Friday 25 December 2009

Car hire excess insurance can be purchased anywhere in the world

Although two of the major providers of car hire excess insurance are based in the UK, residents in any country in the world can easily buy their products. This is of course subject to the individual insurance specialist’s terms and conditions.

Insurance4carhire.com says in it’s questions and answers section “Can I purchase your Excess Policies if I am not a resident of the UK? Yes, our Excess policies can be purchased by people resident anywhere in the world”

We recently contacted Questor insurance about this issue and they replied.” I can confirm that non-UK residents are eligible to purchase our car hire excess insurance.

Please note that non-UK residents would not be covered to hire in their home country e.g. a resident of France would not be covered for hires in France”

You can of course purchase insurance4carhire.com “Daily excess Reimbursement Insurance” and use this on car hire vehicles close to your own home. For example if you live in London or another major city, your car is in for repair or you don’t have one and need to rent for a couple of days, according to the company that is no problem, however you will not be able to use their annual policy locally like that. Naturally you should check with them for the full details.

So remember if you live in Ireland, France, Spain, Australia, the USA etc it is possible to buy car hire excess via insurance providers advertising on www.insurance4carrental.com

Friday 18 December 2009

Spain Still Has Car Hire Problems

Carrentals.co.uk has reported the following article by Robert Bergerson on December 18th 2009
It was a turbulent year in the car rental market on the continent as many firms struggled with restructuring their companies, closing down branches and have fewer cars than the previous year. Many firms, especially in Spain, decided to cut back on new car buys this year and retain older vehicles as they predicted a bad year in their industry. During the peak months of July and August many tourists heading for some holiday sun were lefty stranded as their were not enough cars to meet demand.

The lucky people who had managed to get a car at the last minute were often over charged for simple daily rental. Others were stung for higher insurance packages and increased extras as they shopped around trying to find a car. Reports initially came back that some people had even paid three times as much as they did the previous year as agents struggled with the unexpected need for hire cars.

Well the high season is now over except for Christmas and New Year and it seems that some car rental agents are still playing the same games. With the need for cars during the winter season a lot lower than in the summer months, firms have decided to sell their older cars and wait until next year to make the financial commitment to buy new ones. This has led to some reports of people in Spain not being able to secure rental cars for their stay over the holiday period. Those that have, have said they are being charged over the odds and being hit with high insurance policies.

News Source © 2009 carrentals.

If you are looking for car hire in Spain (or other worldwide locations) over the Christmas and New Year or in 2010 why not visit the holiday autos website HERE

Tuesday 15 December 2009

Car rental excess reminder for Christmas travellers

This has just been published by Insurance Daily

by Gill Montia

Insurance4carrental.com is reminding Christmas travellers to take out car hire excess insurance if they are hiring their transport.

The website promotes specialists in the excess insurance sector, including insurance4carhire.com whose spokesman, Philip Suter, comments that annual policies can prove very good value for money, although most providers also have daily policies at competitive prices.

There is increasing awareness among the motoring public that renting a car also involves additional insurance; in the Eurozone in particular drivers making a claim have been charged excesses of up to £1,000 by rental providers, many of which operate in popular holiday and second home destinations.

Furthermore, while rental agreements normally include cover for collision damage and theft, it is commonplace for the insurance supplied to exclude damage to a vehicle’s undercarriage, tyres and windows.

Most rental companies offer excess insurance but consumers are advised to shop around as it is likely to be at a higher premium than can be obtained from a specialist provider.

Monday 14 December 2009

Make sure you have car hire excess for Christmas

It is that time of year again when many people are going of on a Christmas or New Year break. If you are going away and renting a car or just taking your own, Don't forget your insurance.

We put out a Press Release today entitled "car hire excess insurance reminder for Christmas or New Year break"

You will remember the presents, the food, the tickets, but have you got Travel Insurance?
Remember as well if you are leaving your home be it your own property or a rental property to make sure you leave the heating on. Temperatures can often vary considerably over the Christmas holiday season. Very mild to start with then suddenly ice and snow, so don't get caught out this year,
Have a great Christmas.

Sunday 6 December 2009

Being hit with excessive hire car charges

Going through Paul Gosling's "A Question of Cash" column in The Independent on Saturday 5th December 09, I came across this.

'I have been hit with excessive hire car charges'...
Question: I hired a car from Europcar. Afterwards I had to pay two extra charges. One was for €2.50 and the other €75 (£68), plus 20 per cent VAT, which were taken from my credit card without authorisation. Yet I had paid an extra premium so that I didn't have to pay any insurance excess.

There were a couple of scratches on the car when returned. But I did not have any accidents and if these happened during the time of hire, they must have been caused by other cars whilst the hired vehicle was parked.

I made a declaration at the time of returning the vehicle that the car had not been in any accidents. I have been unable to get Europcar to make a refund and I regard the charges as excessive. KB, by email.

Answer: Europcar has confirmed that €75 was charged as "a damage processing administration fee" imposed by Europcar Italy. "This is a standard fee with Europcar Italy, as stated in the terms and conditions of the rental agreement," says the company and is not affected by your payment of a premium to cover the insurance excess. You were unaware of any damage to the car while it was your responsibility.

There are two explanations for this: it may have been damaged while parked, or it may have been there before you rented it, but was not noted on the rental agreement. Europcar is not prepared to waive the charge and we can only suggest that next time you hire a car that you park carefully and check the surface of the hire car carefully before you rent it.

Have you had any similar experiences? Reply via this blog or via this contact page.

Friday 20 November 2009

A car hire rental experience from 2000

I was going through some archive filing, I found copy correspondence with a car hire company that used to hire out great value Mercedes A Class cars.

Like many other users of this service in 2000, I was taken for a ride with charges for alleged damage to the vehicle upon it's return.

It was most frustrating with BBC TV's Watchdog consumer programme becoming involved, MPs and other media outlets.

The £150 debitted to my credit account was eventually refunded and the full account of this episode has been posted up on the insurance4carrental.com site entitled An early experience of hiring a car

If you have any bad experiences and want to share them, please reply on this blog or on our Twitter Page Here

Thursday 5 November 2009

What does all the car hire jargon mean?

This is something I tried to find out today and spent ten minutes going from one car hire company's web site to another.

There are numerous terms like Standard Damage Excess Waiver (SDEW) - Weekly Accident Indemnity (WAI) - Emergency Medical Evacuation (EVE) - Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) - Repatriation of Remains (ROR) -Personal Effects Coverage (PEC) and we have added a special page at the insurance4carrental.com website

It seems like each individual company comes up with names and abreviations to confuse the general public. Not every company I visited does it, however fortunately most are not on the introduction page.

It is rather confusing for those renting cars. HolidayAutos only had three of these pieces of jargon.

Why not reply to this blog and let us know your experiences?

Saturday 24 October 2009

Autumn Half term Holidays here - are you renting a car?

Left: Shop window dressed for Halloween in Dublin, Ireland - (Photo jml Property Services)
The nights are getting darker, clocks go back this weekend and Monday is the October 26th bank holiday in Ireland.

Halloween and November 5th Fire works celebrations are just days away and so are the autumn (fall) half term holidays.

Despite the recession, many people will be taking a few days holiday with their family as they enjoy a break from school. No doubt you could be hiring a car.

Naturally if you are hiring a car remember you will have to pay certain additions, usually the
Collision Damage Waiver or CDW. Collision damage waiver is the insurance that will provide cover for damage to the rented vehicle. You can insure against this and it is called "car hire excess insurance"

You can usually buy these policies from the car hire company, but quite often you are paying more that using a provider like questor insurance or insurance4carhire. They offer very competively priced daily policies and annual policies that are really great value. Both of the providers advertise at our website insurance4carrental.com If you are hiring a car close to home you cannot be covered by the annual policy (check small print), however according to our contacts at insurance4carhire their daily policy does.

