What are the most common rent-a-car myths?
If you’ve been renting a car, you might have encountered these myths. But if not, allow us to bust them for you. Knowing which is myth and fact about car rentals will help you make the most out of your trip. Therefore, it’s best to be in the know.
Here are the most common rental car myths going around.
10 Most Common Rent-a-Car Myths
1. You can always do a walk-in and get the same price.
No, you won’t. Walk-ins are not a guarantee that you’ll get the same price. They aren’t even a guarantee that you’ll get a car for rent.
So, rule number one is you always have to make a reservation to be assured of the same price. Also, make sure that there is an available vehicle that would fit your requirements. Some car service rentals will advise you to pre-book at least a week before. Some of them may have shorter pre-booking requirements.
2. There is a car rental blacklist.
There is no car rental blacklist, period.
If you’ve run into some arguments with a car rental agency, it doesn’t mean your name will be recorded in a so-called blacklist. There isn’t such a thing. It’s not like your credit card history and debts, where there’s a consolidated list that has a bearing on your credit score. There is no car rental score.
Rental agencies compete with one another. So, if you have issues with one agency, it doesn’t mean that you can’t rent from other companies anymore.
However, some factors do affect your rental capability. Records of DUI conviction or criminal history can ban you from renting a car anywhere.
3. Renting from more prominent multinational companies is better.
Renting from a large multinational company isn’t necessarily better than renting from a smaller one. It doesn’t make any difference.
Most people don’t know that lending firms combine both deals from both companies. So, regardless of the size of the rent a car company, you’re going to get the same value. It’s also a false blanket of security, and everyone seems to love having one. Unfortunately, this is a myth.
4. You have to pay for every dent and every scratch.
You will not pay for every little scratch or damage. It would also depend on your contract with the agency. But small dents and scratches from pebbles don’t usually count.
5. Car rental companies are open 24/7.
Just because airports are open 24/7, doesn’t mean that rental car companies are, too.
These companies still follow a schedule. There is a maximum time for the drop-off and pick up of your vehicle. If you happen to land before that, you have to pay extra and return it the next day.
6. All car rental agencies have the same terms.
This is false. Different companies have different terms of the agreement. Some companies may require more proof of identification, and others might not.
7. If your flight is delayed, the same car is still reserved for you.
Some companies might give you a leeway of an extra 4 hours. But beyond that, expect the car rental to lapse. This applies especially during the peak holiday season, where they won’t be waiting for you. That’s why it’s essential to make adjustments ahead of time. Inform your car rental that you need to reserve an additional day so they can make proper allocations.
8. You get the same car that you book.
Not really, especially during the peak season. You will get the same number of seats since that is needed for your requirements. But it’s not a guarantee that you’ll be getting the same color and the same car model.
You might even get a larger car if you’re lucky, but you won’t be getting anything smaller than what you have booked.
9. Credit and debit cards are the same.
Rental car companies often prefer credit cards over debit cards. Credit cards are the easiest way to block and unblock transactions.
A debit card cannot be unlocked easily. Instead, it just takes the money out. Afterward, it has to be refunded. It also carries transaction fees and different exchange rates.
10. You’ll be fully charged if you pick it up at 23:00 for an hour.
The meter starts running by the time you pick up your car, then it will be computed in 24-hour blocks. Therefore, spare yourself from the hassle of booking at midnight, then staying in the airport to save yourself from a day of being charged.