Things To Avoid When Hiring A Car

We have written a number of blogs like ‘top tips to get the best deal on your rental car’ and ‘best way to avoid the queue’s at the rental desk’. What we haven’t covered before is what to avoid when booking or collecting you rental car. Things you just should not do.

If you stick to the suggestions outlined below then not a lot can go wrong with your rental. Obviously things can and do go wrong sometimes but with the support of our reservations team, we will ensure that you have all of the tools needed for a smooth experience when renting a car.

In no particular order, have a read and let us know if you have any suggestions to add to our list of Things To Avoid When Hiring A Car.

Do Not:

Leave It Until The Last Minute.

With the slow production of cars, booking in advance is encouraged. The closer you leave it to the collection date, the likelihood of obtaining a good price is unlikely. Now that countries are opening up, people are starting to move confidently and those who are desperate for some sun are booking in advance to make sure the best price is booked.

We know that paying in advance through these uncertain times is not ideal, so we offer flexible payment options. Contact us to discuss further as we have pay on arrival options.

Book Without Entering Your Age.

Hiring a vehicle under the age of 25 or over 70 can be tricky; not all suppliers offer rental options to drivers outside of the ages mentioned due to their insurance providers restrictions. Booking a vehicle online without specifically inputting your age could mean that you cannot collect the vehicle and you lose the money that you have paid.

To avoid this issue, contact our team, we have locations where we can avoid the substantial young drivers fee and have suppliers who can help up to the age of 99.

Assume You Can Pay With Someone Else’s Card.

When hiring a vehicle, we can arrange a pre-payment through anyone’s card, so long as you speak to an agent over the phone, via email or through our online chat facility. However, when collecting the vehicle, the lead driver must present their own card for the supplier to block the security deposit.

Book For An Airport Location Without Giving Your Flight Number.

If you book and pay for a rental car at an airport, especially those arriving late at night and do not add your arrival flight number, if your flight is delayed the desk staff will not be aware and will not wait around.

Just Click ‘I Have Read The Terms & Conditions’ Before Booking.

This is a big ‘do not’ when hiring a vehicle. The reason being, each supplier has different terms and conditions, some require high deposits, some cannot accept debit cards and some even have an upper age limit. PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU READ ALL TERMS AND CONDITIONS TO BE AWARE OF WHAT YOU ARE SIGNING UP TO. THIS IS ALSO VALID WHEN COLLECTING YOUR CAR, DO NOT JUST SIGN THE PAPERWORK, READ AND CHECK IT.

Assume Anyone Can Drive The Car.

When making a reservation, unless stated clearly, the price that you book and see online will include one driver. The details of the driver that you input will be the lead driver. When collecting, representatives will offer an additional driver, however this will be an additional charge with most suppliers.

Depending on where you are looking to hire from, our agents can search for a supplier who offer a free additional driver to reduce your overall car hire cost. You will need to speak to us though by way of phone, email, or the live chat facility on our website.

Accept An Upgrade Unless Offered For FREE.

The representatives earn commission from selling additional products such as a GPS, child seat, additional driver, additional insurances, and vehicle upgrades. If offered an upgrade, always ask whether it is a FREE upgrade prior to saying yes.

Try & Use A Payment Card If You Do Not Know The Pin Number.

Although smart phones provide the option to pay without using a pin or even presenting your card, this does not work when hiring a vehicle. Our suppliers will strictly require the lead driver to present their valid payment card, inputting that into their chip and pin machine and processing the pin. If you do not know the pin, that will lead you down a sticky path, the payment will not process, and the supplier will not release a car to you.

Forget To Inspect The Car Prior To Driving Away.

Prior to leaving the depot where you are collecting the vehicle, we encourage all our clients to have a walk around the vehicle to make sure that the damage sheet is up to date. It could be that the agent who checked the vehicle in from the previous customer missed a scratch or dent. So, if you walk around the vehicle and make sure the agent is aware of anything that is missing, you will not be penalised.

Doing the opposite to the above and not walking around the vehicle, driving away could lead you to paying for damage that you have not caused.

Sign A Contract Without Checking It.

If you are hiring a vehicle on holiday, the flight can be very tiring, and you may think that rushing through the airport and signing the paperwork for the car is the easiest thing to do, wrong. Representatives earn commission from selling additional products to each client, so items will be offered to you, which if you are tired can be added quite easily, especially if there is a language barrier or you feel pressured.

We always encourage clients to make sure the rental agreement matches up to the price that we have quoted. Should there be any additional charges that do not make sense, or you are struggling to understand why there is a difference, call us. Our team are always available, no matter what time – we have an out of hours facility if you are collecting a vehicle out of our normal operational times.

Forget To Take Your Driving Licence.

Hiring without the photo card of your driver’s licence is very, very tricky. Depending on the location, we have suppliers who can help, but you cannot book online yourself.

95% of suppliers will strictly require the photo card of your driver’s licence to be presented on collection of the vehicle and should you fail to present it, you could lose the monies you have originally paid.

Forget To Refuel The Car Before Returning.

When collecting a vehicle, 90% of suppliers have a full-to-full fuel policy, meaning you will be provided with a full tank of fuel, simply return the vehicle full to avoid an overly inflated refuelling fee plus an administration fee for having to refill the vehicle.

Return The Car And Post The Key If There is Someone Around To Check The Car In.

When returning your hire vehicle, if it is within the suppliers operational hours, do not post the keys through the key drop box. We always encourage our clients to find a representative to sign the vehicle in, making sure that you do not incur any surprising charges at a later date.

Forget To Take A Photo Of The Car If Returning Out Of Office Hours.

If you are scheduled to leave on an early or late flight. Or you are in a rush to get to work early in the morning, if there are no representatives around to sign off the paperwork, cover yourself by taking pictures of the car in the safe spot where you have parked, from various angles (the wheels and all around the car). Showing that there is no damage.

Return The Vehicle Without Giving It A Clean.

When returning your vehicle back to any rental company, the last thing you want to incur is a valet fee for some sand, dirt or animal hair that has been left in the vehicle. These fines can be quite high, so you are always worthwhile giving the vehicle a quick clean vacuum.