• How to Get the Biggest Rental Car Discount

    A rental car discount ia a bit hard to come by these days. Often times, a discount for a rental car simply boils down to a low price for a low-value car. Unfortunately, this means that the best way to get a huge rental car discount is to make one for yourself instead of hunting around for a rental company bargain sale. Here are a few tips that will help you get the most value from your rental.

    Make Reservations

    Whenever possible, make reservations for a rental car well in advance of actually renting it. Some companies offer discounts or free upgrades to customers who reserve their rentals early. Additionally, some companies provide discounts to customers who make their reservations over the Internet.

    Rent from Local Companies

    If you are unable to make reservations before your trip, local car rental companies may offer better prices than the bigger companies you’ll find in an airport or train terminal. They may also be more open to negotiating their rates with you. The only drawback to this is that you may have to travel some distance after your trip, depending on where the nearest local rental lot is.

    Have Insurance Ready Beforehand

    Having prior arranged your insurance coverage can help to lower the cost of your rental car. If you don’t have insurance, you’ll be forced to get it from the rental company which could raise the price quite a bit. Check with your credit card company before renting to see if they cover car rentals.

    Ask about Extra Rates and Hidden Fees

    Make sure that you know exactly how much you’ll be paying for your rental before actually renting it. Many companies don’t present all their fees and just advertise their base rates. Typically, hidden fees can include a refundable deposit, a collision damage waiver fee, mileage fees and taxes. However, depending on your situation, you may be required to pay an additional-drivers fee, an underage-drivers fee, out-of-state charges or an airport surcharge as the case may be. So be sure you know exactly what you are paying for and see what fees you can avoid, if any.

    Get Discounts for Longer Rentals

    Some companies offer discounted weekly or weekend rental rates, and most offer discounts for the sixth or seventh consecutive rental day. If you plan to keep your rental car for a week or longer, let the company know beforehand and ask if they provide this kind of discount.

    Exchange Frequent Flyer Miles for Rental Car Discounts

    Still other companies allow customers to trade in their frequent flyer miles for rental car discounts. This is a great use for extra miles that could otherwise expire before you have a chance to use them.

    Rent Smaller Cars

    Smaller cars typically rent out at lower rates than larger ones. Since you’re only going to be using a rental car temporarily, it makes more sense to get a small and cheap car instead of a spacious and pricey one. However, you’ll want to find out exactly what you are getting before booking your rental, as the company might have a different idea of the word “compact” than you do.

    In most cases, the only way to get the best value for your money out of a rental car is to make the most of what the company offers. In addition, a little foresight and some light research can go a long way to increasing your rental car discount.