getting insurance for a rental motorcycle is worth it if you don’t have coverage through your current insurance policy or if you want supplemental coverage. the rental company should offer the minimum coverage that’s required by your state. but you might want higher liability limits to protect yourself if you cause an accident or injuries that cost above your state’s limits.
what insurance coverage can i get for a rental motorcycle?
rental motorcycle coverage can vary based on the insurance company and the coverage options you choose. common coverage options include:
- minimum liability. ensures that you meet state minimum requirements for bodily injuries or physical damage to another driver’s vehicle.
- supplemental liability. this coverage provides additional liability above the state minimum.
- physical damage. covers physical damage you cause to the rental motorcycle.
- comprehensive or theft. protects the bike from other unexpected situations like theft, weather damage or vandalism. some companies provide theft-only coverage.
- personal property loss. pay for theft or damage to personal belongings if you’re in an accident with a rental.
- full coverage. some companies provide “walk-away” coverage — in which they claim you can simply walk away from the accident without paying out of pocket, even if the motorcycle gets totaled.
how to get insurance for a rental motorcycle
the process for getting motorcycle rental insurance goes like this:
- decide on your coverage. decide whether you need supplemental liability, comprehensive or physical damage coverage or whether you want only the minimum liability insurance included with the rental.
- find the right policy. you want to balance wide coverage for at least liability, what costs you’re still responsible for and the cost of the insurance. when looking around, you might see rental motorcycle insurance also referred to as short-term or temporary motorcycle insurance.
- provide a security deposit. if you buy insurance through the rental company, you’re usually required to put down a deposit, which can total anywhere from $100–$5,000. you should get the full deposit returned as long as no damage happens.
- choose your deductible, which could range from $2,000–$5,000 — though some plans offer zero-deductible coverage for a higher price. if you get in an accident, you pay this amount before your insurance coverage kicks in.
- sign and ride. after choosing all your coverage options and filling out the paperwork, you can take the proof of insurance to the rental company. if you’re buying through the rental company, simply pick up your rental bike after signing.
where to find insurance for a rental
you can purchase motorcycle rental insurance in three places: at the motorcycle rental company, through your current insurance company or with a specialty rental insurer. buying from the bike rental company is the most convenient place, but your insurance provider or a specialty insurer might offer features or perks not available from the rental company.
the cost of insurance when renting a motorcycle
since many rental insurance policies start at $15 or $25 per day for supplemental liability, you could save thousands of dollars if you get in an accident. however, add-on coverage like comprehensive and property damage can go for a similar rate, making your total cost closer to $30 to $50 per day.
compare insurance for a rental motorcycle
case study: the value of buying rental motorcycle insurance
jack and linda are touring the coast this summer on rental bikes. however, they discover
who their current motorcycle insurance won’t cover them while riding the rentals. they decide to buy the insurance from the rental company for convenience.
because jack and linda are riding long-distance, they decide they need more than the minimum coverage. their costs for insurance, per bike per day, total $75, which breaks down to:
- $15 liability insurance up to $300,000 maximum
- $10 theft and damage coverage
- $10 roadside assistance
- $40 personal property and trip interruption coverage
jack and linda can now ride knowing they have wide coverage over the bikes and their belongings.
what’s not covered?
motorcycle rental insurance may not cover some situations, including:
- bike theft when not properly locked up
- bike damage resulting from negligence, such as failing to respond to an engine oil light
- additional drivers not stated on the rental agreement
- damage to personal motorcycles
- damage to personal trailers used to transport or tow-behind the rental bike
- medical payments for at-fault riders
when buying motorcycle rental insurance, you can choose coverage as low as the minimum state requirements. or you can get a wide coverage plan
who includes trip interruption, roadside assistance and personal property loss.
compare motorcycle insurance options to get peace of mind while riding your rental.
questions about insurance for a rental motorcycle
sarah george is a writer at finder who unravels complicated topics about insurance, business and finance. she’s been wordsmithing for nearly five years, after earning an english education degree. her insurance know-how has been featured on carinsurance.com. you can usually find sarah sipping hot tea and talking through movie plots in her downtime.
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