving the rental vehicle;
  • if the police or authorities were involved, copies of any reports;
  • the accident damage report copy from the rental company;
  • a copy of the statement showing the amount of damage you paid on your credit card.

Hopefully the information above helps you to better understand how SLI and CDW excess insurance works.


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