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American express canada gold car rental insurance

Editor Review of AmEx Insurance

Gmac car insurance addressThe Good: With over 150 years of helping people travel, and decades in the travel insurance business, American Express certainly has experience under their belts. American Express offers bundled products that address all aspects of protecting your trips, including cancellation, medical, delays, accidents, evacuation and more for both domestic and international trips.

The Drawbacks: The American Express site can be difficult to use and travelers can become confused between the travel insurance policies and the credit card travel protection plans. None of their plans offer rental car coverage or coverage for high-risk activities like SCUBA diving, which many travelers are likely to do on a vacation trip.

The Bottom Line: American Express is a trusted name and they offer a brief but well-rounded set of travel insurance package plans with varying limits to meet the needs of nearly every type of traveler.

How to Get a Quote


Compare quotes from all companies: Click here to get quotes from all major travel insurance companies using a comparison tool.

Company Information

Company NameAMEX Assurance Company
US Travel Insurance Association MemberYes
Refund Policy14-day Free Look Period (some plans can be refunded up to the day before departure)
Travel Insurance PlansPackage plans
Global Travel Shield Classic
Global Travel Shield Deluxe
Gold
Platinum
Company Contact InformationAMEX Assurance Company
P.O. Box 53701
Phoenix, Arizona 85072

623-492-3110
623-492-3355 Fax
Policyholder Questions623-492-3110
AMEX Assistance/EmergenciesInside US/Canada:1-800-332-4899 (toll free)
Outside US/Canada: call operator & connect to 303-373-6497 (no charge)

More about American Express Travel Protection

American Express is a well-recognized name brand, and their AMEX Assurance Company is a trusted provider of travel insurance plans, all of which include coverage for foreign and domestic terrorism, hurricanes, financial default, mandatory evacuations, and more.

AMEX travel insurance plans come with pre-trip planning assistance to help with embassy information, weather forecasts for the insured’s destination, foreign exchange rates, visa and passport requirements as well as vaccination recommendations.

American Express offers four full-featured package plans with no age limits, but their website can be confusing to use partly because American Express Travel Insurance is not available to residents of all U.S. states but also because their plans come with trip length limits.

Optional Coverage Available in American Express Plans

  • Cancel for business reasons is offered as an option in the Gold and Platinum plan levels.

Highlights of American Express Travel Insurance

  • All AMEX travel insurance plans include coverage for pre-existing medical conditions (with short look-back periods) if the plan is purchased within 14 days of the initial trip deposit.
  • All plans include coverage for trip cancellation due to foreign and domestic terrorism (with some conditions).
  • All plans include trip cancellation for financial default with a short 7-day wait period.
  • None of the AMEX plans offer ‘cancel for any reason’ or missed connection coverage.
  • All plans have trip length limits of 31 or 60 days, depending on the plan.
  • All plans include trip cancellation and trip interruption, so these are all travel insurance package plans (i.e., not a travel medical plan).

American Express Travel Insurance Plans

Global Travel Shield Classic
This is the plan when you just want basic protection for your trip without spending a lot
This is American Express’ budget plan, with good protection for trip cancellations. The medical coverage limit is not high, but it’s plenty for the standard traveler depending on your destination. This is a basic travel insurance plan to help travelers avoid high financial losses as long as you’re not traveling to a remote location or participating in risky activities.

Global Travel Shield Deluxe
Higher medical coverage without sacrificing the basics
This plan is an excellent blend between a basic plan and the higher priced premium plan, and it offers higher medical expense and evacuation coverage for trips where that’s important to you. The baggage loss limit is also relatively high when compared to other plans, so this plan will help a stranded or injured traveler very well.

Gold
Good travel insurance plan as long as you’re not traveling remotely or adventurously
None of the American Express plans cover risky, adventurous activities, but this is a good plan that will deliver the protection most travelers need. The medical coverage is not high, but it might be right depending on where you’re headed.

Platinum
Nice, well-rounded plan with high medical, evacuation, and delay coverage
This is American Express’ premier plan with high limits for nearly everything. It’s still missing coverage for rental cars and ‘cancel for any reason’ but it’s an affordable full-featured plan for everything the typical traveler needs.

How to Get a Quote


Compare quotes from all companies: Click here to get quotes from all major travel insurance companies using a comparison tool.

Screenshots from the American Express Travel Protection website

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How to Get a Quote


Compare quotes from all companies: Click here to get quotes from all major travel insurance companies using a comparison tool.

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***Apple Pay works with iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus running on iOS 9 and above or an Apple Watch that is paired with an iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6, 6s, 6 Plus or 6s Plus. For a list of other compatible Apple Pay devices see apple.com/ca/apple-pay. You can use Apple Pay with participating American Express contactless merchants and Apple Pay in app purchases on eligible devices. Transaction limits may apply.

