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Chase Sapphire Reserve Card: Maximizing Your Car Rental Insurance & Benefits

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Katie Seemann

Katie Seemann

Senior Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 27U.S. States Visited: 27

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure an...
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The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the top credit cards on the market (and one of our personal favorites). This credit card exploded out of the gate a few years ago with a huge sign-up bonus and has continued to be a powerhouse among travel rewards cards ever since.

The perks that come with the Chase Sapphire Reserve card are a dream for any frequent traveler — an annual $300 travel credit, a Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck credit, Priority Pass Select membership for lounge access, travel insurance, and 50% more value from your points when booking travel through the Chase travel portal.

With so many great benefits, it can get a bit overwhelming to decipher. So, we’ll break it down for you and focus on 1 benefit at a time.

This post will show you everything you need to know about the car rental insurance and benefits that come with the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. We’ll review primary versus secondary coverage, what the insurance includes, who is covered, and how to submit a claim.

Benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

Before we get to the nitty-gritty of the Chase Sapphire Reserve card car rental insurance benefits, let’s take a quick look at the main benefits this card offers.

This premium credit card comes with premium perks — but also a hefty price tag. The Chase Sapphire Reserve card has an annual fee of $550. While this is a lot of money, the benefits that come with it can more than offset the price tag. That’s one of the reasons it remains a very popular card among travel enthusiasts.

Ongoing Perks of the Chase Sapphire Reserve card:

  • $300 annual travel credit
  • Earn 10x points on car rentals, Chase Dining, and hotels booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal
  • Earn 10x points on Lyft rides (through March 2025)
  • 10x points on Peloton equipment and accessory purchases over $250 (through March 31, 2025)
  • Earn 5x points on airfare booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal
  • Earn 3x points on travel and dining purchases
  • Earn 1x points on all other purchases
  • Global Entry ($100), NEXUS ($50), or TSA PreCheck ($78) fee credit (every 4 years)
  • Points are worth 50% more: 1.5 cents per point value when redeemed through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal
  • 1:1 point transfers to lots of Chase travel partners
  • Travel insurance, including trip cancellation/interruption insurance, baggage delay and lost luggage insurance, travel accident insurance, and emergency medical coverage
  • Airport lounge access through Priority Pass

Hot Tip: For more information and a full explanation of all of the benefits offered by this card, see our article on the valuable benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

If the price tag is still too steep for you despite all of these great benefits, consider the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. This card also earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points and has similar benefits, but the annual fee is only $95.

Car Rental Insurance

Image Credit: jcomp via freepik

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card comes with an Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, often referred to as CDW. That’s basically just a fancy term for car rental insurance. It covers damage or theft of most rental vehicles worldwide.

Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver

The auto rental collision damage waiver (CDW) provided by the Chase Sapphire Reserve card applies to more than just the primary cardholder. You’re also covered if you’re an authorized user and listed as the primary renter.

To be eligible for the insurance that comes with the Chase Sapphire Reserve card, you must do 2 things:

  • Decline the collision insurance offered by the car rental company
  • Charge the entire rental cost to your Chase Sapphire Reserve card

Hot Tip: When you pay for your entire rental car cost on your Chase Sapphire Reserve card, you’ll be eligible for primary car rental insurance and earn 3x to 10x Ultimate Rewards points per dollar! You can then transfer those points to one of Chase’s hotel or airline partners or use them to book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal. 

Primary vs. Secondary Coverage

The coverage offered by the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is primary coverage.

This means that you do NOT have to file a claim with any other insurance company you may have before you can take advantage of this Chase Sapphire Reserve card benefit.

Other Chase credit cards offering primary car rental coverage are:

Who and What Is Covered

So, what and who is actually covered when you take advantage of the insurance offered by the Chase Sapphire Reserve card?

The Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) applies to:

  • The cardholder (this can be the primary cardholder or authorized user, but they must be listed as the primary renter on the car rental contract)
  • Any additional drivers listed on the rental agreement

The CDW will cover up to $75,000 in physical damages and/or theft of the vehicle for rentals that are 31 consecutive days or less. Other covered expenses include reasonable towing charges and loss of use charges incurred by the rental company.

