19 June 2013
1. Make sure you book the right size of car for your needs. It sounds crazy but a large number of disputes are about the size of the car. Be realistic about the space needed for passengers and their luggage - with each car we show the recommended maximum combinations of passengers and luggage. If in doubt please call us.
2. Make sure that you add any extra drivers at the time of booking. It may be more expensive to add these at the airport.
3. Understand that you may not get the exact car you booked. Car rental companies reserve the right to substitute a similar or upgraded model.
Car rental staff often make commission on selling additional insurance when you collect your car.
Collision damage waiver(CDW)
This is the basic cover and it reduces your liability in the event of an accident. Without it, you could be forced to pay for the replacement cost of the vehicle.
The equivalent of CDW but protects against theft. Also known as theft protection.
Super collision damage waiver(SCDW)
Reduces your liability to zero and covers tyres, roofs and windscreens.
Pays out if you kill or injure yourself or a passenger, usually covered on regular travel insurance.
Personal Effects Cover(PEC)
Pays out if your property is stolen from a vehicle, usually covered on travel insurance.
To the left is an explanantion of the different types of insurance so that you understand how much cover you have. Check your Travel Insurance policy, as you may find some of the above events are covered anyway.
5. Before driving off check for scratches or dents and make a note of these on the hire company forms. If any more are added during your hire take a snap of them when you drop off the car in case of any disputes.
6. Check the petrol policy. Is it meant to have a full tank? Are you meant to return the car empty or with a full tank? And if the latter make a note of the closest garage to the airport. Above all, make sure what type of fuel the car takes.
7. Most car hire companies have a 24 hour emergency number for breakdowns or accidents. Make sure you have this.
8. Check where the car needs to be returned to and if off the airport make sure you have a map of how to get there. Leave enough time to drop off the car and get it checked over.
9. All car rentals are on a 24 hour basis so make sure you get it back on time to avoid being charge an additional day’s hire.
10. Check your credit card or bank statement when you get back to ensure no extra charges have been added and ensure that any deposit has been returned.
Compare prices carefully
Our car hire prices are always low because we deal with several local companies at each airport location and our computer checks continuously for price differences, however slight between different models and car groups. You may see lower prices being advertised but these prices have usually been achieved by reducing the insurance to a very basic level of cover!