1. Be Flexible with Your Travel Dates and Times
One of the best ways to get a cheap rental car is by being flexible with your travel dates and times. If you can be flexible with your travel plans, you can often find better rates on rental cars.
Try to avoid peak travel times, such as holidays and weekends, as rental car rates tend to be higher during these times. Instead, consider traveling during weekdays or during off-peak times. Additionally, try adjusting your pickup and drop-off times by a few hours to see if that makes a difference in the rental rate.
Being flexible with your travel dates and times may require some adjustment to your overall travel plans, but it can be worth it in terms of cost savings on your rental car.
2. Compare Prices from Different Rental Car Companies
One of the most important steps to getting a cheap rental car is to compare prices from different rental car companies. Don’t just go with the first rental car company you come across – take the time to research and compare rates from different companies to find the best deal.
You can compare rental car prices online using websites that aggregate rates from multiple companies. These websites can provide a quick and easy way to compare rates and find the best deal.
Additionally, check the rental car company’s own website for any discounts or promotional codes that may be available. Sometimes, companies offer lower rates or special promotions that are only available through their own website.
By comparing prices from different rental car companies, you can find the best deal and save money on your rental car.
3. Look for Coupons and Discount Codes
Another way to get a cheap rental car is to look for coupons and discount codes. Rental car companies often offer discounts to customers who use certain codes or coupons.
Check online coupon websites, such as RetailMeNot or Coupons.com, for rental car discount codes. You can also check the rental car company’s own website for any promotions or special offers that may be available.
If you’re a member of any organizations, such as AAA or AARP, check to see if they offer any discounts on rental cars. Many organizations have partnerships with rental car companies and offer members discounted rates.
By taking advantage of coupons and discount codes, you can save money on your rental car and get a better deal.
4. Consider Alternative Pickup and Drop-off Locations
Another tip for getting a cheap rental car is to consider alternative pickup and drop-off locations. Rental car rates can vary depending on the location, so it’s worth exploring different options.
For example, if you’re flying into a major airport, consider picking up your rental car from a location outside the airport. Airport rental car locations often charge extra fees and taxes that can significantly increase the rental rate.
Similarly, when returning the rental car, consider dropping it off at a location other than the one you originally rented from. Some rental car companies offer lower rates for one-way rentals, so you may be able to save money by dropping off the car at a different location.
By considering alternative pickup and drop-off locations, you may be able to find a cheaper rental car rate and save money on your trip.
5. Avoid Extra Fees and Charges
To truly get a cheap rental car, it’s important to avoid any unnecessary fees and charges. Rental car companies often add on extra fees, such as insurance or fuel charges, that can significantly increase the overall cost of the rental.
Before renting a car, carefully review the rental agreement and make sure you understand all the fees and charges. Consider declining any optional insurance coverage if your personal auto insurance or credit card provides sufficient coverage. Additionally, make sure to return the car with a full tank of gas to avoid any extra fuel charges.
If you’re unsure about any fees or charges, don’t hesitate to ask the rental car company for clarification. By avoiding unnecessary fees and charges, you can keep the rental car cost low and get a better deal.