What’s Not Covered

As with most insurance policies, there’s a long list of things that aren’t covered. Here are just some of the things that are NOT covered by the insurance offered by the Chase Sapphire Reserve card:

  • Antique cars
  • Any obligation you assume under any additional agreement
  • Any rentals over 31 days in length
  • Any type of lease
  • Any violation of the rental agreement
  • Expenses reimbursed through other forms of insurance
  • Injury of anyone or anything inside or outside of the vehicle
  • Limousines
  • Loss or theft of personal belongings
  • Mopeds
  • Motorbikes
  • Motorcycles
  • Recreational vehicles
  • Trucks
  • Vans designed to carry more than 8 passengers
  • Vehicles with open cargo beds

Bottom Line: The auto rental collision damage waiver provided by the Chase Sapphire Reserve card will cover up to $75,000 in damages for the primary cardholder, plus any authorized drivers (on most rentals).

How To File a Claim

If you experience an accident or theft of your rental car, you must notify the benefits administrator within 60 days of the incident.

You must submit a completed claim form within 100 days of the damage or theft. And any and all supporting documentation must be submitted within 1 year of the damage or theft.

Here’s how:

  • File a claim over the phone: 888-675-1461
  • File a claim online:

You may be asked to supply supporting documentation with your claim. This could include any or all of the following documents:

  • Car rental agreement showing that you declined the CDW offered by the rental company
  • Credit card statement showing you paid for the entire rental with your Chase Sapphire Reserve card
  • A police report
  • Repair estimates
  • Photos of the damage
  • Any other documents deemed necessary by the benefits administrator

Important Dates To Remember

The timing of your claim is essential. For your claim to be approved, it must comply with the following timeline:

  • You must contact the benefits administrator within 60 days of the incident
  • You must file a claim within 100 days of the incident
  • You must submit all supporting documentation within 365 days of the incident

Bottom Line: To file a claim with your Chase Sapphire Reserve card, call 888-675-1461 or go online to

Special Car Rental Privileges and Discount Codes

Along with collision and theft protection, your Chase Sapphire Reserve card offers you special privileges and discount codes with different car rental agencies.

National Car Rental

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card comes with complimentary Emerald Club Executive Level membership with National Car Rental.

You can also save up to 25% on qualifying rentals in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean using code 5030849. To be eligible for this discount, you must book directly through National on its website or call 800-227-7368.


Once you’re enrolled in Avis Preferred, you can save up to 30% on qualifying rentals with Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD) Number S107100.

To receive this discount, you must book directly through Avis — the discount doesn’t apply when booking a rental car through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

The discount applies to the base rate only and will vary based on location, date, and type of car. You must make your reservation 24 hours in advance to receive these benefits.

Because the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is a Visa Infinite card, cardholders also get complimentary Avis Preferred Plus membership. They can earn free weekend rentals and receive up to 10% off base rates on Select Series rentals, too.

Audi on demand

After creating an account and verifying your card’s eligibility, you’ll be eligible for special discounts with Audi on demand as a Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholder.

Your Chase Sapphire Reserve card must be saved as the default payment on your Audi on demand account to receive a discount. The discount must be applied at the time of booking and can only be used when booking directly through Audi on demand.

The discount isn’t available when booking a rental car through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

Bottom Line: The discounts and benefits offered by Avis, National, and Audi on demand are only available when booking directly through the car rental agency, but a discount code may be required. These discounts can’t be applied when booking a rental car through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

How To Find and Activate These Benefits — A Step-by-Step Guide

These special car rental privileges require you to sign up with each car rental agency individually. Thankfully, links to sign-up are easy to find in your online Chase account.

Step 1: First, sign in to your online Chase Ultimate Rewards account and click on the menu icon in the upper left-hand corner.

Image Credit: Chase

Step 2: If you have more than 1 Chase credit card, be sure to select your Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Image Credit: Chase

Step 3: Scroll to the bottom and click on Card Benefits.

