Secrets to saving money when you hire a car on holiday
Published Wed, Jul 11, 2012 Updated Tue, Feb 16, 2021
So you’ve gone on holiday, and you’re hiring a car. You’re not entirely sure you can navigate across half of the country without some help. Here are a few tips for a hiring a car for your holiday:
Buy or use your own Sat Nav
But then, you notice that your hire car company are offering you hire of a Sat Nav, You’re saved. Or are you? A £70 fee for a couple of weeks use of a Sat Nav might seem great at first, but did you know that many retailers have up to date Sat Navs with free updates and European maps uploaded, for around the same price? You also might consider using your smart phone, as data costs and the download cost of a Sat Nav app, will likely still be less than the cost of hiring a Sat Nav.
Beware of fuel policies
This isn’t the only thing you should be wary of in regards to car hire companies. Many people are finding they have to complain about car hire companies due to unexpected charges after returning the hire car. Pay careful attention to your hire company’s fuel policies. Some firms require the car to be returned empty or you face a huge charge, while some require the car to be returned with a full tank or face another huge charge.
Be sure to ask for clarity on the firm’s fuel policy, because it can be extremely expensive (and unexpected if you get lumped with a huge charge when you get back.
Take photos of the hire car
Another very common issue with hire companies is that minor damage (such as scratches, tire wear and small dents) are often chargeable. To avoid this, you should take photos of your hire car using a digital camera to keep as evidence of the car’s condition before you drive it, just so you can’t get charged for damage you’ve not caused.
Watch out for hidden charges
Be aware of hidden charges such as complex insurances, admin fees and unnecessary service fees. One way to avoid a lot of charges is to take out a comprehensive insurance policy with a reputable car hire insurance company. Many are keen to offer additional free advice to save you the most money they can.