Researching your next Car Rental Deal
Our top ten tips are:
1. Know the dates and times that you want the rental for and also note the day of the week that you start the rental on and end it on (some companies may not be open at the time or on the day that you want service from them). If you are enquiring about a rental over the phone, don't volunteer the number of days, give them dates and times and let them work it out - if you miscalculate and overstate the number of days, you might be stuck with a higher than needed price.
2. Don’t leave it to the “last minute” to conduct your research or make a booking – you narrow your vehicle choices and indeed even your choice of rental companies.
3. Decide what style of vehicle you prefer and what other facilities that you require (e.g. car seats, GPS Navigation, multiple drivers etc.). List what is important to you. Don’t exaggerate the importance of luggage space – you will usually only need to concern yourself with luggage from the car rental office to your accommodation and back again.
4. Ask your friends, neighbours and family for their rental experiences, particularly in the area in which you are planning to rent a vehicle.
5. Localise your internet search (e.g. “car rental Burleigh Heads”), note the top 3 responses, not counting the paid advertisements at the top of the Google search response page.
6. Expand your internet search (e.g. “car rental Gold Coast”) and see what changes occur, you will most probably have a different top three companies – giving you six or so to choose from.
7. Create a check list with each car rental company that you have listed, measuring them against the following criteria:
• Does their vehicle line-up match your wants/needs?
• Does their pickup and return arrangements suit your needs?
• Do they have age restrictions/surcharges relevant to your age or those in your party that might need to drive?
• Do they charge extra for multiple drivers?
• What do they charge for “accessories” that you want, such as baby seats, GPS Navigation?
• If you are travelling into an area with toll roads (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane), what is their policy in
respect of tolls?
• Do they provide GPS Navigation units – if so, what is their charge?
• What is the cost of their premium insurance excess reduction package (however they describe it)? Does it provide protection for you in the event of:
- Damage to other people's vehicle or property (3rd party cover)
- Single vehicle accidents
- Hail and storm damage
- Reversing damage
- Glass and tyre damage
- Interior damage?
8. Rate them on how difficult it was to find the answers to the above matters, making a “?” against any matter that you could not find a ready answer.
9. Price them on the internet, but do not commit to a booking.
10. Now you should have your “pecking order” in terms of price, coverage and facilities. Ring them in order of your preference – you already know the maximum price from their online quote, don’t be afraid to ask for their best price and always tell them who recommended them if you got them from a friend or family member.
Tell them about any affiliation that you might have (RACV, NRMA, Seniors card, etc.) it might not get you a discount, but it certainly won’t increase the price. When you do ring, don’t volunteer a “number of days”, simply give them your dates and times and don’t let on that you already have an online quote.
Get answers from them in respect of any matter that you raised a “?” with on your check list and now you are ready to make a decision – GOOD LUCK and enjoy your rental experience.
Posted By Darryl Essington-Wilson on 27th October 2011
Updated : 6th June 2018 | Words : 641 | Views : 8447 | Comments : 3
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