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Sales and discounts

Avoid extra charges on cheap Car Rentals Deals

Sales and discounts

The rate of car rentals might look reasonable, but once you get the final bill for your rental car, the bottom line can be a shocker. Taxes, fees and charges for everything from an additional driver to satellite radio, concession charges at airport locations and refilling the gas tank – all this can quickly add up to a big surprise if you have not navigated the confusing world of rental car contracts before renting. Read the fine print before you go. And don’t hesitate to ask questions.

Q 1 – Insurance

Enquiry your car rentals company about the insurance included in the quotation. You need to know who and what is covered.

Questions to ask:

  • What is the excess in case of an accident?
  • Any additional excess in case of a single vehicle accident?
  • What if the accident is not at your fault?
  • What if there is a dispute in liability?
  • What if the repairs are less than the excess amount?

Q 2 – Roadside assistance

It is something you definitely need while on holidays. Unfortunately bad things happen – tyre puncture, empty fuel tank, broken or lost car key, etcetera. You don’t want to ruin the day of your precious holidays dealing with some towing service or booking a hotel in the area where the car broken down.

All the prices of Low Cost Car Rentals include 24/7 premium roadside assistance. It means a help is just 10-60 minutes away from where you are, depends on your location and type of the issue.

Q 3 – Location fares

If you found the best price, don’t often assume it includes the taxes and GST. Even though it is not entirely legal to hide surcharges and GST, some companies find legal ways to work around it. Do not hesitate to ask the rental company if the price is final. Ask if it includes the car delivery (if applicable), airport fares or any other fees when picking up the car.

Check the company’s drop-off policies, which may include hefty charges for one-way rentals or drop-offs at a different location.

All quotations issued by Low Cost Car Rentals are final and include all the taxes, fares, delivery fees (if applicable) and refundable bond.

Q 4 – Membership points

If you own some credit card that has an awesome points system. Don’t use it just yet. Ask the rental company if there is any charges apply when paying with the credit card. Some companies charge it daily, most of the time it is one-off fee.

Low Cost Car Rentals does not charge any fees for any of the accepted payments methods.

Q 5 – Car Rentals fuel policy

Most of the companies follow the “full tank out – full tank in” policy. It is worth confirming though. You don’t want to get a car with 10% of fuel in and then being asked to return it with a full tank.

Also, sometimes you can be in a rush when returning a car and will not have a chance to re-fill the tank. Ask the rental cars company if there is any charge apply in this case.

If you happened to return a car to Low Cost Car Rentals with less than 100% in the tank. We would refill the car for you and only charge you the amount we pay at the petrol station. This is only valid if you return the car to our CBD location in Alexandria or Sydney Airport. Please ask our staff for any extra charges if you return the car into a different location.

Q 6 – Fines and toll payments

Obviously during the rental period you are liable for any toll payments, fines or parking tickets. If you know you would be travelling through the paid roads, be careful. With some car rentals, they would charge you a fee for each of those fines you receive. Additionally they might charge you an administration fee for each day you use the paid roads.

More tips on using the toll roads here.

Q 7 – Return date and time

Sometimes the trip doesn’t go as planned. Whether you are running late or one of your travel companions gets sick. You have no choice but extend the car rental. Most of the companies would start charging you a non-discounted daily rate. You will not be entitled for any discounts or specials you might of had before. Be careful, it is no uncommon the rental company would start charging you hourly rates. So a day of the extended rental can cost you an air ticket to LA and back 🙂

Here, at Low Cost Car Rentals, we are very flexible. As long as the car you have is available for the dates you need, you will have it for the same price. We are easy on 2-3 hours late returns as well and will not charge you any extra fees. The only condition, you have to contact one of our staff members in advance and make sure they are aware of the extended rental.

ADDITIONAL TIP

Examine both the exterior and interior of the car carefully before leaving the rental lot, making a note of any damages. A quick time-stamped photo on your cellphone is a good idea. Point out any defects out to the rental agent to avoid being charged for damage that was already there when you picked up the car.

WARNING

Follow the rules and conditions of your contract. Do not smoke in a non-smoking car. Never let an unauthorized driver operate the car, even a valet. Never drink and drive. Violations can void the contract and result in hefty charges. Treat the car as you would your own, keeping it clean, parking it in safe locations and always locking the doors and trunk.

Cheap car rentals – 5 myths busted

True or false - cheap car rentals

1. Car rental near airport is very expensive.

It is true, the space within the airport car park and a kiosk right next to the arrivals are costly. So companies who you normally see there, would have higher rates than normal car rentals. They need to cover up for all the expenses.

But it does not mean that you should avoid all the near-airport car rentals altogether.

Usually the airports are located in non prestige suburbs or in industrial zones. An office only a kilometre away from the arrival gate is much cheaper. There must be some car hire agencies who are located there.

For instance, one of the Low Cost Car Rentals depots is located only 2.7km away from the Sydney Domestic and 3.2km from International airports.

We offer free airport pick-up and drop-off on all long term rentals (7+ days). And it is as cheap as 30 dollars both ways for short term hires.

