Repairy Holiday Travel - How to snag the best value on rental cars
As the holiday season begins, many of us are planning our trip around the globe to various vacation havens for a well-deserved break. Whenever you touch down at a new locale, a car should be one of the first things you look into hiring. Rental cars can definitely be worth it to avoid the crazy expensive uber fares and the hassle of public transportation, but the cost can really add up if you are not well-versed in the art of ‘car rentalship’. Repairy has prepared a few pro tips before you grab the rental car keys.
1. Do your research.
Aggregator sites that allows you to compare rental car rates online should be your research starting point. Enter your details (drop-off location, date, time) and you will be able to compare all the available rental car options to find the best deal for the duration of your need. Our favourite sites are: Skyscanner, Expedia, Kayak and rentalcars.com.
In some cities, it is smart to skip the airport rental (price can hike up due to airport taxes and fees) and just bus/uber to the closest local rental site. In some cities, airport locations can be budget-friendly because the competition and inventory are often higher. Every city you visit can be different, so make sure you do your research!
2. Book directly.
As mentioned above, aggregator sites like skyscanner and Kayak is useful as a price comparison tool to research the rates, but we recommend you to book directly through the rental company. Doing so can grant you a level of flexibility that is not offered to those booking via aggregator sites, when it comes to cancelling reservation, changing dates or vehicles.
Rental company websites will also show you deals that are currently going on if you book with them. In the case of Hertz, you can save up to $100 by ‘pay now’ option instead of ‘pay later’. If you find a company that consistently provides you with great value deals, sign up to their loyalty program to receive even more perks.
3. Review the contract.
Before you sign on the dotted line, read the contract carefully and look for the fine prints on gas refuel costs, cleaning charges and late fees et cetera, which can result in higher expenses upon drop-off.
If the contract shows a higher price than what was stated on the website, have the rental company employee walk you through the charges, as this will help to eliminate any surprise add-ons.
4. Before you drive, examine.
Does the license plate number match what is written on your contract? Is there any existing exterior damage on the vehicle? A tip from us is to use your phone to record a video and/or photo of the car’s exterior before driving off. This is especially useful when travelling abroad, where companies are more strict on getting you to pay for scuffs and scratches.
5. Does your auto insurance cover rentals? (unless you’re aboard)
If you are travelling domestically, check your personal car insurance cover now, because you might already be covered for car rentals! If you are not sure whether this is the case, give your insurance company a call and they will gladly tell you, so don’t pay for extra insurance if you don’t have to!
If you are booking using a credit card, you are likely to benefit from your credit card policy that might already include complimentary travel insurance within Australia, rental excess insurance being part of the benefit. This article by Canstar should help you understand this matter more in-depth.
Travelling abroad is a whole new ball game, with many credit card companies putting in ‘countries of exclusion’ in their coverage fine print. You are unlikely to be covered for accidents in which you are at fault, so research up and determine if the extra insurance is worth your dollars.
6. Avoid extras + fill your gas.
At the counter, you will be offered extras by the rental agent, such as GPS option, or a vehicle model upgrade. Don’t just say yes. Instead of getting a GPS upgrade, maybe Google Map will suffice? Instead of getting the latest model, maybe the 2016 model will do just fine?
At the end of your rental period, set a reminder to re-fuel your rental car’s tank back up to the level it was when you just received the car. Companies prefer if you’d return their rental cars with a full tank of fuel, and some will penalize you for not complying, unless you select the right fuel option at checkout.
7. Designate one driver.
When you are booking rental cars, the booking price shown will not include additional driver fee. Adding more drivers to the rental agreement will certainly increase the cost, even if the additional driver is also over 25. So decide on whether or not it is worth to share the driver’s seat, or just have one person behind the wheel in order to lower the cost.
Need your vehicle serviced or repaired? Repairy is the way to do it. We will pick up your car, have it serviced at one of our trusted workshop partners and get the car back to you in no time! Have a question about Repairy? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Repairy is an airbnb/uber for car service. We help people to get their car serviced without having to go to workshop.
We pick the car, get it serviced, we wash the car, and bring it back within the same day. In between, car owners can track the status of the car through our text messages update.
Repairy partner with workshops accross Melbourne and advocating on your behalf, so you can get the best quality of service at a competitive price.
At Repairy, we believe that taking care of your car should be an easy and stress-free experience.