Renting an automobile is actually such a prevalent part of the travel experience that you would think the process will be transparent and straightforward – yet somehow, it’s anything but. Lots of travelers are not sure how to rent an automobile without making a couple of common mistakes. Do I have to purchase additional insurance? What about paying to refuel the automobile?
I listen to horror stories about phony damage claims; should I be worried? Nobody is actually around to examine the automobile with me; is actually that OK? Can I drive into another country? Do I need all the extras they offer me at the rental counter? These questions come up pretty much every time someone rents an automobile. Once again, anything but straightforward.
Prepaying for Gasoline Prepaid gasoline charges appeal to the desire for simplicity while traveling and to concerns about being late for flights. Every couple of minutes added to the airport’s visit creates much more risk for arriving too late to board. As airport security has added considerable time to this process, rental companies have developed new choices for automobile refueling. They are actually giving them the hard sell at the rental desk.
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Unless you’re entirely sure you will return the tank empty, or perhaps you have a pre-dawn flight that would make it worth the money not to have to refuel yourself, do not fall for that one. Sometimes the option where the company charges you only for the fuel you actually use is actually tipped aggressively in the rental agency’s favor because the price of having them refuel your automobile is almost always higher compared to the cost of doing it yourself.
Neglecting to Check on The Way of yours Out for a Place to Refuel on Your Way Back The best time to find a place to refuel your car is right away after you pick it up. As you’re driving away from a rental agency or the airport, please take note of the nearby gas stations, and make a plan to go back to the most easily accessible or perhaps best priced of them at the end of your rental.
The neighborhoods around airports can be unfamiliar and confusing, which means you do not wish to be driving in circles looking for a gas station as your flight time approaches. Figure this out on the way of yours out when you’re not pressed for time.
Purchasing Insurance, Reason No. one: Your Own Auto Insurance Covers You.
Before accepting this one at face value, it must be emphasized that auto insurance policies can vary considerably, which means you will want to check with your own insurer directly. in case you have the minimum legally permissible coverage, it might not include coverage for rental automobiles -. In contrast, if you’ve what companies call “full coverage,” it almost surely does, at least in the home country. Call or perhaps email the insurer of yours to find out.
Generally, the rule of thumb is that the coverage you’ve for your primary vehicle extends to your rental vehicle because the rental is a replacement vehicle under the policy. So in case you’ve comprehensive coverage on your own automobile, your policy would also provide you with comprehensive coverage for the rental vehicle.
Purchasing Insurance, Reason No. two: The Credit Card yours Covers the Rest.
Anything your own automobile insurance doesn’t cover, it’s very likely that the credit card yours will. In some instances, the credit card coverage is as good as or perhaps better compared to your auto insurance; in others, it’s meant to be secondary insurance to help cover anything your auto insurance doesn’t.
Naturally, you will need to pay for your automobile rental using that card; just having a qualifying credit card doesn’t provide you with any protection.
Ignoring One Possible Caveat: “Loss of Use” Insurance
When a rental automobile is actually damaged, “loss of use” charges are actually applied to cover the potential revenue lost when the car is actually off the road for repairs. This’s typically charged in the amount of a day’s rental for that vehicle, and the majority of auto insurance companies don’t cover the fee. Many credit cards do; however, American Express, MasterCard, and Visa all offer “loss of use” coverage with rentals paid for with several of the cards theirs. Check out the terms and conditions in advance to make sure.
Ignoring Potential Offers for Upgrades In the past, I have recommended reserving a low-priced automobile and then inquiring about upgrades at the rental desk. This works best at times that are busy when the garage is actually running low on its cheapest vehicles and may offer you free or perhaps extremely affordable upgrades to a larger automobile class due to inventory management issues.
Typically, the desk agent has considerable discretion in setting upgrade rates, so if he or she asks if you’re interested in a bigger automobile, respond that it depends on the price; you may end up in a better and bigger automobile with minimal additional cost.
Neglecting to check for AAA, Reward Program, AARP, or perhaps Other Discounts Many membership programs establish relationships with automobile rental companies as a member perk. These include travel organizations as AAA, airline frequent flyer programs, age-specific organizations like the AARP, and even some hobby-focused or sports- groups. Rental automobile discounts are generally listed on the organization’s site; you’re currently paying membership dues, so have a look before booking, and you can get a good deal.
Making Too Cursory and Inspection Upon Departure When you pick up the automobile of yours, check it inside and out for anything that could likely be considered damage before you drive away. Search for scratches, loose parts, scuffs, and working power windows and mirrors.
Keep a watch out for big and small problems; the tendency is usually to take a quick walk around the automobile searching for blemishes and scratches, thinking that big problems will have already been noticed, but this’s not necessarily the case. I once rented an automobile with a loose back bumper that the automobile rental company had not noticed previously. If I had not caught this before we left an inspector and the garage had seen it afterward, I’d have been held completely accountable.
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