When you’re off on your travels, car rental may be high on your list of priorities. Whether you want to get to the hotel or villa as quickly as possible and relax, or get off the beaten track to really explore an area, you’ll need a set of wheels. So how do you choose the right rental vehicle for your next trip?
Where do you want to go?
The right rental vehicle will depend first of all on the trip you’re taking. If you’re on a weekend away, then a sports car might be a great way to impress your partner and have some fun. Going to be doing plenty of city miles? An economical and easy to drive compact is your best option. If you want to get off-road and explore, then you’ll be looking for a rugged and reliable 4×4 or SUV.
Size is important
How much space do you really need? If you’re going on a family holiday, then you’ll need a large enough car for everyone and their luggage. Will you need any additional gear for a skiing holiday or a fortnight’s diving? Will you be hiring equipment when you arrive or taking your own? When you’re hiring a car you’ll need to think about every inch of space so you don’t hire a vehicle that’s too big to handle or too small to be comfortable.
Hire companies these days provide a huge range of extras – at a cost. For example, you can hire a car seat and a satnav but it may be cheaper just to take your own with you. Part of the calculation will also include the convenience of just picking up all the gear you need when you land at the airport. It’s worth researching this option thoroughly. For example, some airlines are happy to carry car seats at low cost but are you happy to have to manage it with all your other luggage?
What’s your budget?
Clearly, every decision you make about the size and style of your rental car will impact on your budget. If you’re travelling alone, do you want to arrive in style or minimise your costs? That’s the difference between a premium and a budget rental. The same applies for a family holiday but you might prefer to stretch your budget just a little to get the most comfortable car you can afford, particularly if you’re going to be spending a lot of time sightseeing. Don’t forget the hidden costs of driving including the amount of fuel you’re likely to use. If you plan to do plenty of miles, then factor in fuel economy when choosing your hire car.
Do I need car hire excess insurance?
Clearly you can’t drive a hire car without insurance and the hire company will be happy to sell you the minimum level of insurance you need to be road legal. However, it’s always worth picking up a car hire excess insurance policy which protects you financially if there are any problems. Because you’re not the named policyholder on your hire car insurance, you won’t have any say as to whether a claim is made and the excess that you’ve agreed to pay could run into the thousands. A car hire excess policy adds that extra level of security so you can drive with confidence. And with single trip and annual policies available, you’re covered however frequently you travel. Compare car hire excess insurance policies with excessbuddy.com.
Do your research
There’s no getting away from it, to get the best deal you’re going to have to spend some time online doing your research. A good comparison site is your friend and you’ll be able to filter your search to your specific criteria in order to balance cost with utility. Booking online tends to result in the lowest price for a given vehicle. With a little preparation, you can hire with peace of mind and arrive at your destination in style.