Articles - Best Car Rental
5 Essential Checks Before Driving a Rental Car
There are many reasons to hire a rental car . It could be that your own car is in for service and you need a way to get around. It could be because you’re travelling to another city for business and you need a vehicle for work-related activities. Or perhaps you’ve planned a big holiday road trip and you’re not keen to take your own car on the long slog. Whatever the case, there are certain things to check — both when you compare car hire and when you show up to pick up your vehicle — before you drive away in a rented car.
1. Type of car
This is something to check well in advance. Do you want a large car or a small car? Smaller vehicles are more fuel-efficient and can be easier to drive, especially when you’re on unfamiliar roads. However, you may have to reserve this well in advance as, if they are available, they will be in higher demand. If you don’t know how to drive a manual transmission vehicle, then it’s also important to ensure you reserve an automatic car, otherwise you may end up with a rental car that you’re not confident or even capable of driving.
What is the insurance like on your vehicle? In most cases, you’ll be offered the option of paying an extra fee to get insurance for your rental car. This is certainly something you should take, because if you’re involved in an accident that’s your fault — or even where fault is disputed — you will probably end up having to pay the costs. Some private car insurance covers rentals, so check with your own insurance company if this is the case. If it’s not, then we’d definitely recommend paying for extra insurance.
3. Extra fees
Before you drive away in your rental vehicle, it pays to ask as many questions as possible, and most of these questions will probably relate to extra fees. Is there an extra fee for picking the vehicle up from the airport? What about if you have underage drivers? Or if you’re taking the vehicle on a long road trip, is there an out-of-state fee? These are all costs that could add up and make the great rental car bargain you found null and void once all the extras are added on top.
When you compare car hire , make sure you find out the cancellation policies of various rental providers before you go ahead and make a booking. If unforeseen circumstances arise which preclude you from completing the trip that necessitating a rental car in the first place, you want to be able to cancel without being slugged a hefty fee. Additionally, if you’re planning on taking your rental car on an open-ended road trip, check which fees might be associated with dropping the vehicle off in a different city to the one you originally listed.
5. Where am I heading?
Unless you’re hiring the rental car in your own city due to having your own vehicle out of service, the chances are you’ll be driving around in an unfamiliar location. If this is the case, it pays to ask the staff at the rental company for directions. They’ll undoubtedly be able to provide you with maps and sage advice, and sometimes there will be the opportunity to acquire a GPS navigational device as well — sometimes as an added bonus and sometimes for an extra fee.