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Updated February 2, 2020

Chase Sapphire Reserve Rental Car Insurance

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Chase Sapphire Reserve® offers primary coverage for rental cars. Learn what this covers, how to use it, and how to file a claim.

With a $300 annual travel credit, airport lounge access, and 1:1 transfer to airline and hotel partners, Chase Sapphire Reserve is one of the most popular premium travel rewards cards.

Perhaps one of the top travel benefits is the complimentary car rental insurance. It has the most superior coverage compared to rental insurances offered by other travel rewards credit cards.

Read on for everything you need to know about the Reserve's auto rental benefits.

Chase Sapphire Reserve Car Rental Insurance Key Points:

  • Offers primary collision and damage insurance up to $75,000.
  • Save money by declining the insurance offered by the rental company.
  • Do not have to file a claim with your own auto insurance policy.
  • Authorized users and additional drivers are also covered.

What Is Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver

Chase Sapphire Reserve offers primary car rental coverage for Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver (CDW). This benefit provides reimbursement for damage due to collision or theft on a rental car.

You are covered up to $75,000 on most rental cars in the U.S. and abroad. Rental cannot exceed 31 days.

All car rental companies offer this protection at extra cost. With Chase Sapphire Reserve, you automatically have primary coverage when you use your card to pay for the rental and decline the rental company's collision damage waiver (or similar insurance).

This can also save you a good amount of money each time, since CDW insurance fees can be as high as $20 - $30 per day.

Primary vs Secondary Coverage

There are two types of coverage: primary and secondary.

Chase Sapphire Reserve provides primary auto rental coverage. This means that you DO NOT need to file a claim with your own car insurance firm if an incident occurs. You just handle the entire claim directly through Chase.

This is a huge benefit because your insurance company doesn't have to know about the accident. So your personal auto insurance premium won't increase.

Most auto rental CDW policies and credit cards only offer secondary coverage, which is not as extensive. This means you first need to report to your own insurance.

The credit card coverage kicks in only after your personal car insurance policy. It only covers costs not covered (such as the deductible and costs over your coverage limit).

Do authorized users get primary rental car insurance too?
If you add an authorized user to your Chase Sapphire Reserve card, they also get the same primary rental car coverage when renting a car with their card. Each authorized user costs $75 each year.

Authorized users also get their own complimentary Priority Pass membership, which gives free airport lounge access worldwide.

What Is Covered

This benefit covers most private passenger cars, minivans, and sport utility vehicles in the U.S. and abroad, up to $75,000.

Examples of a covered loss include:

  • Auto rentals up to 31 consecutive days
  • Physical damage of the rental vehicle
  • Theft of the rental vehicle
  • Valid loss-of-use charges while the damaged vehicle is not available for rent
  • Reasonable and customary towing charges to the nearest repair facility

$75,000 will cover most vehicles, even many luxury cars. Of course, if you want to rent something like an Aston Martin, it's better to buy the rental company's insurance.

What Is NOT Covered

Here is what is NOT covered under the Reserve's car insurance policy:

  • Antique automobiles, vans with seating for more than 9 people, vehicles with an open cargo bed, trucks, limousines, and RVs

  • Motorcycles, mopeds, and motorbikes

  • Injury of anyone or anything inside or outside of the vehicle

  • Damages due to the driver being under the influence

  • Damages due to using the car off-road

  • Loss or theft of personal belongings

  • Any violation of the auto rental agreement or this benefit

  • Personal liability

  • Wear and tear, gradual deterioration, or mechanical breakdown

  • Car rental periods exceeding 31 days

For a full list of not covered losses, review the Chase Sapphire Reserve Guide to Benefits.

Before driving the rented car out of the lot, check it thoroughly for any prior damage. If you do identify any, bring it to the attention of the rental car company.

Who Is Covered

Chase Sapphire Reserve's car rental protection applies to:

  • The primary cardholder whose name is on the card

  • Additional drivers listed in your rental agreement

  • Authorized users on your Sapphire Reserve card when they rent a car with their card (as well as any additional drivers on their rental agreement)

Is There Liability Coverage?

One downside of the Chase Sapphire Reserve's CDW benefit is that it does NOT cover personal liability. This is protection against damage and injuries to others while driving the rental car.

If you're at fault in an accident and someone gets hurt, the Reserve card won't cover medical costs and property damage to the other party. It'll still be your responsibility.

The Reserve's CDW also doesn't cover injuries to yourself or your passengers. However, if you do get injured while on a trip, it does have emergency medical coverage up to $2,500 for you and immediate family members.

You should never drive without liability coverage. Your own personal car insurance may offer this protection. If not (or you don't have car insurance at all), you can purchase it from the car rental agency.

Are International Rentals Covered?

Chase Sapphire Reserve does cover you when you rent a car in most foreign countries.

Many credit card companies' auto rental insurance excludes certain countries such as Ireland, Italy, Israel, Jamaica, Australia, and New Zealand (many of which are popular destinations to rent cars). Chase does not have these exceptions.

However, before going to these countries, call your Benefit Administrator first to confirm that you will be covered. If you can, get a letter from Chase stating that your Reserve credit card includes collision damage coverage. In many cases, rental car agencies will want to see this assurance since you're declining their CDW.

