When you need a vehicle for a short time, like on vacation or because your automobile is in the shop, renting a car may be the option. Whatever the circumstance, it is crucial to understand the many intricacies of renting a car to avoid any hidden costs that rental companies may charge.
You would be surprised to find that some of the things they charge for are completely irrelevant or unimportant, like age fee or tire and battery recovery fee.
However, we believe, the benefits outshine the drawbacks when it comes to car rentals; as long as you know how to deal with rental agencies. Renting a car can be a major time-saving venture when traveling further than walking distance. However, such hidden expenses may cause a significant bump in your travel budget if you are not well informed.
This article focuses on the most common aspects that potential customers should be aware of before going for a car rental.
Look for Car Rental Coupon Codes
First thing’s first: know that almost all rental companies charge excessively high for most forms of transportation they have to offer. Considering this fact will help you see the real cost behind a car rental – making it easier for you to negotiate.
The good news is, many organizations provide discount coupon codes for particular car rental companies. These coupons will allow you to identify the cheapest car rental agencies available within your vicinity, and beyond. These codes may come in the form of both corporate and official ones. You need to dig these out and start cashing in on them whenever you need a vehicle for rent.
Try asking among your friends and family to find out if they can refer you to some active coupons. Check the internet. They are everywhere. All you need is intent.
Keep All Your Paperwork With You
Nothing is more frustrating than realizing you left your driver’s license at home after arriving at the car rental agency. You need to make sure you have your driver’s license and an active credit card in your name before renting a car.
Most automobile rentals will demand you to furnish a valid credit card as a guarantee to compensate for any accidental charges like parking citations and traffic infractions.
Debit cards are rarely accepted as a form of assurance – although this generally depends on the rental agency. Some organizations prefer cash deposited upfront which effectively negates the need for credit cards. Thus, it is for you to figure out the specific criteria of your preferred car rental before taking their services.
Avoid Renting From the Airport
You would be surprised to find the number of car rentals you would bump into when in an airport. This is where these companies do most of their business – and quite profitably as well.
However, renting an automobile from such venues adds an extra burden to your budget without any particular reason other than them being conveniently located in the airport. Choosing certain vehicles, like electric cars, are even more expensive just because of their nature.
If you want to avoid the hassle of going out of the airport to fetch a rental vehicle, know that you will be charged an additional fee as the airport charges itself.
These surcharges are passed onto the customers – who, at that time, have nothing to do other than pay the extra fee and get it done with. Thus, we suggest taking the extra effort and departing the terminal to hire a vehicle from outside the airport premises.
Bring Your Equipment
In life, at times, what matters the most are the little things. The same can be said about rental vehicles. Before coming to any conclusions, try to determine the equipment you need on your trip. It may be a GPS or a car seat for your child. You may want to take a radio along the way.
We suggest bringing everything that you might require during the trip. This has the potential to save you tons of money. Imagine paying $3 per day to play the radio.
The costs of taking external services tend to pile up the overall expenses exorbitantly. Make sure you prepare a plan and make a comprehensive list of essentials that you might need on the trip.
Try to take as many items as possible with you. The impact this promises to have on your budget will surely surprise you.
Do Not Make Plans for Off-Roading
Always try to stay on paved roads while driving a rental vehicle. Inform the agency if you need to drive off-road to reach your destination. Believe it or not, most rental companies intentionally avoid mentioning certain clauses that bump up the price whenever the customer goes off-roading.
This is a major nuisance as most customers claim that they had no idea of such rules in the first place. However, know that this is a standard practice among most car rentals around the world.
Driving on uneven terrain or rough gravel can harm the tires, as well as the vehicle itself. So, be careful to avoid unpaved roads if possible. Even if you acquire protection from collision damage or insurance for rental cars, companies may still charge you for damage caused by unpaved surfaces in certain circumstances.
Traveling in a rented automobile is considered one of the smartest and convenient modes of transportation in this day and age. As long as you know the general rule of car rental procedures, you should be able to strike the best deals out there. It is nothing complex. All you need is a little effort.