Renting a Car? Know Your Rights

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Certain car rental companies employ dubious practices while arranging or offering rental contracts. These include unexpected charges and coercion and scare tactics to push consumers into purchasing items they do not require. Please read the following before signing a rental contract:

Make sure you get what you asked for

A rental firm fraud is seeking to scare clients into purchasing unnecessary extras. One of the most prevalent “deals” is accident damage waivers, which exclude drivers from liability for vehicle damage. Consult your insurance policy or credit card agreement to determine whether you are safe from this type of damage. Additionally, the rental agency’s collision damage waiver may limit coverage in case of vehicle theft and tire damage. It also limits if the driver was on drugs or alcohol (even when the drug is nothing more than over-the-counter).

Make sure you get what you want

Advertised low rates may be subject to additional charges for desired extras. A low rate may not entitle you to an automatic gearbox, air conditioning, or a second person to drive the car. Additionally, consider the opportunistic expenses associated with a “free” update. Consider that larger cars can be much less fuel-efficient than smaller ones when offered an upgrade.

Gas up before you return the vehicle

Numerous car rental firms provide drivers with a full tank and request that you return the vehicle to the same state. Fill up the car before returning it. The rental agency will frequently charge substantially more for a gallon of gas than the market price. Additionally, preserve the receipt from the gas station and track the miles from the gas station. You can present this to the rental agency if the rental agency attempts to impose a gas fee.

Keep an eye on the time

You will be instructed to return your vehicle by a specified time to avoid late fees. Keep an eye on the time. Using a car past the deadline may result in charges for a whole additional day. It may even be at a higher cost than the one you signed up for.

Get the best rate

If you are a business traveler, you should not automatically think the corporate rate is the cheapest. While corporate rates typically include complimentary insurance and mileage, they may be out of step with promotional rates. Rather than that, get the lowest possible rate to ensure you are not overpaying.

Recognize that additional fees may apply to the renting

Inquire about the fees and taxes included in the final bill and their amount. All possible fees include:

  • early or late return fees,
  •  airport surcharges,
  • fuel charges;
  • mileage fees;
  • roadside assistance fees;
  • expenses for equipment such as a navigation system, a car seat, or a toll pass.

The toll charges may not be reflected on your credit card statement for many days after returning the rental car. Inquire about the company’s rates and whether they are daily or per toll. Compare rental rates from many rental providers, including taxes and fees. Once you’ve got a rental vehicle, thoroughly inspect it before departing the lot. Notify the rental agent of any damage. If possible, take a photo to prove any pre-existing damage so you are not charged for it when you return the vehicle.

There are so many horror stories about a car rental gone bad out there. Be sure not to fall for some of these tricks. If a deal sounds too good to be true, it likely is a scam. Protect yourself by following the tips above