With the ever-growing value of credit available on credit cards in the United States and over $800 million in credit card debt, knowledge of credit card insurance is crucial for millions of Americans. Not only can it save your day should the unexpected occur, but it can also grant you the peace of mind you deserve.
Travel rewards, cashback, no maintenance, bonus points – there are so many potential benefits with modern credit cards but perhaps the most beneficial is credit card insurance. This benefit can provide you with the financial flexibility needed during the most critical moments of your life.
Among many other things, a carefully chosen credit card insurance policy can:
What’s the catch? Well, there’s no catch except that there are so many types of credit card insurance that it can quickly become frustrating — to the point where you are ready to give up on the idea just to free your mind from the burden of choice.
But not on our watch!
In five to ten minutes, you’ll become a credit card insurance guru. It’s really simple.
Get yourself comfortable and read on.
Credit card insurance pays your credit card debt if you are unable to do so because of an unforeseen event such as a job loss, critical illness, disability, or death. Being secondary insurance, it only kicks in if the limit of your basic insurance – life insurance, job loss insurance, disability insurance, or critical illness insurance – is reached.
Credit card insurance pays out your outstanding balance or covers your monthly payments to your credit card issuer if you are not able to pay due to one of the qualifying events.
The main types of credit card insurance are:
Your exact coverage, however, will depend on multiple factors such as your age, social status (student, retired, etc.), and age.
To calculate your credit card insurance cost:
It depends on whether you are prone to having credit card debt. If you usually have small daily balances, have lots of savings, and are well insured, credit card insurance might be just a waste of money for you.
If you are an inveterate traveler, then credit card travel insurance may be just what you need, as it can save your vacation should an unforeseen circumstance (weather conditions, health issues, etc.) occur during your domestic or international travel.
If you’ve ever rented a vehicle, then you know that most rental car companies offer their own car insurance as a part of the rental agreement. But if you already have auto insurance with your credit card, then you can decline the local auto insurer’s offer.
Rental car insurance covers theft or damage to the rental car. That’s it – all other types of coverage are typically excluded, which makes rental car insurance pretty narrow-focused and cries for the necessity of personal auto insurance.
Primary car rental insurance is recommended for those rare drivers who do not have personal auto insurance.
Primary car rental coverage is offered by very few credit card companies. Here are some of them:
According to Forbes, Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, Ink Business Preferred, United Club Infinite Card, and United Explorer Card are the best credit cards that provide rental car insurance.
More often than not, rental car insurance excludes liability insurance (both bodily injury liability coverage and property damage coverage), personal effects insurance, and personal accident insurance.
Expensive cars, trucks, motorcycles, and cars from car-sharing services are usually excluded from rental car insurance.
Visa, MasterCard, and AMEX do provide rental car insurance, but the exact type of coverage depends on the bank that issued the card, as well as the type of the car being insured.
One of the most underrated and exclusive coverages is emergency evacuation coverage, which covers the expenses of an immediate evacuation of the policyholder or members of his/her family due to an injury or sickness. Emergency evacuation coverage is secondary to any other type of insurance that can compensate for losses.
Now, a lot of confusion comes from these terms. Purchase protection and payment protection are not the same types of insurance. Read on to learn the differences.
This type of insurance puts your regular credit card payments and fees on hold if a qualifying life event occurs. It doesn’t happen automatically, though – you have to manually activate your protection plan provided you have the qualifying event to back it up.
The time of coverage under your credit card payment protection plan varies for different events and insurers. Also, most insurers will ask you for proof of your specific qualifying event before you can use your credit card payment protection plan.
Credit card payment protection benefits can be short-term or long-term.
Payment protection insurance plans will not cover criminal acts and activities. Other than that, the exclusions to the coverage depend on the particular policy, so it would be wise to examine the terms and conditions of your policy.
Payment protection insurance can keep your credit card account healthy while you are going through a rough patch, alleviating the burden of regular payments.
Credit card purchase protection insurance covers theft or damage to the item – for example, a mobile phone – that occurred within a specific time frame after the item was purchased. The insurance, however, is only valid if the item in question was bought using the same credit card that the claim is filed under.
The common exclusions are:
There are more types of coverage worth mentioning: price protection, extended warranty protection, and return protection.
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Oleksandr is an expert in deep research. He covers various insurance topics across verticals, adopting to every local law.