Car rental companies offer insurance because it is a way for them to make money. If you have not other coverage, you will have to buy (at least some of it) in order to meet legal requirements. If you don't want to be liable for damage to the vehicle, you might consider the extra insurance that covers the car against all types of damage. When I used to rent cars frequently, I always got the extra coverage. The one time I got hit (while the car was parked in a lot in Vegas; the other driver didn't even leave a note) it more than paid for the times I'd purchased it previously. You can avoid buying insurance from the rental agency (and still be covered) one of two ways: 1) if you are covered by the insurance policy on your own vehicle; or 2) if you have coverage through your credit card. In both cases, it is VERY important that you check with your insurance provider/CC to find out EXACTLY what is covered, which vehicles are eligible, for how long, and if additional drivers are covered. Many CC's have a $1000 deductible on collision coverage (or provide just liability and collision, but not coverage for the car - say in case of theft) so be sure to check. If you are comfortable with the coverage, great, otherwise you can buy additional. Also, by checking in advance and being certain (say in writing) of what coverage you have, you can minimize your hassles with the rental people. AF
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