Credit cards with car rental excess insurance

Planning a road trip? Compare credit cards that offer car rental excess insurance when you’re travelling in Australia or overseas.

We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!

Name Product Purchase rate Balance transfer rate Annual fee
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 36 months
$29 annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Save money with a 0% balance transfer rate for 36 months (with no BT fee), a first-year annual fee discount and free travel insurance.
St.George Amplify Platinum
19.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$49 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Receive 130,000 bonus Amplify Points when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days. Plus, a 0% balance transfer offer and a first-year annual fee discount.
American Express Explorer Credit Card
20.74% p.a.
$395
Get 100,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points when you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months. Plus, a $400 Travel Credit each year.
ANZ Platinum Credit Card
0% p.a. for 17 months, reverts to 20.24% p.a.
20.24% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter)
Now offering Cashrewards Max. Receive a 0% purchase rate offer for 17 months and a $0 first-year annual fee. Plus, complimentary overseas travel and medical insurance.
American Express Platinum Card
0% p.a.
$1,450
Up to 200,000 bonus points (150k when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months and 50k in year 2). Plus, a $450 Travel Credit per year.
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
14.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 34 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$0
Get 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 34 months (with a 2% BT fee), ​an ongoing $0 annual fee and 0% foreign transaction fees.
Qantas Premier Platinum
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$199 annual fee for the first year ($299 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 90,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $3,500 in the first 3 months and save with a reduced first-year annual fee.
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
20.74% p.a.
$195
Earn 50,000 bonus points when you spend $1,500 within the first 3 months. Plus, a $200 statement credit offer.
ANZ Rewards Platinum
20.24% p.a.
20.24% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 p.a. thereafter)
Now offering Cashrewards Max. Get 100,000 bonus Reward Points (worth $440 in eGift cards) when you spend $1,500 on eligible purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, $0 first-year annual fee.
ANZ Frequent Flyer Platinum
20.24% p.a.
20.24% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($295 p.a. thereafter)
Now offering Cashrewards Max. Receive 70,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within 3 months. Plus, a $0 first-year annual fee.
BankSA Amplify Signature
19.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$279
Up to 200,000 bonus points (100k first year & 100k second year) - worth $900 in gift cards - when you spend $12,000/yr for the first 2 years.
CommBank Ultimate Awards Credit Card with Qantas Points
20.24% p.a.
5.99% p.a. for 5 months
$450
Receive 70,000 bonus Qantas Points when you apply and spend $5,000 in the first 90 days from card approval. Plus, 0% foreign fees.
Bankwest Breeze Platinum Mastercard
0% p.a. for 15 months, reverts to 9.9% p.a.
0% p.a. for 15 months
$0 annual fee for the first year ($69 p.a. thereafter)
Get 0% interest on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, a $0 first-year annual fee and no foreign transaction fees.
Great Southern Bank Platinum Credit Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 25 months
$0 annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Get 1 Great Southern Bank Platinum Rewards point per $1, complimentary travel insurance, a $0 first year annual fee and a 25-month balance transfer offer.
Westpac Altitude Platinum Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$49 annual fee for the first year ($150 p.a. thereafter)
Get 130,000 bonus Altitude Points (worth $450 cashback) when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days, a 0% balance transfer offer and a $49 discounted annual fee.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

Comparison of credit cards with complimentary car rental excess insurance

If you're thinking of getting a rental car for a trip in Australia (or overseas), insurance is an important part of the package. While car hire companies have their own insurance to cover accidents or other issues, a lot of them charge an excess if you make a claim – and it can be as high as $8,000 in some cases.

Car rental excess insurance helps cover this out-of-pocket cost. You can choose to buy a policy yourself when you hire a car but there are also some credit cards that offer complimentary rental car insurance.

What is car rental excess insurance?

Car rental insurance is designed to reduce your excess if you have an accident in a hired or rental car. If you choose not to take up this cover, the excess you have to pay if something happens could range from around $600 to $8,000.

As a rough guide to costs, car rental companies typically offer excess insurance (or excess reductions) for about $20 to $30 per day, per car. And it can go above $50 per day if you want a $0 excess.

You can also buy rental car excess insurance policies separately, usually for around $6 to $10 a day. But the cost can vary based on the company, the type of car or even where you're going.

How does credit card car rental insurance work?

Credit card car rental insurance is designed to protect you against high excess costs on your rental car. While you may still need to pay an excess if you make a claim, it's usually much lower than the excess you'd pay the car hire company.

As an example, you could pay an excess of $200 for complimentary car rental excess insurance offered through a credit card, compared to $3,000 with a car rental company.

