Renting a car when you are on vacation in a new city is one of the best decisions if you want your trip to be easy. Unfortunately, the process of renting a car can be daunting, especially if you are in a foreign territory, or it’s your first time. To take the guesswork out of the entire situation here is a step by step process of renting a car in a new city;
The process should ideally happen in three stages;
- Compare prices online. Ideally, you decide on renting a car before you actually leave for that city. This is because it’s easier to shop online and compare several agencies to get the best deal. You can visit websites like Travelocity.com, Kayak and Cheapcarrental.com to check out the most affordable car rental.
- Reserve the car. The cheapest option would be to book your flight together with the car rental because you will get a package deal. If this is not an option, however, you can reserve the car you want online or via a telephone call. This is when you will be asked what kind of vehicle you want, the specifications, any extras, and of course how many drivers you want. Most agencies will make a reservation for you even if you don’t pay anything.
#2 Pick up the car
- Visit the car agency. You can choose to rent a car from an airport agency or outside, which will be cheaper in most cases. Once you walk into the agency, you will be required to give your driver’s license and credit card for verification and payment.
- Review the rental agreement. Make sure everything you discussed with the agent is correctly outlined in the rental agreement. Reading the fine print is essential because it also has the rules of the agency. How many miles you are allowed to drive, what to do in case you are late to return the car and any other nuance.
- Review the insurance. Another important aspect of car rental is the damage insurance. If you come from the same country and you already have comprehensive coverage or credit, it should cover the rental as well. However, if you are in a different state, the agency will provide the insurance which you will pay daily. Alternatively, you can go online and look for cheaper insurance for car rentals.
- Take the keys. Once everything is in order, you can now pay using your credit card or debit card and receive the car keys. Some agencies allow you to choose a car from the selected lot while others will choose for you. Be sure to scrutinize the car for any damage, scratches or dents and take pictures with your phone.
#3 Return the car
Clean the inside and outside of the car. Fill it with gas at your selected gas station because most often than not, the agencies prepaid gas is very costly. Take more pictures as evidence that you have returned it as it was. Take it back to the agency and hand over the keys to them. You will take care of any pending issues like debit card hold when you return the key.
If you do your due diligence and stick to well-known companies, your car rental journey should go without hurdles.