In reality, we love Sydney visitors so much, we often offer free unlimited kms package and GPS on long term rentals. All of those are worth more than 25 dollars per day.

I personally believe, the car rental agencies near airports are the most professional ones. They have to deal with a lot of customers from overseas therefore their standards are much higher.

2. Shared cars schema is cheaper than usual car rental companies.

There was a lot of excitement when we first saw our neighbours offering their cars for rent for cheap prices.

It was good at first until those car owners faced first troubles. Cars often were left in prohibited areas. Parking fines, tolls notices, light scratches and dirty interior that nobody will ever pay for.

It all led to the new restrictions. You must be an approved member to rent the car. Usually it involves an annual fee regardless of whether you would even need a car that year.

The price might still look cheap, however you will understand later that it is not final. You will have to pay each kilometre you travel. You will need to have your own GPS or baby seats if you need them.

To conclude, the shared car can be cheaper than a cab if you just need to travel short distance then back. Nothing else seem to be worth it.

3.GPS is too expensive, i will use my phone.

Firstly, lets assume you have the phone holder to secure your phone in the car. So now you are able to follow the directions without the need to juggle the phone in your or your passenger hands.

Secondly, we would assume, you have unlimited mobile data and all-around country mobile coverage.

I already doubt you have all the above.

Now, how about the reception? Do you have it while at the car park in the shopping centre? How often it is getting lost in the tunnels and how long it takes for the signal to recover?

You still think 5 dollars a day or free GPS on long term rentals is not an option?

4. I can get away with not registering the additional driver.

This is a very dangerous myth. It is not up to the car rentals companies to decide who is guilty in the accident. It is not them who is charging you when you have an incident.

Touch wood, if anything happens and it is the additional drivers fault. Just because they were not registered as the driver of the vehicle, the insurance company would decline the claim. You will end up loosing the excess and would have to pay for both car repairs and any hospital expenses anyone incurred due to the crash.

The insurance company used by Low Cost Car Rentals only charges a one-off fee to register the driver. It only costs 11 dollars for the whole rental period. Touch wood, but it is a piece of mind.

5. Companies use foreign language for rental agreements.

I can’t say for all companies, but Low Cost Car Rentals contract is written in English and you do not require any form of translation.

If you really unsure about anything in there, you are free to ask questions. Our staff is also fluent in English and therefore easy to communicate with.

People movers to rent for snow

What type of car to hire? Do i need a 4WD?

People movers to rent for snow

Often we receive calls from our customers asking for 4WD cars to rent because they are going to snow.

If you hire a rear- or a front- wheel drive car, you will also need to rent the snow chains. Therefore it is a common perception that a 4WD will save you a lot of money on your car rental.

Low Cost Car Rentals staff believes the choice of the car to rent depends on the circumstances.

Multiple adults traveling

If you have more than 5 adults in the car, we would recommend you to hire a people mover.

You can easily find a 4WD which is a 7- or an 8- seater. However, the last row in most 4WDs have a height limit. Depends on how tall your friends and/or family are, it might be just too tight for all of you.

Storage space required

You will probably think the 4WDs have better storage space? You are wrong. People movers like Kia Carnival or Toyota Tarago offer a larger boot space than most 4WDs.

Driving to snow

Our branch manager once said “4WD is only good in snow if you know how to drive a 4WD in the snow!”.

Four-wheel drive systems are helpful options, but they aren’t cure-all for winter driving problems. It is important to become familiar with a few 4×4 driving basics before you tackle snowy roads.

The advices for driving any type of vehicles are the same: slow down on windy roads, keep extra distance from the cars in front of you and take a lot of rest as snowy roads reflect the sun and tire your eyes quicker than usually.

It is also recommended to switch your 4WD into 2WD mode when driving downhill.

Nevertheless, If you have neither a lot of people, nor a lot of baggage, you should be just fine with a sedan or a hatch.

If you planning to drive to the snowfields and not to drive up the snow mountains, then any car will do the job.

Don’t forget there is also a choice of AWD cars to rent too.

Moving house on a budget

Renting a 4WD is a good option when you are moving house on a budget. Vans, trucks and utes can be very costly.

Additional tip is to ask for a car that has a tow-bar and/or roof racks fitted. Some of our 4WDs and people movers do. That will save you on another trip between homes.

Going camping

We will easily find a winner in the selection of the four-wheel drive cars. It is also important to tell the rental company that you are planning on such a trip.

When driving off-road, not all 4WD are the same. It is important to have high ground clearance so if you drive over a stone, you would not damage the bottom of the car.

Off-road is often not sealed. Even straight roads would have some mud pools and cause the car to skid. Rent a 4-wheel drive to do the job, unless you are planning to spend most of your time waiting for road side assistance or towing truck.

Cheap car rental made easy

While a road trip can be a great way to get you away from the everyday hustle and bustle, don’t jump into booking cheap car rental without proper research.

