What to Do If Your Rental Car Breaks Down

calling roadside assistance

Choosing a rental car is convenient whether it’s for a vacation, road trip or just a quick family visit. Renting a vehicle gives you the flexibility to go around town as you please without having to depend on public or hired transportation. While many rental cars tend to be newer models and very reliable, breakdowns may still happen. How are you going to deal with a disabled rental car and get the roadside assistance you need in an unfamiliar area? Follow these steps to guide you along.

Get to Safety

Whether in a rental or personal vehicle, your priority is to make sure you and your passengers are safe. Remember to move out of traffic. If you feel unsafe, consider calling the police department.

Only after taking care of your safety and well-being, should you worry about calling the rental and/or insurance company.

Let the Rental Company Know What’s Going On

Call the rental company to let them know about the incident. Regardless of who’s at fault, most contracts state that you’re legally required to report breakdowns or accidents to the rental company, especially if you purchased an additional rental car protection plan.

The car rental company will probably send roadside assistance. However, if you're held financially responsible for the tow and/or repairs, you could try using membership-based services or even your own auto insurance.

Personal Auto Insurance

When it comes to paying the repair bill, some rental companies charge the customer for damage repair costs and for “loss of use”. This is essentially what the rental company charges for the revenue they would have made if the vehicle was in service rather than being repaired.

In a case like this, find out if your insurance policy covers such charges. All insurance policies are not equal. If it's been a while since you reviewed your policy, you may not remember whether or not you selected this option.

A Word of Advice

Many car rental companies exempt repairs and services from Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) coverage, which means that loss of use sometimes is not included. A proactive step before getting a rental is to read the fine print on the contract to prevent unexpected charges if it breaks down.

In case anything unexpected happens, whether driving personal or rental vehicle make sure you have a reliable team at your service. Call an Infinity Insurance agent at 1-800-INFINITY or get an online quote today.

The materials available in the Knowledge Center are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact legal counsel to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use of this website or any of the links contained within the website do not create representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.

The materials available in the Knowledge Center are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact legal counsel to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use of this website or any of the links contained within the website do not create representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.