Collision Damage Waivers When Renting a Vehicle: Should you buy it?
In the rental agreement that you sign, you agree to be responsible for all the damage to the vehicle while it is in your care. This not only includes accidents-even when the other driver is at fault-but also includes all other damage, including theft, hail damage, storm damage, broken windshields, etc. So, what's a vehicle renter to do to cover this exposure?
Sources of Coverage
There are four resources that can cover most or all of the obligations you incur as a renter when you bring the vehicle back damaged:
1. Purchase the collision damage waiver (CDW) from the rental agency. (CDW is a misnomer since the coverage applies to more than just collisions. A better title would be vehicle damage waiver.) This article addresses why this choice is not a good idea in most cases.