What Should I Look For When Renting a Car?



Renting an exotic car is not a life-altering decision, but it’s still one that takes a bit of time and consideration. Comparing companies, evaluating costs, and determining insurance are steps that should be taken before committing to one vehicle.

When it comes to renting your car, many people are unaware that three companies own over 90% of your options:

  • Enterprises owns both Alamo and National
  • Avis owns Zipcar and Budget
  • Hertz owns Thrifty and Dollar

Car sharing platforms are steadily making a bigger footprint in the field because of the demand for more convenience.

Things to Keep in Mind Before Renting

Set Your Sights Beyond the Airport

You may want to reconsider renting a car at the airport because almost everyone wants to rent a car at the airport. In addition to the longer wait time, the rates will be higher due to facility charges and extra fees. Renting away from the airport may be a bit more inconvenient, but it will definitely save you money depending on the date and the city.

Make Sure You Use a Credit Card

When picking up your vehicle, make sure you have a credit card readily available. Large car rental companies will not accept prepaid cash cards or debit cards as a form of payment. Neither will they accept them to guarantee the rental at the time the reservation is being made. Upon returning the vehicle, debit cards may be used as a method of payment.

Keep the Number of Drivers to a Minimum

Whether you are going on a weekend getaway with friends or driving down the coast with the family, you will want to keep the number of authorized drivers as low as possible. You will be paying more money than you should if the number of drivers exceeds two.

Kids Cost More

Your 21-year-old son may have a driving record without a blemish on it, but that doesn’t matter to car rental companies. They will only view him as a potential liability to their product. Keep in mind car rental companies commonly attach an addition fee to drivers under 25 regardless of whether the young driver gets behind the wheel. This is something to consider before you list them as an additional driver.

Shop Around for Car Insurance

Sure, you can get insurance from the car rental agency. But the cost is very high and should only be considered an option if you have exhausted all others. Examine your own personal insurance which may already cover car rentals. Also consider contacting your credit card company because a lot of them offer some form of insurance for car rentals.

Has the Rental Car Been Recalled?

A final thing to consider is checking the recall listing from the National Highway Safety Administration. Rental car companies are supposed to remove any recalled vehicle from the fleet until the proper repairs are made, but you should never be under the assumption they have done so.

You may be in the market for an exotic car rental in Los Angeles or a basic model to get you from point A to Point B. Either way, the car rental industry is making improvements in the booking process and overall experience which is great news for consumers.

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