Travel Smart – Car Hire


I’d like to take a moment to discuss car hire abroad. Because if you travel at all, especially to repeat destinations where you’re familiar with the roads, you’ll know that car hire is a convenient way to get straight off the plane and crack on with your journey. But there can be issues if your car hire plan isn’t water tight. This post was inspired by some great information that I found here relating to the help that is available for people who do run into difficulties – I’ve attached the infographic for you all to get a good idea about how to avoid some of the major pitfalls.

Why talk foreign car hire? Well, the moment people find out that I have visited all seven continents, they usually have many weird and wonderful questions – and the immediate hurdle of getting around in a strange new land is often high on the list. My friends will say “I would be lost, I don’t know how you walk out of the airport and know what to do, traveling must be so hard sometimes”. Well, yes and no. But if you ask me, that’s all part of the fun.

Car Hire Abroad

One thing I can tell you is that it can be much easier – but often more expensive – to hire a car from the airport and not have to rely on foreign public transport (which can be confusing and is not always guaranteed to arrive on time). While car hire can be fast and simple, and while it does give you the freedom to buckle up and take control of your trip right away, there can be huge problems – and mounting costs – if not done correctly. Let’s look at some examples.

Make a plan

The best tip anyone can give you concerning foreign car hire is to do your research well ahead of time. Leaving the details of your car hire until you arrive will mean booking at the airport, which as I mentioned is convenient but often more expensive. Research the airport transport links and have a plan to get into town where you can pick up your (cheaper) rental.

Use a credit card

You are much more likely to be able to challenge any payment discrepancies if you pay for your car hire using a credit card (attempting to reverse or stop any payments without the help of a credit card company can be extremely difficult – especially if you have already left the country and realize the discrepancy upon returning home).

If you don’t ask, you don’t get…

The car hire company knows you have options. They want your business. Ask about upgrades. Does the car have Wi-Fi? Does the care have a built in sat-nav? Is there a handback grace period? An extra couple of hours can help you to avoid accidental late charges that can easily occur if you get lost on your way to drop off the car.

For further information, check out this great checklist on how to avoid a car hire horror story when traveling abroad. Make the time to plan ahead and get the most out of your journey.

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