Image Credit: Chase

Step 4: Scroll down until you get to Special Car Rental Privileges. You’ll find more information and links to sign up with the 3 programs that offer discounts — National, Avis, and Audi on demand.

Image Credit: Chase

Final Thoughts

Renting a car can be stressful, but having the right credit card in your wallet can help make the process a little easier.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card comes with many benefits, including primary rental car insurance. This policy is activated if you decline the collision damage waiver (CDW) offered by the rental company and pay for the entire cost of the rental using your Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Frequently Asked Questions

About Katie Seemann

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure and Forbes Advisor.


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November 12, 2019

I rented a car with Chase Reserve recently and was told I also needed to provide my regular car insurance to them because Chase does not cover liability.

Michael McHugh

November 13, 2019

Hi Pam,

The Reserve provides primary auto rental Collision Damage Waiver (CDW). This is not liability insurance, so you’re only covered for damage and theft to your rental vehicle. CDW does not cover damage to someone else’s property or if someone is injured in a wreck.


November 13, 2019

In the USA car rental companies are required by law to provide liability insurance. Lots of people in the US don’t own a car and therefore don’t have any car insurance, they can still rent a car declining all the optional coverage! The problem is that the default insurance only covers the state minimum requirement, which might be ludicrously small. So that’s why they ask for your coverage or try to sell you “supplemental liability”. I think it’s illegal to *require* you to purchase the supplemental (in the US). Foreign countries seem to do it as a matter of routine.


December 07, 2019

I booked a car rental in January with my CSR using points, but I am thinking about downgrading the card soon as I don’t think I’ll need it as much after this trip. Would my rental still be eligible for the insurance coverage if I downgraded the card before the trip?

Jarrod West

December 08, 2019

Hi Marcus,

Unfortunately, it will not be eligible for the insurance, since you need to be cardholder when submitting a claim.


February 04, 2020

I’ve seen articles like this reference that trucks are excluded from coverage. However, reading Chase Sapphire Reserve’s Guide to Benefits dated 11/ 1/19 on page 3 it says that certain vehicles are not covered include: “antique cars (cars over twenty (20) years old or that have not been manufactured for ten (10) years or more), cargo vans, vehicles with open cargo beds, trucks, (other than pick-ups), motorcycles, mopeds, motorbikes, limousines, and recreational vehicles and passenger vans with seating for more than nine (9) people, including the driver (passenger vans with seating for nine (9) or
less, including the driver, are covered).”

Also, on page 4 it address damages that are excluded from the policy including “Damage to the interior bed of a pick-up truck unless such damage is caused by or the result of a covered loss, such as theft or collision” and “Damage to a pick-up truck that is a result of loading or unloading objects into the bed.”

This seems like contradictory language. Trucks are excluded from coverage – “other than pick-ups.”

Has anyone had any experience with this?


April 08, 2021

Can you still get primary car rental coverage if you are only paying taxes and fees on the rental with a Chase Sapphire Reserve? I have enough points with Enterprise to rent a car for free for 8 days. I’m only required to pay the taxes and fees on the rental.

Christine Krzyszton

April 08, 2021

Hi Pat. The terms and conditions state that you must “initiate and complete your entire car rental transaction” with the card. You may want to call the number on the back of your card and speak with Chase for any further clarification.


June 02, 2022

Does the car rental insurance cover rental services like Hui and Turo?

Christine Krzyszton

June 02, 2022

Hi Ashley. Chase states that the vehicle must be rented from a car rental agency. Hui and Turo are considered peer to peer rental companies, not car rental agencies, and you would likely not have coverage. You can call the number on the back of your card to confirm, however.

Pat Novak

July 09, 2022

Does the Chase Sapphire cover a rental car using Turbo?

Christine Krzyszton

July 10, 2022

Hi Pat. According to Chase, the vehicle must be rented from a car rental agency. Turo is considered a peer-to-peer rental company, not a car rental agency, so you would likely not have coverage. You can call the number on the back of your card to confirm, however.


September 30, 2022

What is the difference between a car rental company and a car rental agency? Which companies come under car rental agency? Thanks in advance.

