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Mark Bower

Mark founded MoneyMaxim in 2008, with the aim of delivering an impartial and independent service. Mark is a regular money saving expert in the press and writes regular news and articles for the MoneyMaxim news pages sharing his views on banking, personal insurance and the utilities (gas, electricity, mobile and home phones, broadband and pay TV) market with customers.

Car Excess Insurance can cost more than car rental itself in key European destinations this Easter

The MoneyMaxim Annual Car Hire Insurance Review, which looks at excess car hire insurance costs across Europe indentifies where excess levels are highest.

MoneyMaxim.co.uk, the Car Hire Insurance specialists, highlight the ‘egg-sessive' costs of car hire excess insurance this Easter and offer tips on how to avoid paying too much when renting a car.

  • Ireland and Portugal join France and Italy as high excess zones, where the average excess drivers are liable for on a compact car is over €1000 from the major car hire firms
  • Excess Insurance can add up to 145% to the cost of car rental this Easter

LONDON, Tuesday 13 March, 2012: The MoneyMaxim Annual Car Hire Insurance Review which looks at excess car hire insurance costs across Europe has revealed that in a number of key locations car rental companies are charging as much, if not more, for excess insurance as they do for the car hire itself.

A survey of the car hire information available on leading car rental firm's websites across Europe, including Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz and Sixt has revealed that in a number of European cities surveyed the excess charges are now greater than the cost of the car rented. This could have a considerable impact on family costs ahead of the forthcoming busy Easter holiday period.

The figures show that in Ireland the weekly premium for a car hire excess insurance policy is on average 45% more than the cost of car rental during the Easter holiday period, whilst in Lisbon it was over 25% . In the UK, Italy and Greece the excess insurance added 80% or more to the base price of the rental vehicle, whilst the maximum weekly charge found in the Czech Republic was a staggering €210 (£176).

Mark Bower, Managing Director of MoneyMaxim, said today:

‘The cost of car hire excess insurance through car hire firms can easily hit the pocket as hard as the car rental itself. This is something all families need to be particularly aware of if they are hiring a car over the Easter holidays. Customers across Europe are paying too much for policies offered by the car hire firms which normally offer less cover those available from independent insurers.

Amazingly the cheapest policy from a car rental company we found in any European destination was more than double the prices customers pay through our comparison service.

‘Easter sees many travelling to holy centres, such as Rome, Lourdes or Knock and all three are in countries where the excess car renters are liable for is €1,000 or more when renting even a modest compact car. Customers we speak to worry both about the massive bill they could face if they are involved in an accident or their rental car is vandalised or stolen and the cost rental firms charge to protect it.'

‘Those in the know call upon our help to find cheaper alternatives to the high prices car rental firms demand to provide protection – which, as can be seen from the table below can often be higher than the cost of the car rental itself.'

Another concern identified by the MoneyMaxim Annual Car Hire Insurance Review is the fact that some car rental companies can make it tricky for potential customers to identify what they are liable for.

Whilst some car rental firms (such as Hertz and Sixt) detail the excesses and policy costs well, others, including Avis (who rarely advertise the cost of their excess policies) and Alamo (who have only minimal details of excesses on their website) have been highlighted by the research as needing to improve on their customer information when it comes to being clear about the cost of the car rental firm's own policies.

Continues Bower;

‘It is perhaps understandable why it is in the car rental firms interests to be less than forthcoming over these details bearing in mind the cost of their policies in Europe average over £80 a week whilst prices on our Car Hire Comparison Service run from under £14 for similar cover.

‘Another advantage of the independent policies is that they include cover for tyres, wheels, windscreen, glass, underbody and roof – all normally excluded from the car rental companies alternatives.'

**To search and find excess car insurance visit: ******

Selected Car Rental Data:

car rental

Excess levels and Excess insurance costs are for compact car (such as a Ford Focus or Opal Astra). Car Hire Costs are for the cheapest similar vehicle available through the MoneyMaxim Car Hire Comparison Service rented from 9am on the 31st March to 9am on the 7th April at national airport through companies websites. Survey conducted 12/03/2012.

Rates converted to/from Euros from £ Sterling at a rate of €1.19 : £1

Car rental firms included in survey include Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz and Sixt, where the details are available on their website.

  • Where Collision Damage Waiver and Theft Protection excesses differ the higher of the two has been taken.

** Average cost of excess insurance bought from car hire firm directly. Only policies which remove rather than reduce the excess have been included.

Full details of similar data for 19 European countries are available from MoneyMaxim.

Notes:

**For more information, case studies and interviews contact Dale Lovell, Search News Media, on: 01753 859 588. E-mail: **

About MoneyMaxim.co.uk: Launched in 2008 by Mark Bower MoneyMaxim.co.uk aims to deliver an impartial and independent service both online and through telephone money saving specialists.

Visit: www.moneymaxim.co.uk for more money saving advice and information. The website won The Best Niche Insurance Aggregator Award 2010 from The Money Awards.