Convenience versus safety
Renting a passenger van or sprinter can be a convenient and cost-effective way to transport yourself or a group of people. But is it safe? From insurance coverage to understanding the basics of driving a large vehicle, there are a few things to consider before you rent. Let's look at what you should know before you hit the road with a rented van or sprinter.
How to find and book a safe rental van
It can be as easy as going online to search for a rental company that offers sprinter vans or passenger vans for lease. There are websites to connect you directly with owners in your area, indicating their preference to rent out their vehicles when they’re not using them. Alternatively, you can go to the website of a major carrier, such as ZipCar or Hertz and search their existing inventory of rental vans.
Once you have found a van owner or rental company, here are some things to keep in mind before you hit the road.
The most important thing to verify when renting a van is that it has sufficient insurance. The owner should provide you with a copy of their policy for you to review. Any rental van should be covered by collision damage waiver (CDW) and uninsured/uninsured motorist coverage (UIM). These are included in the rental fee, so make sure the owner is providing adequate coverage.
Many times when renting a 15 passenger van, your normal car insurance will not cover you. Nearly all personal policies will not cover a rental that takes more than 9 passengers.
The risk of rollover is significanly higher when renting a larger passenger van or sprinter especially in comparison to renting two smaller vehicles.
You should also make sure that the van is covered for rental vehicle spectators, which covers you (and any passengers) if the vehicle is involved in a collision while it’s being operated as a ride-share or taxi. Note that some states, such as California, require additional coverage if the vehicle is a passenger van that can carry more than 9 people including the driver.