(BLACK PR WIRE) -- If it hasn't happened to you already, there's a good chance you will need to rent a car someday, in any number of situations. The most common reason for a rental car is due to flying in on vacation or a business trip. Additionally, you may need to rent if your regular car is in repairs for an extended period of time, if you need a specialty vehicle, or if you simply want to take a long drive without putting excess miles on your own car. Whether your car rental is part of a long-anticipated trip or a last-minute need, keeping some tips in mind can help you save money and make the most out of your experience.
You know how important it is to shop around and compare different agencies, but don't stop there. Depending on your flexibility, you should also shop around with your rental plans. You would be surprised how seemingly minor details can radically change a rental price. For example, weekly rates are often cheaper than daily rates. If you need a vehicle for only four days or a long weekend, ask the reservation agent about the price for a full week, which may only require a five day rental. Also ask if there is a fee for early return.
Shop around with locations. If you are renting locally from an agency with an airport location, ask if they also have an off-site office and compare prices for both locations. Rental cars at airport locations often carry additional fees, and there may be more competition for the vehicle you want. However, they usually have longer hours of operation since they accommodate flight passengers.
Shop around for the "extras." Different agencies have different policies regarding mileage and insurance. You will have the option to purchase or decline insurance from your rental agency. Before making that decision, find out how your own car insurance policy covers rental cars. You should also ask your reservation agent about mileage fees. Some agencies offer unlimited mileage, some start charging after a certain amount and some charge from the beginning.
Shop around for your personal discount. Demographics can affect the rental price in either direction. Adding on additional drivers, paying with cash instead of a major credit card, and being under or over a certain age may incur additional fees with an agency. On the other hand, some agencies will give discounts based on membership in certain organizations and promotion clubs, or being a government or military employee. Giving as much information as possible up front will get you the most accurate price quotes and make the process run efficiently.