Negosentro.com | 6 Ways to Save Money on Car Rental | Before you rent a car, it is important to pay attention to the extra charges and facilities for which you will be billed. If you are not careful, these payments can easily surpass the rental price. Take not that rates vary, depending on the organisation and area in which you are renting. If you’re doing any research, have the right insurance policy in place and know the law.
The cost of renting a car in New Zealand may take a significant part of your travel budget. Fear not, as we are here to help with these 6 tips to save you money, so you can spend time on fun!
Most vehicle rental companies only have small fleets available to rent. In order to have vehicles ready, they need to forecast demand a few weeks in advance for any possible customers. For this reason, if you are planning your trip close to the peak travel season, you’ll want to book as far in advance as possible. This will ensure not only a good price but a good car too.
Beware of Hidden Fees
Taxes and various fees can easily raise the advertised rental cost. Make sure you include all costs when you compare rental agencies. Although sales tax should be normal at a given location, some businesses charge energy surcharges, tire and battery recovery costs as well as vehicle licensing fees.
In addition, unless you specifically refuse to accept the offer, you may be charged extra for a GPS system, radios and insurance, to cover theft of your personal belongings, should someone break into your car.
Decline the Insurance
Companies make big profits from insurance fees and in an effort to obtain the business, some even train their clerks to create anxieties in people who decline. By way of example; that their insurance covers costly loopholes. Another, are reports of non-payment by other companies in the event of an accident.
While there might be truth to some of these stories, the chances of you needing car rental coverage are slim. Most personal auto insurance plans cover car rentals, so call your agent to confirm if this is true for your cover. Unless you can absolutely afford it or your travels may put you at risk, you may want to decline the rental insurance.
Rent a Fuel Efficient car
One of the major costs of driving in New Zealand in a rental car is gas. Prices differ but in some regions, gasoline can cost up to $2.30 per litre. Fuel-efficient vehicles will help you save money on your fuel costs. Even though the regular rental price is marginally higher – newer cars appear to be more efficient. In addition you’ll not only be reducing your fuel consumption but your carbon footprint too.
It is however important to remember, your choice of rental depends to a large extent on where in New Zealand you will be going. For example, a 4-wheel drive or a high SUV would be better if you are visiting some of the country’s more rugged terrain, neither of which are very fuel efficient.
Planning a New Zealand road trip but don’t know where to start? Visit the Ultimate New Zealand driving guide, for all you need to know about road trips in New Zealand.
Always Fill the Gas Tank Yourself
On the issue of gas, make sure you return the car with a full tank. If you attempt to drop off the vehicle without doing so, you will be billed an admin fee for refuelling and have to pay premium prices for extra gas. It can end up costing quite a bit, making a sour ending to a great trip.
Avoid Airport Rentals
This is not a hard and fast rule but generally speaking, airport rental rates are more expensive than rental agencies outside of the airport or elsewhere in the city. Begin by looking for pick-up prices near your hotel, or even in the city centre.
Do note that you are going to need to arrange transport to the rental agency. Find out whether you can take a hotel cab, public transit or a taxi to the city.
Only Pick your Car when you are Ready to Drive off
You will still be jet lagged or at least tired from your flight when you arrive in New Zealand. Make sure you only arrange your car pick-up for when you’re ready. This is usually best the next morning. It will save you a day’s rental or at least a couple of hours, with certain companies.
Exploring New Zealand by car or campervan gives you the absolute freedom to go where you want, when you want and helps you to fully tailor your journey to fit your needs. We hope these tips add up to give you an affordable, yet quality ride, for your road trip.