What is CDW & SLI and When It is Worth Buying?

a damaged red rental car

Renting a car can be a lifesaver if you do not have your own car at the moment or you need a fast and reliable means of transportation. However, car rental can turn into a nightmare if you get into a traffic accident and you do not have proper insurances. There are two we will be looking at today: CDW and SLI.

If you research this topic online, you will find a lot of people asking whether car rental insurance is worth the money. However, there are certain cases where it might not be necessary. So, let’s learn more about it!

What Is CDW Insurance and SLI Insurance?

What does CDW stand for? CDW stands for Collision Damage Waiver and it covers the costs of the damage to your rented car but usually does not cover parts such as the wheels, tires, undercarriage, windscreen, and roof. CDW is usually included in the car rental package but sometimes in the USA this is not the case and you will have to pay for it separately.

SLI, meaning Supplementary Liability Insurance, on the other hand, covers the costs of damages that other vehicles, objects, or people have sustained in the accident you were involved in. Therefore, this type of insurance gives you third party liability cover. However, in some countries, like the USA, the SLI insurance limits are quite low, so you might need to top them up.

The Different Terms for SLI Insurance

So, we’ve established the importance of rental car insurance but you should also be able to recognize it when you’re making a booking. Depending on the car rental company you’re using, the SLI insurance will be referred to in different terms.

SLI is also known as ALI, which stands for Accident Liability Insurance and Third Party Liability Insurance(Protection). However, no matter which of these terms you encounter, you should consider getting it.

Now, a lot of customers ask us, “Do I need SLI insurance in the USA?” Let’s satiate their curiosity and answer this question below.

What Do You Need to Know About Car Rental Insurance in the USA?

Residents of the USA with a car of their own are usually covered by their own personal car insurance. This insurance provides the same protection as Liability Insurance but it is secondary to it. Therefore, you may only need to purchase CDW or LDW (which includes CDW and Theft Protection) to provide additional protection in case of theft and damage to your rental car.

However, it is still advisable to that you buy the SLI, which will supplement the personal auto insurance coverage, usually up to $1 million. Car rental companies in the US (except for California) need to provide statutory minimum liability coverage (a very low amount). That makes it wise to purchase SLI as well.

Aiming to simplify your car rental decision, EasyRentCars has streamlined all rental packages by showing their insurance inclusions detailedly on the right side of the listing page when applicable. You are able to learn about the differences between “No Protection“, “Limited Protection“, “Basic Protection“, “Full Plus” and “Super Protection” by hovering over each of them.

A Screenshot of EasyRentCars' Listing Page Displaying Car Rental Packages with Different Insurance Coverage for A Particular Car Type
A typical listing page from EasyRentCars displaying car rental packages with different insurance coverage for a particular car type/car group.

Visit easyrentcars.com now.


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