Not a fan of stationary vacations and wishing to do a bit of exploring? Then you’ll undoubtedly seek out the services of car rental agencies during your trip. On the one hand, having a car and the freedom to drive as you wish is liberating, but it can have its drawbacks for the unprepared. Read this article to make sure you’re not one of them!
Choose from the Vehicles Offered by Car Rental Agencies Carefully
Before you do anything else, think about your priorities. You might have different expectations for you car, depending on some of the following factors:
- You’re on a budget and wish to save as much money as possible – all other choices, including comfort, might be subjected to this one.
- You’re taking your kids and family with you, in which case you’ll be probably looking at something like a spacious SUV or something similar.
- You’re environmentally conscious and things like diesel and gasoline cars simply don’t cut it for you, then many companies offer electric cars for rent as well. Just be mindful that they’re not very suitable for long distances. More on the pros and cons of electric cars here.
- Perhaps you’re not used to manual shift gear, and would prefer automatic transmission.
- Also consider where you’ll be driving. Smaller, compact cars are much better for cities, but you’ll probably not take them for a muddy off-road drive.
The above list is merely illustrative and your priorities may lie somewhere else. But always take great care in choosing a car that would fit the nature of your trip the best.
Compare and Book in Advance
The internet is a wonderful thing in that you can compare the offers of hundreds of different car rental companies – sometimes at once, thanks to the many aggregator and comparing sites. You should do just that before setting out for your trip to land yourselves the best price.
Also, try to book as soon as possible once you’ve decided you want to! Renting at the last moment or even directly at the stop will come at a much greater costs!
Another useful tip would be to scour the internet for discount coupons and promotion codes, which may cut a significant portion off the price. Or sign up on the particular company’s website – this may land you discounts and special offers as well.
Watch out for Hidden (or not-so Well Mentioned) Costs
The standard price that you see advertised in bold letters may not be final, since there can be many additional fees that are not yet accounted for. These might include:
- Airport surcharges
- Fees for additional drivers
- Fees for drivers under 25 (more on this topic here)
- Extra insurance
- Drop-off charges
Consider Well Whether You Really Need to Pick Up the Car at the Airport
Doing so incurs extra fees that are sometimes a bit excessive. Of course, if you want to have the convenience of changing an aeroplane for a can in an instant, then do so. Otherwise, it could be better to pick up the car at some of the company’s pickup points, which should be considerably cheaper.
Especially if you’re arriving at the airport late and the only thing you’ll do with the rented car will be to drive to your hotel and sleep – this way, you’ll waste money on the airport surcharge and the extra day of renting!
The limited space we have here does not allow for a deeper delve-in into topics such as insurance, car inspection and so on – there are so many topics that need to be covered, we might need your help. Post your own tips for would-be car renters in the comment section and help enrich this article!