We covered this in more detail back in July this year on this blog site "Renting a car close to home, can I buy car hire excess insurance?"

As there are lots of times when you will need to rent locally like:

  • People only have one car, it is holiday time and they need a larger one for a day trip - ideal for a day trip on the half term holiday

  • There is only one car the family has and a family member is using this and another family member needs a car for a day or two.

  • There is no regular car of their own as the family lives in the city centre and parking is expensive and limited and they prefer to rent when they need one.

  • The car is in the garage for repair.

If you are not going away you may decide to stay at home and decorate or undertake some DIY project. Part of the problem is that you need to transport materials and you can't get these in the family car. You decide to hire a van. Rather like with hiring a car you will have to pay the excess insurance to the van hire company.

For just £7.99 per day, you can be protected against Van Excess charges, whenever you rent a van in the UK. Find out more here

Finally apart from car hire excess insurance we at jml insurance also act asd introducers for lots of other products including Travel Insurance, Property Insurance, Wedding Insurance, Pet Insurance and even products ffor people with criminal convictions. Take a look at our website sometime jml-insurance.co.uk

Have a great break, however if you are not taking one remember "insurance is one essential you can't afford to be without today.

Tuesday 13 October 2009

Holiday Car Hire - More on the 2009 chaos

On Sunday the 11th October, “The Mail on Sunday” an article entitled Holiday car hire: Get the rental details right and avoid the chaos by the newspaper’s feature writer Fred Mawer. As with so many articles these days, advice on this blog and our website www.insurance4carrental.com he started the article with the words. “Car hire is something many of us put off sorting out until the last minute, long after we have booked our flights and accommodation.”

Mr Mawer went on to explain that In previous years, this hasn't been a problem because there have always been enough vehicles available in mainstream holiday resorts and, unlike with airline fares, rental costs haven't really fluctuated. But 2009 has been different saying that some holiday makers who had not booked early enough in Spain had ended up paying £400 per week to hire a small car.

The message very simply expressed by this Mail on Sunday journalist and others like Harriet Meyer of The Observer and Simon Calder of The Independent had been that you should book well ahead if you want to be sure of a hire car. It is easy to put this off to the last moment. You have secured your flights and villa rental, however something as straightforward as arranging car hire is left on “the things to do pile” near the bottom.

The Mail on Sunday’s article explained once again that the situation during the summer of 2009 came about because car rental companies operated with smaller fleets. Due to the current recession, car manufacturers are making fewer vehicles anyway and rental firms have been struggling to get credit from banks to purchase replacement cars.

As with Harriet Meyer and Simon Calder a quote was found by Car hire broker Holiday Autos Managing Director Stuart Nassos, saying “This year, car rental fleets in Spain have shrunk by 35 to 40 per cent and in Portugal, Italy and France, we've also seen fleet reductions of 15 to 20 per cent. As a result, at peak times - over Easter and during July and August - there was a shortage of cars and with demand sometimes outstripping supply, prices went through the roof. The situation in Spain was the worst”.

The article also quoted Gareth Robinson, Managing Director of price-comparison website carrentals.co.uk, says the problems look set to continue at periods of peak demand this autumn and winter. 'In winter-sun destinations such as the Canaries and Madeira, and at airports for skiing holidays such as Geneva and Chambery, at times I anticipate there will be a limited choice of vehicles and prices will be pushed up for late bookers,' he says.

Last week on the 6th October we posted a story on this blog site entitled Is there still a shortage of car hire vehicles in Europe? and it seems evident from Gareth Robinson’s comments that there will be.

Meanwhile Stuart Nassos of Holiday Autos is more concerned about next summer and has commented that 'It looks as if the challenging conditions may repeat themselves next summer, We're seeing many more people booking their car now for next summer than would have been the case in previous years.'

It is good to book several months ahead if you are one hundred per cent sure of your t holiday plans. We know that through our self catering villas site, www.jmlvillas.com that a local agent in the Algarve in Portugal has taken a lot of bookings for the summer of 2010 and is receiving a lot of enquiries.

The article ends up with an excellent plug for insurance4carhire.com by saying “Shop around for excess waiver. While rental firms quote rates including insurance against damage and theft, the cover usually comes with an excess - what you're still liable to pay in the event of an accident - running into hundreds of pounds. Rental firms let you reduce the excess to zero for an additional hefty fee, but even then you often have to pay for any damage to the tyres, windscreen or roof.
You are better off taking out an excess-waiver policy with a specialist insurer: it will be much cheaper and will cover damage to all parts of the car. See carhireexcess.com and worldwideinsure.com for cover from under £2 a day in Europe, www.insurance4carhire.com is competitive with its annual policies.

The article lists other cost saving suggestions as we have been saying recently like look out for those additnal charges like, additionaldrivers, child seats and even sat nav navigation systems.We are now into mid-October so with Christmas and winter holidays around the corner if you are hiring a car, you should make the arrangements as soon as possible plus arranging the car hire excess insurance.

Thursday 8 October 2009

Just renewed our Europe Family & Partners Car hire Excess Insurance

In October 2003 when my wife and I took out our first Annual Excess Car Hire insurance with Insurance4carhire we had individual policies. Each policy cost £49.00 which it still does some six years later. No increases there unlike a lot of insurance products.

Our annual outlay on this was £98.00 and to date, fortunately neither of us have had to make a claim when we have been away hiring a car. However rather like taking out AA cover on our own cars or Legal protection insurance on a rental property, taking this cover is beneficial, because you never know when you might need it.

We have also found that it is cheaper to take out an annual policy rather than daily ones when we are renting a car a few times in the year. We have also found it cheaper to buy the insurance4carhire.com product than buying it from the car rental company.

A couple of years ago at this time of year when we were about to renew the policy, we discovered that insurance4carhire had a "Europe Family & Partners 31" policy for only £79.00.

This looked ideal as it covers 2 policy holders, who must be family members or partners, travelling toether or separately. The policyholders and all additional drivers on the car rental agreement for unlimited use throught the 12 month period. It Covers Excess on damage to the rental vehicle including the undercarriage, Excess on theft, and damage to windows and tyres
What is more it saves us £19.00 a year so is well worth considering and as our present insurance policy does not expire till the end of the month, we have arranged it today and in fact you can arrange them up to three months in advance. You can also pay be credit card too.

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Tuesday 6 October 2009

Is there still a shortage of car hire vehicles in Europe?

Throughout the main holiday season, particularly in southern Europe, it has been rather frustrating for those wanting to rent a car and unless the booking was made far in advance.

On this blog in July we ran a story entitled "Book your car hire early this summer - you might not get one at the last minute" It tells the story of some regular visitors to Nice in the south of France who had not booked in advance and when they arrived there could only find luxury cars available like an Audi TT.

These types of cars do tend to be rather expensive to rent, if all you want is a small Citroen with air conditioning.Then on this site on the 10th August we ran an article "Shortage of Car hire vehicles in Spain". This was following Simon Calder's article in The Independent's travel pages about a visitor who had booked “a pay on arrival” car with “DoYouSpain.com” and was contacted a couple of days before he was due to arrive in Palma Airport in Mallorca that no vehicle was available.

This renter did find one in the end however and found a Renault Clio that was available and would cost £843. In his original booking it was going to be £197!Simon Calder also researched other airports and discovered no vehicles at Faro in Portugal, Ibiza or Mahón in Menorca. At Málaga you get VW Polo for £472 for the week.Following on from this we ran a story "Where have all the car hire rentals gone?" on our insurance4carrental.com site. The story outlined the problems of the summer where Car rental companies were saying they have not been able to buy enough vehicles because of a fall in manufacturing and tighter lending conditions.

