No one goes out looking for their rental car to get broken into, but sometimes bad luck has a way of just finding you.
Other times, it just takes a little more awareness of where you’re at – like in a city with a car break in problem. Heck, it might not be a dangerous city, but for example in San Francisco about five years ago, car break ins skyrocketed. Who knows why that happened, but it did.
The good news is that car break ins are becoming more and more infrequent with city-owed garages, cameras, fencing and routine police surveillance all playing an important role in helping to ebb the effects of crime.
That being said – it’s still important to make sure to not only know what to do to minimize the risk of your rental car getting broken into – but that you also know what to do in the event the worst case scenario does occur and you have to deal with a car break in.
What are some precautions I can take?
Your rental car isn’t any different than your regular car and it’s important that you treat it as such. Don’t park your car in poorly lit areas. Don’t leave the car unattended for long periods of time. Keep your doors locked, roll up your windows and make sure that you don’t leave valuables laying about in your car. Do that – and you’ll be fine.
What do I do if someone breaks into my car?
The first thing you’re going to want to do is document the damage. If you come upon your car and the window is broken or find the lock’s been picked, don’t touch the car. Instead, take in the details of the break in from the outside of the car. Take photos of the places where there’s damage or a place where something’s been taken from. Write these things down and if you don’t have a pen and paper, simply use your phone’s notepad feature. The more specific you are, the better.
The second thing you need to do is file a police report. Yes, our car got broken into, but chances are it’s your stuff that got stolen. File a report as soon as possible. This is important because they can also document the damage, back up your story and begin an investigation if warranted.
Finally, it’s time to call your rental company. It’s really important however, that you file your police report first. When you call, we’ll ask for the case number so we can take care of everything we need to take care of on our own end. From there, you’ll want to take care of your insurance needs as well. If you purchased LDW insurance from our company, you’re covered on the damage. If you’re using your own insurance, you need to let your company know.
Experiencing a break in is never fun, but like we said at the beginning- it’s a lot less stressful when you know what you need to do. Follow those tips, stay safe and enjoy your time on the road!