If you’re headed off on holiday, you may want to hire a car so you can move around as and when you like, but there are plenty of cons out there. Here are some of those problems and how to avoid them.
Be Sure to Do Your Homework
Many people leave booking their car to the last minute. Just as with booking flights, prices can creep up as you get closer to your departure date, especially if you are travelling out of season. You could have a problem finding the car you want if you leave it until the last minute. The key is to shop around, as car rental prices can vary from day to day.
Opt for a Full Tank
There are car hire companies that will provide a full tank of fuel and tell you it’s okay to return the vehicle empty. It’s actually a way for them to profit from you, since they charge top prices for a full tank, and most people will leave a quarter tank of fuel when they return the vehicle.
Extra Drivers Equals Extra Charges
Few people want to drive on their own, and at one time an additional driver on the policy was standard with car hire packages. That’s not the case anymore, and firms charge by the day for a partner sharing the load.
Take Your Child Seat with You
If you have a baby or toddler, a booster or child seat is going to cost you. You can cut costs by taking your own child seat with you. If you are flying, remember to check the airline’s policy about taking a seat with you, or if there is an additional charge.
Get Your Own Satnav
If you think you are going to need a satnav to guide you from the rental place to your hotel, and all around during your getaway, it’s a good idea to pack your own. Charges for renting a satnav from a car hire firm can add up quickly, so get a cheap satnav online. If you already have one, load it with the map of the country you will be visiting. It will still cost a lot less than having to hire a device.
Pay with a Credit Card
Many car hire companies will want a deposit or a copy of your card. Never hand over your debit card; use your credit card. This offers far more protection, especially if any disputes arise. There is usually a buffer between when the firm charges money to the card and when the credit card company takes the money from your account, so there is enough time to dispute a transaction and have it frozen, if necessary.
Check the Car Carefully
No matter how tired you may be, check the vehicle thoroughly when you collect it. If you notice any marks on it, draw attention to them and insist the attendant note them down.