Car hire broker Holiday Autos Managing Director Stuart Nassos was saying that the shortage was blamed on shortages in the recession as car manufacturers have cut the number of cars being built, therefore fewer are available and also there is a lack of credit. The two combine to create a perfect storm. He suggested that advised holidaymakers should not rely on an airport booking, which may be cancelled at short notice, but to book a car from a city location.Last month on the insurance4carrental.com site we featured a report entitled "car hire vehicle shortage predicted for September 09".

This was about an article by Harriet Meyer of "The Observer" saying that there will be a shortage of hire cars in European hotspots and steep price rises may cause problems for travellers into September.Our story also took into account northern Europe as we had asked a car hire company in northern Europe on how they had got around the problem of not having enough cars in the height of the summer and they had replied that they had put up prices and this had solved the problem.So there were predictions of problems running into September.It would be interesting to know if this actually happened and has it continued into October by adding your comments in the box on the right "add your comments here".

I look forward to hearing from you and it will be interesting to see if there are more cars about again in 2009.

Thursday 1 October 2009

Who needs car rental excess insurance?

Just filing a few old emails and came across this Google Alert from those people at insurance4carhire.com with the following article.

Car rental excess insurance exists to give people renting cars additional security and peace of mind.

It is a sad fact that accidents can happen at any time including when driving a rented vehicle. In such circumstances the insurance cover that is included as standard with the vehicle rental may prove to be limited and involve the renter in significant additional payments towards the cost of any claims arising.

When booking the vehicle initially the hirer should check carefully to see what insurance is included as this varies by country and rental company. It may or may not include cover for things such as third party, fire, theft and damage to the vehicle itself. Not only should the areas covered be confirmed, but also any exclusions and limitations. As an example, it is always important to ensure that the third party insurance levels are high enough to meet the hirers needs and potential exposures.

In many countries the basic insurance that comes with the vehicle typically provides cover for fire, theft, third-party claims and some forms of damage to the rented vehicle with this latter usually called Collision Damage Waiver or CDW. For all categories of claim the policy may contain large excesses in other words the first part of the total claim amount that the renter will be expected to pay in the event of an accident.

These excesses could amount to very significant amounts of money running into hundreds or possibly thousands of pounds/dollars that the renter would need to find following an accident.

It is usually possible to reduce the excesses payable and broaden the cover by paying the car rental company for top-up insurance at the time of rental and this is also sometimes called car rental excess insurance. This usually has to be done on a rental-by-rental basis and may prove expensive.

There is another insurance alternative that can reduce these risks and costs.

Specialist car rental excess insurance offers protection against these excesses and can be purchased on-line through various insurance companies. In the event of an accident, the renter will pay the excess as stipulated by the car rental policy, but then claim this amount back through their car rental excess insurance policy.

This type of insurance may also offer other significant advantages. Many basic insurance policies that come as part of the rental itself may exclude damage to some parts of the rented vehicle including windows, glass, roof, wheels and tyres.

Many car rental excess insurance products will include cover for these items as part of their basic policy, thereby allowing the renter to claim back any payments made for damage to those areas. They may also increase the amount of personal liability cover provided for the hirer.

Another possible advantage arises from the fact that car rental excess insurance is sold to the policyholder and is not restricted to a given car rental arrangement or company. What this means is that it may be possible to purchase this type of insurance to cover all car rentals during a given period of perhaps 3 months or even a year. Typically this will offer cost and logistical advantages to renters, particularly those planning to rent several times in a period of time.

Car rental excess insurance may have its own conditions and limitations. Policies of this type may only cover rentals that take place more than a specified distance from the policyholders home. Typically they will also exclude specialist rentals such as goods vehicles, sports cars, vintage or antique vehicles and very high value cars such as a Rolls Royce. As is good practice with all types of insurance, the policy details should be checked before purchase to ensure that they will meet the needs of the individual renter.

Car hire insurance policies can vary in cost and detail of cover and it would be sensible to check the details carefully before purchase.

Interesting, reminds me must renew my car hire excess insurance later this month as it expires soon and it is always good to have peace of mind with an annual polict in case you have to suddenly go somewhere and need to hire a car.

Friday 25 September 2009

Van Hire Excess Insurance in the UK now available

A news release was circulated today to the web media including Insurance Daily.

insurance4carrental.com has announced it is now able to act as an introducer for van hire daily excess insurance.

It will cover Excess payable on the damage and theft portions of the van rental up to £1000 in any one incident, covers the policy holder and all additional named drivers (maximum seven) and can be used at all van rental locations and with all licensed van rental companies.

That is good news for those people who rent vans. More details are Here

Wednesday 23 September 2009

Car Hire hidden rental costs

Came accross this article the other day Car rental hidden costs it was on a wensite called "The Independent Traveler", an American website that started life in 1990.
We contacted them to see if we could publish the article as it seemed rather relevant to the insurance4carrental.com site.
We were very pleased they agreed and although the article is directed to the American audience, it does have a lot of valid points that are applicable to anyone hiring a car.
If you have had problems when renting, please reply on this blog as there appear to be a lot of people who pay additional costs that they need not do.

Tuesday 22 September 2009

Hiring a car can be more expensive than you Budgeted for

Renting a car in Dublin can be a lot more expensive than you thought. That car advertised at £35 per day suddenly becomes nearly £60 per day. It can’t help the tourist market at the moment so look out for the hidden charges.

Fortunately I only rent a car approximately four times a year, as taking a city break, the beauty of such a trip is not having to drive, find your way about or park.

There are however times when my wife and I have to rent a car, although our recent experiences have just been in France and Ireland.

Renting a car in France has always proved very straightforward apart from one occasion in 2000 renting an easyCar Mercedes in the south of France. We normally book on line , pay and know that we won’t be paying any additional charges that could come out of the blue when we go to the check in desk of the car hire company.

Following on from the incident in 2000, when we heard about Larry Dale Ursich’s company insurance4carhire being publicised one Saturday a few years ago were quick to buy the annual excess insurance policy.

Since then our company jml Property Services has become an introducer agent and through various web sits in the jml Group including http://www.insurance4carrental.com/ has generated over £87,000 worth of business for them. We therefore don’t buy the product from the car hire company as it is normally more expensive that way.

We quite often visit Dublin, Ireland and if we don’t make a long drive and sea crossing, take a short flight from the greater London area. Unfortunately the rental experience is never the same as it is in France.

The impression is that although you have made your booking, paid for it there will suddenly be little extras when you go to collect a car. One of these little extras is a €28 airport charge. We have discovered that some rental companies even make this charge if you collect the car from a city centre depot and go nowhere near the airport!

Another charge is a credit card charge, admittedly only €5.29, however it would nice to have these charges included in the “estimate price” and not added on for when you go to collect the car.

Airlines had the habit of offering very cheap flights that attracted you to fly and then when you went to book found the price had trebled because of all the fees and local taxes. We consumers like to know how we stand so we can budget accordingly. You would not be very pleased going to the local supermarket or petrol station and then just before you paid told you had to pay a compulsory charge.

In late August we made a mistake with a booking on a five day rental in Dublin. The booking was made on line and we did not accept the CDW Insurance. Collision damage waiver (CDW), sometimes confusingly also called loss damage waiver (LDW), is essentially a form of insurance that may or may not come included in the rental price of a hired car. It exists to provide cover for damage that occurs to the rented vehicle itself.

It appears that if you are paying with some American credit cards they may allow you to waive this charge. The actual daily rental quoted with the CDW was not much more than with, however going through at least three car hire providers websites for comparative pricing got somewhat confusing. We paid £167.39 on line for the five days rental .

When my wife went to collect the car, she was told as we had declined the CDW we would have to pay an additional amount of £14 a day which is more than the price would have been for an inclusive daily rate, but obviously the car hire company would want an admin fee.

She was asked to pay a further £191.39 that included a full tank of petrol. (In France we have always found that the car comes with a full tank of fuel, the car hire company swipes the credit card, but does not debit it and at the end of the rental, provided the car comes back full there is no further activity on the card) We have always been charged for fuel straightaway at Dublin.

