Find Out What You Need To Know Before You Rent A Car
Whether you choose to rent a car for the weekend or you need it for a week, there are some essential things that you’ll need to consider to both save you time and money. Below, we’ve answered five of the most asked questions regarding renting cars. This will help you get the best deal and make a better choice when choosing your next rental car.
When Should I Book My Rental Car?
It’s always best to book your rental car as early as possible. Rental car pricing is affected by the companies availability of vehicles. If you wait until the last minute, you’ll miss out on getting the significant discounts that are available to those who book early. Which means you’ll inevitably pay more. In fact, you could end up paying 40% more for your rental car if you wait to book.
How Do You Get The Best Deal When You Rent A Car?
Do your research online first. Most car rental companies offer discounts only available online. Our car comparison tool will help you to see what options are available and the price variations so that you can ensure that you get the best deal.
Avoid the pressure of booking in-store, as often you’ll end up being persuaded into taking up options that you don’t need. You’ll also miss out on the ‘early-bird’ deals that you could have snapped up by booking in advance online.
Do I Need Insurance?
Rental car companies offer insurance in the form of the Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) and the Loss Damage Waiver (LDW). The CDW protects the insured party against costs related to damage in an accident. The LDW protects the rental car company against any loss of use charges that the company may incur in the event of damage or destruction of the vehicle. In both cases, your personal car policy may already include coverage of both of these. So before you book your rental car, make sure that you check with your insurance provider. There’s a chance these options are included in your current policy. If you book with a credit card, your card provider may also include either one or both of these things. So it’s a good idea to check with them too.
Is It Cheaper To Book A Rental Car At The Daily Rate?
In short, no. We looked at a couple of different rental car companies to see how much we could save on renting a compact Nissan (or similar size car). We found the difference between the daily rate and the weekly rate to be entirely different. The average daily rate of a compact car such as the one that we researched, came up as approximately $57 per day if the ‘pay later’ option was chosen. This price equaled a total of $399 at the end of the week. When we looked at renting the same vehicle at the weekly rate, the price came up as $236.30. That’s a staggering $162.70 price difference!
If you only need a car for the weekend, the weekend rate also comes up cheaper by almost 30%. Some rental car companies will also add in an extra day for free, which also makes it much more expensive to choose the daily rate.
Should I Prepay For Fuel?
If you’re looking for convenience and don’t mind paying premium prices for your fuel, then go ahead and pre-pay. If however, you want to save your money, your best option is to skip the pre-paid fuel and just fill-up the tank before you return the car. Most rental car companies charge premium fuel prices when you choose the prepaid fuel option. Unless you are sure that you won’t be using the full tank, it’s cheaper to hit the gas station just before you return the car and pay for whatever fuel you’ve used at the lower price.
Do you need to rent a car for your next vacation? Check out our Hertz vs. Avis article where we compare the differences in what these companies have to offer as well as what’s in their fine print regarding their ‘best-price’ guarantees.