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How to Get the Best Deal on a Rental Car

Posted on by Defensive Driving | in Defensive Driving Online

When you travel to a different city, there are usually a number of ways to get around–by train, bus, or taxi, for example. But no means of public transport can match up to the feeling of having your own car to take you wherever you need, especially as some cities don’t even have adequate public transport. However, rental cars can sometimes feel like more of a luxury, and by the time all the extra fees have been added on, it can add a whole extra expense for which you hadn’t planned. But if you do it right, there are ways to save on rental cars. Here’s how to get the best deal on a rental car.

book early, and often

It might sound nonsensical, but the phrase “book early and often” is the key to getting the best deals on a rental car. As soon as you have your trip planned, get online and book your rental car. A lot of the best deals can be found months in advance, but occasionally the rates will drop as you get closer to the rental date. Keep checking for new deals regularly. Usually you can cancel your current reservation and book a new one at the lower rate.

use online comparison sites

If you go directly to a rental car site you might find a good deal, but you might also be missing out on other cheaper rentals from lesser known rental companies. Luckily, there are a lot of online comparison sites that will collect and compare prices from around the web. These will allow you to sort rentals by price and figure out the best deal for yourself.

sign up for loyalty programs

Most of the big rental companies have their own loyalty programs. They will reward members with exclusive deals and even points programs that will help you to save. There is no limit to the number of loyalty programs that you can join, so why not join them all?

Look beyond initial pricing

While you may find yourself the cheapest initial rate online, it’s important to look past the day rate, and check what sort of extra fees you will be expected to pay, and what is actually covered by the rental car company. You might also regret it if you pick a company that has notoriously bad customer service. Always do some research into the company before you book with them.

be sensible with your car choice

You might think you need all that extra space, or eight seats and a huge trunk, or maybe you have your eye on a sports car that you’ve always wanted to drive–but the truth is, picking the right vehicle can cut a lot off of the price of your rental car. It’s also really important to take cost of gas into consideration. You pay for fuel yourself, so if you get a gas-guzzling vehicle, your wallet will probably come to regret it.
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