After the car was returned full of fuel and the next credit card statement came in there was a refund of £68.80. This means that an additional amount of £122.59 was added to the rental price of £167.39 making the total rental for 5 days £289.98 ( or £57.99 per day) for the lowest price card.

My wife was told she was given a free upgrade, but it looks like she had to pay for it!. When we emailed the car hire company about the charges they simply stated they were correct.
It is most important that whenever you book a car rental that you check thoroughly to see if the price is inclusive of collection, road tax, credit cards etc.

Some car rental companies charge for additional drivers, some only charge for more than one additional driver. Most car hire companies charge for car hire excess insurance unless you have arranged this yourself and of course you could be paying more for roof racks and child seats.

The cheapest car rental price, may not in fact be the cheapest one by the time the add ons arrive.

There are airport fees at Dublin, it would be interesting to hear from other people if many other airports have these and which ones. If you can help we would like to compile a list and what they charge.

Thursday 17 September 2009

insurance4carrental has just joined Twitter

insurance4carrental has just joined Twitter.

Now you can check out our Tweets and start following us as we will follow others.

We will continue to run information on hiring cars here on this blog site and add the alerts to Twitter.

In case you want to follow insurance4carrental.com on Twitter follow this link

Wednesday 16 September 2009

Excess insurance could wipe out over £524million of consumers' costs

Got this information from a press release earlier in week, although the release is a few months old, it looks good.

Cash-strapped consumers spend a yearly average of £524million* on motor and home excesses so in a bid to help them recoup their costs on these and other insurances, insure4excess.com has launched a policy that reimburses claimants' payouts to insurers.

Known as Excess Protection, the annual policy covers excess costs incurred on motor, home, travel, pet and private medical insurance policies - ensuring consumers no longer have to 'write off' substantial amounts when making a claim.

Insure4excess underwriters estimate the average excesses for the five most commonly-held policies total around £540. Claimants' liabilities are around £100 for home, travel and private medical insurance, £180 for motor and £60 for pet. More on this here

Thursday 10 September 2009

Affiliate website car Hire Excess Insurance

We came across a website recently that was informing prospective web providers about affiliate plans on offer.

One of these was for insurance4carhire.com offering Car Hire Excess Insurance and Car Rental Excess Insurance. The information this company was providing was:


Insurance4CarHire sells excess insurance for consumers hiring a motor vehicle. When a consumer hires a vehicle, insurance4carhire can protect the user for any claims or damages that are made, requiring them to pay their excess. With Insurance4carhire, the excess is protected and the consumer doesn’t pay.


Annual policies from £49 (their biggest seller) protect the user for any car hire contracts they take out across the territory of the product. The more expensive products cover worldwide territories as well as extended driving time of up to 60 days. I4CH also sells a daily package for around £4 per day however this will be only a small part of the programme.

All very interesting, to find out more about car hire excess companies go into www.insurance4carrental.com where you can learn more about both insurance4carhire.com and Questor car hire excess insurance.

Monday 31 August 2009

Shortage of car hire vehicles predicted for September 2009

Shortages of car hire vehicles in the main European hot spots have been very much in the public eye in the summer of 2009. It looks like this will continue into September as well.

There was an article in yesterday’s UK Observer (30th August 09) by Harriet Meyer entitled “Keeping a cool head as cutbacks turn up the heat on holiday car hire” saying that there will be a shortage of hire cars in European hotspots and steep price rises may cause problems for travellers into September.

This appears to be very much the pattern of the summer so far, as we have been highlighting on the insurance4carrental.com site and our car hire excess insurance blog site. Back in July we reported the story of two people who are regular visitors to the south of France who could not rent a car at Nice. In the end through a friend of a friend they rented a car body work repair shop’s courtesy car.

In August we highlighted the situation in southern Europe, particularly Spain and Portugal and on both occasions advised travellers to book their car hire vehicles early. The Observer’s article was giving the same advice.

More information here

Sunday 30 August 2009

How to save money when you hire a car

Although the main summer season is drawing to a close and the 2009 car rental shortages ending, people rent cars throughout the year and there are ways to cut costs when you rent a car. Normally when you hire a car the vehicle will come with a full tank of fuel. Under the hire agreement in most cases you will find that you have to return the car with a full tank or the car hire company will re-fuel the vehicle, but will usually make an administrative charge for doing this.

This of course is understandable as it is going to take time taking the car to a petrol filling station, even if it is only a hundred metres away from their car hire depot.
If the car has been returned full it can be efficiently checked over, cleaned and be ready for the next customer and with shortages of car hire vehicles in July and August 2009 in many parts of Europe this has been most important.

There are a few car hire companies that actually encourage a renter to return the car empty, so they can automatically charge the customer an administration fee.
So always check the situation out when you are signing up the car hire documentation at the check in desk and then you can save money.

When you do fill up with petrol or diesel, remember to keep the receipt so you can show it to the car hire return check in staff if asked. There have been cases whereby renters have added water to make the tank full, or bought diesel instead of unleaded petrol. The majority of rental vehicles have stickers on the outside of the fuel cap area and inside the area as well.

Another way to save money when renting a hire car is to buy your car hire excess insurance from a specialist insurance provider. Their daily policies are normally a lot cheaper than those provided as an additional cost onto the car rental by the car hire company. The reason is fairly straightforward they add a higher profit margin on. The website http://www.insurance4carrental.com/ acts as an introducer advertising service for a couple of providers and you can buy daily car hire excess policies or an even better idea is the annual policy.

If you have any further tips please let us know via this blog.

Thursday 20 August 2009

Insurance4carhire.com raises funds for charities in 2009

Insurance4carhire.com is an online insurance company providing car rental excess insurance, a low cost alternative to the expensive Excess Waiver charges offered by car rental companies and are valid for car hire in Europe, the US/Canada and Worldwide. Not only is the company adept at helping people save money, they are also involved in delivering real projects that make a difference to people's lives.

The company has been working with their customers and colleagues to raise funds for specific projects at four great charities which touch the lives of most people. As part of the Towergate Group, Insurance4carhire.com is supporting Towergate's four nominated charities - the Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity, Help the Hospices, Childline and Cancer Research UK.

The Towergate Charitable Foundation (www.towergate.org.uk) ensures that funds are channeled to specific charitable projects, all of which are supported by donations from Insurance4carhire.com. See www.towergate.org.uk for details. For Cancer Research UK, Insurance4carhire.com help pay for Professor Adrian Harris world leading molecular medicine project at Cancer Research UK's Oxford Research centre. For Childline, Insurance4carhire.com are helping to pay to train volunteer staff at 11 call centres across UK so that all of the 4,500 children who call each day can receive help.

The financial contribution at the Great Ormond Street Hospital is effectively paying to build two isolation units in the new Cardiac & Respiratory wing which will cut post operation infection. At
Help the Hospices, they are contributing towards paying for 17 Scholarships for senior Hospice staff to take a Masters in Hospice leadership at £5k each. They are also providing £50k to an Innovations Grant Fund that will provide grants to local hospices who wish to test innovative fund raising schemes but do not have all the launch money needed.

Insurance4carhire.com invites its customers to make a difference to the community today by adding a charity donation of just £1 to their insurance payment. Not only can consumers save in this economic climate, they can continue to support charities and those less fortunate by choosing Insurance4carhire.com.

Tuesday 18 August 2009

Low Car Hire Insurance

Car hire insurance is a must have when renting a vehicle regardless of where you are located in the world. Most insurance companies are offering car hire insurance cover nowadays and it is even easy for one to buy this insurance cover online. With most of the major insurers competing for a share of the internet market, one can easily get very reasonable rates on car hire insurance if they take their time to compare prices before buying. Still, some insurance companies have partnered with car hire companies to offer discounted rates on car hire insurance. It is now possible to get very fair rates on day to day car hire plans. This adds to the many options of choosing the most convenient insurance plan when hiring a car. Other than the daily packages, there are other covers suitable for weekly, monthly, annual, periodical and long-term hire.

