Getting The Best Deal From Your Car Hire Company

When you arrive to collect your car, the staff at the car hire desk will often try to sell you additional insurance, add-ons etc. We’ve put together this handy guide to take with you to make sure you know what your rights are, what you’re covered for and what you definitely don’t need.

Super collision damage waiver (CDW)

CDW (Collision Damage Waiver) is normally included in the cost of the rental. This can sometimes come with high excess charges in the event of damage or an accident. However, some car hire firms will offer you Super CDW at a daily cost (sometimes as much as £20 per day) which will reduce your liable excess to zero. This will, however, add significant cost to your rental and you may not have anticipated this expense. Often, these top-up policies don’t cover damage to the windows, tyres, roof and undercarriage. That’s where insurance4carhire comes in. With our car hire excess insurance policies you can decline damage waivers because you’re already covered with us. We even cover damage to windows, tyres and the undercarriage. What’s more, our cover comes at a fraction of the price offered by car hire companies (as little as £3.99 per day).

Windows, tyres, roof and undercarriage cover

If you are offered cover for the car’s windows, tyres, roof and undercarriage, you can decline it. Your insurance4carhire.com policy covers you for these and will reimburse your excess if you get charged. Car hire staff may try and push you into purchasing this add-on by citing the excess that you would be liable for. But remember, your car hire excess insurance policy will cover you for up to £4,000 in a single claim.

If you have purchased an excess reimbursement policy from us you DO NOT have to purchase the excess waiver cover from the rental company at the desk (be aware that their cover still excludes damage to the undercarriage, tyres windows and roof). Your car hire insurance policy works by reimbursing you the excess, including any administration fee charged by the rental company for processing the excess. Always make sure the credit limit on your card is sufficient, as they will often put a charge on your card for the excess amount before you take the car. An administration fee may be charged if you take the car back damaged.

Always check the small print

Car hire firms sometimes hide additional costs within the small print and then give you an unexpected bill on your return. Make sure that you read everything before you sign the agreement, and don’t sign if there’s anything you’re unclear about. If you’re not sure, just ask.

Decline upgrades

“Great!” you might think. But sometimes you’re only up-sold rather than upgraded because the rental car company doesn’t have your chosen car in stock. If you politely decline the upgrade you might get a better car any way without paying any extra. This often happens in America where there tends to be more of a ‘hard-sell’ culture among retailers.

Don’t rush

Always take your time. Take time reading the small print. Take time checking the details of your rental. Always take time when you’re checking over the car for scratches and damage. When checking for damage, always make sure the agent makes a note of all scratches and dents, however minor they might seem and make sure they sign it before you leave. It’s understandable that you might be feeling exhausted if you’ve just arrived after a long flight, but if you take your time, you’re less likely to miss a detail or sign something you don’t want to.