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  1. This offer is only available to new SimplyCashTM Preferred Card from American Express Cardmembers. For current or former SimplyCashTM Preferred Card from American Express Cardmembers, we may approve your application, but you will not be eligible for the Welcome Rate of 5%. 5% cash back rate applies for the first 6 months of Card membership, up to a maximum of $6,000 in purchases (equal to $300 cash back). If the bonus earn rate of 5% applies to a purchase, the base earn rate will not also apply to the same purchase. Provided your account is in good standing, cash back can be earned on purchases less returns and other credits. If you choose to return a purchase or are otherwise entitled to a credit or adjustment that is related to a purchase, your entitlement to cash back rewards will be reduced accordingly. All deductions for returns, credits and adjustments will be calculated at the earn rate in effect at the time of the return, credit or adjustment. This means that the cash back rewards deducted from your balance may be different from the amount originally earned. Funds advances, interest, fees, balance transfers, Amex cheques and charges for travellers cheques and foreign currencies are not purchases and do not earn cash back rewards. Cash back is applied as a credit to your account annually. All references to you means the Basic Cardmember.
  2. No annual fee for Supplementary Cards. Supplementary Cardmembers must be age of majority. Maximum 9 Supplementary Cards per account.
  3. 2% cash back rate (base rate) applies to all card purchases. Provided your account is in good standing, cash back can be earned on purchases less returns and other credits. If you choose to return a purchase or are otherwise entitled to a credit or adjustment that is related to a purchase, your entitlement to cash back rewards will be reduced accordingly. All deductions for returns, credits and adjustments will be calculated at the earn rate in effect at the time of the return, credit or adjustment. This means that the cash back rewards deducted from your balance may be different from the amount originally earned. Cash back is applied as a credit to your account annually and will appear on the statement issued in September of each year. The cash back calculation resets annually. Funds advances, interest, fees, balance transfers, Amex cheques and charges for travellers cheques and foreign currencies are not purchases and do not earn cash back rewards. All references to you means the Basic Cardmember.
  4. Purchase must be charged in full to an American Express Card issued by Amex Bank of Canada. Subject to availability and to event ticketing agent terms, conditions and fees. Not all seats are available. All sales are final. No refunds. No exchanges.
  5. Underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada. Coverage is in effect as long as you have fully charged your rental to your SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express. There are specific conditions that apply to who may rent and drive the rental vehicle, the length of rental and the type of vehicle covered.
  6. Travel Accident Insurance is Underwritten by Chubb Life Insurance Company of Canada, Head Office in Canada: Toronto, Ontario, under Master Policy TMH600135.
  7. Underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada.
  8. Underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada.
  9. When you charge the full price on eligible purchases to your SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express, the coverage given under the manufacturer’s original warranty is automatically doubled for up to one additional year. Buyer's Assurance Protection Plan is underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada.
  10. Underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada. Coverage is in excess of any and all other applicable insurance.
  11. All references to you means the Basic Cardmember.
  12. Your account must be in good standing. If this is a personal referral, you agree to only make recommendations to known friends and family members with whom you have a relationship and who have confirmed to you that they want to receive this communication. If this is a referral in the context of your business, you agree to only make recommendations to business contacts who you know and who have consented to receive this recommendation from you. You must not send recommendations to people you do not know. You can only receive a maximum referral bonus of $3,000 Cash Back per calendar year for approved referrals. Bonus point maximums may change at any time and if you change card products. Should the referral bonus amount change during the calendar year, you may receive a partial bonus depending on the available maximum bonus points. You are not eligible to receive this referral bonus offer if you have already reached your maximum annual referral bonus limit. The referral bonus will be awarded to you based on each eligible referral for which American Express receives an application that is subsequently approved, subject to all applicable terms and conditions. Due to the confidential nature of the approval process, you will not be notified when applications are approved or declined and any individual you have referred must agree to allow your account to be bonused upon approval or you will not receive the referral bonus. If our records indicate that any person you have referred has opted not to receive e-mails from us, your referral will not be sent and you will not receive the referral bonus offered as part of this program. Referral program varies by product and may be modified, suspended, cancelled or otherwise terminated without notice. Cannot be combined with any other offer. If the people that you refer have already applied for the product that you are referring without participating in this program, neither you nor they will be eligible for any referral bonus that may be offered as part of this program. Likewise, if the people you refer decide to apply for a Card through this referral program other than the one you have specifically recommended, the referral bonus for which you and they may be eligible will vary. Referral program participants should allow 8 to 10 weeks for the award of the referral bonus once program criteria have been met and must be enrolled in the corresponding loyalty program (if applicable) when the referral bonus is awarded. All products and services are subject to applicable Terms and Conditions.

†All insurance coverage is subject to the terms and conditions of the respective master policies. Certain limitations, exclusions and restrictions apply. Please read your Certificates of Insurance carefully.

®, TM: Used by Amex Bank of Canada under license from American Express.

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Disclosure: We get a commission for links on the blog. You don’t have to use our links, but we’re very grateful when you do. American Express, Barclaycard, Chase, and US Bank are Million Mile Secrets advertising partners. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by our partners. Here’s our Advertiser Disclosure.

