The Guide to Chase Freedom Rental Car Insurance

The type and level of coverage you get will depend on which card you have and where you're renting.

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

Car accidents can happen at any moment — even while you’re on vacation. When you’re renting a car, being involved in an accident can be even more stressful because you’re in a new location with a car that isn’t even yours.

Thankfully, many credit cards offer some type of rental car insurance that can help you navigate the process and potentially cover some of the repair costs. If you’re wondering, “Does Chase Freedom have rental car insurance?” the answer is yes, but the coverage does have its limits.

Let’s take a look at how Chase Freedom rental car insurance works, what’s covered under the policy and how to make a claim if you do have an accident.

How to get Chase Freedom rental car insurance

All Chase Freedom cards come with an auto rental collision damage waiver, which means that it will provide reimbursement for damages to your rental vehicle caused by collision or theft. Here are the cards that provide this coverage:

Coverage eligibility

To be eligible for Chase Freedom car rental insurance, you need to do two things prior to driving off the lot with your rental:

  • Use your Chase Freedom credit card or Chase Ultimate Rewards® account to cover the entire cost of the car rental. To be eligible, your name must be printed on the credit card or listed on the rewards account.

  • Decline the collision damage waiver offered to you by the rental car company at the counter. If you accept coverage from the rental company, your credit card benefit will be canceled.

Note that only the cardholder and any other drivers authorized by the rental car company are covered by the policy.

What’s covered by Chase Freedom rental car insurance

The coverage terms are the same for all three Chase Freedom cards, and the insurance only covers a rental period of 31 consecutive days or less.

The Chase Freedom rental car insurance policy limits its coverage to the following scenarios:

  • Rental vehicle damage.

  • Theft of rental vehicle.

  • Loss-of-use charges.

  • Towing charges resulting from damage or theft.

  • Rental company administrative fees.

Here is a partial list of what’s not covered by the policy:

  • Damage caused by acts of war, invasion, rebellion, insurrection or terrorism.

  • Anyone’s injuries (including yours).

  • Damage due to off-road driving.

  • Damage to another vehicle.

  • Depreciation of the rental vehicle.

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

  • Loss or theft of personal belongings.

  • Personal liability.

  • Property damage (inside or outside the rental vehicle).

  • Vehicles not rented from a rental agency.

Additionally, some vehicle types aren’t covered by Chase Freedom card rental car insurance, including:

  • Cargo vans, trucks or vehicles with open cargo beds (excluding pickup trucks).

  • Exotic and antique cars (cars more than 20 years old or cars not manufactured for 10 years or more).

  • High-value vehicles, such as a Ferrari, Porsche, or Maserati.

  • Limousines.

  • Motorcycles or mopeds.

  • Passenger vans with capacity for more than nine people (including the driver).

  • Recreational vehicles.

This means that if you rent one of these vehicles and something happens, you should be prepared to cover any costs with a personal auto insurance policy.

How to make a rental car insurance claim

To file a claim for your Chase Freedom car insurance, call the benefit administrator at 1-888-320-9656 (from the United States) or 1-804-673-1691 (a collect call from abroad). You can also file online at eclaimsline.com. You must make your claim within 60 days from the date when theft or damage occurred. It’s best to file as soon as possible to ensure any expenses you incur are covered.

Make sure to obtain the following documents from the rental agency and/or the parties you interacted with after the incident:

  • Copy of the accident report.

  • Copy of the rental agreement.

  • Copy of the repair estimate and itemized repair bill.

  • Two photos of the damaged vehicle (if available).

  • Police report (if applicable).

  • Copy of the demand letter indicating the charges you’re responsible for.

You’ll also need to collect these documents for the benefit administrator:

  • Completed and signed auto collision damage waiver form.

  • Credit card account statement with the rental car charge.

  • Statement from your insurance provider showing the amounts that have been paid and your remaining responsibility.

  • Copy of your primary insurance policy’s declarations page.

  • Any additional documents requested by the benefit administrator.

Note that you must submit the auto rental collision damage waiver form no later than 100 days after the incident or your claim will be denied. For additional information on what to submit for your claim, contact Chase directly.

Primary vs. secondary coverage

The auto rental collision damage waiver that comes with Chase Freedom credit cards provides secondary coverage in your country of residence and primary coverage outside your country of residence.

Secondary coverage means that if your rental vehicle is damaged or stolen, you have to file a claim with your personal automobile insurance provider first, and the credit card insurance will cover what your personal insurance won’t. For example, if you have a high deductible, the Chase Freedom rental insurance should cover that cost.

If you don’t carry an auto insurance policy, then the credit card insurance benefit will reimburse the full amount you owe to the car rental and/or towing companies.

If you do choose to use your card for a rental outside of the U.S., note that Chase Freedom-branded cards charge foreign transaction fees of 3%.

Which credit cards to use for primary coverage

If you prefer not to deal with your own insurance, consider paying for a rental car with a different credit card. A couple of other Chase cards offer primary auto collision damage coverage:

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® car rental insurance and the Chase Freedom Flex℠ rental car insurance make you go through your personal coverage provider first. The Chase Sapphire car rental insurance doesn’t — you file a claim directly through the benefit administrator.

Unlike the Freedom-branded cards, both Sapphire-branded credit cards charge annual fees: $95 for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and $550 for the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. However, the benefits that come with these cards — such as trip interruption and trip cancellation coverage and no foreign transaction fees — can outweigh the fees, depending on how you use them.

If you’re considering booking a rental car with your Chase Freedom credit card

Note that the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and the Chase Freedom Unlimited® car insurance coverage is secondary in your country of residence and primary when you travel abroad. If you live in the United States and are involved in an accident, you may need to involve your personal auto insurance provider, which could raise your rates.

If you live in the United States, you’ll incur foreign transaction fees on rentals outside of the country. In this case, you’ll have to compare the transaction fees to the cost of the car rental company’s own collision insurance to know if you’re saving money.

Better yet, use a credit card that provides primary coverage in case of an accident, and you can avoid dealing with your personal auto insurance altogether.

The information related to Chase Freedom® credit card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.


How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2022, including those best for:

Get more smart money moves – straight to your inbox
Sign up and we’ll send you Nerdy articles about the money topics that matter most to you along with other ways to help you get more from your money.