The Do's and Don'ts of Car Hire
Car hire can seem somewhat of a mystery, it's tricky to know what the right thing or the wrong thing to do is. It can feel like you do everything by the book yet still end up with a charge at the end. We've put together a list of the do's and don'ts of car hire which we hope may help you to navigate the car rental world!
The number one thing to do when hiring is to be prepared. By knowing what to expect you will be more confident should car hire staff offer you unwanted extras or tell you that you need additional cover. Make yourself aware of any documents you need to bring to the desk, the excess you are liable for, the deposit you'll need to leave and how much you need to pay. All of this information is available on your voucher from Clarify Car Hire and is also shown in the terms and conditions and during the booking process.
Use the vehicle within the terms and conditions on the rental voucher. If you do not stick to the terms, your insurance will be invalidated and any claims arising will not be covered. Classic terms and conditions state things such as not using the vehicle on the beach, driving under the influence, treating the car with due care but it's always worth having a read through your rental agreement and making yourself aware of all exclusions.
If you have been to the beach and there is a large amount of sand or mess in the vehicle, it's always worth either getting it cleaned or giving it a clean yourself before returning it. Charges for cleaning as a result of excess dirt are often high and much more expensive than a standard valet.
If you are hiring in your own country look out for extra requirements - such as additional photo id, or proof of your home address. Do make sure you have all the necessary paperwork with you as it can be hugely frustrating if you are refused the car as you lack a critical document.
Don't be late! Make sure you adhere to the times for pick up and drop off that you selected when you booked your car hire. If you drop off your car after the time stated on your rental agreement you will be liable for charges for the additional time. Similarly, if you arrive late to pick up your vehicle without informing the office, it may no longer be available. If however you are going to be unavoidably delayed let your rental company know - if they understand your situation they will do their best to help you out.
Don't be afraid to question any issues with the car when you pick it up. The car hire company has a duty to provide you with a working vehicle and if the vehicle has mechanical faults these are much easier to remedy at the car hire office than in the middle of your rental. It's always worth testing the clutch and having a good look around the vehicle to see if there are any scratches or bumps which haven't been picked up on the rental agreement when you collect the car. If there is anything that hasn't been noted, let the staff know there and then.
Don't return your vehicle with the incorrect level of fuel. Often car hire firms will ask you to leave a fuel deposit and this will be returned to you at the end of your rental as long as you have refilled to the correct level. If you do not fill your vehicle with enough fuel, you will only get part of your fuel deposit back (or if you haven't left a fuel deposit you will be charged) for the missing fuel. The price charged by the car hire companies is often higher than pump prices due to the admin involved so don't get caught out by not having filled up your car to the right amount.
The terms and conditions, deposit, excess and the amount due to be paid should be clear on a broker's website so you can look at these prior to booking and make sure you are happy with it all. Here at Clarify Car Hire we have these clearly displayed on our website and also in the voucher you receive after booking so you can remind yourself at any time.
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