How to get that extra mile from your car hire

HolidayExtras.com shares its insights for a smooth ride on holiday 

Providing holidaymakers with the freedom to explore destinations in their own time, whilst opening up the experiences and locations available, car hire is an extremely popular choice for those heading abroad. 

With so many companies and services to choose from, the process of hiring a vehicle ahead of a holiday can be overwhelming. Not only are consumers faced with numerous suppliers when booking, but the differences in the protocol they adhere to can also cause confusion during the break itself. But this needn’t be the way…With a few top tips to hand and a little preparation, hiring a car for a getaway can be a smooth ride! 

With over 36 years of experience, and a mission to take the hassle out of every holiday, Holiday Extras is the UK’s favourite destination for holiday extras. Here, the company shares its top tips for hiring a car this summer: 

1. Avoid fuel charges 

When selecting your rental car, make sure you choose the “Full to Full” refuelling option. If you select the “Full to Empty” alternative (i.e. leaving the resort with a full tank and returning the car on an empty one) you may be charged an extra fee by the provider for the service of refuelling. 

2. Purchase excess insurance: 

To avoid paying out in case of damages, make sure you take our sufficient insurance cover for your journey well in advance. All hire comes with a certain level of insurance as standard, but this may not cover you in the way that you’d hope. 

We’d always recommend purchasing a refund policy prior to collecting your car. With that in place, you shouldn’t feel pressured into taking any extra insurance over the counter when you land at your destination. Car hire firms will often try and persuade you to purchase a premium insurance product on arrival but these can be more expensive and, as it’s often a physical payment, it would be strictly non-refundable. 

Holiday Extras excess insurance: 

Holiday Extras Excess Insurance protects you for up to £3,000 worth of possible excess charges to give you peace of mind should you have an accident or damage the car in any way. You will still need to leave a deposit on arrival, but this is not a physical payment and the full amount will be released to your card following your rental if the car is returned on time and with no damage. If you do have an accident, the cost of the repairs will be taken out of the excess. 

3. Beware of mileage caps and one-way fees 

Most of the providers Holidayextras.com works with offer unlimited mileage. However, in certain locations, such as Portugal, some suppliers do cap mileage. In addition, you may on occasion be charged for returning the car to a different destination from the one you picked it up at. If you’re planning on driving long distances or one-way, make sure you look out for mileage caps and drop-off charges before you depart, to avoid nasty surprises at the end of your journey. 

car hire

4. Don’t get caught out in the wrong car 

Do your research before booking a car to avoid disappointment on arrival, or having to pay extra to upgrade. For example, if the car carries five people, will there be ample room for all your items of luggage or other travel needs? Booking well in advance will reduce the chance of your chosen car being unavailable when you arrive, as there isn’t always a guarantee the exact car is going to be available on the day. 

5. Get snap happy 

Finally, we recommend fully assessing the car before you set off and photographing it from all angles to avoid any existing damage being wrongly attributed to you once you’ve dropped the car off. It’s a simple and quick action that can provide you with a lot of peace of mind on your break. 

Holiday Extras is the UK’s market leader for travel add-ons. For more information or to book destination car hire, visit holidayextras.com or call 0800 1313 777. 

Holiday Extras offers a wide choice of holiday booster options including UK airport parking, airport hotels, worldwide airport lounges, destination car hire and holiday insurance. The Holiday Extras booking app is available to download now via a link at HolidayExtras.com.