Whether you’re taking a road trip or your own car is in the garage,there are a number of reasons for hiring a vehicle. Whatever your reason is, rental cars are accommodating and provide many advantages. However, there are some things you should understand before driving away. Here are some top tips every driver should know before hiring a car.
Bring your own accessories
The cost of hiring a satnav can be expensive and most hire cars do not come with one as standard. Therefore,it’s always best to take your own if you’re going to be driving in anew area. You should also bring along your own child seats or booster seats for your children as these can be costly to rent also. Pack your own travelling extras and be sure that the rental company remove theirs- from the car and the bill.
Check your credit card
Unexpectedly, most credit cards actually provide a degree of rental car insurance, avoiding you the costly extra of insuring your hire vehicle. If you pay the entire rental on your credit card and the renting company decline all insurance offers at the counter before you drive away, then most credit cards will provide you with cover.
Return the car on time
If you bring back the vehicle late you can incur additional fees. Some companies have a grace period which allows you extra time to return the car before you are charged. It’s usually between 30 minutes and an hour, but after that grace time is up you can expect costly fines for every hour you’re late. The charges add up quickly and get added on to the overall bill. If you’re stuck in a situation that you desperately need more time, your best bet is to call the company ahead of time to extend the length, it’s much less costly.
Cancelling will not cost you
When you reserve a vehicle to rent, it is similar to making a hotel reservation; it’s free to cancel, pretty much any time up until the agreed time and date. This means that it is possible to book one and then keep searching for a rental until the cheapest one is found. This way you can be sure to not be left without a rental vehicle, but it also gives you the freedom to keep looking.
Check the policy on other drivers
If you’re over 25 and you’re hoping for anyone under 25 to take over the wheel for you during the journey, you should check the policy first. Usually, they are not covered to drive the vehicle, but they can be added on. However, this may come at a hefty fee. It is usually assessed on a daily fee as well, which can add up to be expensive. So be sure that they will actually be driving and if so, only allocate the necessary days.
Make your own inspections
When you pick up the car it is a good idea to make your own inspections. Check for anything that could potentially be considered as damage. Scratches, scuffs, loose parts, working power windows and working electric mirrors are just some of the things you should check. If you spot anything you can either go back in and advise the company or take photos or videos for your own records. This way you cannot be wrongly accused and your back is covered.
Follow these top tips and you’ll be in the driving seat when it comes to your hire agreement. Be sure to read all of the small print in the policy and that you fully understand the agreement. This way you can avoid unexpected fines, costly charges and have the perfect road trip.