Anyone who has ever rented a car knows how quickly it can turn from an affordable vacation mode of transportation to a high-interest loan. With your whole credit line at stake, you need to be especially careful with how you use your car and who you rent from.
Fortunately, there are some tips and tricks that can help you avoid common car rental mistakes, so you’ll be able to focus on all of the great things about your vacation instead.
Mistakes to Avoid When Renting a Car
Not reading the agreement
There are a few key points on most car rental agreements that are important to know. Firstly, read over the mileage policy. You don’t want to return the car with more miles on it than you can afford. Also, look at any damage fees or cleaning fees that the car-sharing platform may demand of you if you return the car dirty or broken.
Lastly, be sure to pay attention to any additional liability waiver that your rental company may offer. It’s easy to miss these provisions, so you’ll want to be proactive and check them out before your trip.
Returning the car late
When you return a car late, you may end up paying a late fee. In many cases, the amount is directly tied to the day of returning the vehicle. In other cases, there may be a flat rate charge. Either way, it’s money that you can’t afford to spend and will put your finances in jeopardy if the rental period is extended.
If you’re not the type of person who likes to plan, you also want to avoid this mistake. Be sure that you’re ready to return the car earlier before the date set on the contract arrives.
Signing the wrong waiver
You may be asked to sign a liability waiver for any damages to the car or other people involved when you rent a car. It’s vital to read this over carefully before signing to know your responsibilities. Misinterpreting this waiver can cause cash-strapped vacationers headaches when they return home.
Not having money set aside for the unexpected
When you rent a car, certain things can and may occur, increasing your rental cost. These include additional mileage fees, small damage charges, cleaning fees, etc. The problem is that these charges can add up! If you have set aside extra money to cover the unexpected, you’ll be able to save yourself some trouble.
Returning the Car with Excessive Damage
You may be required to pay additional fees if you return the car with excessive damage. If you don’t have the extra cash on hand, this can be devastating. As a vacationer, you may not want to use the same car-sharing service again, so it isn’t worth putting yourself in this position. Take care of the car while you’re renting it. Make sure that everything works properly before returning it and avoid getting into an accident with it.
Consider Car Sharing Instead of Car Rental
A car-sharing service allows customers to rent from a fleet of vehicles on an hourly or daily basis. It provides individuals with a more affordable means of transport, particularly when compared to traditional rentals. Rental companies often charge high taxes and fees, leading to increased costs for the consumer. By renting through a car-sharing service like Avail, you can avoid these added fees that are not necessary. Car-sharing is also flexible and environment-conscious.
Renting a car is something that can quickly get expensive if you don’t do it properly. There are countless stories of vacationers running into significant trouble with the cost of their rental cars. But once you understand these common mistakes, you can avoid them altogether and save money on your next vacation.