In most cases, you need to activate the cover by using your eligible credit card to pay for the rental car. You also need to follow the policy's terms and conditions (just like you do any insurance), and may need to provide a copy of the formal rental agreement.

two couples hanging by the card with a beach view

What credit cards offer car rental excess insurance?

Credit card providerCredit cardsInsurance details
American ExpressCover for loss or damage to rental vehicles for hire periods of up to 31 days
ANZApplies for car rentals in Australia. There is a $0 excess for most claims. For claims relating to rental vehicle collisions, there is an excess of $350.
BankSARental vehicle excess insurance only available in Australia. You must pay the first $250 of each claim.
Bank of MelbourneRental vehicle excess insurance only available in Australia. You must pay the first $250 of each claim.
Bendigo BankOffers global cover up to a maximum of $5,000. A $250 excess applies for each claim.
CitiAll of these cards offer rental vehicle excess cover for international trips as part of the complimentary international travel insurance policy.

The Citi Prestige, Citi Premier and Emirates Citi World Mastercard also offer rental vehicle excess cover for trips in Australia.

CommBankOffers overseas rental vehicle excess insurance of up to $2,250. You may also be given the option of increasing the value of this cover for specific trips.
HSBCFor international trips, you get cover of up to $3,000. For domestic trips, you get cover up to $6,000. An excess of $200 applies for each claim.
IMBOffers up to a maximum of $2,750 for domestic car rental as part of the interstate flight inconvenience insurance.

This means you are only eligible for cover when you have used the card to pay for the entire cost of a return, interstate flight and also hired a car during the trip.

JetstarOffers global hire car excess waiver cover of up to $5,000, with an excess of $250 per claim, when you use the card to pay for the entire cost of the rental car.
Macquarie BankOffer global hire car excess waiver cover of up to $5,000, with an excess of $250 per claim, when you use the card to pay for the entire cost of the rental car.
Qantas MoneyThe Premier Platinum offers global hire care excess waiver cover of up to $3,000 when you pay for the rental car with your card. An excess of $500 applies for each claim.

The Premier Titanium offers global hire car excess waiver cover of up to $5,000 with a $250 excess. Cover is activated you pay for the rental car with your card.

St.GeorgeThe Amplify Signature card offers domestic rental vehicle excess insurance of up to $5,500. A $250 excess applies per claim.
WestpacRental vehicle excess insurance only available in Australia. You must pay the first $250 of each claim.

Cover also applies to American Express Westpac Altitude Platinum and Black cards.

Pros and cons of credit card car rental excess insurance

Pros

  • Peace of mind. Car rental insurance helps make hiring a car more affordable by reducing your excess you must pay if you have a covered accident.
  • Potential rental savings. While rental companies and insurance companies allow you to pay for car rental excess insurance, getting it through your credit card can reduce the daily cost of the car hire.

Cons

  • Lots of terms and conditions. Each policy has different requirements to activate the cover, as well as details of what accident will be covered.
  • You may still pay an excess. Many of the complimentary car rental excess policies charge an excess of between $200 and $500 per claim. While that's better than the thousands of dollars you could potentially pay without excess insurance, it's still a cost you need to consider.

What to watch out for

If you're thinking of getting a credit card that offers complimentary car rental excess cover – or if your existing card offers this cover – make sure you keep the following details in mind before hiring a rental vehicle.

  • Eligibility. Most credit cards only provide this cover if you have used the card to pay for the rental vehicle or for the entire trip. Make sure you check these details in the insurance policy booklet before assuming you're covered.
  • Coverage limitations. While complimentary car rental excess cover typically applies for vehicle damage or theft, exclusions could apply for damage to the tyres, windscreen or under body of the car. Most policies also exclude claims that relate to off-road driving.
  • Location requirements. Credit card car rental insurance could cover you for domestic trips, overseas trips or both, but it does vary a lot based on the card.
  • Other card costs. If you're looking for a new credit card that offers car rental excess insurance, make sure you also consider the card's other costs, including the annual fee, interest rates and any overseas transaction fees that may apply. Remember, you can always pay for car rental excess insurance, so the priority should be finding a card that's affordable for you – regardless of whether or not it includes insurance.

How do I make a claim?

Any claims you need to make will go through the insurance provider, rather than your bank. You can find these details in your credit card's insurance booklet, or by contacting your provider. You will also need to provide a range of documents to support your claim. This usually includes the following:

  • Proof of your eligibility, such as a credit card transaction statement showing you paid for the rental vehicle.
  • A copy of your car hire agreement.
  • A copy of the incident report (which you would have to fill out after an accident or theft).
  • Details of the damage and repair costs.
  • Written notice from the rental company that outlines the amount you are required to pay.