[Disclaimer:  Rental car terms and conditions and state law changes constantly.  Please do your OWN research on additional driver fees before renting a car.]

Rental car companies such as Budget, Avis & Enterprise allow you to add a spouse or domestic partner for free when you rent in the US.  Other rental car companies such as Thrifty, Dollar, National, Hertz and Alamo charge you to add an additional driver. However, you can avoid the fee at Alamo, Hertz, & National by enrolling in their frequent rental programs and then booking a car rental which has your frequent rental number.

Update:  Alamo no longer waives the additional driver fee for Alamo Insiders Members who enrolled after May 11, 2014.  But if you enrolled May 11, 2014 or earlier can still add another driver for free.  Thanks to reader Alan W. for pointing this out!

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You Have to Wade Through a Lot of Fine Print to add an Additional Driver for Free!

Cheap Car Rentals Series:

  • Part 1 – Finding The MOST You Should Pay With Hotwire & Costco Travel
  • Part 2 – Save Hundreds of Dollars by Using the Chase Ultimate Rewards or Citi Thank You Portal!
  • Part 3 – Saving Money With the Capital One Travel Portal
  • Part 4 – Southwest Airlines’ Car Rentals
  • Part 5 – National Car Rental’s “Last Minute Specials”
  • Part 6 – Priceline’s “Name Your Own Price”
  • Part 7 – 5 Ways to Add an Additional Driver for Free
  • Part 8 – Let Autoslash Do The Work
  • Part 9 – American Airlines Car Rentals
  • Part 10 – Why Everyone Should Sign Up For Frequent Car Rental Programs
  • Part 11 – Save More With Car Rental Savers
  • Part 12 – Do You Know How To Get The Lowest Price For Drivers Under 25 Years Old?
  • Using Airline Miles for Car Rentals
  • Using Hertz Coupons & Discounts
  • Using Airline Discount Codes & Earning Miles for Rentals

Usually the fees to add an additional driver are ~$10 per day.  So in some cases, it could be well worth it to pay more to rent from car rental companies which allow you to add an extra driver for free if you like sharing the driving with someone else. I am a control freak like driving so Emily rarely drives the rental car, but having her as an additional driver is useful when we visit family.

It may be tempting to not pay the additional driver fee and have someone else drive the car, but you would be liable for damages in case the additional driver got into an accident and was not an authorized driver on the rental contract.  So don’t have someone else drive if he or she is not authorized to drive the rental car!

Ways to Add an Additional Driver for Free

Note that while you can avoid additional driver fees, you may have to pay underage fees if your additional driver does not meet the age requirements (usually 25 years or older).

1.  Rent from Budget, Avis & Enterprise

Budget, Avis & Enterprise do not charge a fee for an additional driver who is your spouse or domestic partner.  And if you are renting under a business discount code, you may be able to have business colleagues as additional drivers. But the policy at each appears to be slightly different. Here’s a link to:

  • Budget’s policy for additional drivers
  • Enterprise’s policy for additional drivers
  • Avis (I can’t find a stand-alone link, but the terms and conditions appear in the last page when you book a car rental at Avis.com)

2.  Costco Travel

Booking through Costco Travel usually lets you add an additional driver for free at Alamo, Avis, Budget, and Enterprise.

3.   AAA, AARP & USAA

AAA, AARP, and USAA have slightly different additional driver policies:

  • AAA lets you add an additional driver (has to be a AAA member) with Hertz for free. Spouses or domestic partners (of AAA members) don’t need to have AAA membership to be an additional operator
  • AARP lets you add an additional driver with Alamo & Hertz
  • USAA lets you add your spouse or other USAA family members as an additional driver with Hertz, Avis, Enterprise & Budget

Note that just being a member of these organizations is NOT enough.  You have to use their discount code and contract number while renting to get the additional driver benefits.

4.   State Law

California law allows an additional driver for free when renting in California.

5.   Loyalty Program Membership

Some rental car companies which charge fees for additional drivers may waive them if you are a member of their free loyalty program.

  • Alamo waives the fee for 1 additional driver ONLY if you were an Alamo Insider member (free to join) May 11, 2014 or earlier
  • Hertz waives the fee for a spouse or domestic partner if you are a Hertz Gold Plus member (free to join)
  • National waives the fee for a spouse or domestic partner or immediate family members who shares the same address as you if you are a National Emerald Club member (free to join)

Note that you usually need to have your loyalty program number on the reservation to get the additional driver fee waived, so this may not work if you book the rental through a third party like the Ultimate Rewards Mall or Priceline.

Bottom Line

Renting a car with Avis, Budget or Enterprise will let you add your spouse or domestic partner as an authorized driver for free.

So it could make sense to rent from those companies, even if they charge higher rates to save on paying extra fees for an additional driver elsewhere.

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* If you liked this post, why don’t you join the 25,000+ readers who have signed-up to receive free blog posts via email (only 1 email per day!) or in an RSS reader …because then you’ll never miss another update!

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