What You Need to Know About Renting a Car

Renting a car is an option for people that do not own a vehicle as well as for consumers who are traveling or simply need access to a different ride while their own car is being serviced. There are many companies that rent cars including Enterprise, Hertz, Avis, Budget, National, Alamo and regional operators. Before you rent a car, you need to keep a few things in mind including the following.

1. Contact rental car companies. Contact at least three rental car companies to determine vehicle availability and costs. You can search for rates online or call each company directly.

2. Look for special deals. The car rental industry is always offering special deals. That information may be on the company’s website or it could be offered through a third-party site such as Groupon. If you don’t have time to look around for a coupon or discount code, call the rental car companies, explain what you need and ask for their best rate. Weekend rentals are usually discounted and you may be able to save money by renting a car for a week over one for four or five days rent a car Split.

3. Find a rental location. Some car rental companies such as Enterprise will bring a car to you. Others may have a location at the airport, at a car dealership or in town. Find a location that is convenient to you or arrange to be picked up. You’ll want to determine your drop off location too if it is different from your originating location.

4. Choose your vehicle. Some rental car companies offer cars from one manufacturer such as Ford or may feature two or more brands. First, determine the type of vehicle you need, i.e., SUV, minivan, compact car, convertible or sedan and, second, obtain rates by segment. Typically, a rental vehicle will be priced the same by segment regardless of manufacturer.

5. Reserve your vehicle. A major credit card will secure your rental. There are other considerations you should be aware of prior to renting a car. Most companies require that you be at least 25 years old. You may be required to purchase collision insurance or sign a waiver. You can contact your car insurer to learn if your coverage extends to a rental car.

6. Pick up your vehicle. Get picked up or taken to your rental vehicle before the time that you said you would get your car. Fill out the required paperwork, make payment, get your keys and inspect the car inside and out before you leave. If there is a scratch or dent on the vehicle, notify the rental car company, otherwise you may be held accountable for the damage.

Rental Tips

Bring your car back no later than the time you said it would be returned. Otherwise, you will be charged extra for keeping the car longer. Top off the gas tank before you pull into the rental car lot. If you leave the gas replenishment to the rental company, you’ll pay a fee and perhaps double the pump price for this service.

Matthew C. Keegan is a freelance automotive writer. Matt is also a contributing writer for Andy’s Auto Sport and affiliated websites, an aftermarket supplier of quality auto parts including Magnaflow Exhaust and H&R Springs.

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