Angie's List: Rental car tips and knowing your obligations

Angie's List: Rental car tips and knowing your obligations »Play Video
Rental car insurance may already be covered by your insurance policy.
LEWISTON, ID - Families are dreaming of spring break getaways.
You've spent a lot of time planning your perfect vacation - from booking the hotel to researching restaurants.

But there's one thing you may have overlooked. In today's Angie's List report, how to save money on your car rental.

"If your plans are pretty definite prepaying is a really good option," said Hertz Corporation, Jeff Neiman. "You can save up to 20% if you pre-pay. Now, there could be a fee if you cancel so that's got to be a pretty firm plan."

"Many times people rent cars over their vacation, but the last thing they want to do is read the details of the agreement on their way to having some fun, but it's important," said Angie's List Owner, Angie Hicks. "You need to understand what you're responsible for with that car, what happens if it breaks down, what happens if you get into an accident? Know exactly what your obligations are."

"If you have a six month travel time, that's the best time to do it," said Neiman. "Most people will book their airfare and their hotel out, and they'll wait on the car rental. It's the same principal, the sooner you can book, the better."

"Before you hit the road, call your insurance agent and find out whether they cover you in a rental car and what kind of coverage you have," said Hicks. "Also, you might check your credit card that you use to pay for the rental car. It might provide insurance as well. Check both of those to find out if there is a gap you want to cover from the rental company."

"Treat it like it's your own," said Neiman. "What would you do if you got into an accident in your car? You'd report it to the authorities. You would come back and let the rental car company know and fill out an accident report and go from there."

Don’t buy unnecessary insurance if you don’t need it. Rental car insurance can cost as much as $40 a day, and you may already be covered by your existing auto insurance policy or credit card. So determine your existing coverage before you buy more.