How much do car rentals cost? The answer depends on a plethora of factors. Different car rental shops have different policies.
However, they generally consider the factors we’ll discuss here. Make sure you take note of them before you rent a car.
1. Date of Booking
Generally speaking, the earlier you book, the better the deal you’ll get.
Booking a car five or more months in advance lets you pay a lot lower than if you book on the day before you need to be on the road.
2. Date of Driving
The weekdays are peak days for car rental companies. Search for affordable car hire during the weekends.
Car rentals are also teeming with customers during holidays. You’re likely to pay higher if you rent during these times.
3. Place of Pickup and Dropoff
This is simple: the more inconvenient your pickup and dropoff locations are, the higher you pay. Make sure you check your options and find the most convenient locations to rent a car.
4. Length of Time
This is another no-brainer: the longer you book the car for, the lower your daily rate will be. So, most renters rent for an entire week or longer for long trips.
5. Type of Car
Car rental owners classify their cars in different ways.
Here’s a rule of thumb: fancier cars are pricier. Smaller sedans are economy vehicles, so they’re much cheaper than sports cars or SUVs.
If you’re not sure what type to rent, this infographic should help.
Car rentals also have rules when it comes to fuel. Generally, you need to pay for the fuel you use.
For instance, if you receive the car with a full tank, you must return it full, too. Other shops let you pay upfront for a full tank, and you may return it empty afterward.
7. Your Age
Rental companies are also strict when it comes to the age of the driver.
Generally, drivers under 25 years of age must pay additional fees. Shops also do not allow them to rent certain vehicle types.
8. Extra Fees
Apart from the actual rental fee, you need to consider some sneaky fees, as well as the following:
- Car Rental VAT – Value-added Tax is an industry tax on top of any rental fee. Rates vary per country.
- Local Taxes – local taxes can be a road tax, road safety tax, vehicle license fee, or environmental fee.
- Mileage Fees – some rental shops add mileage limits to the agreement, so be thorough and read the fine print to avoid exceeding limits.
- International Travel Fees – this fee applies only if you plan to drive outside the country.
Make sure you ask your dealer about any extra (or hidden) fees so you don’t set yourself up for an unpleasant surprise.
All these factors affect how much you have to pay to rent a car. Remember that the car rental sector is a growing market segment, so more shops are offering more competitive deals.
And to get the best deals, make sure to ask not one or two shops, but as many shops as possible.
Find a great car hire, and enjoy your trip!