Money saving tips for renting a vehicle

Posted at 11:09 AM, Oct 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-26 12:09:22-04

MILWAUKEE — If you are renting a vehicle, there are a few things to consider that can make a big difference in the price you pay. In addition to shopping around, and using discounts offered through warehouse or motor clubs like Costco, Sam’s Club, or AAA, here are a few other things that you can do to save some money:

Reserve the smallest vehicle to meet your needs. If a rental company does not have a smaller vehicle, you could get a nice upgrade at no additional charge. Consider picking up the vehicle at a location away from the airport where fees tend to be less.

Ask about renting the vehicle for more days than you actually need, to take advantage of multi-day discounts. However, ask about any fees that may be charged for early returns.

Watch out for added fees for things that you may not want or need such as extra charges for GPS, satellite radio, or extra insurance. If you have auto insurance and are driving the vehicle in the United States, your existing coverage should carry over to your rental vehicle. And, if you use a major credit card for paying for the rental, some card issuers have additional protection.

When picking up the vehicle, make sure to take pictures of any pre-existing damage to avoid being held responsible later.

When returning the car, it is a good idea to return it with a full tank of gas to avoid the potential for paying the rental company for inflated fuel charges.

Avoid paying late charges by returning the vehicle on time. If you need to return the vehicle later than expected, call ahead. Sometimes a company will allow a later drop off at no additional charge if they have enough advance notice.

As you settle things up on the return, make sure to do a final inspection of the vehicle with the attendant and, go over your final bill to avoid surprise charges