Christine Krzyszton

October 01, 2022

Hi Yamnesh. This is how Chase describes the coverage: “vehicles not rented from a rental agency” are not covered. A rental agency is defined by Chase (in the Guide to Benefits) as “a commercial rental company licensed under the laws of the applicable jurisdiction and whose primary business is renting automobiles“. Turo, for example, is considered a ride-sharing app, not a car rental agency. Please understand, however, that we do not determine what is covered or not covered, or which companies are considered car rental agencies/companies. Chase and its third-party claims administrator have the final determination.


July 20, 2022

Does the rental insurance cover a rental in Costa Rica?

Jarrod West

July 20, 2022

Hi Phil,

Yes, you should be covered in Costa Rica.


August 13, 2022

If I want to rent a vehicle for 2 months, can I have two rentals of one month each in order to qualify for less than 31 consecutive days?

Christine Krzyszton

August 13, 2022

Hi Sean. The terms and conditions state that “Rental periods that either exceed or are intended to exceed thirty–one (31) days”, are excluded. If there was a gap between the 2 rental periods when the car was not rented and there were 2 separate rental agreements, it is possible that would qualify. This, however, is only my opinion. You might want to read through the Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver section of the Guide to Benefits and then make your decision.


August 14, 2022

The thing this article misses is what it is like, in practice, to file a claim.

Based on my experience with Chase Reserve, and the experience of one family friend, most people would give up trying to collect on their coverage.

When you file they will reject your claim, they ask for ever more documentation, no matter how meticulous you are. This is not at all like the CDW of a rental car company where they handle all the admin. The insurer associated with Chase will try to get out of reimbursing you for repairs and admin fees by finding loopholes in your contract and put all the additional admin on you.

I persisted for about 14 months, calling probably 8-10 times, and sending letters. I eventually got reimbursed for the repairs and admin, but there was a lot of documenting, and duplicate documenting because they ask again, and again. My family friend gave up after a few months of trying.

The rental car agency CDW is typically around $15/day. I rent fewer than 10 days/year. CDW seems worth it to avoid the headache. Time is our most precious resource.

Please see the following for their loopholes (pages 3-5):


August 14, 2022

FYI, these are only some of their loopholes, note the additional provision in the link I shared above:

“This information is a brief description of the important features
of this insurance plan. It is not an insurance contract. Insurance
benefits are underwritten by Indemnity Insurance Company of North
America (“Provider”). Coverage may not be available in all states or
certain terms may be different where required by state law.”

If you call the number listed in that link they will not confirm whether or not it applies in your particular state, and will not put anything to writing. They also will not share the contract with you. I tried.


October 07, 2022

Does this CDW benefit cover any excess? Trying to figure out if it makes sense to take out additional excess insurance on a car rental in Europe. Thx!

Christine Krzyszton

October 08, 2022

Hi Sam. The car rental insurance coverage on the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is primary which means you would not have to make a claim on your personal insurance and therefore not have to pay its deductible (excess). If that is not what you’re asking, please clarify. Also, be sure to call Chase and ask for a letter of coverage to take with you to show to the rental agency.


January 25, 2023

I cannot find anywhere whether authorized users also get the complimentary upgraded status with National/Avis, or is it the primary cardholder only?

Jarrod West

January 25, 2023

Hi Mike,

Authorized users should receive that benefit as well.

Thomas Jennings

February 11, 2023

Any thoughts on special limitations on using Chase Sapphire coverage for car rental in Italy? Specifically, I have used the Chase Sapphire card in 2021 and again in fall 2022 in Italy, and both times it was not allowed to rent the car unless I agreed to the most basic coverage that clearly included CDW. Both rentals went well without a hitch, but was I not covered under the Chase coverage as I could not decline CDW(there was no option, I wasted 45 min both times to no avail to get the reserved car without the Basic coverage).

Christine Krzyszton

February 13, 2023

Hi Thomas. While Chase doesn’t exclude coverage in Italy, reports are consistent that car rental agencies there have required the purchase of at least basic CDW coverage, as you have experienced. We always recommend securing a letter of coverage from Chase before any travel when renting a vehicle. But for Italy, it may be of little use. Sorry about your experience.

