With the onset of spring, planning for a summer vacation begins, an exciting part of any vacation! If you are planning on renting a car while traveling , it is important that you know the pros and cons before you go to have peace of mind on the road.
Renting a car on vacation can be a real headache when you’re not properly prepared. Whether you’re staying in the province, crossing the border, or taking off on a tour of Europe, these tips will help make your next car rental the most enjoyable experience.
Do your homework before you go
The main advantage of renting a car while traveling is that you enjoy greater freedom of movement. No need to depend on public transport, we move where and when we want. However, some annoyances like heavy traffic in some metropolitan areas, difficulty finding parking and common road hazards can hinder your experience. It is crucial to inform yourself before leaving to prevent any problem!
Before making your reservation, give a detailed estimate of the projected costs including the rental price:
- the appropriate insurance
- gasoline costs
- The cost of GPS, parking and toll booths, etc.
Be aware that drivers under the age of 25 will often be charged additional fees and additional drivers must be announced at the time of booking. Also remember to validate that the car has a driving license in all the countries you will visit if you plan to cross borders and obtain an international driving license , if required.
At the time of confirmation, verify that you are renting an automatic or manual transmission vehicle, depending on your preference, that it is of the correct category / size and that the mileage included in the contract matches your needs.
Find the right lane in a rental car
Have you thought about printing maps before you go or bringing your GPS to save a few dollars? If you want to borrow it from the rental company, make sure the addition of the service is included as it will cost you more if you request it when picking up the car.
To better find your way in the winding alleys of Jamaica and avoid wasting time, note the distances in a logbook as well as the addresses of your destinations, and this, even if you are helped by technology, because it can sometimes fail at very inconvenient times. Identify public parking lots in the cities you will be visiting beforehand and do some research to familiarize yourself with local signage.
Choose the right car rental insurance
Did you know that the insurance offered by most car rental companies does not include punctures, broken windshields, mirrors or windows in addition to theft in the vehicle, even though these are the problems? The most common?
It’s not easy to choose insurance for rent a car in Jamaica while traveling, but it is essential to analyze the different options to confirm that you are well protected. Some credit cards offer it, but the clauses are sometimes restrictive and the deductible very high. The same goes for your home insurance. It is important to read the contracts that are sent to you carefully to leave with peace of mind.
In the event of an accident during your stay, several types of insurance come into play Emergency medical insurance is a must for you, the traveler, while rental car insurance, like the one offered by Efay, covers damage to the rental vehicle.
Do not forget anything when taking possession
When you are given the keys to your rental car abroad, it is normal that you will be asked for a security deposit on your credit card. Take pictures of the automobile from several angles as proof of its condition in case you need it later. Inspect all parts of the vehicle and its bodywork and insist that all abnormalities be documented on both copies of the contract before signing it.
Check that the gas tank is full and remember to ask for the type of fuel recommended for this model of car. Find out where to get gas on the return trip if you are returning it to the same rental office.
Procedure in the event of a mishap during the trip
In the event of an accident, contact the police first. Stay put. Do not discuss the accident until the police arrive. Take note of the contact details of the driver and the owner, if different, the details of the vehicle (make and model, year, license plate number) and of the insurance company of the person (s) involved ). If there are witnesses, also write down their contact details and take photos of the damage and the location of the vehicles. The police will give you a report that you can send to your auto insurer who will explain the procedure to follow for any claim.
In case of injury, call for help immediately. Then notify your travel insurance provider.
Of course, no one wants to need these services, but by being aware of the pitfalls to avoid during your next car rental while traveling, you will avoid many adventures and will keep the memories of vacations with family or friends for a long time!
Have a good trip and a good rental!