How to Save Money on Renting a Car
Vacation time equates to travel for most people, unless you’re into stay-cations. Most destinations require that you rent a form of transport to best see the sites. It's definitely a bit strange for us to be giving you tips on renting a car but we get it; sometimes Electric Vehicles just can't give you the range you want, and every so often you just need a quick set of wheels. Take a look at a few tips Borrow has compiled to help you save money on rental cars.
Re-Think the Vehicle’s Size
There’s nothing worse than being crammed into a compact car with your five-person family for an eight-hour drive. That the stuff nightmares are made of. But if you have the freedom to do so, try going down a rental size. You won’t necessarily have to sacrifice creature comforts like air conditioning if you opt for a Kia Soul instead of the Nissan Altima.
Especially in this economy, rental car prices have been getting more and more competitive. Many companies will have incredible deals for a limited time so be sure to surf the sites of a couple different brands. We priced the same size car and same weekend dates with two different rental companies and found a $70 difference in total price. Don’t assume that the company you always go with will have the lowest prices in every city. Rates can also drastically vary between regions.
Seek out Extra Charges
Even when you do see that amazing, must-buy-now price, make sure that there aren’t hidden fees that can rear their ugly heads when purchase time arrives. Certain companies charge for things like airport drop-offs, underage drivers (usually under 25) and excess mileage. Sometimes these won’t be apparent until you’re at the rental desk, so a call beforehand can save you the last minute price bump.
Search for Discounts
Before clicking that ‘Purchase’ button, double check that memberships to organizations like AAA, AARP or even Costco can’t save you 10% here and there. Frequent flier memberships can also reduce the final price.
Check the Car for Damage
The last thing you want is to be charged for damage that you didn’t incur. Take two minutes in the parking lot before you leave to go over the interior and exterior of the vehicle. Note any damage or excessive wear and tear. Then let the agent know what you’ve found. Those few minutes could save you the hassle of being blamed for something you didn’t do.
Gas Up before You Turn It in
You always have the option to return the car will a half-gallon of gas in it – this is especially handy when running late. However, you will be charged for the amount of fuel it takes to top off the tank. The catch is that you will undoubtedly be able to find cheaper gas on your way to the rental place than their standard fuel rate. Pump your own gas to avoid paying a premium.
Extra Tip: Get a Borrow Subscription If You’re Staying For A While
While it’s not technically a rental, a Borrow subscription is just perfect if you’re going on vacation for a whole summer or if you’re in a new place for just about any time longer than a month. We are just in LA right now but are rapidly expanding nation-wide and you can always join our mailing list to find out when we’re in your area.
Borrow is the right way to own a car, with a simple monthly, flat fee subscription. We are bridging the gap between leasing, ownership and on-demand and removing the complexity of car ownership by making the process simple, intuitive and fun. Think of Borrow as your personal mobility concierge. JoinBorrow: Take The Wheel.