Frequent travelers will definitely find the car hire excess insurance both valuable and economic. Under this insurance package, you do not pay extra charges for any damages that the car may suffer during the period you hired it as it is all covered in the initial price. It covers all the extras which you may be required to pay such that you are not charged for damages in the event of a minor accident. You can also take advantage of car hire excess waivers which are designed to make the service friendlier. Waivers can minimize the excesses you need to pay, sometimes up to zero levels. Different companies offer different rates on waivers so it is wise to do some searching before settling for one particular insurer to ensure that they get the best deals. It can be quite expensive to buy this type of insurance package from car hire companies. The best way to get cheaper rates would be by buying through insurance companies which specialize in offering the same.

There are several other factors to consider when choosing car hire insurance policies. Some of the general things to look out for include the credibility of the insurer and the rates at which you are buying the cover. Insurance is costly and it is therefore always good to do some comparison so that you get the fairest deals you can lay your hands on. You should also consider the regional coverage of the cover more so if you intend to cross the continent. The company you choose to buy your car hire cover from should in this case have a worldwide presence so that the service becomes convenient and cheaper for you.

The third party cover, collision damage and theft protection aspects of car hire insurance that one also needs to bear in mind. In most countries, it is mandatory that insurers provide these three covers even on hired cars. Some crafty insurers have a way of twisting around this so that you get to pay for damages incurred in case of an accident. A good car hire insurance cover should take care of this.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/insurance-articles/low-car-hire-insurance-939166.html

About the Author: For more information please check out the resource site Car Hire Insurance and its partner site Car Hire Excess Insurance

Monday 10 August 2009

Shortage of Car hire vehicles in Spain

Simon Calder The Independent’s travel writer reported in the 8th August that there is a shortgage in Spain this summer. He told the story of a Mr Carl Whitaker who had booked “a pay on arrival” car with “DoYouSpain.com” and was contacted a couple of days before he was due to arrive in Palma Airport in Mallorca that no vehicle was available.

You don’t have to pay till you arrive, can cancel without penalty and according to their website “DoYouSpain.com is a company dedicated to providing you with efficient low-cost car hire services in Spain. We take pride in offering reliable and flexible services with our All Inclusive Price Policy with No hidden costs or last minute surprises.” Checking their conditions on the web, their was no reference to them cancelling, however I would presume further terms conditions would appear when a customer makes a booking.

Apparently Mr Whitaker tracked down an alternative car and the Renault Clio that was available would cost £843. In his original booking it was going to be £197.

Simon went onto check other popular Spanish airports for a weeks rental and also Faro airport in the Algarve, Portugal. He found a VW Golf at £751 which is around £100 a day and his research discovered no vehicles at Faro, Ibiza or Mahón in Menorca. At Málaga you get a VW Polo for £472 for the week.

In July in a headline in the jmlvillas.com group’s cotedazurrental.com “Travel News” There was the story link for “Book your car hire early this summer - you might not get one at the last minute” reporting on a shortgage of cars at Nice airport in the south of France. Using Holiday Autos for a search I found cars in Alicante. Spain for a rental starting on the 12th August “ there was no problem, however who knows in a few days time they could be just as busy, so whenever possible try and book well in advance, particularly in the height of the summer”.

Back in October on the main jmlvillas.com main site In “Tips and Topics In Ireland 2008 onwards” there was a report about “car dealers are facing increased congestion on their forecourts. as a large number of Self drive car rental hire cars are returning to their forecourts to be sold/ 18.712 hire car vehicles were supplied to date in 2008 and the cars are being returned to be sold as "used cars. Apparently there are not so many hire cars in Ireland this year and on my visits to Ireland have seen several cars out on the roads that are operated by car rental that had 2008 and even 2007 registrations.

August is probably one of the busiest periods for car hire companies and if the economic situation improves next year then hopefully the car hire operators will have more stock again, however in the short term as Simon Calder points out in his article “Rental companies are making a mint from the hole in the hire-car market”.

Try and book in advance whenever possible, arrange your booking, arrange your car hire excess insurance in advance and have a stressful trip.

Tuesday 4 August 2009

It is early August are you off on holiday? Got your car hire arranged?

4th August 2009 - We are in the height of the summer holiday season, but the weather is not too hot in the south of England today around 19 degrees and it is raining.

If you are starting your holiday later this week and are renting a car, do make sure you have taken out car hire excess insurance in advance. Car hire rental excess insurance is something that you may chose to ignore completely – particularly if you happen to like large and unpleasant financial shocks.

Such shocks are a very real possibility when hiring a car. That’s because the insurance provided by the hire company will, in all likelihood, contain a critical limitation. Buried somewhere in the small print will probably be a clause to the effect that the policy contains ‘excess’ and the excess is usually stated to be a financial amount between GBP £500 and GBP£1500!!

What you may be liable for:

If you have an accident that results in a claim then you will have to make a mandatory contribution to the cost – in other words the ‘excess amount’ that is sometimes also called the ‘first part’ of any claim. So if the policy excess is defined in the hire agreement to be £750 and you have an accident resulting in GBP£500’ worth of damage to the rented car, you should expect to see a charge to your credit card of the GBP£500 because it is below the policy’s stated excess. Should the damage be assessed at GBP£1500, you will get a charge to your credit card for the full £750 excess.

What is the best solution -

Take out a daily excess or annual excess policy. You can even take out one for family and partners and age group 75 -85.

Our website insurance4carrental.com is full of information, articles and links to well known providers like insurance4carhire.com and Questor. We do not sell the these products, just act as introducers under the terms of the UK FSA regulations.

So if you are off on holiday later this week, later this month or next month, arrange the car hire excess today. You don't want to leave that till the last minute.

If you are taking a holiday in the UK in the next few days, if you rent a convertable, make sure the roof closes it ok, it lookws like there is going to be a fair amount of rain about.

Monday 27 July 2009

Business booms for insurance4carrental.com

That was the headline on the "Insurance Daily" report this afternoon.

The insurance4carrental.com website has just had a makeover and now boasts some twenty pages of specialist advertising from providers like Questor, dailyexcess.com and insurance4carrental.com plus many pages for those thinking about hiring a car, be it for pleasure or business.

Insurance4carrental.com is a trading name of jml Property Services and part of the jml Insurance website group. They act purely as introducers under the terms of the UK's FSA regulatory body.

Let us know if you have any car rental experiences.

Thursday 23 July 2009

Renting a car close to home, can I buy car hire excess insurance?

This is is a querstion I raised recently with the people at insurance4carhire.com.

Apparently if you take out one of their annual policies there are restrictions. It is Not valid if vehicle is rented from a location within 150km of usual residence (for example, if you live in London, you are not covered to rent a vehicle in London. The rental location must be more than 150km away from your London home).

As there are many people needing a car to rent close to home for different reasons like:

  • They only have one car, it is holiday time and they need a larger one for a day trip
  • They only have one car and a family member is using this and another family member needs a car for a day or two.
  • They don't have a regular car of their own and prefer to rent when they need one.
  • The car is in the garage for repair.
Although the annual policies do not cover this type of situation apparently the " The Daily Excess Reimbursement Insurance" policy does. According to their website the only geographical exclusions are: No cover is provided under this policy for any trip in, to, or through Afghanistan, Belarus, Cuba, Congo, Iran, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Liberia, North Korea, Myanmar, Sudan and Zimbabwe'

The website says it costs £4.50 (€5.76) per day and it covers:

Cover Excess on damage to the rented vehicle, Excess on theft Covers damage to windows, tyres, undercarriage & the roof

Valid worldwide: can be used at all car rental locations and with all car rental companies

Covers the policy holder & all additional drivers

Next time I need a rental car when I am in my home area I will certainly get this Daily Excess Reimbursement Insurance

          Monday 20 July 2009

          Five Reasons to buy Car hire excess insurance from Questor

          Did you know that according to the Questor Insurance website:

          1.They have a total commitment to customer service from sale through to supporting their clients should they have a claim
          2.No hidden charges - Questor does not charge its clients any fees our remuneration comes from our Underwriters
          3.They offer the best price/cover combinations
          4.Their products are designed by us for delivery through the Internet
          5.They are innovators and market leaders in the products that we offer

          Don't take my word for it take a look at their website Questor

          Renting a car for business or pleasure?....... Don't forget the car hire excess insurance.

