Mercury Insurance Advises Holiday Rental Car Drivers to Know Coverages and New Vehicle Driver Safety Tech

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Nearly half of all Americans plan to travel over the holidays and those heading to the car rental counters should know what is and isn’t covered by their personal auto insurance.

“Your auto insurance policy transfers to almost any car you might rent,” said Kevin Quinn, Vice President of Auto Claims at Mercury Insurance. “However, some policyholders may want the added protection insurance rental companies offer for an additional fee.”

The holiday season is forecasted to be a busy one for car rentals as Americans continue to return to a normal travel schedule. And while rentals offer the opportunity of leaving personal cars at home and driving the latest models, these new cars (which can be a dozen years newer than the average car most consumers drive) offer many technology and performance advances not found in the renter’s personal ride. These differences make it incumbent on the renter to spend time understanding the rental car, as well as how one’s personal auto insurance policy covers that vehicle in the event of an accident.

“Your auto insurance policy transfers to almost any car you might rent,” said Kevin Quinn, Vice President of Auto Claims at Mercury Insurance. “If you have collision, comprehensive, and liability policies, you can rest assured that your coverage extends to a rental. However, some policyholders may want the added protection insurance rental companies offer for an additional fee. Make sure to read and clearly understand what you’re purchasing before picking up the keys.”

There are some important things to know about modern vehicles before driving off the rental lot:

  • New tech features: Today’s modern vehicles can come with a host of new technology such as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), large touchscreens, and other aids. These systems can help drivers stay safe on the road, but there is a learning curve, especially if you’re coming from an older vehicle. “You should research the potential vehicle you’re renting and the new technology systems. There are some great online videos that show how to operate the systems as they’re intended. Once you’re at the rental lot, plan on taking extra time before you drive away as you don’t want to try to learn how to operate these systems as you drive,” Quinn said.
  • Electric vehicles: Some rental agencies and ride-sharing apps offer electric vehicles (EV). In many ways, these vehicles operate similarly to vehicles with internal combustion engines. However, a big difference is an EV’s driving range, how to charge, and acceleration. Recharging an EV is a bit more tedious than refueling a gas vehicle, so it’s imperative to know how far you can drive, and what type of charging your vehicle requires. Also, EV’s have instant torque available immediately, so keep in mind how much pressure is put on the pedals when the light turns green or you’re trying to pass another car.
  • Size: Holiday travel frequently means piling a lot of people into a single car — so many travelers opt to drive a larger vehicle than their vehicle at home. “Keep in mind how large and wide the rental vehicle is as this will help reduce the chances of an accident,” Quinn said.

For more tips on safe driving and savings, please visit http://www.mercuryinsurance.com.

About Mercury Insurance
Mercury Insurance (NYSE: MCY) is a multiple-line insurance carrier predominantly offering personal auto, homeowners, renters and commercial insurance through a network of independent agents in Arizona, California, Illinois, Georgia, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Virginia, as well as auto insurance in Florida. Mercury writes other lines of insurance in various states, including business owners and business auto, landlord, home-sharing, ride-hailing and mechanical protection insurance.

Since 1962, Mercury has provided customers with tremendous value for their insurance dollar by pairing ultracompetitive rates with excellent customer service. Mercury has earned “A” ratings from A.M. Best and Fitch, as well as ranking highest in the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Insurance Digital Experience Study℠ and four consecutive “Best Auto Insurance Company” awards from Insure.com. For more information visit http://www.MercuryInsurance.com or follow the company on Twitter or Facebook.
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Shane Smith
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