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You got the time off from work, you planned your trip, you know what to pack and you ’ re excited for a new venture. All you have to do is book a lease car. Before you arrive at the counter, you should know what to expect in ordain to avoid paying more than you should .
rental car companies were squeezed with the rise of rideshare apps and car sharing services anterior to the Covid-19 pandemic. They experienced even worse fiscal adversity as travel restrictions were implemented in the spring and summer of 2020. Some even filed for bankruptcy.

many sold off large portions of their fleets, and now as travel ramps back astir, demand is higher than the supply of rental vehicles. This is causing lease costs to rise. While that price may be out of your control, you can still save money on cable car rentals by making ache decisions when it comes to narrow details and fees .

Related: Best Credit Cards for Car Rental indemnity
here are five ways that rental car companies might try to rip you off, and how to avoid them :

  1. Forced upgrades
  2. Unnecessary insurance
  3. Refueling options
  4. Damage claims
  5. Unexpected add-ons

Forced Upgrades

Let ’ s say you script an economically priced rental car, only to arrive at the counterpunch to be told there are no longer any cars available in the booked tier. At this decimal point, a customer service representative explains that the only options are to pay to upgrade to a more expensive vehicle or wait a drawn-out time period of time for a car in your price range to become available .
Whether the spokesperson is telling the truth or not, it is improbable that the only options are to wait or pay more. In fact, many companies will—and should, whether contractually obligated to or not—cover the costs of the more expensive fomite if a site like this one arises .
A good path out of this fix is to ask to speak to a director or suggest that you might take your clientele elsewhere or contact the Better Business Bureau. Don ’ thymine discount rate your baron as a consumer, the power of holding up the line or of costing the occupation more money than it ’ ll make when you require the aid of more employees than it has available .

Unnecessary Insurance

Persuading you to buy rental cable car policy is a park way rental companies try to generate supernumerary tax income. Representatives will attempt to sell expensive indemnity plans to cover everything from damage and larceny to personal item loss. These selections can tack on hundreds of extra dollars depending on the distance of your trip and which coverage options you might be talked into purchasing. In most cases, however, you are already covered by your own car insurance—if not a credit card—and preceptor ’ t need any of the add coverage .
The best room to avoid being talked into unnecessary coverage is to do your research before arriving at the rental counterpunch. Check the extent of your car indemnity coverage deoxyadenosine monophosphate well as the car rental provisions of the credit poster you use to make the purchase .
Related: Best Credit Cards for Car Rental policy
here ’ s what you need to know before considering buying the policy from the rental caller :

  • Personal car insurance generally extends to rental cars, as long as it’s for travel use and not business. However, you should confirm that your policy covers rentals, to be sure.
  • If you have full coverage car insurance, meaning you carry comprehensive and collision insurance, you don’t need rental insurance.
  • If your personal policy doesn’t include comprehensive and collision coverage, you should buy a Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) from the rental company. The waiver exempts you from paying for accident damage, theft or vandalism. You’re also off the hook for daily fees incurred if the rental is in the repair shop and not in use. A Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) works the same way as an LDW, but does not cover theft.
  • If you have an accident with the rental car and use your own insurance, your rates may increase as a result of the claim.
  • Credit card coverage typically pays out only after your personal car insurance policy limits have been tapped out.
  • If you have home or renters insurance, you’re already covered if someone steals your possessions from the car.
  • If you don’t own a car and don’t have insurance, the rental will automatically be covered under the state’s mandated minimum coverage limits.

If you decide that you would rather not risk an increase in your personal car insurance rate, it is besides possible to find third-party rental cable car insurance policies and book coverage ahead of time. Allanz Global Assistance and Insure My rental Car are companies that may offer better deals than what you might find at the rental buffet .

Refueling Options

There are a few ways to deal with the write out of refueling the rental car upon returning it, and all have trade-offs.

Ignoring the fuel level when returning the lease car gives rental companies an excuse to take advantage of you. Some rental companies profit on the backs of inexperienced or unretentive renters by charging far more than the standard price of gas to complete the refill once the car has been dropped off. evening in states where the price of gas international relations and security network ’ t already closely $ 4 per gallon, rental car companies in some cases have been known to charge upwards of $ 8 a gallon .
It should be noted that many car lease companies advertise policies suggesting their rates are “ comparable ” to local anesthetic heart rates, but that ’ s not always the font. fortunately, this destiny can be avoided by filling up before bringing the cable car back .
Some lease companies offer “ deals ” where you pay for a full moon tank car of natural gas upfront so you ’ re not charged regardless of the fuel level upon return of the car. To make this option worth the cost, you need to return the car as close to empty as possible—any extra flatulence left in the tank goes to benefit the rental company, which means money out of your wallet and into company hands .
even when the cable car is returned with the empty light on, the rental company may still profit, depending on the monetary value of the fill up and the price charged to you .
The most economic option is to agree to refill the car yourself before returning it. This will ensure that the lease caller does not jack up the price of boast and charge you for it. When choosing this choice, however, it is significant to find a accelerator station close to the airport for the final refill, keep your acknowledge as proof and even take a word picture or video recording of the fuel indicator upon car return .

Damage Claims

When picking up a rental car, you are expected to sign a phase agreeing the vehicle was in good condition upon transfer of possession. This makes you liable for any damage found on the car after you drive it, even if the price existed already .
Always take a here and now to cautiously examine a rental car before signing any paperwork and leaving the batch. Walk all the direction around it and check for dents, chips or other blemishes. Be sure to photograph or video any price that you find and bring it to the care of a car lease representative. This will prevent you from having claims filed against you for wrong you didn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate lawsuit. Take extra pictures and video recording when returning the car, particularly if returning a rental after hours. That manner you ’ ll have documentation of the cable car ’ south condition after you used it and have proof to prevent any bogus damage charges .

Unexpected Add-ons

There are a number of other unexpected, extra fees cable car companies may try to slap on once you ’ re ready to pick up a car or after you return it. For exercise, many lease companies charge customers exorbitant daily rental fees for children ’ s car seats. The rental cost can be close to what you might pay for a new seat. If traveling with children, consider bringing your own cable car seat. It ’ s a pain to haul around the extra gear, but car seats can be checked with baggage for free with most airlines .
here are a few other electric potential unexpected add-ons and fees to be aware of :

  • Electronic toll payments fees
  • Satellite radio
  • GPS navigation system
  • Late return charges
  • Early return fees
  • Mileage limits
  • Roadside assistance fees
  • Tire disposal fee
  • License recover fee
  • Airport surcharges
  • Energy recovery fee
  • Roadside assistance
  • Out-of-state charges
  • Alternate location drop-off fees
  • Additional drivers
  • Underage driver fees

While some of these unexpected fees can be avoided with caution, research and planning, others may be inevitable—or equitable taxes passed on to you, the consumer. With this in mind, accounting for some extra charges associated with your lease car when creating your travel budget is a good idea .
Booking Ahead ? Watch Out for Scammers
While it may seem like a good theme to reserve a rental and pay for it before your trip, it is important to be extra argus-eyed when making rental car arrangements online .
As travelers clamor to find rentals during a dearth of available vehicles, rental car prices are increasing due to the high demand. The demand has opened the doorway for scammers who prey on customers attempting to make on-line rental car reservations in training for locomotion. These scammers pose as rental cable car companies—sometimes even creating fake websites and advertising forge customer service phone numbers—in an try to trick hopeful and unsuspecting vacationers .
To avoid scams like this, choose a rental car company you know, or thoroughly research the party you find. besides, be sure to pay with a credit card ( on which claims can be disputed ) rather than a debit or give card.

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