How do I rent a car?
Start by searching for your rental car. You’ll need to put in the location, dates, and times you would like to have the rental vehicle. You will then be able to compare vehicle sizes and options. Be sure to search through the results to find the best deal for your needs, location, and time you'll need a rental.
Some rental car companies will hold your reservation with a deposit, while others will require you to pay in full at the time of booking. A credit card is required for most car rental agencies.
On your rental date, arrive at the rental pick-up location to pick up your rental car.
Requirements: You will need a valid driver's license as well as a credit card to rent a car from most rental companies. Some rental car companies may also ask for a deposit. Most rental companies also have a minimum age requirement.
Do I need to buy insurance when renting a car?
Generally, coverage from your primary auto insurance will extend to a rental vehicle. Be sure to call your car insurance company to verify your rental coverage. You also have the option to buy additional coverage directly from the rental agency.
If your car insurance policy covers you for any vehicle you drive, you don't have to purchase the rental car agency's additional insurance. If you cause an accident while driving the rental, your liability insurance will cover up to your policy limits for the damages to other cars or property.
If you cannot provide proof of insurance, the car rental agency will require you to purchase coverage directly from them.
Are there age minimums for renting a car?
Most car rental companies rent to drivers age 20-years old and above.
However, each rental car company has their own individual age-related policy. Along with meeting the age requirements of the rental company, young drivers will need a valid driver's license as well as a credit card to rent a vehicle.
There may be an additional fee for drivers under the age of 30 or over the age of 65.
What other costs are there with renting a car?
You will need to provide your credit card information when you book a rental car. The rental company may put a hold on your card or charge you a security deposit. Both of these will disappear when you return the car. Remember, this charge counts against your credit limit, so factor that in when making other travel-related purchases.
Most rental companies will offer you collision insurance for an additional charge. You may not need this additional cost if your personal car insurance extends coverage to rentals.
Take a copy of your rental agreement to the rental agency when you pick up your car. Extra fees and additional services or protections can be added or upsold but with your printed agreement in hand you can make sure you stick to your original price
You may also face extra fees if you are under 25 years of age.
When you rent a car, you will need to check the condition of the vehicle before leaving the rental lot. Make sure your contract has detailed information regarding the existing damage. Damage such as windshield cracks and dents or scratches on the auto body should be noted. Any damage or failure to report previous damage could result in an extra fee.
When returning a rental car, be sure to return the car with as much gas as required. Different agencies have different requirements. Check your rental agreement for details.
Return your rental in a clean state to avoid extra fees. Clean any trash and dirt out of the car before you return it. If the rental agency has to clean the car, you may be required to pay a cleaning fee. Remember, most rental agencies do not allow smoking or pets in vehicles.
Is there a mileage use limit on rental cars?
Rental car rates include either unlimited mileage or maximum mileage restrictions. It is important to carefully read the rental details before booking as some deals and companies have a mileage cap.
Unlimited mileage bookings allow you to drive your rented vehicle as far as you like.
Rentals with limited mileage are a great deal if your trip is short distances or calculated to not go over the limit. Your rental agreement will include the number of miles allocated to you to use. If you drive more than the mileage cap allows, you will be assessed an additional fee.
If you pre-book your rental car online, you should see the mileage that is included in each deal before you book. If you’ve already booked your rental car and you’re unsure what the mileage deal is, check the terms and conditions. You can also ask the counter staff when you pick up the car.
How do I pick up the rental car?
Different rental car companies have different procedures for picking up your rental car. Most places require you to pick the vehicle up from the location it was rented from. Your booking paperwork will have the information on it.
When picking up the vehicle, you will need your driver’s license, your credit card, and your booking documents. You may also need country-specific documents if you are renting a vehicle outside of the United States. These documents might be a passport, international insurance, or a permit to drive in the country.
Some car rental companies will deliver and pick a car up at a place of your choosing for you. For more information on a service like this, you should reach out to the car rental agency directly.