There are indeed many companies offering cheap car rental. Always be careful and consider the following tips. We will try to help you find your best deal so you can hit the road and start exploring.

Cheap car rental

1. Book in advance

When you book in advance you will almost always get a better deal than at the counter. And it’s easier and quicker. The last thing you want to do after a long flight is deal with rental car companies at the airport and negotiate a deal.

Be sure to take all your documents with you as proof of hire and your rates to avoid any hassles (scan and save in your email account).

2. Read the paperwork thoroughly

Before fixing the deal for cheap car rental, make sure that the paperwork is thoroughly studied by you. While rushing through it, you may miss on some important terms and conditions which might turn out a major surprise for you once you are back from your trip. Do not leave room for any doubt or uncertainty. This will save you from paying the extra charges, which we are sure no one really wants.

3. Check the insurance

Most of the cheap car rental come with full insurance. However it is always better to check that you are being covered from every aspect. This will help you understand whether there will be any excess charges or not. Ask the hire company what is your excess in case of the accident. It is important to know what happens if it is a “one vehicle” or “not at your fault” accidents.

Here at Low Cost Car Rental in Sydney we always read the important terms and conditions to our customers. If you hire a car from someone else, make sure you ask those questions before driving away.

4. Stick to the known cheap car rental companies

If you are hiring cars frequently, we suggest you to find one company and stick to it. For example, Low Car Rentals always give some discounts to our return customers. It is not always a money value. Our repeat customers often get free car delivery, GPSs or extra kilometres at no charge.

5. Keep a tab on discounts

There’s no issue if you aren’t regular with the car hire, you are still entitled to get discounts and other free extras. The only thing you have to do from your part is to ask for it. Also, don’t forget that most of the companies offer “Price guarantee” policy. Get a quotation from another car rental company where it clearly states what car they offer, kilometres allowance and insurance excess amount with the price in the local currency (e.g. AUD in Australia). You will most probably get the same deal from any other place. Low Cost Car Rentals often beat price by offering further discounts. Unfortunately it is always a subject to the cars availability and might not work with another discount or offer (e.g. free GPS or Unlimited kilometres package).

6. Check the fuel policy options

Almost all rental car companies will require you to return the car with the same amount of fuel it had in the tank at pick-up. Others operate a fuel policy where you, the renter, must purchase the first tank of fuel and may drop the car off empty. In this case, there may be no refund for unused fuel.

Where the car hire company charges for fuel, the cost may be higher than it would be at a local petrol station.

7. Age requirements

In most locations, the minimum rental age is 21 years. Additional fees can apply with certain car rental companies for drivers aged under 25 years or over 65 years. They are defined as more at “risk” drivers.

If you’re not yet over 25 years but are traveling with a companion who is, have them be the designated driver to save on this cost.

8. Additional driver fee

Extra fees typically apply for additional drivers. If you can get by with having only one designated driver you’ll typically save $15 per day. Of course, NEVER run the risk of driver fatigue, a few extra bucks is nothing when it comes to your safety and that of others on the road!

9. Additional state taxes and admin fees

Be aware of additional state taxes and fees that may apply if you cross state borders. And don’t lie about where you are taking the vehicle, because if you have an issue you probably won’t be covered by insurance! Always ask the rental company of any restrictions of the vehicle use. Don’t forget to ask if the quotation you got includes all the administration fees and is final. So you will not be mandated to pay extra money when picking up the car and will be in the situation where you have no choice but paying it.

Here in Low Cost Car Rentals, all our prices and quotations we issue are final. Remember it is often issued with an assumption that you are over 25 years old and hold a full Australian Driver Licence. If you don’t meet the age requirement or still on your Ps, make sure to tell the rental company about in advance.

10. Don’t use your debit card

Book using your credit card. Not only for added consumer protection and rewards points if it’s a rewards card, but rental companies tend to hold a larger deposit for use of debit cards and the hold on your deposit may take days to be returned.

11. Inspect your car before driving away

Do a thorough inspection of your rental car before driving out of the lot. If you find any damage fill in the documentation (get a copy) and take pictures with your phone so you have a time & date stamp. You don’t want to be held liable for damage from a previous driver.

Remember, You are entitled to do any checks you feel required. You can start the car, check the lights and air conditioning are working. Obviously all the car rental companies supposed to offer only safe cars to drive and perform all-around checks of the vehicles before offering to you. However, especially in the peak season, it is better to take the extra 15 minutes and have a proper look of the car you intend to hire.

12. Extra day may be cheaper

Cheap car rental often start when you hire a car for long term. Sometimes a 7-days deal can be cheaper than a 6-days one.

Often if you pick up the car at 9am and return at 10am, it can count as an extra day. Make sure you ask the car rental staff on how you can save on your rental prices. May be you can drop a car a little earlier to avoid paying the extra day. Sometimes, dropping off the car on a public holiday can involve the holiday surcharge.

If you can make a note of these points, can help you comparing the car rental prices from different companies. Also, you will be able to save money on car hire along with enjoying a leisure trip.

Cheap car rental deal is a good way to start your journey.