The past year was not the best one for travelers. With the pandemic in full swing, most of us were restricted to our homes for the greater part of 2020. But as the lockdown restrictions are easing in many countries and the world is preparing to reopen its doors in 2021, it’s the right time to start preparing for your next dream vacation.
When we think about vacation and traveling, it’s impossible not to think about car rentals and how overwhelming it can be to find the most affordable one. Most people have a fixed budget for their trips, and they cannot afford to splurge on rental vehicles. Also, doing that is not the brightest idea either.
However, finding cheap car rental offers in another city or country is not a piece of cake. At the same time, you can greatly sabotage your traveling budget if you don’t do it right– you can even end up paying a premium price for a below-average car! Just Googling “best car rental near me” won’t be of much help either because you need to know some smart car rental hacks to grab the best deals.
Luckily, you don’t have to worry about it because we have got some amazing tricks up our sleeves that will help you find the best car rental deals and save some bucks on your next adventure.
So, let’s have a look at them:
1. Book Your Vehicle in Advance.
If you want to save money on your rental, one of the best things to do is book your vehicle well before time. In fact, we would suggest you book your car rental as soon as you have finalized the dates of your journey.
Booking early not only helps you obtain cheap car rental deals, but you’ll also be able to get your hands on your favorite car quite easily. That’s hardly possible when you make a booking four days before your trip. So take advantage of the time you have and make the reservations for your rental vehicle well in advance.
2. Be Wise While Fueling Up.
If you want to save money on your rentals, try to fuel up the vehicle yourself rather than requesting the company to fill the tank up for you. Doing this will cost you additional costs, which will be higher than what you have to pay if you get it fueled up yourself.
Different car rental companies have different rules when it comes to the fuel levels of the vehicle. Some will provide you with a full tank of gasoline, while others may give you only a quarter of a tank with gas. So it’s important to clear this up with the rental company beforehand.
Also, don’t forget to go through the rental agreement properly. Every rental service has a fueling requirement for returning the vehicle. You may end up receiving a penalty if you fail to fulfill this part of the agreement. Again, the penalty will be much higher than the cost of fueling the car.
3. Make the Most of Group Memberships.
Are you a member of groups like Costco, AAA, or AARP? If yes, then you are already eligible to get some generous car rental discount offers. Surprise!
AAA members can get some amazing vehicle rental deals on Hertz car rental. AARP has partnerships with Avis, Payless, Zipcar, and Budget to provide some incredible benefits to its members. Costco membership is also a way to get some fantastic deals on vehicle rentals. It also has a search engine that allows you to find rental booking deals from its partners.
4. Become a Member of the Rental Company’s Loyalty Program.
Many vehicle rental companies have a loyalty program, and you can choose to become a part of it for grabbing some exclusive and generous deals on car rentals.
Most of these loyalty programs also have tie-ups with hotels and major airlines. When you rent a car from the company, you are rewarded with rental points that you can later use to get benefits on your flights and hotel stays. So, this way, you will get multiple benefits rolled into one!
5. Book Your Car Rental as a Part of a Package Deal.
Many times traveling websites and companies offer massive discounts if you book a package deal from them. For example, if you book your flight tickets, hotel stays, and a vehicle rental from the same website/ traveling agency, you might get some cheap car rental deals with terrific discounts.
6. Choose Smaller/ Economy Cars to Get the Best Deals.
One of the best ways to get affordable car rental deals is to only rent a car that fits your needs, nothing more, nothing less.
Before you make your choice, think about the size of the vehicle you need. Do you really need a big flashy BMW or Tesla, or a smaller vehicle would be enough? Most travelers end up renting bigger cars that they don’t even require. An economy car is way more affordable than a big one and unless you need a specialty vehicle for your trip, it would be enough to suffice your traveling requirements and keep you going happily on the road!
7. Pay Upfront to Grab Some Terrific Deals.
Many car rental websites offer amazing discounts (sometimes as high as 30%) if you choose to pay for your rental booking upfront. So if you like the vehicle and are sure about it, it can be worth paying for reservations in advance.
However, when you reserve a rental vehicle this way, companies generally don’t allow cancellations. So we strongly recommend you go for this option only when you are a hundred percent sure about your trip, the rental vehicle, and the price.
8. Have Only One Driver to Avoid Extra Cost.
Many vehicle rental companies charge extra money when you have more than one person driving the car. So getting a rental car is often cheaper when there is only one driver.
Also, you may want to have the oldest person take control of the wheels. That’s because rental car companies often charge an additional cost if the person driving the automobile is under 25 or 30 years of age. After all, young drivers are usually considered to be reckless and hence, more of a liability. So if you want to escape the extra charges, and if possible, let someone over 30 years of age reserve the vehicle and drive. It will save you a lot of money.
However, if it is not possible, try to look for rental services that don’t have these rules and allow more than one person to drive at no additional cost.
9. Book With Companies Providing Free Cancellation.
This is perhaps one of the best and easiest hacks to find a cheap car rental. Try to book multiple cars with the rental company offering free cancellation and cancel the ones you don’t need when the rates take a dip.
This way, if you find a cheaper deal later, you can easily cancel the previous bookings at no extra cost or penalty. However, every car rental service doesn’t provide this facility, so you would need to do a little bit of research to find those that offer free cancellation.
Looking for an even easier option to grab the best rental car deals?
Then book your rental vehicle from www.bestcarrentalsandiego.com if you are making a trip to San Diego.
We provide travelers with the best set of wheels at the most affordable prices. So save your precious time and reserve your rental car with us. It has never been easier!
So these were our top 9 hacks to find a rental car at the most affordable price.
We hope you found them to be helpful and will use them to get great rental car deals on your next adventure!