          Have you used them, I would like feedback.

          Tuesday 14 July 2009

          Hope those tourists had pre-paid car hire excess insurance

          Monday 13th July 2009. I was walking passing a car rental office in North Dublin, Ireland that must have had some twenty people plus back packs waiting for cars to rent.

          I hope that the individuals renting a car had bought their car hire excess insurance before using the car provider. I know that many of these car hire companies charge more for the excess insurance than specialist providers like insurance4carhire.com and questor insurance.

          I have rented cars in Dublin for over 25 years now and some of the people I have experienced behind the rental desk have not been too helpful.

          I have been told that the annual car hire excess insurance I had was not as good as the car rental company’s product, it would not cover me sufficiently and I should really buy their one as well. This is possibly because they can make a good commission out of these and the specialist questor or insurance4carhire policies are usually cheaper!

          I have also found that they do not always make it clear exactly where their cars are being kept at Dublin airport and maybe some customer service training would help.

          Unlike many other locations you always have to pay an airport surcharge at Dublin. I believe this is currently over €30.Even if you rent from the city centre, apparently you still pay this. This is as nearly as bad with London Luton airport’s recently introduced charges for dropping off and collecting passengers where there is now a fee, or for using the airport trolleys it is not very welcoming for tourists.

          It must be frustrating for local Dublin residents who need to rent a car for a couple of days for a weekend away or whilst their car is being repaired to have to pay an airport charge.

          Warning from Car hire Rental companies

          On a recent visit to France the car hire company had included a very useful “Warning for renters” in French and English.

          If you are hiring a car these days it is well worth considering the following advice on vehicle security:

           When returning the car you should hand the car keys to a uniformed member of staff at the rental desk. DO NOT leave the keys in the car. DO NOT give the keys to anyone, particularly in the return car parking area. If you do not follow this return procedure you may be liable for the full value of the vehicle if it is stolen.
           When you leave the car unattended (for example at a petrol filling station) always take the keys with you and lock the doors.
           As a precaution, when driving in some city areas, it is suggested you keep the doors locked and the windows closed.
           Do not leave personal belongings on display in the car.
           When parking, if possible leave the car in a secure, well lit parking area.

          Thanks to Alamo, National and Citer car rental for this information.

          Friday 10 July 2009

          Book your car hire early this summer - you might not get one at the last minute

          Due to the world economic situation, it appears that many car rental companies have not been replacing their car hire fleets and decreasing the number of vehicles they have.

          Earlier this week I heard of two people who had decided to take a last minute break at a friend's villa in the south of France arrived at Nice airport hoping to rent a car. They could not find anything apart from an Audi TT that was rather expensive for the week due to the type of car it is.

          One of their friends contacted several car rental companies on the phone and was politely told they had no vehicles available.

          Eventually they were able to source a vehicle (but would not be able to collect it for a couple of days) from a vehicle body repair company that provides courtesy cars. This was only possible because the villa owner actually knew of this company.

          I normally use Holiday Autos and looked on their website seaching for cars at Nice airport for the next day. There was a message saying "We do not have any cars that meet your requirements" and I found the same situation on the 11th July looking for a car from 12th.

          I then tried looking for a car from the 12th Augusst and had no problems. Remaining with a search in France for around 12th July and tried Lille Airport. Obviously not such a popular area in northern France as there are cars available.

          Finally moving on to another popular location Alicante in Spain, there was no problem, however who knows in a few days time they could be just as busy, so whenever possible try and book well in advance, particularly in the height of the summer when events like the Juan Les Pins Jazz Festival is on.

          Remember of course when book you car rental, from any car rental company to take adequate car hire excess insurance. Companies like insurance4carhire.com and questor offer great value policies that are usually cheaper than those offered by the car rental companies themselves.

          You will normally be quoted a daily or weekly or period of rental you require cost for the car rental, however there are normally extras like car hire excess insurance, additional drivers, airport collection fee (not memany airports add this on, however Dublin airport in Ireland does and it a lot of money as it appears an easy way to make additional income from their clients) so check this out first.

          Have a great summer holiday and if you have any experiences you want to share please use this blog.

          Monday 6 July 2009

          Lost car hire keys cost money

          Just renting a car as I have done take great care with car keys. If you lose them and need a replacement it can cost a fixed amount of €200 as with this car rental company in France.

          You can of course make sure you have taken out a car hire excess policy and buying an annual policy costs around £50 - or with the present exchange rate approx under €60.

          It is no good ruining your trip because of this and links to major car hire excess providers can be found at www.insurance4carrental.com

          Enjoy these warm sunny summer days and make sure you take out car hire excess insurance before you collect your car rental.

          It is usually cheaper to buy a policy from a specialist provider than from a car hire company.

          Friday 26 June 2009

          Questions and Answers from insurance4carhire

          Going travelling soon and hiring a car for your holidays?

          I found a set of interesting questions and answers from those insurance4carhire.com people.

          CDW insurance for Asia:
          Q) Do you cover CDW (collision damage waiver) in Asia?

          A) Yes we cover CDW for Asia with either our daily CDW insurance policy, which is £5.99 a day or our annual policies starting at £109

          Car hire excess insurance for the Canary Islands
          Q) Does your Europe policy cover the excess for my car hire in the Canary Islands?

          A) Yes, the Europe 31 policy covers the excess on car hire in the Canary Islands.

          Car hire excess charges in North America
          Q) Is an excess on car hire charged in North America?

          A) Excess on car hire is generally not charged in North America, however there are some companies that charge for damage to the windows, tyres, undercarriage and roof. If this is the case then our excess policies will cover you for these items

          Car hire excess insurance South America
          Q) Does your Worldwide 31 car hire excess policy cover car hire in South America?

          A) If you car hire comes with insurance, the Worldwide 31 policy will cover the excess that you may be liable for should you damage the vehicle or if its stolen whilst in your possession.

          Car hire excess insurance for the Far East
          Q) I live in the Far East, am I still able to purchase one of your car hire excess insurance policies?

          A) Yes, our car hire excess insurance policies are available for customers worldwide.

          Car hire excess insurance Australia
          Q) How much does an annual car hire excess insurance policy cost that will cover Australia?

          A) Our Worldwide 31 car hire excess insurance policy will cover you for Australia and costs £65 for one year’s cover. You can use the policy as often as you wish within the 12 month period as long as no one rental exceeds 31 continuous days.

          Car hire excess for Northern Cyprus
          Q) I am an existing customer about to renew my cover. We are going to Northern Cyprus this year. Does “Europe Insurance” cover this area?

          A) Both Northern & Southern Cyprus are covered by our Annual Excess Europe policy

          Arriving at the car rental desk
          Q) Hello - before I buy a policy, please would you advise me if Avis in Ibiza will find it acceptable? I am mindful of arriving on a very late flight with a tired family in tow, and trying to explain this policy to a Sales Agent!