How to Use the Sapphire Reserve CDW Benefit

To correctly receive the CDW credit card coverage when renting a car, you MUST do the following 2 things:

1. Reserve and pay for the entire rental transaction with your Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card.

2. Decline the car rental company's auto rental Collision Damage Waiver or similar insurance (it may also be called Loss Damage Waiver or LDW).

If you do not decline the rental company's CDW, Chase Sapphire Reserve's insurance will not be eligible.

Am I covered even if I use points to pay for the auto rental?
Yes. Chase allows you to rent a car using your Ultimate Rewards points on the Chase Travel℠ portal (or a combo of points and credit card). You will still be eligible for primary CDW coverage if you use points to pay.

How to File a Claim

If your rental car received damage or was stolen, it's important to take the following steps as soon as possible:

1. Report the incident within 60 days
You have 60 days to report, but you want to do so immediately.

It's easiest to submit the claim online through Or you can call your Benefits Administrator and request to have a form mailed to you.

2. Take photos
Take clear pictures of the damaged vehicle and accident scene.

3. Send the claim form within 100 days
Even if you don't have the other documents ready, it's extremely important you submit the claim form within 100 days of the incident. Otherwise, your claim may be denied.

4. Send other required documents
Within 365 days of the incident, there are several other paperwork that you need to send, including:

  • The entire rental agreement

  • The receipt or monthly billing statement showing that the entire rental was charged to your Chase Sapphire Reserve card

  • Accident Report Form from the rental car company and Demand Letter indicating the costs you are responsible for

  • Repair estimate or itemized repair bill

  • At least 2 photos of the damaged vehicle

  • Police report, if applicable (required for stolen cars)

Once you've submitted all required info, Chase will handle the rest.

Important Contact Numbers

If you need to report an incident, have issues filing, or just have general questions about your benefits, call your Benefits Administrator any time at 1-888-675-1461 or the customer service phone number on the back of your card.

If you're outside of the US, you can call collect at 1-804-673-1691.

How Long Does the Claim Process Take

Generally, Chase will review and pay the claim within 15 days of receiving all required documentation. There is no more action on your part.

This benefit is a reimbursement. This means the rental agency will first charge you for the damage. You can have it charged directly to your Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card (and earn some points while at it).

Once Chase reviews and accepts the claim, they'll reimburse you. But you'd have to float the cost during the claims process, which can be lengthy and take three months or more.

Users have reported that while Chase is usually no problem to deal with, the rental car company may be more of a pain. Make sure you follow up with them often to get the documents.

Car Rental Privileges and Discounts

In addition to car rental insurance coverage, The Sapphire Reserve credit card also comes with other special car rental privileges. You can get promotions, discounts, and upgrades with National Car Rental, Avis, and Silvercar. You must enroll in each loyalty program through your account to activate these benefits.

National Car Rental:
You get a complimentary Emerald Club Executive Level membership. This allows you to choose any rental car and only pay the midsize rate. You can bypass the rental counter and choose your own car.

Plus, you may receive up to 25% discount on rental car rates when making a reservation directly online through National or by calling directly at 1-800-227-7368. Use discount code 5030849.

Avis Car Rental:
You get complimentary Avis Preferred Plus Status. This offers up to 30% savings on Avis base rates when making a reservation directly online through Avis or by calling 1-800-633-3469. Use the Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD) Number S107100.

Also, you can get free two-day weekend rental for qualifying rentals.

Save up to 30% on every qualifying car rental. You must first validate your card and register for a Silvercar account (at To receive the discount on rental cars, you must add your Reserve card as the default payment method in your Silvercar account.

You also get triple points per dollar spent on car rentals.

Other Benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve

The Sapphire Reserve comes with a long list of credit card benefits and high-end perks to justify the $550 annual fee. You get:

  • A sign-up bonus of 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.

  • $300 annual travel statement credit for any travel-related expenses.

  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Travel℠ immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases

  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide with a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership (plus two guests at no extra charge).

  • Up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS or TSA PreCheck.

  • 50% more value when you redeem your points by booking travel on the Chase Travel℠ portal (includes flights, hotels, cruises, and car rentals).

  • 1:1 point transfer to airline and hotel travel partners.

  • Travel protections, including trip cancellation and delay, lost baggage, and emergency medical care.

Read more in detail about all the Sapphire Reserve benefits.

Other Chase Credit Cards That Offer Primary Car Rental Insurance

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® card also offers primary coverage for damage and theft. The difference is that the coverage is up to the actual cash value of the car. However, coverage does not include expensive, exotic, or antique vehicles.

The Chase business credit cards offer rental car insurance perk too. Chase Ink Business Preferred®, Ink Business Cash®, and Ink Business Unlimited® offer coverage up to the actual cash value of the car when renting for business purposes. If renting for personal reasons within your country of residence, then coverage is secondary.

Bottom Line

Chase Sapphire Reserve offers perhaps the best car rental insurance benefits of all travel credit cards on the market. It offers peace of mind when renting, and can save you lots of cash and hassle in case of a mishap.

The card coverage is primary, which means you don't have to file first with any other kinds of insurance policies. This helps you avoid your personal premium going up.

Just remember that personal liability insurance is not included, so make sure you have a way to cover it elsewhere.

Refer to the Chase Guide to Benefits for a full explanation of terms, restrictions, and exclusions.

Write to Anna G at Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for our latest posts.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Chase. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by Chase. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.

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