How to buy ... car hireAs holiday expenses go, few can have as many potential pitfalls as hiring a car in a foreign country. You're driving on the other side of unfamiliar roads, probably dealing in a language other than English - and to cap it all you've signed a contract that appears to give the car hire firm carte blanche CARTE BLANCHE. The signature of an individual or more, on a while. paper, with a sufficient space left above it to write a note or other writing.
2. In the course of business, it not unfrequently occurs that for the sake of convenience, signatures in blank are to hit your credit card on the slightest pretext PRETEXT. The reasons assigned to justify an act, which have only the appearance of truth, and which are without foundation; or which if true are not the true reasons for such act. Vattel, liv. 3, c. 3, 32. . Given all of that, it's amazing a·maze
v. a·mazed, a·maz·ing, a·maz·es
1. To affect with great wonder; astonish. See Synonyms at surprise.
2. Obsolete To bewilder; perplex.
v.intr. that anyone ever does it. However, despite the possible problems, hiring a car abroad need not be an ordeal - assuming you follow some basic rules.
Before you go
Car hire is still generally cheaper if booked in advance, and a host of aggregator websites now compete with the big household names History
Household Names have been together since 1998, with various members rotating throughout the line-up with singer, Jason Garcia, until it was solidified in the summer of 2000 with bassist/keyboardist, Chris Peters, and drummer, C. J. for your business.
The key to comparing prices is to include "super collision damage waiver collision damage waiver n (Insurance) → rachat m de franchise
collision damage waiver collide n (Insurance) → " (SCDW SCDW Super Collision Damage Waiver (extended Insurance for rental cars)
SCDW Standing Committee on Drinking Water (European Commission) ) that most people will want to include. This is extra insurance which, in most cases, reduces the excess to zero in the even of a crash.
A survey conducted by Guardian Money shows that companies often quote an initial low rental, but make up the cost by adding it to the insurance.
There's no need to take it all, but if you have a crash, or damage the car, you'll soon find a £600 charge lands on your credit card (see 'Bang goes £641', below) whether you were responsible for the damage or not.
If you hire more than one car a year, or are hiring it for more than one week, it is much more cost-effective to buy an annual SCDW policy from a company called Insurance4carhire.com. For £49 a year, you get all the super collision damage waiver insurance you can use in Europe - on all cars hired more than 150km from your home. This has the added benefit of covering wheels and tyres that the car hire company's own policies will never cover. It also offers worldwide or US policies.
When comparing prices it's also worth considering how much it will cost to add an extra driver to the policy, if required. Some firms like Holidayautos will let you add a second to the rental agreement A rental agreement is a contract, usually written, between the owner of a property and a renter who desires to have temporary possession of the property. As a minimum, the agreement identifies the parties, the property, the term of the rental, and the amount of rent for the term. for free. Others charge as much as £27.
When checking quotes, make sure they include any additional local surcharge An overcharge or additional cost.
A surcharge is an added liability imposed on something that is already due, such as a tax on tax. It also refers to the penalty a court can impose on a fiduciary for breaching a duty. . Some car hire firms impose €25, payable on arrival, for all airport pick-ups in Ireland. Never buy the personal accident insurance which will typically add €6 a day to the rental cost, as you've probably already got cover in your travel insurance policy, and may even be covered under your home insurance policy.
Once you arrive
The classic mistake that most people make when picking up a hire car is not checking it over. When the rep shows you the car go round it very carefully marking every blemish blem·ish
A small circumscribed alteration of the skin considered to be unesthetic but insignificant.
blemish on the sheet they provide - even if the rep says there is no damage. Take photos. Pay particular attention to the wheels - particularly alloy wheels Alloy wheels are automobile wheels which are made from aluminum or magnesium metal alloy. Alloy wheels differ from normal steel wheels, because of their lighter weight, which improves performance. - and get the sheet signed. Check it really is full of fuel, and that the spare tyre spare tyre
1. an additional tyre kept in a motor vehicle in case of puncture
2. Slang a roll of fat just above the waist
spare tyre, spare tire (US) n (AUT is there. Some people also check that the engine is full of oil.
Handing back the keys
If you are due to return the car full of fuel, then do so because the charges to fill the car on your behalf are inevitably punitive - car hire firms not only charge more for the fuel, they also apply a extra handling charge.
Assuming you haven't damaged the car in any way, you need to be able to prove this if there's a dispute once you have returned to the UK. If you can, get the car hire rep to walk round the car with you and sign the sheet showing it's clean.
However, many firms now just ask you to park it up and hand over the keys. As someone who had a summer job working for a car hire firm, I now always photograph the car I'm handing back to show there was no damage when I left it. Again focus on the wheels as the most common post-rental claim is for damage to the wheels - typically scrapes to alloy wheel hubs - which are not covered not covered Health care adjective Referring to a procedure, test or other health service to which a policy holder or insurance beneficiary is not entitled under the terms of the policy or payment system–eg, Medicare. Cf Covered. by their extra insurance. Keep the pictures and copies of all paperwork supplied. If the car hire firm later tries to argue you damaged the car, you will be able to provide photos to show you were not responsible.
Bang goes £641
One man who knows all too well the perils of handing your credit card details to car hire firms is Ken Holder.
The retired chief engineer from Washington, Tyne & Wear, has been trying for more than a year to recover £641 charged to his card by Europcar.
Despite having photographs that he says clearly showed he was not at fault, all demands for his money to be returned have fallen on deaf ears.
He hired a Fiat Brava bra·va
Used to express approval of a woman, especially for a performance.
A shout or cry of "brava."
[Italian, feminine of bravo, bravo; see bravo1.] at Malaga Airport in June 2007 and had declined to take the extra insurance because he wasn't going very far. "After an uneventful 45-mile journey to the place we were staying there was a bang, and the car's steering went stiff. I called Europcar, and was recovered using a tow-truck." Before it was taken away he saw that the air conditioning air conditioning, mechanical process for controlling the humidity, temperature, cleanliness, and circulation of air in buildings and rooms. Indoor air is conditioned and regulated to maintain the temperature-humidity ratio that is most comfortable and healthful. compressor compressor, machine that decreases the volume of air or other gas by the application of pressure. Compressor types range from the simple hand pump and the piston-equipped compressor used to inflate tires to machines that use a rotating, bladed element to achieve was hanging by its pipes. He captured it all on film. "I know my way around engines. The restraining bolts were missing and it was also clear no impact had taken place."
When he handed the replacement car back, Europcar's Spanish staff refused to discuss the matter. "When we received our next credit card bill, there were three unexpected charges totalling £641.00. We contacted Europcar UK and were told that they would investigate and call us back. Having heard nothing for a number of weeks, I contacted them again."
Each time, over the subsequent 12 months, he rang Europcar, he was promised it would be looked it, but nothing happened. "I'm at the end of my tether tether
to tie an animal up by the head or neck so that it can graze but not move away. See also barton tether. ," he says.
In a statement Europcar blamed the delay on "organisational changes". "Having reviewed this case and the photos there is no indication of any 'shearing' within the boltholes. Europcar believes this is sufficient evidence to suggest that Mr Holder may not have been entirely at fault for this damage. Europcar is happy to refund the damage charges of €909. In addition, as a gesture of goodwill, it will be happy to cover any charges that may have been incurred, given the delay in this being resolved."
· This article was amended on Tuesday July 22 2008. We originally said that "for £49 a year, you get all the super collision damage waiver insurance you can use in Europe - on all cars hired up to 150km from your home". This should have read "more than", not up to, 150 km from your home. This has been corrected.