Avoid Car Rental Upcharges

If planning an affordable trip via a careful review of cheap traveloptions, such as cheapairplane tickets, discount hotel rooms, cheap auto rentals, cheap vacation packages, and discounttravel deals is important, then you need to be aware howsome car rental agencies try to gouge their rental customers.

Rental companies often post very low base prices then add avariety of fees and charges that can almost double the actual cost of renting acar. Such charges can include concessionrecovery fees, licensing fees, premise occupancy fees, and airporttransportation fees.

Select car rental companies charge high prices for optionsthat can be avoided. The following aresuggestions on how to avoid being overcharged by your car rental agency,according to Smarter Travel:

  • Overpricedinsurance is a typical tactic. Whilerental companies sometimes refer to their policies as insurance in most casethat is not an accurate description. Their policies usually are a waiver of the companys right to collectdamages from you if you damage the rental. Third party sources can provide car rental insurance for often as littleas one third of what a rental agency would charge and many credit cardcompanies offer free insurance so long as the car rental is charged on theircredit cards.

  • Fuelingcharges can be excessive. Typically carrenters are offered three options for fuel: Buy a full tank when you rent the car, pay to have the rental companyrefuel it when you return the car, or return your car with a full tank of gas. Thefirst two options are rip-offs. Notgetting credit for returning a partially full tank makes no sense. When a rental company fills a car, often itcharges two to three times the local price per gallon. You should look for gas stations near yourcar rental agency so that you will know where to get a refill immediately priorto returning the car. Make certain youget a receipt since some companies require proof (i.e., a receipt) that youfilled the tank within a few miles of the drop-off location.

  • Extradriver chargers can run up to $13 per day, per driver, sometimes with a minimumcharge of over $90 per driver. Alamo,Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Hertz, and National waive the extra driver fee for aspouse/partner on rentals by members of their frequent renter programs.

  • Geographiclimit mileage charges are imposed by select rental companies, typicallysmaller, low priced renters. Violators can often be tracked by GPS units incars and be charged steep additional fees. Most national companies no longer charge such fees.

  • Companieslocated at airports or train stations often charge more for suchlocations. You can sometimes realizesubstantial savings by renting from a downtown or suburban location. Before doing so you need to weigh theconvenience of renting from where you first arrive and the additional cost ofgetting to and from the rental location.

  • Excessiveone way charges are yet another way rental customers can be abused. If you cant arrange your itinerary in such away as to return the car to where you rented it, make certain you compareprices of major rental companies. Periodically select companies offer lower oneway prices. Consider directly callingthe rental agencys local office in your pickup city.

    Sometimes rental agencies will waive theirone way fee if they have a car on the lot that they want to return to therental office at your destination. Yetanother option is to combine multiple local rentals with rail or air trips sothat you do not have any one way car rentals.

  • Toavoid high local rates in Europe go online to a U.S. Travel Internet site andbook a car often for substantially less.

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