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What is "excess", "CDW", "LDW", "excess reduction", etc? And what is

The amount payable in the event of an accident is usually called your "excess" or "liability". Rental companies all offer multiple options to reduce your excess. In some countries such as the USA, Canada and Mexico, suppliers do not include any insurance in their basic price, so your excess is actually the full value of the car. In some countries such as Australia and NZ the rental companies are not permitted to pass on this level of risk to customers. In other countries such as UK and most of the EU it is uncommon to see cars without some level of reduced excess.

The product that reduces excess from the full value to a lower amount (usually €/£/$1000-2000) is usually called "CDW" ("Collision Damage Waiver"). Policies that reduce your liability from that level towards €/£/$0 are most commonly called Super CDW (also called "Excess Reduction" in Australia/NZ, Damage Liability Fee and many other names that serve the same purpose). CDW that includes theft coverage is called LDW ("Loss Damage Waiver") while Super CDW that includes theft is called Super LDW.

At present, offers cheap alternatives to Super CDW/Super LDW and covers all types of damages caused by an accident.

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What are the benefits?
Who is & Who provides the coverage?
What is the Rating of Our Underwriters?
Why use
What have I got and what will I be offered at the rental desk?
Who are’s insurers?
Are additional drivers covered?
Should I just risk it?
What do I pay if there’s an accident?
What vehicles are covered?
What about unsealed roads?
How are coverage days calculated?
Am I insured if I have more than one accident?


When can I expect claims to be settled?
How do I make a claim?
How do I report a claim for "Collision Damage Coverage" (for US Residents)?
My claim has been approved. When will I receive payment?
What are the steps in the claims process?

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What is the claim process?

Rental Guide: Destination Asian Countries

What should I do at the rental desk in Asian Countries

Rental Guide: Destination Australia/NZ

How does Excess Reduction & Third Party Insurance work in Australia and New Zealand
What should I do at the rental desk in Australia/NZ?

Rental Guide: Destination Canada

How does rental excess & CDW work in Canada? What are my options?
What should I do at the rental desk in Canada?

Rental Guide: Destination EU/UK

How does rental excess/CDW work in Europe? What are my waiver options?
What should I do at the rental desk in EU/UK?

Rental Guide: Destination Latin American Countries

What should I do at the rental desk in Latin American Countries

Rental Guide: Destination Namibia/Africa

How does rental excess & CDW work in Africa? What are my options?

Rental Guide: Destination United States

What are the insurance options in the USA? How does the US differ from most other countries?
How Does The Free Roadside Assistance Work for USA Policies?
What is Extra Cover for the USA? What do I say at the rental desk?
What should I do at the rental desk in the US?
What should I do at the rental desk if I am traveling abroad with Collision Damage Coverage (for US Residents)?

Rental Guide: Destination Worldwide

What should I do at the rental desk: Introduction

Rental Guide: Insurance products

What is "excess", "CDW", "LDW", "excess reduction", etc? And what is
Is "Third Party" included?
How do "LDW" and "Super CDW" and "Super LDW" differ from simple "CDW"?
What is SLI (Supplementary Liability Insurance)?
What is PAI (Personal Accident Insurance)?
What is Theft Protection?
Why do rental companies charge a large excess when the repair cost is small? What happens if I'm "not at fault"? Will I get my money back? When?

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