          A) We bypass the car rental companies completely. We do not insure their vehicle - we insure you the Policy Holder. This means that you can use our policy with all rental companies. When you get to the car rental counter, you decline the car rental company’s Excess. This is a reimbursement insurance. If you have any damage to the vehicle, the car rental company will charge your credit card and you then claim for reimbursement. When you decline the car rental company’s Excess at the counter, they will respond in one of the following ways: they may simply swipe your card (which they will do anyhow), they may block the amount of the Excess on your card or, more rarely, they may actually withdraw the amount of the Excess from your card and release it when you return the vehicle. At any rate, if you have any damage to the vehicle, they will all charge your card and then on your return home you claim for the full amount back from us.

          Difference between Worldwide cover and USA/Canada cover

          Q) I’m a little confused about the difference between worldwide cover and USA/Canada. Do I have any level of protection in USA/Canada if I opt for the worldwide cover?

          A) When you hire a car directly when in the USA, you have the choice of taking a rental that is either fully inclusive, or fully exclusive, of car rental insurance. If you hire a car on an exclusive basis, no car rental insurance is included in the car rental price. In those circumstances, it is necessary to purchase Collision Damage Waiver/Loss Damage Waiver (CDW/LDW) and Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI). CDW/LDW covers damage, loss of use and theft of the rental vehicle, and SLI covers third party liability. These insurances are sold at the car rental counter and cost between US$20 and US$30 per day.

          Our USA & Canada policy covers:

          Supplemental Liability Insurance (Third Party) up to US$ 1 million
          Collision Damage Waiver/Loss Damage Waiver (CDW/LDW) - covering damage, theft and loss of use of the rental vehicle - up to US $80,000
          Uninsured Motorist up to US$ 100,000
          Under-insured Motorist up to US$ 100,000
          Hit & Run Motorist up to US$100,000
          Car rental excess if excess is charged (it is generally not charged in the USA)
          Damage to windows, roof, tyres & wheels and the undercarriage.
          Our Annual Excess Worldwide policy covers you for the Excess which is not usually charged in USA.

          Insurance cover for fly drive and package holidays

          Q) Hi, I have a package holiday with Thomas Cook to Florida (Sanford Airport), I just found out the included car hire with Dollar only covers SLI or third party. Thomas Cook said I can upgrade for extra but I think its too expensive. Can I use this insurance to cover for the two weeks? Am I allowed to do that? I mean will Dollar still give me the car if I have insurance with some other company?? Also there will be 2 drivers both over 25.

          A) If you require our insurance for the USA you will need to hire a car that has no insurance included and our policy will fully cover you.

          I set out below the cover and how the policy works:
          When you hire a car in the USA, you have the choice of taking a rental that is either fully inclusive, or fully exclusive, of car rental insurance. If you hire a car on an exclusive basis, no car rental insurance is included in the car rental price. In those circumstances, it is necessary to purchase Collision Damage Waiver/Loss Damage Waiver (CDW/LDW) and Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI). CDW/LDW covers damage, loss of use and theft of the rental vehicle, and SLI covers third party liability. These insurances are sold at the car rental counter and cost between US$20 and US$30 per day.
          Our USA & Canada policy covers:
          • Supplemental Liability Insurance (Third Party) up to US$ 1 million
          • Collision Damage Waiver/Loss Damage Waiver (CDW/LDW) - covering damage, theft and loss of use of the rental vehicle - up to US $80,000
          • Uninsured Motorist up to US$ 100,000
          • Under-insured Motorist up to US$ 100,000
          • Hit & Run Motorist up to US$100,000
          • Excess if excess is charged (it is generally not charged in the USA)
          • Damage to windows, roof, tyres & wheels and the undercarriage.
          If you have taken a rental that is exclusive of car rental insurance, then our Policy will fully cover you for your car rental insurance requirements

          Fly Drive programmes are generally structured so that the car rental company makes very little money on the rental, and looks to make its profit from add-ons such as insurance. For that reason, companies which participate in Fly Drive programmes do not always readily accept this insurance.

          If you are doing a Fly Drive programme, it would be sensible to contact the car rental company, tell them you can provide your own insurance, and confirm that they will accept it.

          Interesting facts there. If you are looking for car hire excess insurance take a look at insurance4carrental.com

          Wednesday 24 June 2009

          Car rental advice on Irish Radio

          With school holidays fast approaching in Ireland many people will be renting cars overseas. The Myles Dungan Today consumer programme offered advice on what to do and not to do.
          I was in Dublin earlier this week and whilst I was sitting in the car wash, RTÉ Radio One’s Today with Myles Dungan programme and he was interviewing a lady regarding tips for when you are renting cars.

          The interview came at a time when many Irish people will be off on their summer holidays as Irish schools (like Scottish ones) end the summer term much earlier than in England and Wales.

          The person being interviewed in this consumer feature was warning people that although if they book a car via an online provider that the ultimate responsibility lies with the car rental company itself if there are problems.

          She explained that the daily rate quoted would normally have lots of extras like car hire excess\insurance and waiver, insurance for additional drivers, however did not mention that if a renter was staying at home in Ireland, Dublin car hire rental companies normally charge an “airport fee” as well. Maybe this is just peculiar to some cities in Ireland.

          Advice was given about checking the car when you collect it. Damage, is full of fuel etc, which was rather interesting as this north Dublin petrol station is also used as a depot for a few rental cars and as my car was being washed a mini bus arrived with two couples collecting their rental cars.

          One couple never looked at the state of the car, it was very clean, but did not check for damage and the other couple were more concerned about how to open the boot. The representative helped here, but was already driving off in the mini bus before I saw him take a quick look around the 2005 Toyota.

          Apparently one issue that is very important is to make sure if you are dropping a car rental back out of hours, that you actually leave the keys. One renter from Ireland had taken the keys on the flight back from England and posted them back when he realised that he had forgotten them.
          They took a few days to get back to the car hire company and because the car could not be hired out to anyone else he had to keep on paying rent! Car hire companies don’t normally keep spares at the local depot unless it is a small organisation, so do take care not to loose them. This is another reason to take out car hire excess insurance, although not sure if the gentleman who flew off with the keys would be covered.

          Another point that was mentioned was that apparently Visa and Mastercard must now inform the cardholder if the car hire company is going to charge for damage before debiting the account. Again do make sure you have you take out the appropriate excess insurance and an annual policy certainly proves great value. A company like insurance4carhire.com caters for the Irish renting cars overseas.

          There were a few text messages to the programme with listeners’ experiences and one person who texted the programme said that he had booked a car rental in the USA costing €400, however by the time he had paid all the additional “add ons” this was €800.

          Whether you are just off on holidays, on business and have or have not rented before do make sure you take out the proper insurance, check that car when you collect it and return it and make you are insured to take the car from one country to another if you are renting in mainland Europe for example. Don't forget to take out car hire excess before you pick up that car hire vehicle. You could save a lot of money.

          Sunday 14 June 2009

          Times Online features insurance4carhire.com under Best road, rail, ferry and cruise websites

          The March 18th edition of Times Online had a feature to show “Trains, boats, automobiles... these websites will make researching and booking transport a doddle”
          Under the “Road” classification was insurance4carhire.com car hire insurance excess site that jml-insurance.com and jmlvillas.com have acted as introducers for since 2004.

          Their comment on the long established car hire excess provider was “This site is a gem if you want to avoid getting stung by car rental firms for excess charges. For an annual premium of £49 you can get cover for the total amount of excess for which you are liable if the car is damaged or stolen, and also for damage to the roof, undercarriage, windows and tyres.”

          The “Times Online” website is part of the News International Group that publishes The Times and The Sunday Times. The site is full of up to date news from these two publications.

          The £49 a year is great value considering I have just booked a 13 day car rental and was quoted £38.87 for the period for the excess waiver.

          Thursday 11 June 2009

          Don’t get caught not paying the toll on the M50 in Ireland

          To speed up the M50 “C” shaped motorway that links the north and south of Dublin with all the major motorways and “N” roads, it has been widened in part and the toll removed. The toll is for the bridge over the River Liffey and was originally the west link with a toll plaza. There are now cameras operating as you cross the toll rather like those for the London congestion charge zone.

