The car rental business is booming. Renting a car has become a popular service, and it’s easily accessible to everyone. Rental companies want to satisfy their clients and are offering better and better cars - new vehicles that are well-equipped. Rental rates are also becoming more and more attractive, or at least, you might think so when reading the ads of various rental companies.
Car rental companies are fighting like cats and dogs in their adverts by offering lower and lower rates per day. However, it turns out that very often the low price for a car is just a way of catching a client’s eye: what rental companies really profit from is the cost of additional options. So what factors should you consider to calculate the real cost of renting a car?
You can pick up or return a car at a branch office of the rental company free of charge, but if you’re arriving to your destination by plane and you would like to take a car straight from the airport, check in advance whether you will be charged additional fees for picking up or returning a car there. At Kaizen Rent you can pick up and return cars from the airport free of charge:
A similar situation occurs when you have your car delivered to a specified address. Many rental companies offer this service for an additional fee. Depending on the company, it may be a one-time fee regardless of the distance or a rate depending on the distance driven. If you want a car delivered to your home, check how much you will pay for this amenity.
The cost of service outside standard working hours is another element that influences the final price of a car rental. If you plan to rent a car at night or during bank holidays, you should expect additional costs. Check the price list to learn the cost of out-of-hours service.
Rental advertisements often give a daily rental rate - make sure that the daily rate does not depend on the duration of the rental. Most often in ads you will see the lowest possible daily rate, which applies only to long-term rentals. For short rentals of one or two nights, a different rate may apply.
This is usually a one-time fee for preparing a car for a client. Depending on the car rental company, you may be faced with different practices. In some companies, this fee is added to the rental price. Other companies don’t charge this fee, but they require you to return the vehicle in the same condition it was when you picked it up – clean and washed – which can be troublesome when travelling.
Rental companies provide their clients with a number of additional options. The most common ones are:
Each of these options has an impact on the final price of the rental, and sometimes it’s significant. Consider these options when comparing offers from various rental companies.
In most situations, the deposit is not a real cost to the customer, as it is usually returned or unblocked on the card as soon as the car is returned. Unfortunately, there are cases when the deposit becomes a cost, and this is an uncomfortable situation for the client and the rental company. However, take careful notice of the cost of the deposit, as the block on your card decreases your available funds. If a high deposit discourages you from renting a car, ask about the possibility of reducing or waiving the deposit requirement. Some rental companies are willing to lower the deposit amount as long as you purchase an additional protection package.
The costs described above are common for most car rental companies. Sometimes, the rental company introduces its own unique fee to its price list, which other companies don’t charge. So, if you want to compare the actual costs of renting a car, don’t just look at the price per day, but also ask for a full calculation of the rental based on your specific conditions. The full quote will allow you to make the right decision and choose the best car rental company.