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Old 05-26-2010, 12:14 PM   #1
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Car rental insurance - do I buy it???

My family is going to Ireland this summer on an unexpected trip. I got a great price on air + car rental for the 5 of us. The question is do I purchase car rental insurance. My personal auto insurance has some coverage - it's a additional $250 to purchase it with the package.

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Old 05-26-2010, 12:16 PM   #2
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chances r ur US based policy offers no protection in Ireland.
call and check.
i would buy it .. only because its a forigein country
Married a Sailor.. enjoying my babies

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Old 05-26-2010, 02:11 PM   #3
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Absolutely, without question if you are going to rent a car in Ireland you need to get rental insurance. Dh and I visited Ireland this spring and after researching it thoroughly we decided to just use public transportation rather than renting a car. The roads in Ireland tend to be tiny, and often in bad condition (particularly in the countryside). I can't tell you how many trip reports I have read about people who had to use the rental insurance after mishaps while driving (from side swipes to loosing/damaging hub caps). The roads there are a lot different than the roads in the US and it is much better to be safe than sorry!!

Good luck and have a great time. Ireland is a beautiful country!!!
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Old 05-26-2010, 02:25 PM   #4
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Check your credit card first. Many will provide you with insurance if you use the card to rent.
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:23 PM   #5
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Yes. Absolutely get the car insurance because yours will not cover you if you're out of the country. Would you rather pay $250.00 car insurance or $25,000 to buy a new car?

(Me) (DH)

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2006 - Kansas City, Mo
2005 - Carnival/Fantasy - Bahamas
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:37 PM   #6
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We went to Ireland in 2003 and paid way more than $250 for the car insurance. It was worth every penny. Our credit card did not cover Ireland specifically. I was worried about driving on the other side of the road, and for good reason! We hit a plastic barrier before we even made it out of the airport parking lot!!! After that we were fine. But it was great peace of mind on those super narrow roads where you have to pull in your side mirrors if you pass an oncoming car (our rental was already missing the passenger side mirror!). Many of the roads are bordered by stone walls. If you happen to meet an oncoming bus, you have to pull onto the side as much as possible and hope for the best.

By the way, we stayed with friends in Cork who told us that most people in Ireland have no car insurance because it is ridiculously expensive, more than the value of most cars.

Also, rent the smallest car you can possibly fit into. We had a station wagon and it felt like we were driving a boat compared to the locals' cars.

Get the insurance and have a great trip!
Our January 2011 group: Me, DH, DS (7), DS (4)

Last trip: Offsite (Legacy Park) during the great freeze of January 2010! 10 family members, 10 fabulous days!
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:51 PM   #7
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Get the insurance. Most credit cards have a list of countries they will not cover in and Ireland shows up on those frequently, so check with yours.

Credit card insurance, if a claim is filed, will likely run through your own auto policy first and pick up any difference, so that claim will be on your auto policy record. Also, car rental companies both in the US and abroad tend not to just charge you for the actual damage, but also for lost income while the damaged car is out of service. That can be considerable.

If you opt not to take insurance most car rental companies overseas will put a high authorization hold on your credit card that can be the as much as the cost of the car, so that can impact any other spending you want to do with that card.
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Old 05-26-2010, 05:53 PM   #8
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Definitely get the insurance!!!! On my first trip to Ireland, I was driving and then suddenly got rear-ended by a couple from Chicago who had just left the rental shop in Galway. They couldn't get the hang of shifting with the other hand.
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