Travelling can be expensive enough without putting loads of extra money into your car rental. Nevertheless, we’re all guilty of just taking whatever deal we can get, without stopping to make sure that we’re getting the best price possible. Here are some secrets for saving money on your rental, so that you can spend that extra cash on amazing food and attractions instead of borrowing a car.
Everyone knows about the different websites you can visit to get price comparisons and quotes for hotels and flights, but did you know you can look for car rentals through those sites as well? Next time you’re looking for a great deal on travel, don’t forget to check for rental cars. Being in a position to compare some of the big agencies against each other should help you get an idea of which company has the fairest pricing. If you bundle your hotels, flights, and rentals you’re likely to get an even better deal!
Don’t stop at online quotes though; as always, getting the best deal requires doing a bit of work first. If you get quotes from a handful of companies, pick the company you’d most like to use and tell them what the cheapest company quoted you at. At the least you should be able to get a discount, but best-case-scenario they’ll price match the cheaper company, and you’ll get to drive the car you want to drive.
Location, Location, Location
If you often travel, you are probably aware that the same rental car will cost more at an airport than it will at an agency just down the road. But if you’re willing to travel even further to find your car, you can get some great deals. Look around the area for agencies with lots of cars in the lot. Less busy rental places are probably dying to rent out a car and will be much easier to negotiate with than a place who manages to rent out all their cars daily.
Leave Out the Little Things
Do you really need that child’s car seat included if the rental if it’s going to cost you a daily fee, or could you just bring your own along? Some rental places offer GPS systems along with their car for a fee, but every phone these days already has a great navigation system, so unless you’re still clinging onto that flip phone from the past you most likely won’t need it. Remember, the agents at car rental places are often incentivised to upcharge you, so they’re great at convincing you that you’ll need something you don’t actually need.
On that note, if you already have great insurance that probably takes care of any cars you happen to rent as well, so you shouldn’t have to buy the extra rental insurance. Just make sure you’re up to date with all the rules of the road before getting behind the wheel of a car that isn’t yours; no matter how great your insurance is, getting in a wreck is always a headache. Stay in practice by taking a mock driving theory exams on the Toptests website, and drive knowing that you’ve been refreshed on the rules.
Renting a car can be a pain, but it will be much easier (and less expensive) if you can follow these tips. Happy travels!