There are various reasons why you may need to rent a car. Yours may be broken and may need to stay at the mechanic’s for a long time or you’re planning a road trip and your car is not big or comfortable enough for such experience. Renting a vehicle is, in those cases, an interesting and savvy alternative
However, more often than not the price you actually pay turns out to be much higher than the price you plan to pay. Many rental car agencies add fees for extras that add onto the overall costs making them escalate noticeably. Their employees are experts at hard selling and in talking you into options and features you might not have really considered, wanted or needed when you first arrived at their offices but end up totally convinced that it is just what you need.
Avoiding those extra fees and being ripped off can be difficult but it’s not impossible. You need to be aware of their tactics and some of the features they’ll try to upsell you.
What About a Vehicle Upgrade?
You’ve chosen a nice car at the agency but, as you are finishing with the paperwork, the employee will try to convince you to rent an upgraded vehicle… for an added fee of course! Their arguments will vary but they’ll tell you that the vehicle you chose is not exactly what you want to rent, that it’s not big or comfortable enough.
Remember that nobody can push you to purchase (or hire) something you don’t want to. Look into the car you’ve chosen and, if it is just what you want, tell them so. If you feel you do need an upgrade, see if at least you can get a discount.
Aren’t You Interested in Roadside Assistance?
Having roadside assistance is extremely helpful, especially if you’re travelling long distances and fuel, liquids and extra tyres are not available everywhere. Some time or other during your conversation with the agent he’ll try to make you purchase the roadside assistance service they offer.
Before saying yes, consider if you don’t already have it or if you can’t get it through your credit card. It’s convenient to do some research before going to the car rental company so that you can easily avoid feeling pushed to getting this additional service through them.
Collision Damage Waiver
The Collision Damage Waiver that the car rental company offers is an insurance policy that provides you with coverage against any damage to the rental vehicle without having to make a claim with a credit card or insurance company. Although it can be attractive to return the car as a wreck and just hand the keys back and say good-bye!, the truth is that rental companies are known for changing a fortune for their coverage option. So much so that they can make the whole rental fee skyrocket!
It’s in such moments when doing a thorough research of the insurance options available in the market can save you more than a few bucks. Companies specialized in offering insurance policies for rental cars such as Bonzah can get you the same coverage (if not more) without breaking the piggy bank!
Car rental companies are famous for fining excessively those clients that return their vehicles late. You’re advised to ask beforehand how much their fees are and do your best to return the car to the company on time.
You won’t be able to avoid the hard sell but you can avoid overspending on fees by not making decisions at the rental counter. Take your time to evaluate carefully the car you need and the insurance and ask plenty of questions before even going to the agency. Don’t let the employee push you to purchase anything you don’t need. Make sure you always understand what you are signing and how much you’ll have to pay for your rental car from the moment you sit on the vehicle until the second you return it.