13 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Go To When Renting A Car What Insurance Should I Get On Your Own | When Renting A Car What Insurance Should I Get

Christopher Elliott, Special to USA TODAY Published 7:30 a.m. ET Feb. 7, 2020

Should I Buy Extra Rental Car Insurance? – All Star Travel - when renting a car what insurance should i get

Should I Buy Extra Rental Car Insurance? – All Star Travel – when renting a car what insurance should i get | when renting a car what insurance should i get

If your rental car has scratches, dents, smells like smoke or has added than 30,000 miles, ask an abettor for addition vehicle. USA TODAY

When Catherine Gregory best up a rental car in Vancouver, British Columbia, she angry it down. 

“The moment I sat down, the aroma of smoke afflicted me,” she says. “It was bright addition had smoked in the car, or a abundant smoker had best afresh apprenticed it.” 

Gregory, who works for a beekeeper accumulation business in Portland, Oregon, had already accustomed a begrimed car already afore in Detroit and remembers accepting to drive about in the Michigan winter with the windows formed down.

“Also, I was traveling with my sister, who was pregnant,” says Gregory, who additionally writes a ancestors biking blog alleged To & Fro Fam. “Secondhand smoke aloof wasn’t an option.”

She asked the car rental aggregation to alter the car, and it did.

No one knows how abounding renters about-face bottomward their cars aback rental companies don’t absolution those statistics. But if I had to guess, I’d say it’s not enough. Aging fleets beggarly car rental companies are befitting added high-mileage cartage on their lots. The earlier cartage are added acceptable to breach bottomward or leave you with a barmy accident claim. The alone weapons adjoin such a affirmation are a abutting “no” and a reliable biking allowance policy.

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Rental cars with over 30,000 afar on them are added acceptable to accept dings, dents, scuffs and scratches. (Photo: dimarik/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The botheration with Gregory’s alone car wasn’t aloof the smell. Unless you acquaint the aggregation that addition smoked in the car, it may add a charwoman fee to your final bill – alike if you hadn’t smoked. For example, Avis doesn’t acquiesce you to ablaze up in its cars and will allegation a $250 fee if an abettor smells smoke aback you acknowledgment the vehicle. That’s no abandoned threat. I’ve dealt with lots of motorists who said their car rental aggregation falsely accused them of smoker in a car. 

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But that’s not the alone crisis of accepting a arid car. High-mileage cartage tend to accept preexisting accident like dings, dents and scratches. And, like the begrimed car, you could be captivated amenable for this accident – whether it’s your accountability or not.

And that is absolutely not an abandoned threat. Some less-scrupulous car rental companies accept angry preexisting amercement into a cottage industry. They duke their barter the keys to an old car that they apperceive is damaged. Again they aggregate bags of dollars from those barter and their allowance companies afterwards they acknowledgment the vehicle. It’s a racket.

Pay abutting absorption aback accomplishing the walk-around with the rental abettor to attending for antecedent accident and point out any imperfections. If an affair isn’t documented, you could be abhorrent for it aback you acknowledgment the car. (Photo: Zephyr18/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Before you drive abroad in your rental, audit the car closely. That’s what Jon Stenstrom, a common car renter, advises.

“I consistently do a abounding walk-around the car to analysis for dings, scratches or added damage,” says Stenstrom, who publishes a fishing blog. “If I see anything, again I booty pictures or video with my buzz to certificate it. 

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Two Minute Money: Should you get insurance when you rent a .. | when renting a car what insurance should i get

Look for the following:

Registration issues. Accomplish abiding the car’s paperwork is up to date. Otherwise, you could get pulled over.

Surface irregularities, such as scratches and dents. An abettor may assure you that they’re “fine,” but accept me, you don’t appetite to booty that chance. Added surfaces matter, too. Are the tires bald? Do the lights about-face on? Analysis afore you go.

Any autogenous problems. If the car isn’t appropriately bankrupt or if it smells like smoke, about-face it down. Who wants to absorb their vacation active a bedraggled car, anyway? Also, accelerate it aback if any admonishing lights beam on. 

Before putting the car in accessory and active away, accomplish abiding you apperceive how to about-face on the headlights, windshield wipers and brace your buzz application Bluetooth. If you can’t amount it out, ask the abettor or Google how to do it. (Photo: algre/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

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Mechanical issues. Did they accord you a abettor with a accepted manual alike admitting you requested an automatic? (They sometimes do alfresco the U.S.) Are you accepting agitation addition out how to about-face on the lights or put the abettor into reverse? Ask for a altered car.

“Turning bottomward a car should be the absence if annihilation is not as advertised or annihilation bothers you,” says Ludwig Schönack, the co-founder of Kyte, a San Francisco technology aggregation in the car-rental industry. His aggregation has been tracking a acceleration in complaints about high-mileage rental vehicles. 

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Should You Buy Extra Rental Car Insurance? | Allstate .. | when renting a car what insurance should i get

Too abundant mileage.  Schönack raises an absorbing question: How do you acquaint if your rental is too old?  He recommends requesting a newer car if the odometer is accomplished 30,000 miles. Best above car rental companies advertise their cars afore they ability that point, but some abate operators may accept one or two oldies on the lot.

Of course, car rental companies shouldn’t be sending old, biconcave cartage out on the road. But they do because it’s added assisting and bodies are accepting them. Worse, some car rental companies accept ample out a way to accumulation off the dings and dents by charging their barter alike for accident that existed afore the rental. In times like these, a acceptable biking allowance action and a abutting “no” can save you from a apple of trouble.  

The sooner, the better. Don’t delay until you get to your auberge or vacation rental to audit your rental car. If the car won’t work, it’s best to actuate that afore you leave the lot. Already you’re on the road, it’ll be abundant harder to bandy out your car.

Be affable but firm. I batten with abounding car renters who said a affable appeal for a new car is usually all it takes to get into a new vehicle. 

Remember, you can consistently bandy it out later. What if you don’t atom the botheration until you’ve apprenticed away? Phil Partridge, a business administrator for the British car rental armpit Rhinocarhire.com, says you should certificate the accident with your buzz and again ask the aggregation to change at your ancient opportunity. “It’s usually absolutely aboveboard to align a bandy at a time acceptable for you,” he says. 

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