Maria L.

March 05, 2023

I had an experience in 2021 of using the CSR primary rental insurance benefit. I agree with the post that Chase will request documentation however I don’t recall sending much documentation, other than what was requested. I filed a claim online, submitted requested documents (rental agreement; estimate repair and itemized repair bill; photographs of the vehicle damage; copy of the rental car agency’s demand letter stating the costs I was responsible for; and credit card billing statement showing charges for the rental).

The estimate repair/itemized repair bill and copy of rental car agency’s demand letter came from rental company without my request. There was delay in submitting the documents as I waited for the rental company to mail me the documents since I returned the vehicle without contact, thus not reporting the damage. I did file a claim with Chase as soon as I returned the vehicle and noticed the damage, as well as took photos of the damage. All in all, not too much of a headache; I don’t recall speaking with anyone (Chase or rental company). Everything was done online.

Damage to rental vehicle was cracked windshield.

Hope this helps.

Christine Krzyszton

March 05, 2023

Hi Maria. Thank you so much for sharing this information.


May 27, 2023

Thanks Maria. Did you have to pay anything out of pocket for the repair or did Chase cover everything?

Ruth Post

March 21, 2023

What number do I call for a letter of coverage for an upcoming trip? How do I know what countries are covered by my Chase Sapphire CDW as we will cross borders to tour multiple EU/Schengen countries over 3 weeks.

Christine Krzyszton

March 22, 2023

Hi Ruth. You can call the number on the back of your card and let them know you need a letter of coverage for the collision damage waiver coverage that comes with your card. Most countries are covered but the representative who issues your letter of coverage will be able to tell you if any of the countries you’re visiting are excluded.


April 20, 2023

I was in an accident and was provided a rental car by enterprise during my repairs through the other persons insurance due to the accident not being my fault. I did not have to pay for anything other than a $50 hold on my CSR, am I covered under the CSR rental car insurance?

Jarrod West

April 20, 2023

Hi Matt,

Yes, you should be!


April 28, 2023

How can I cover liability, third-party issues, in addition to CDW?
Going to Italy soon and having to rent two cars. Is that covered by the Reserve card? Thanks.

Christine Krzyszton

April 29, 2023

Hi Pablo. First, I would request a letter of coverage from Chase to take with you to present to the rental agency as it will show you have CDW/LDW coverage. The Chase Sapphire Reserve card car rental insurance does not cover liability. Liability covering third parties will either be included with the rental fee or for a nominal charge. Have a wonderful trip.


April 30, 2023

Thank you!


May 05, 2023


Does this CSR insurance also apply for international car rentals?


Katie Seemann

May 05, 2023

Hi Eric,
Yes! Here’s a description of the benefit from Chase: “Decline the rental company’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental cost to your card. Coverage is primary and provides reimbursement up to $75,000 for theft and collision damage for rental cars in the U.S. and abroad.”

Rebecca Bratlien

May 19, 2023

Does the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card cover car rental in Ireland?

Chris Hassan

May 19, 2023

Yes, it does.


July 09, 2023

I rented a Hertz/Thrifty car in Ireland with my Chase Sapphire Reserve card. A rock has cracked my windshield and looks pretty bad. I also notice previous damage on the passenger side that I can attest wasn’t me, but I didn’t notice or do a walk around with anyone before I headed out. My two questions are, what’s going to happen with the windshield? And do I just ask for previous photos with dates on the car to prove the scrap/dent wasn’t me? Also found it wild they still put a $5,000 hold on my card when initially signing. Is that right of them?

Christine Krzyszton

July 21, 2023

Hi Autumn. Sorry for your situation with the rental car. By now, you have probably turned in the vehicle and they have assessed any damage. If you paid in full with your Chase Sapphire Reserve, you should have coverage for the damage. And yes, you could ask for the previous rental condition to see if there was preexisting damage. Be sure to contact Chase and file a claim promptly to start the process if you need coverage. While it is customary to have a hold on your credit card when renting, the amount varies by car rental agency. Your rental agreement would state the amount. Also, please let us know how you made out.

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