I personally love renting a car when I’m traveling because it affords you so much more freedom than relying on public transportation and is often significantly more economical than relying on Ubers and taxis. Rental cars can also be a huge help if you’re traveling with children because you can carry more things and have more freedom to work around their nap schedules. The type of rental car you choose will depend on your family’s needs, your budget, and how long you’re renting for. Here are my top 3 tips for choosing the perfect rental car for your next vacation:
1. Size Matters
It can be tempting to go for the cheapest rental car possible, and if you’re on a strict budget this might be your only option, but if there’s a little more wiggle room in your budget then think about a few things. If you’re traveling with a lot of big suitcases or planning to do a lot of shopping, then you might have to go for a bigger car to fit your extra bags in the back seat or for a SUV for the extra trunk space. If you’re five people, it might be tempting to fit into a five seater, but you might find yourself cramped especially if you’re doing some longer trips. Think about what size car you really need and what will be comfortable for everyone. It might be worth getting a smaller car if you’re planning to do a lot of parking within a city as sometimes it can be a mission to park a bigger car in a central city.
2. Book in Advance
A rental car is not something you want to leave until the last minute because it will mean you will have less options available. Booking a few weeks or even months in advance will afford you more options, better prices and ensure you don’t turn up to the car rental place accepting whatever weird car they have left. There are some parts of travel that you can leave until the last minute, but car rental is simply not one of those things.
3. Check Comparison Sites
I find browsing comparison sites the best way to find what rental car companies are the best in the area I’m looking. I spend a bit of time reading through people’s reviews to see what they like and didn’t like about certain companies. Trustpilot is one of my favourite comparison sites because they make it easy to view a few options at once and have overall scores so you can see which companies perform the best in their categories. If you’re looking for the best rental car companies, here are my top 5:
1. Miles Car Rental – Rated 4.5/5
Many reviewers comment on how great the service was and how fast the entire process was, meaning they could get their holiday started quickly. Another comment that kept coming up time and time again was the excellent value for money and special prices compared to other car rental companies. Others noted that the staff were happy to answer all questions and doubts, ensuring that the renters started off on the right foot.
2. Viajemos.com – Rated 4.5/5
People commented that this company just made everything so easy for them which in turn resulted in them becoming loyal customers and repetitively using this company over the course of years. Others noted that this company offered extremely competitive prices without compromising on the quality of the cars. Another review that I saw a few times was that this company has a great range of cars to choose from.
3. Despegar.com – Rated 4.5/5
This is a great option if you want to make a fast reservation as many people commented it was intuitive and fast. Others mentioned that their website is extremely user friendly, making reservations super easy! For people new to booking online, ease of use is going to be a big factor in where you choose to book. There are a good range of cars available, especially if you book in advance.
4. Rentingcarz – Rated 4.5/5
One of the things customers liked most about this rental car company is their online chat service, making it easy and fast to have any questions answered which can be a huge help if you’re not familiar with the rental car booking process. Other reviewers simply commented that everything was easy to use and the service was great and that they would use this company again for their next trip.
5. Carretal8 – Rated 4.5/5
People commented that the entire process was very easy and they were happy with the service they received. Other thing that I saw over and over in the reviews was that they were able to receive their service in Spanish, which is great for international travellers who are not so confident in English. There are a good range of cars available, ensuring that no matter the size of your travel party you can find a good option.
Renting a car can be one of the biggest expenses on a trip, but it’s worth it for the freedom and independence it affords. Use these tips to ensure you have a great rental car experience.