Have you ever felt annoyed when tried to find best rental offer abroad? How to find best solution and not to overpay? As a frequent traveler and CEO of rental portal Rentmama.com I would like to share my observation.
It’s worth doing a bit of research before renting a car in any country as this could lead to a better deal. In each country there are the international rental giants with their swanky airport offices compete with a very active local market – smaller companies which can offer lower rates, a broader range of cars and a more personalised service. Renting from a local company can also be easier and cheaper for young drivers and those who’ve only recently passed their test.
Some local agencies don’t even have offices. A representative drops off and picks up the car wherever is most convenient for you – the airport, your hotel or a central meeting point. Take note, the cost of the pick up and drop off service will vary according to the exact location.
Signing of documents takes place in or outside the car. You’ll need to show your driver’s licence and provide a copy of your passport or ID card.
- Read the terms and conditions
You may well have rented a car hundreds of times before but this doesn’t mean you can skim read the terms and conditions. Paying attention to the details is vital, particularly when renting from an agency you haven’t used before.Did you know that in some countries you as the rentee are often expected to get the car professionally washed prior to returning it? Car wash isn’t included in the price of the rental so this adds another EUR 10 or so to your overall bill.
- Check the state of the car
In some countries, the average age of a rental car is 10 or more so they don’t come picture perfect. Take more than just a mental note of the state in which the car is delivered to you. Are there any marks or scratches on its surface? Be sure to point these out to the company rep before signing the contract so as not to risk paying for damage which wasn’t caused by you.
- Know your insurance
Don’t skimp on pennies. Ensure you get an appropriate insurance plan which covers accidental damage and theft. Some policies might seem like a good, cheap deal but if you look into them you’ll find you have to fork out a fortune in the unlikely event something does go wrong. Wouldn’t you rather be safe than sorry?
- Plan your trip
How far are you planning on going? Will you be crossing any international borders? These are important factors to consider before renting a car. Some rental companies set limits on how far you can drive each day and some don’t allow international travel.Mileage limits are set to keep the cars in good shape. If the set mileage is exceeded, you’ll be fined accordingly to cover the costs of potential repair work.Spontaneous trips across the border are inadvisable. If anything were to happen abroad to a rental car which isn’t meant to be outside Latvia, insurance wouldn’t cover it.
- Rent a car in advance
Car rental is popular in many countries both among locals and visitors so it’s always a good idea to book your car in advance. This way you can also benefit from the best deals and choose from the widest selection of vehicles from budget to luxury class.Christmas, Midsummer, school holidays – these are all busy times so if you’re planning on renting a car during those periods, start thinking about it soon.
Having considered all the above points you should be good to go. A rental car makes travelling much easier and more fun provided you’ve got a good deal!