The number of people renting cars has dramatically risen. The recent rise can be attributed to the easing of travel restrictions that had been effected to reduce transmission of the Covid-19 virus. People opt to rent vehicles for various purposes such as:
- To go on road trips
- To use when on vacations in other countries
- To use for daily travels instead of buying a car
However, the dramatic rise in the rate of car renting has caused an equal rise in the cost of renting cars. To trace the cause of the price inflation of car renting, we shall go back to the beginning of the pandemic in 2020.
The Covid-19 pandemic brought about lockdowns and travel restrictions. These travel restrictions meant that car rental companies lost a significant portion of their clientele. Most car rental agencies went out of business, and some even had their assets (the cars) auctioned to pay off debts.
A report by the Jefferies Group stated that the number of cars sold by car renting businesses was over 770,000. This large sale of assets by car rental companies started the first wave of the car renting crisis.
The problem got more severe with the global chip shortage limiting the production of cars by automobile companies. This meant buying more cars was an expensive endeavor. This meant that customers would have to pay more and wait longer to get a rental car.
Despite these challenges, it is still possible to get a rental vehicle for a pocket-friendly price. In this article, we shall discuss a few ways to get the best and cheapest car rental.
1. Ignore the Airport Car Rental Services
Airports are always equipped with services to ensure that one’s stay in their travel destination is comfortable. This means ensuring that almost all services, including car renting, are offered at the airport. Often when arriving in a new town or country, a person’s first instinct is to get a rental car from the available agencies at the airport.
Rental cars at airports are always overpriced due to airport supercharges imposed on the agencies. It is therefore advisable to take an Uber to the nearby town and get a rental car from there.
2. Get Rental Cars From Dealerships
Car dealerships often include car rental services. Often when one gets a cheap car rental deal, the car is not in the best condition. This leads to mechanical problems later when in use.
If you are traveling to Florida, the Toyota dealership in Tampa Fl ensures that you get a reliable vehicle at a good bargain. The Toyota service centers carry out maintenance checks on the cars. They do this to ensure that the experiences of their clients are top-notch.
3. Go for Economy Cars
It is human nature to splurge and go all out when on vacations or road trips. Some would even say that it is the essence of vacations. However, choosing an economy car rather than a luxury SUV can help save some bucks.
Often, even when making a reservation for an economy car, they end up not being available on the pickup day. When this happens, the car rental businesses often bump up the reservation, and the clients end up getting a better car.
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However, when choosing an economy car, you have to make sure you choose one that suits your needs. An eight-seater minivan is not a good choice for a couple looking to go for a hike in the mountain ranges. Also, for a small family, an economy car with a cheap car rental in Dubai is a wise choice. To ensure that your car suits your needs, you can consult with the employee at the car rental business.
4. Make Reservations in Advance
Similar to hotel rooms, early reservation of rental cars grants better prices. With the current crisis in the car rental business, the prices are slowly but surely going higher as the days go by. It is, therefore, more advisable to make a reservation about 2-4 months in advance.
Even if car hire prices go lower after booking, most businesses offer free cancellation policies. This means that you can cancel and rebook at cheaper rates.
Making reservations in advance also adds another benefit to those looking to rent cars in high demand. This ensures that you will get the vehicle you want. For late booking, you often end up finding that the car you want is not available, thereby forcing you to settle for another car.
5. Use Your Personal Automotive Insurance Cover
Unknown to many, some personal vehicle insurance covers also cover you when using a rental car rented under your name. For the young who still use their parents’ vehicle, you can request your parents to add your name to the insurance policy as a driver. This should be a fairly easy process without additional charges. The process can however prove to be difficult if you do not have a clean driving record.
A couple of credit cards offer basic insurance covers. The insurance cover only applies in situations where the cards are used to pay for the rental cars. A key point to note is that the credit card insurance cover only applies if the official credit cardholder is the one who has rented the vehicle.
Credit card insurance covers dictate that the renter must decline the insurance cover from the car renting business for the cover to be valid. With this in mind, you can save cash and get a rental car at a low price by saving the daily $30 on car insurance.
6. Forgo Additional Services
All car renting businesses offer additional services to the client to try and coerce them into spending more money. These services often go unused by most clients and therefore end up being easy cash for the rental agency.
The additional services can include:
- Breakdown services
- Satellite radio
- GPS location services
Services such as GPS location services are rendered redundant by the map services on all smartphones. This, therefore, makes them an unnecessary purchase. If you are traveling to a location that does not have cell coverage, you can download offline maps in advance.
A quick look at the above-discussed points will reveal the two paramount aspects of it. These aspects are cutting down on necessities and choosing a reliable and good rental agency. Observing these two critical factors will ensure that you get a rental car at a pocket-friendly price.