You’ll be hiring a car rental for your next trip abroad and perhaps you’ve never rented overseas before. You probably have a few questions about how the process works, or how you can get a better deal. With that said, here are five tips to make sure you get the best possible price and service while also having a safe and enjoyable trip in your rental car:
1. Use a Car Rental Comparison Site
If you’re looking for a discount international car rental, checking comparison sites first is the best way to go. With these platforms, you can easily type in the name of a city and country to receive a curated selection of the best car hire deals in the region. Starting your comparison from an informed perspective is always a wise course of action, and using a comparison site is the fastest way to do your research. It makes hiring a car rental at a good price so much easier.
2. Look for Special Promo Codes and Discounts
Once you’ve found a good provider through a comparison site, you might be able to find further discounts with that company by searching Google for the brand name of the rental car company followed by “promo code” or “coupons.”
3. Ask the Right Questions
When you call to speak with the car hire agent, be ready to ask a short list of important questions. For starters, you may want to inquire about weekend rates, gas charges, and late fees. Likewise, you should find out what time you’ll be expected to drop-off the vehicle.It’s important to note that honoring the specified drop-off deadline is important because some agencies will wind up billing you for another 24-hour period if your return the rental late. If you want to return your rental car to a different location, ask about extra charges you might incur.
4. Understand Restrictions and Limitations
If you’re under the age of 25 or over the age of 70 when hiring a car rental, many companies will not let you rent a vehicle from them, or they’ll charge you an extra fee to do so. Ask about geographical limitations, to avoid penalties for leaving a designated rental area if the agency forbids taking their vehicles outside of a certain coverage region.
5. Study the Rules of the Road
Driving in a foreign country for the first time can be an intimidating and stressful experience, particularly if you’re not familiar with the local driving laws and signs. Doing your research and watching a few videos on driving in a foreign country is an important step. If an International Drivers permit is required, be sure to plan ahead for your trip.
Hiring a Car Rental and Being Safe
- Inspect your rental car before leaving the lot. Make sure your car operates smoothly, and also check brakes, tires, and windshield fluid. You don’t want any surprises. If there are any scratches or dings, note those on your paperwork or with the lot attendant.
- Be patient on the road. Did you know that, statistically, “being in a rush” is the number one excuse given by auto accident victims when they’re asked to explain why they crashed? Driving carefully is particularly important when you’re hiring a car rental for obvious financial and legal reasons. So be sure to take your time changing lanes, pulling out of driveways, maneuvering in parking lots, and performing other potentially risky driving maneuvers.
- Drive a car with air conditioning and leave your windows up, so no one can reach into your car to steal a purse or other valuable.
- Always wear a seatbelt, and don’t pick up hitchhikers.
With these tips, you should find renting a car for your trip a breeze.