Keep in mind that these requirements mean you'll usually have to cover the cost of the original car hire excess, then wait for your claim to be assessed before you're reimbursed.

Do I really need car rental excess insurance?

This type of insurance is optional, meaning you technically don't need it to hire a car. But if the rental company has a high standard excess, this cover could help you avoid paying thousands of dollars after an accident. While that doesn't mean you have to get cover, it is worth considering before you pay for a rental car.

Pictures: Shutterstock

Back to top

More guides on Finder

    Ask an Expert

    You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

    • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
    • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
    • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
    • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

    Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.

    14 Responses

      Default Gravatar
      BonnieDecember 11, 2017

      Hi I would like a card that ticks the following boxes:
      – Reward points (preferably velocity)
      – international + domestic travel insurance (includes car rental excess)
      – I will also be doing a Balance transfer

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        MayDecember 12, 2017Staff

        Hi Bonnie,

        Thank you for your inquiry.

        The frequent flyer credit cards that earn Velocity points are listed here. As not all cards have the same benefits, you may need to go over each card featured on that page and see if they have complimentary travel insurance and Balance transfer features. Please also note that domestic travel insurance are not usually covered under the travel insurance benefit. The car rental excess are typically included in the overseas complimentary travel insurance though.

        Hope this helps.

        Cheers,
        May

      Default Gravatar
      JohnMay 25, 2017

      I am a platinum ANZ credit card holder and I want to hire a car in NZ do I get the same access cover as I do in Australia?

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        HaroldMay 29, 2017Staff

        Hi John,

        ANZ Platinum credit cardholders are covered under QBE complimentary overseas medical and travel insurance. There’s comprehensive cover for a range of events, including an unlimited benefit payable for overseas medical and dental. If you already have an ANZ Platinum credit card, you’re eligible for the insurance when you hold a return ticket to Australia and have purchased at least $250 of your prepaid travel expenses using the ANZ Platinum credit card. See the insurance terms and conditions to confirm what you’re covered by.

        I hope this information has helped.

        Cheers,
        Harold

      Default Gravatar
      AlokaFebruary 5, 2017

      Hi I’m about to rent a car using my ANZ platinum card. Do I need to purchase additional insurance from the Rent a car company ?
      If event of accident without additional insurance what does the car cover?
      Thanks

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        MauriceFebruary 6, 2017Staff

        Hi Aloka,

        While it’s not compulsory to purchase rental vehicle excess insurance from a car rental company (if you already have cover with your credit card) you might need to purchase damage insurance from the rental car company. Car rental excess insurance included in your credit card covers the excess payable on damage insurance.

        It’s a good idea to clarify with your rental company what type of insurance you are buying from them.

        According to the product disclosure statement (PDS) of ANZ, the maximum amount you are covered for is $2,400 in rental excess cover.

        I hope this helps,

        Maurice

      Default Gravatar
      JpJJuly 22, 2016

      I am the cardholder of an HSBC Australia Visa Platinum card. If I hire a car in Australia and have an accident, am I automatically covered for rental vehicle insurance excess? Many thanks.

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        MayAugust 2, 2016Staff

        Hi JpJ,

        Thanks for your inquiry.

        As the complimentary travel insurance is applicable for international trips, I’m afraid that the rental vehicle excess cover is only applicable for trips overseas as well. Please feel free to check our HSBC credit card guide for more information about the HSBC complimentary travel insurance cover.

        Cheers,
        May

      Default Gravatar
      PamDecember 24, 2015

      I am the holder of an anz visa platinum card. When I hire a rent a car in Australia, am I automatically covered for accidents and to what extent.

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        SallyDecember 24, 2015Staff

        Hi Pam,

        Thanks for your question. Yes, the ANZ Visa Platinum Card does offer cover for domestic car rentals in Australia. You’ll need to meet QBE and ANZ’s eligibility requirements before you can access the rental cover. I’ve emailed you a copy of the insurance policy so you can confirm that you meet those requirements.

        QBE will reimburse you for the amount of any collision excess that you have paid under any vehicle rental agreement that you enter into with a car rental company to hire a vehicle registered in Australia and its offshore territories, where:
        • you are the hirer, or
        • you are a joint hirer and you were driving the hire car when the accident occurred.

        The process for how you can make a claim is also included in the document I have emailed to you.

        I hope this has helped.

        Cheers,

        Sally

    Go to site