Tips for Hiring a car and hitting the roads in the USA!
If you are thinking of hiring a car and cruising across some of the iconic roads of america such as Route 66 and Highway 1 then you are going to have a trip of a lifetime. Whether you are roadtripping for a few days or months having your own car is one of the best ways to see what america has to offer and can still be achieved on a budget. Below are some tips to save you time and money for your road trip.
Comparison websites make it easy to compare rental companies but can also open a can of worms as you have to trawl through pages of small print to find out what your policy does and doesn’t cover so this post will hopefully give you some tips of what to look out for!
Age- If you are under 25 expect to pay a premium excess and some rental companies will not insure you in the first place. I found that to hire a car in 2016 it cost $25 per day with an additional young driver fee of $25 per day per passenger. It may be worth insuring just one person if you and your travel companions are under 25.
Mileage limits- Make sure you find out whether there is a limit to what mileage you can reach throughout your time of hire.
Some companies will have hefty charges if you go over this limit.
Interstate charges- Make sure that if you are planning on the leaving the state you hired the car in then your policy allows you to do this free of charge. Some policies will charge you per day that you are out of the state you hired the car.
Breakdown Cover- You can add an extra breakdown policy online but this will be through a third party company, not the hire company themselves. I found out the hard way that you shouldn’t do this! The hire company will offer you a breakdown assistance when you pick up the keys which is worth taking as if you breakdown you can call them and they will either repair your car or give you a new car.
Extras- expect to pay extra when you arrive at the hire company as tourist tax, local taxes and other costs can be added. But make sure you scrutinize your charges as they have a habit of adding a few extras on for good measure.
Navigation- This is fairly easy as americas roads are straight with not many roundabouts so if you are feeling brave then maybe using the map would give you a real feel for adventure. If like me you like the sound of a sat nav telling you where to go then this can be a good option. Rental companies hire these out for roughly $8 per day. But it could work out cheaper to buy one yourself and then sell it when you are finished with it.
APPS APPS APPS- The modern world has an app for everything now and MAPS.ME is a fantastic app that enables you navigate without paying charges for data usage. Just make sure that you downlaod the map of where you are going on WIFI before you set off! Then you can stick your phone up on a stand on the dashboard and you have a free Sat Nav