Do you need Budget rental car insurance?

Budget rental car insurance includes Loss Damage Waiver (LDW), Personal Accident and Effects (PAE), Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI), and Emergency Sickness Plan (ESP). If you already have car insurance, Budget rental car insurance may not be worth it. However, if you want extra coverage in case the car gets damaged or you're traveling outside of the country, you may want to consider purchasing Budget rental car insurance.

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A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Dec 6, 2021

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Here's what you need to know...

  • Budget rental car insurance includes Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) Personal Accident and Effects (PAE), Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI), and Emergency Sickness Plan (ESP)
  • The cost of Budget’s insurance add-ons may be between $7 and $35 per day
  • Check your current car insurance policy for rental car coverage. You may not need to purchase any more coverage from a rental car company, but it could be beneficial in some situations

If you’re thinking about renting a car from Budget, you may be wondering if you should pay for rental car insurance. Budget offers a few different plans, so choosing between them may be confusing.

Keep reading below to understand the Budget car rental insurance options, how much they cost, and whether purchasing them is the right option for you.

If you need help finding a car insurance company with affordable rates, enter your ZIP code into our free quote comparison tool above.

What is Budget rental car insurance?

Budget rental car insurance is an add-on policy that you can buy when renting a car. The company provides various car rental insurance options that have different levels of coverage.

The Budget car rental insurance plans include Loss Damage Waiver (LDW), Personal Accident and Effects (PAE), Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI), and Emergency Sickness Plan (ESP).

Loss Damage Waiver is not technically insurance, but it eliminates your responsibility to pay for damage to the vehicle. In some cases, a rental agreement may indicate that you need to pay some portion of damages, but Budget is generally responsible for paying all damages.

Personal Accident and Effects (PAE) will cover medical, hospital, death, and dismemberment for the renter and passengers if they are in an accident. PAE also covers the loss or damage of personal property. The coverage limits for this plan include:

  • $175,000 death and dismemberment for the renter and $25,000 for passengers
  • $10,000 accident medical expenses
  • $500 per day up to 30 days hospital accident benefit
  • $1,000 per item for personal effects coverage up to $3,000

Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI) provides additional liability coverage for any excess expenses over the amount indicated in the rental agreement. The Budget car rental liability insurance maximum combined single limit is $1 million or $2 million, depending on your location and the vehicle.

Emergency Sickness Plan (ESP) covers non-US residents to cover illnesses for the renter and their non-US traveling companions.

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What are the Budget car rental insurance requirements?

There are specific requirements you must meet to rent a car from Budget. For example, you must be at least 21 years old in most states. However, drivers who are 21 to 24 will have to pay an underage renter surcharge.

You must also present a valid driver’s license and a credit or debit card when you rent from Budget. Depending on your location, a deposit may be required. Budget may also check your driving record to make sure you don’t have any recent serious infractions.

How much does Budget car rental insurance cost?

How much is Budget car rental insurance?

First, let’s look at how much some of the Budget rental car insurance policies cost compared to other rental car companies:

Daily Car Rental Insurance Rates by Company
Insurance CompaniesLoss Damage Waiver Cost per DaySupplemental Liability Insurance Cost per Day
Dollar$8.95 - $34.99$8.95 - $12.99
Thrifty$8.95 - $34.99$8.95 - $12.99
Hertz$9.00 - $35.99$10.95 - $12.95
Avis$9.00 - $35.99$10.95 or $12.95
Budget$9.00 - $35.99$10.95 or $12.95
Enterprise$10.00 - $15$10.00 - $16
Alamo$10.50 - $22.99$11.95 - $12.95
National$10.50 - $22.99$11.95 - $12.95
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In addition to the cost of the Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) and Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI), Budget’s Personal Accident and Effects (PAE) fees start at $7 per day.

The cost of each of these policies may vary based on the rental location and the type of vehicle you rent.

How do I make a Budget rental car insurance claim?

It’s easy. There are two simple steps to filing Budget car rental insurance claims.

The first thing you need to do is to fill out an accident report. You can do this at a Budget rental location.

After you fill out an accident report, you must send written notice of the claim to the corresponding address.

For Personal Accident and Effects (PAE) and Emergency Sickness Plan (ESP) claims, you can send notice to Health Special Risk Inc., Attn: Claims Department, 4100 Medical Pkwy., Carrollton, TX 75007. You may also call 800-328-1114, option 1.

For Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI), notice can be sent to Budget Rent-a-Car System, Inc., Attn: Claims, 300 Centre Pointe Dr., Virginia Beach, VA 23462. You may also call 866-446-8376.

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Is rental car insurance worth the cost?

If you have a car covered by car insurance, you most likely don’t need to purchase insurance from the rental car company. In addition, if you don’t own a car or car insurance, Budget will cover the minimum liability requirements for your state.

If you rent a vehicle for personal travel, your car insurance coverage will likely cover you in an accident. However, if you are traveling for business reasons, you may need commercial car insurance or to be covered by your company.

Suppose your personal car insurance doesn’t include collision or comprehensive coverage. In that case, you may want to purchase a Budget car rental insurance policy that will cover any damages to the vehicle you’re driving.

If you already have liability car insurance, your best option is to purchase a Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) from Budget (or Collision Damage if you’re renting from another company).

You may also want to purchase additional coverage if you are traveling outside of the United States.

Enter your ZIP code into our free quote comparison tool below to get affordable car insurance quotes from companies near you.

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