Car Rental Tips for Saving Time and Money

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Car Rental Tips for Saving Time and Money

Emily Gojko · Aug 14, 2009

Whether you need a car rental for a vacation, business travel, or just the day, you always want to get the best bang for your buck! Here are some great tips to help you save money on your next car rental.

1 – Shop Around

Renting a car is like anything else, you need to compare prices in order to find the best deal. The Internet is a great resource to compare car rental prices. Websites like Expedia and Orbitz will compare multiple rental companies all at once for you. You can also go directly to the rental company’s websites, jot down the information, and compare it yourself. Make sure that you are comparing apples to apples though. Obviously, a minivan rental will be more expensive than an economy car rental. If you are looking for a minivan rental, then compare the price of only minivans.

2 – Use Car Rental Coupons

There is nothing better than finding a great deal, and having a coupon to top it off. Car rental coupons can be found on the Internet. Simply do a search for car rental coupons or car rental promotions, and coupon websites will give you free promotional codes or links to save you money. Also, many credit card companies with rewards programs offer cash back on certain retailers. Check with your credit card company to see if there is a car rental company with which they offer cash back rewards. If you are an American Automobile Association (AAA) member, you can also get discounts on car rentals.

3 – Do I Need Rental Car Insurance?

Every auto insurance policy is different. If you have auto insurance, check with your insurance company to see what sort of coverage you have on rental vehicles. Typically, if you carry only liability insurance on your own vehicles, your auto insurance will not cover damage to a rental car. If you find that your policy does cover rental vehicles, but simply want more piece of mind, then add the extra insurance. If you do not have auto insurance, or your policy does not cover rental cars, it is highly advisable to purchase rental car insurance. If you are in an accident, or the vehicle is damaged, without coverage, you are personally liable for all related costs. Paying roughly $10 per day on your car rental for insurance is peanuts in comparison.

4 – Other Things to Consider

If you are only traveling one-way, make sure to make this clear when you are renting a vehicle. Find out where you are supposed to drop off the vehicle once you reach your destination. Also, find out what time you have to return your car rental before they charge you for an additional day. For example, if you return the vehicle after 11:00 AM you are charged an additional day for the car rental.

In today’s economy we are all looking to save a buck. Doing comparison shopping, and coupon scrounging on the Internet can really pay off, and put more money in your pocket.

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Emily Gojko: I am a writer, marketer, and manager with a strong background in real estate development and management. I am also a native New Yorker with an obsession for home design shows, so I have personal and professional experience making the most of small spaces, and dealing with good and bad living situations.

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