How to Rent a Car Without Getting Into Trouble
Renting a car is incredibly convenient when you are on holiday or driving across the country to visit family and friends
23:33 08 June 2022
Renting a car can be one of the most stressful experiences, but it's incredibly convenient, whether you're on holiday or driving across the country to visit family and friends. You never know how much it's going to cost, if there will be hidden fees and if you'll be able to return the car in the same condition as when you rented it in the first place.
Renting a car can also become very expensive if you don't keep in mind some simple tips on avoiding trouble or, more simply, the do's and don'ts of renting a car. Here are some points to help you with the process and get you on the road as quickly as possible.
Research the Company's Rating Online
Even before you think about renting a car, check out sites like J.D. Power & Associates and Consumer Reports to see which companies have received good ratings (and why). Ratings for rental companies vary wildly, so it's essential to look at several sources before committing to anything.
You can also read reviews on various companies by customers who've rented cars in your area or from locations where you will be travelling. Be aware many reviewers don't understand how insurance works, including car insurance!
Ask about Insurance Before You Book
First, you need to find out if your car insurance covers rental vehicles. If it does, then you don't need rental insurance. However, if your policy doesn't cover this or if you are unsure, it is best to get an insurance policy just for your rental vehicle.
Remember that only including collision/loss damage waiver (CDW/LDW) coverage will protect you from paying any damage expenses out of pocket; personal car insurance may not cover damage done in a rental vehicle. Also, check with your credit card company to see if they offer coverage. Some provide free CDW/LDW coverage when you pay with your card.
Collision Damage Waiver (CDW)
When you rent a car, you can select between two main types of coverage: a collision damage waiver (CDW) or personal insurance. CDW doesn't always come cheap — it can cost a significant amount per day on top of your base rental fee — but it pays for all collision-related damages that your vehicle incurs during your rental period. So, if you strike another car or run into a pole, your rental company will cover repairs at no extra charge.
Check the Rental Car Before Departure
At pick-up, it's essential to inspect your vehicle's exterior and interior. If you notice any dents, scratches, or other damage in either area, no matter how small, ask your rental company representative to note them on your paperwork so you won't be charged at drop-off. Some dishonest companies charge drivers for pre-existing damage. This can end up turning a rental into a nightmare. To avoid being surprised by unexpected charges, read all the fine print before signing anything.
Stick to the Paved Roads
It can be tempting to take off down an unfamiliar side road or dirt trail when you rent a car. Don't do it! It will not only cost you time (driving off-road slows you down), but your rental company's insurance policy likely excludes damages caused by reckless driving, such as bush-rashing or damaging natural features.
Paved roads are better for car rentals because they make it less likely that you'll get into an accident. Many rental agencies don't allow their vehicles to go off-road, so stick to official routes. These things also apply to dirt roads or trails—bad driving habits are wrong, no matter what mode of transportation you're using. So, for example, if you damage a rental car, it will likely cost more than your credit card deductible, and the rates can likely skyrocket.
Getting a Car with Bad Credit
Lacking access to auto financing doesn't mean you're not getting a rental car. And when it comes to buying one, Car financing with bad credit is also available from Carplus. This firm works using unique methods to fund your vehicle for you. It looks at your circumstances and provides low rates in terms of finance. If you are looking to get a car with bad credit, then look no further; Carplus will help you get based on their expertise in offering car financing to those with a bad credit history.
Renting a car sounds like a cool, liberating thing to do. However, you need to understand the responsibilities that come with it. The key is to be prepared with all the information in advance. So be careful before renting a car; you should be conscious about not getting into trouble.
Never give your credit card details out to anyone without confirming the authenticity of the rental company. Read all paperwork given to you at the time of rental before you sign anything. Make sure that everything is clear and if something looks confusing, ask quickly about the details with the representatives of the rental company.