Ready to rent a car for your next trip? Follow these top 10 tips on car rentals before you book your next car. These tips will help save you money.
Top 10 Tips On Car Rentals
1. Do you really need transportation?
Are you planning on staying at a resort? Do you need a car once you arrive at the resort? You may be better off getting transportation to the resort and not renting a car.
2. Rent the vehicle only on days it’s needed
If you only plan to drive out of town for a day, only rent the car for the day rather than the entire vacation. If you’re staying in the city, generally you can rent a car from hotels for the day rather than from the airport for your entire stay.
3. Rent off the airport property
It is usually much cheaper to rent a car in town rather than the airport. The airport has additional fees that can be avoided by renting a car in town. Check with hotels in the area and find out where you can pick up a car for the day. If you rent the car at the end of your trip, plan on returning it at the airport, avoiding a transportation fee to get back to the airport.
4. Rent for a day trip and return it after hours
If you’re planning to take a day trip, pick the car up from a hotel in the city. Return the car after hours and avoid the second day rental as long as it’s returned before they open the next day. In addition, you’ll avoid paying overnight parking fees as well. Drop by the car rental in the morning and pick up your receipt or have them email it to you.
5. Search the web for coupons
Determine which car company you plan to use, then do a search for coupons and discounts that apply to that rental company. Typically, you just need the code. Once you have it, apply it to your car rental. Weekly car rental coupons typically can save you $25.00 — $30.00. That’s quite a discount on a weekly car rental.
6. Stay over a Saturday night
Car rentals often discount the rate for a Saturday night stay over. Most coupons only work when there is a Saturday night stay over. If you’re planning to rent a car from Sunday — Saturday, you might have a much better deal renting from Saturday — Friday.
7. Rent a smaller vehicle and request a free upgrade
Rent an economy or compact car and often they’ll tell you they just upgraded you to a larger vehicle. Rental car companies tend to have an overflow of the larger vehicles and will usually upgrade you without additional cost. Check with them to see if they’ll give you a free upgrade.
8. Don’t opt for them to refill your gas
Always choose the option to bring the car back full of gas. If you elect to have the car rental company fill the gas tank for you, you’re paying for a full tank, regardless of how much you’ve used. Most times your tank is not registering on empty as you pull in to the car rental to return the car.
9. Check with your insurance company for coverage
If you already have car insurance, it probably covers car rentals. Check with your car insurance and find out what your car rental coverage is. This could save you quite a bit if you’re already covered.
10. Check with your credit card company for coverage
Most major credit cards provide for car rental insurance. Read the fine print as some state the reservation and the payment must be made with the same credit card.
There are so many ways to save money on rentals. Consider renting a car at the beginning or end of your trip, allowing you to avoid transportation costs to or from the airport. Plan your day trip requiring a vehicle at the start or end of your trip, to avoid keeping the car for the entire vacation.