I like to be able to drive my car to wherever I am going, but sometimes it is impossible to do so, such as when you fly to a place where obviously you cannot carry your well beloved car. So when you do decide to rent a car you can save yourself quite a bit of money by just taking care of a few things:
Be suspicious of Upgrades: An offered upgrade may seem like a good idea, but remember a larger car is a less fuel efficient car so will cost you more to run. So unless you really need a larger car, decline the upgrade because a smaller car saves you money.
Prepaid Tank of fuel: Think about how much you are going to run the car and whether it makes sense to use the prepaid fuel option (if you do use the prepaid option, make sure you use up all the fuel). Also if it is stipulated that you must fill it up before returning the car, remember to do so because sometimes the rental agency can charge a great deal more per gallon of gas than you would pay at the pump.
Don’t rent from the Airport: If it is possible, avoid renting a car at the airport, because taxes and fees charged at the airport can be almost double that charged at non-airport locations. It can be a lot more economical to take a shuttle into town and rent a car from there.
Use your digital camera: I once used my digital camera to great effect when I had to make an insurance claim on my own car when I had had a small accident. Make use of it when renting a car too and don’t forget to turn on the time and date option, which will indicate the state of the car when you rented it, warts and all.
Consider weekly rental: If you need to rent a car for a week or more consider weekly rental which can save you up to 30% over the price that you would pay for daily rental.
Insurance and other costs: Ask exactly what it is you are paying for; i.e. the various components of the rental amount. Insurance is one item that they can really fleece you on so consider what you need. Ask if state and local taxes, airport surcharges, additional driver fees, insurance, gasoline bills and drop-off charges are included in what is being charged.
Shop around for bargains: This is a very competitive market so ask around, check on the internet and see what the best price you can get for yourself is.