If you have ever traveled for business, chances are you may have had to rent a car. In fact, more than half of the travelers prefer to book Cyprus car rental while on a business trip. But, with all of the car rental options available, how do you know if you are getting the best rates and service? Though business travel in itself can sometimes be stressful, renting a car doesn’t have to be. Here is our list of Car Rental Do’s & Don’ts to help you prepare for your next business trip.
DO use smaller companies
While the majority of the market is still dominated by large rental companies, independent outlets are slowly beginning to close the gap. The rise of independent car rental companies is great news for travelers as it signifies a shift in the market. While larger chain companies are focused more on sales and profits, the smaller, independent offices are much more invested in customer service. Though renting car from a large company may be more convenient – especially if you need to make reservations online ahead of time – it doesn’t mean it is necessarily the best option, since small, local car rental companies frequently offer lower rates. Always be sure to shop around. You should also visit the car rental companies’ Web sites as well — they will often offer exclusive discounts, and you will avoid booking fees.
DO choose the right vehicle
Think carefully about what kind of vehicle you will need. If you are traveling with co-workers or have a lot of supplies to haul, such as tradeshow materials, you may want a large sedan or SUV. If you are looking to save your company money on rental rates and gas, you will want to reserve the smallest available model. Looking for something environmentally friendly? Don’t know how to drive a stick shift? Be sure to reserve a car with automatic transmission. In many countries, a manual transmission is the norm — so read the fine print before booking
DO designate one driver
Many car rental agencies include additional fees for a second driver. If you are traveling with a co-worker, it will be more cost-efficient to have only one of you be responsible for the driving. If you must share the driving responsibilities, then the advice is to shop around and inquire about fees for adding a second driver.
DON’T overlook insurance
Car rental agencies want to sell you insurance to cover the car in case of an accident. However, most car insurance companies’ coverage (the coverage you have on your own personal automobile) transfers over to the rental vehicle during the time the rental is utilized by you. Call your insurance agency to confirm. If you are not covered adequately by your own insurance policy, or if you do not own a car or have your own car insurance, then you might want to consider the rental agency’s options. Any insurance is better than no insurance.
Traveling internationally? When renting a car overseas, make sure the rental company provides auto insurance with the rental package. In some cases, you may need to consider purchasing additional insurance coverage if the coverage they provide is not at least equivalent to what you carry at home.
DON’T forget to ask about fees
If you are booking online, read the terms and conditions carefully before confirming your reservation. If you are booking over the phone, ask the agent about restrictions. Is there a penalty for no-shows? Will the company charge you if you drive more than a specific number of miles? Don’t forget to inquire about the price you will have to pay for returning the car late in case something unexpected occurs. Think returning a rental car early means you will pay less? This is often not the case! If you are getting a special weekly rate, returning the vehicle early may be extra costly, as some rental companies will cancel your discounted rate. Other companies will prorate fees for the days you didn’t use, so you will pay a little less. Therefore, make sure you understand the company’s early return policy before dropping off the car. The rental company will also add on the required state, city, or county taxes — and their own sales tax rates — to the price of your rental car. You may see other fees, too, like a “vehicle licensing fee” or an “energy recovery fee.” Keep in mind your rental company will likely place an authorization hold on your credit card upon your reservation. A hold means the company reserves on average anywhere from €300 to €500 through your bank account or credit limit. The company won’t process the held amount unless you fail to return the car as specified in your contract.
DO inspect the car before signing anything
While most car rental companies wouldn’t trouble their customers with a claim unless it was serious, some see damages as a profit opportunity. This is why it’s so important to give the car pre-rental inspection. Note every ding, scratch and dent, no matter how insignificant. Unless you are the first person renting the car, you should take notes on the rental agreement, pinpointing even the slightest scratch. It ss also a smart idea to take your own photos of every angle of the car with a digital camera or smartphone. It will only take a few minutes and will prove you didn’t create that scratch on the fender with a time and a date stamp on your photo.
DON’T wait until last minute to book
If you are traveling internationally, book your car rental well before embarking on your trip – at least a week in advance. Not only is it often cheaper, but you will be more likely to get the type of vehicle you want, and are less likely to encounter hidden clauses in on-the-spot contracts, shifting exchange rates upon arrival, or language barriers that can slow the process in person. Domestic travelers should also book early – at least a week in advance of your trip. Booking early gives you flexibility — both in terms of choice and pricing. Longer lead times mean more available cars, a broader selection and better rates.
DO pack an emergency ‘mini’ road safety kit
Even though you are renting a car, emergencies and unexpected events can happen. It is a good idea to pack a mini-version of your road safety kit and include just-in-case items such as a flashlight, extra batteries, flares, your roadside assistance card and of course, your travel assistance membership card in case you get sick or hurt and need emergency medical assistance when you’re more than 50km. away from home.
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Our customer service team will be very happy to answer any questions you have about Car Rentals Cyprus therefore please do not hesitate to get in touch by phone, email or post.
Address: Shop 1, Central Park Residences, 6 April 1st Street 8011, Paphos Cyprus
Support Phone: +357 26 945222
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Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8am – 6pm