What’s a Damage Fee Waiver? Why would I want one?

A wise person once said: “Only have an accident if you can plan it in advance.” And of course, who can? If you are using an HOURCAR and something happens that is out of your control – you are hit by another driver, you get a flat tire because of a nail on the road, or the tree you’ve parked under loses a limb and it falls onto the car – we will never charge you any of the cost to repair those damages.

However, if you cause damage to an HOURCAR, you are responsible for up to a $2000 damage fee to cover the cost of repairs – unless you purchase a damage fee waiver.

A damage fee waiver provides you with peace of mind by guaranteeing that you won’t be liable for expensive damage fees in the event that you damage an HOURCAR during your reservation.

A damage fee waiver costs $50 and is valid for up to one year. Coverage for additional drivers on shared accounts is $10/driver. Should you be deemed at fault for vehicle damage, your damage fee waiver can be applied to that incident, as long as you report the damage to HOURCAR within 24 hours of the incident in which the damage occurred. You may then re-enroll in the program by purchasing a new damage fee waiver.

Purchasing a waiver won’t change your insurance coverage — every member is covered by our comprehensive insurance policy. The waiver simply eliminates the possibility that you will be charged the normal $2000 fee if you damage one of our vehicles.

How do I purchase a Damage Fee Waiver?

New Members: opt into the damage fee waiver program on the new member registration form. The cost of the damage fee waiver will be charged once payment information is added to your account.

 

Existing Members: email or call our office. The damage fee waiver will be charged when it is added to your account.

A waiver becomes effective 24 hours after you opt into the program. Waivers are non-refundable.

How do I redeem my waiver?

Report vehicle damage to HOURCAR within 24 hours of the incident in which the damage occurred by calling 612-343-2277 or emailing info@hourcar.org. Remember – damage must be reported within 24 hours in order for the damage fee waiver to apply. If you are deemed liable for unreported damage, the standard damage fee will apply regardless of participation in the damage fee waiver program.

What if I have multiple drivers on my account?

Only the account holder can opt into the waiver program, but a damage fee waiver can be used by any driver on the account. Damage Fee Waiver coverage for additional drivers is $10/driver.

A single waiver only eliminates the damage fee for one incident. However, once your waiver has been redeemed, a new waiver can be purchased for $50.

Does my waiver renew automatically?

Yes, your waiver will automatically renew twelve months from your opt-in date. The damage fee waiver program is optional and you can opt out at any time by emailing info@hourcar.org. Waivers are non-refundable.

Do other carsharing organizations do this?

Yes! Here is what some other well-known CSOs charge for damage fees and waivers:

Car2Go: $250 damage fee; $1 Driver Protection Fee per trip for the first 90 trips in calendar year

Zipcar: $1000 damage fee; $90 annual full damage fee waiver; must be 21 or older to purchase waiver, does not cover “acts of nature”

Minor scrapes and dings are no big deal, right? They should be cheap to fix.

When you total up structural damage, paint matching and the cost of parts and labor, a simple fender bender can easily cost $2000 – or much more – to repair. There are so many better things to spend your money on! Give yourself the freedom from worrying about repair costs.

But aren’t plans like this a ripoff?

That’s up to you – the Damage Fee Waiver program is totally optional. But two things to keep in mind: one, it would take well over 10 – likely closer to 15-20 – years of enrollment in the Damage Fee Waiver program to come close to the cost of most auto body repair. Two, no Hourcar member who has ever purchased and had to use a Damage Fee Waiver for an at-fault incident has ever regretted being covered, and 100% of them purchased a new waiver right away!