With so many car hire suppliers and options, getting a good deal can be tricky. If you are new to hiring a car, comparing car hire can be truly horrific. That's why we asked our experts how to avoid getting caught out with nasty surprises.
Auto Europe's rental rates include basic insurance such as Collision Damage Waiver Insurance (CDW), Third Party Liability and Theft Protection (TP). In many countries it is required by law to have these basic insurances. They protect you for financial responsibility in case of an accident or theft. They will cover you up to a certain amount, but not always the full cost, so it's advised to purchase an Excess Refund Insurance. This insurance is not required by law, but it will save you a lot of money in case of an accident. Auto Europe offers insurance at the time of booking to cover any excess charges up to AUD5,000, starting from as little as AUD9.90 per day. When you decide to book this, make sure you take the details with you when picking up your vehicle.
We have all heard the horror stories about customers getting charged for pre-existing or fictional damage. It is a tricky situation so here is how to avoid it: Go through the check form to see if there are any damages before you pick up your rental car. Make sure they are recorded, and on the correct side, to avoid charges. If needed, take a photo of the damage. When you drop off your car, let an employee sign off the car saying it is OK.
There two options when it comes to fuel: pick-up full and return full or buy pre-purchased fuel and return empty. Auto Europe gives you the option to tick a box with the policy you prefer. For car hire over a long duration, returning empty can be the best way to squeeze every drop out of the tank! If you're on location for a short period of time, the Full/Full policy might suit you better, as it is likely that you won't need a whole tank. If that is the case, fill up the tank close to your drop-off location to avoid turning up with an 'almost full' tank.
Toll policies are different per country and supplier. Some have tags in their vehicles to register the toll and they will invoice you the charges at a later stage. Others offer a prepaid toll option. You can also choose to pay tolls yourself, as and when you use the road, without the assistant of a supplier. Research your destination to find out where you have to pay toll and what payment options local authorities offer visitors. If you prefer to pay as you go and you are offered a car with automatic tracking, you can ask if this is a legal requirement for the country and if it can be turned off at no cost for you.
When you're already feeling the post-holidays blues, that last thing you want to deal with is unexpected payments appearing on your credit card statements. Minimise this risk by asking about all the charges when booking, such as GPS hire or one-way fees, and check the paperwork to see what extras you may need but are not included as standard. Most one-way rentals have a one-way fee, which is payable at the time of pick up, and not when you make your booking. Knowledge is key; most unexpected charges are for fuel and damages, as long as you follow these tips you should avoid these costs. Sometimes mistakes do happen, and if you do see a charge you weren't expecting to pay, either phone customer services or the supplier to talk to a representative.
To take away a little bit of the stress, Auto Europe compares car hire suppliers in over 8,000 locations and over 130 countries, so you can pick the supplier and car you prefer and have peace of mind with 24/7 support. Think above the tips above when you book your car hire for a stress-free holiday - better still, the more you save the bigger the budget to spend on sipping Margaritas in the Mediterranean and enjoying Bratwurst in Bavaria! For more information, give our experienced reservations staff a call on 1300 656 601 or simply book online today!