1. Perhaps the most important - Use the internet!
But, isn't it better (or cheaper) to go direct to the car hire company
that actually owns the cars? No single car hire company can cover every
destination all of the time. Even if they could it would be almost
impossible for them to offer the most competitive pricing all of the
Car rental companies charge by every 24 hours - or part thereof.
If possible, make sure your drop off time is the same (or slightly
earlier than) your pick up time. This way you will avoid being charged
extra for "running over" for what may be only a few hours.
3. Duration of Hire
Most car hire companies charge the same for 5,6 or 7 days - they
treat these periods as a week. It's sometimes better, therefore, to book
a week -even if you only need the car for 5 or 6 days - take it back
early. However, some companies (notably in the US and Canada)
charge a penalty for returning a car early - so check at the time of
4. Choosing Your Car
If you are a large party please make sure the vehicle you choose is
large enough - remember all that luggage! However, it may sometimes pay
you to rent a smaller car for the bulk of your holiday - when you wont
be needing that luggage space - but rent an extra one for the start and
end days of your trip so you have extra space for all that luggage!
Remember that your insurance (even when "fully inclusive") will not
cover glass, tyres, punctures, roof, underside or interior of the car!
These days many
car hire suppliers offer a "top up" at quite reasonable rates.
(purchase at the check in desk usually) - well worth it for peace of
mind! Also remember that off-roading invalidates your insurance
completely - even if it is a 4 x 4!