          If you are driving an UK registered car as I was last week, apparently because you are on foreign plates does not exempt you from paying the toll. The signs are not one hundred per cent clear and you are meant to pay this charge by 8.00 the following evening.

          If you don't pay your toll before 8pm on the day following your journey, a penalty of €3 is added to the outstanding amount. If you fail to pay the toll and this €3 penalty within the next 14 days, a further penalty of €41.50 will be levied. Failure to pay the full amount due within a further 56 days will result in an additional €104.50 penalty. Then if you still have not paid the total amount due, legal proceedings will be initiated

          Motorists must carry an electronic tag, pre-register to pay automatically, or pay the following day in order to avoid penalties. All car registrations from Ireland and the UK passing through will be captured on camera.

          The National Roads Authority will use a Europe-wide debt recovery agency to seek out drivers from the UK who fail to buy an electronic tag or to pay later via the internet. It compared the fines regime to the one used in London to monitor the congestion charge.

          I paid my €3 in one direction by having to find an Internet Café and paying on line and in the other direction by finding a local SPAR shop that I could pay at. Apparently you can save money by registering your car on line at the e-flow website.

          If you are renting a car, do make sure that you check with the car rental company about the toll. Some Irish car rental companies are keeping credit card details so the amount can be debited accordingly. If you are renting a car in Northern Ireland it is worth checking there as well.

          On the 11th June it was reported that the company handling customer queries from M50 toll users has lost its contract due to the high volume of complaints about its service. BetEireFlow which is the organisation that operates the M50 tolling system on behalf of the National Roads Authority (NRA) had terminated its contract with its customer service operator, Teleperformance. It had also handled queries for the eFlow electronic toll tag service.

          According to the report in "The Irish Times" The contract has been awarded to Cork-based business services provider Abtran, which is to hire an additional 100 staff for its head office in Bishopstown to handle the approximately 6,000 telephone calls a day associated with the service. One of the problems was that the legal firm appointed by the NRA to pursue motorists who failed to pay the toll sent letters to motorists who claimed their account arrears had already been paid.

          When I paid my toll charge on line at the Internet café, I printed off the payment receipt and when I paid the second time in the SPAR shop I asked for a receipt, in case there was a payment at a future time.

          It is important to retain these receipts for a while together with car hire information as you never know when you might need it. A few years ago my wife received a speeding notification from the Garda Síochána (Police). She had rented a car, however the registration the car hire company had provided the authorities with was similar to the one on the ticket. She had to send them a copy of the car hire agreement to prove she was not driving the car involved. Fortunately she had retained the information as otherwise it would have involved contacting the car hire company and asking them to provide this.

          Whether you use the toll or not don’t forget to take out your car hire excess insurance in advance and save money.

          Car hire charges could increase in Ireland

          I see in the “Irish Times” Motors feature on the 10th June that they are reporting on the state of the Irish car hire market. Apparently the total num,ber of new cars that has been supplied to the car rental market has fallen by 70 per cent in 2009 compared to the same period in 2008.

          In January to May 2008 there were 14,235 registrations whereas this year there were only 4,272. Tourist numbers are expected to be down this year and so car hire companies won’t need such a large stock. There are going to be a number of factors leading to increases in rental charges.

          This includes the VRT allowance. (Vehicle Registration Tax) that can be claimed by the car rental company. There are many lower rates of VRT on the 09 fleets, but there is the prospect this could be scrapped in 2010 and the car renter will have to pay the difference on a daily rate. Some providers like Irish Car Rentals are selling off some of their fleet with a page of cars on their website. This is probably a regular occurrence and must obviously save dealers costs and make a second hand car better value.

          Cars in the Republic of Ireland do tend to be a lot more expensive than in the UK.

          Monday 25 May 2009

          Changes to French registration plates from 2009 - Black on White registration plates on French cars from 2009

          From the 15th April 2009 the département number will no longer be on the French registration plate. The registration plates will no longer be black on white at the front and black on yellow at the rear as in the UK, but black on white on the front and rear as in Portugal, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Poland and many other European countries.

          They are made up of two letters, three numbers and two letters these are separated by hyphens(e.g. DE-354-FG) and will be allocated to a vehicle for life unlike presently if the owner moves from département to département. The new plates do not contain any element that identifies where the car owner lives.The Government claimed that this would facilitate police dealing with stolen or suspect vehicles.

          There was opposition from the suppression of department numbers (75,62,48,06 etc) on the registration plates and there was a Government climbdown. A car owner may add the official logo of their a French département to the their new style plate together with the département number below it on the right hand side of the number plate. This does not have to be the département where the owner lives.

          Second hand cars: The new regulations apply to second hand cars from the 15th June 2009 will get these as well when la carte gris (registration document) is updated with a new address or owner.

          Living in France and keeping your own country's registration

          If you are moving to France from another EU country uyou can keep your old British, Irish, German registration plates, but you must display where relevant Contrôle Technique. However if you are caught by a speed camera, don't think your foreign plates will help you.According to Transport Minister Dominique Bussereau the British are the worst followed by the Germans. Drivers will be tracked down to their French home address or via the home country of the registration plate.

          Remember, if you qare renting a car, buy your insurnce excess in advance and a year long policy is much better value using a company like insurance4carhire.com or Questor is usually much cheaper than going to a car hire company for it. More information at insurance4carrental.com

          Thursday 21 May 2009

          Car hire excess insurance sales are increasing - PRESS RELEASE

          After acting as introducer for car hire excess insurance for the past five year, jml Insurance are celebrating that they have now found over 17,200 purchasers for the product.

          jml insurance has been an introductory agent for insurance4car.hire since 2004. Over the past five years they have now introduced over 17,000 clients to the company from marketing the products on their insurance services websites like www.jml-insurance.co.uk and holiday homes vacation sites like www.jmlvillas.com .

          According to Philip Suter of jml Property Services “the public are now very much aware that when the rent a car they usually have to pay additional insurance when they book or collect it.”

          “We have discovered that Insurance4carhire.com daily policies are much cheaper than those offered by most car hire rental companies and what is more they include cover for such important items like windows, tyres and undercarriage.”

          Philip went on to say” it does however make more sense to take out an annual policy as this much more cost effective”

          Insurance4carhire.com is not the only car hire excess product introduced on the jml sites. Since September 2008 Questor insurance has also been added. The business of introductions is building well with some 250 introductions to date.

          In February 2009, jml Insurance launched www.insurance4carrental.com that acts as an introducer in the same style with the Questor and insurance4carhire products.
          trip policies.

          Philip Suter of jml Insurance said” I have had an annual car hire excess policy from insurance4carhire.com since I first heard of them. I was caught having to pay a large excess for alleged damage to a car rental in the south of France in October 2000. Like many other renters I was charged a lot of money for “damage” from a low cost hire car company.”

          Philip went on to say “ from my experience in renting cars, I have found that car hire company put a lot of pressure on individuals to buy their products that are usually more expensive. I have heard reports of car hire receptionists telling customers that the annual or daily policy that they have purchased will not be sufficient and they must buy their product.”

          “On a recent visit to France as I had not purchased the car hire company’s own product and although I showed them documentation that I had additional cover, I had to pay by credit card €800 and would not get this back till after the car was returned. This appears to be very unfair if a client only has a small credit limit. Some car hire companies just swipe the card’s details and use them if required which is a much fairer option”

          Company Information
          jml Insurance.co.uk is part of jml Property Services, the trading name of Jeffrey Milner Ltd. The company is an UK based company that was established in 1979. jml insurance acts as an introducer for insurance companies selling property insurance including landlord and tenant rental products, pet insurance, wedding insurance, motor insurance, car hire excess insurance, travel insurance and non standard insurance products. They also operate jmlvillas.com an online marketing service for owners of holiday home property to advertise and are part of the jml Group that includes jml Training and Consultancy.