Adding stamps to your passport, Europe trips can let you explore many places in just one ride. Car journeys are the best in Europe, and the licensed bunch who can’t afford a vehicle can easily rent one instead. It is an optimal method for roaming the continent, as you cannot cover the tiny beauties and country villages through other means. Having complete control of your rides is essential when traveling to countries like Germany, France, Hungary, Netherlands, and Poland, which have millions of towns and countryside to explore.
Car rentals are more advantageous than taxis or public transport, as it allows you to make custom stops and make the trip flexible and enjoyable. However, these rentals can backfire when traveling in city areas, resulting in higher costs due to longer duration. This dilemma can make you question the best way to rent these vehicles in Europe without spending a lot. Here are some of the factors you have to consider to hire cheap rentals and certain other things you can do to make your trip affordable:
Understanding The Cost Of Renting
The proposition of renting a car in Europe creates fear in many people due to price factors. However, if you consider certain factors and research how to get them inexpensively, car rentals won’t be as terrifying. Most rental adventures start with choosing the right rental company. There are many to choose from, and it can get overwhelming and insecure about comparing these options only in terms of price. To get the best car rental deals to travel around Europe inexpensively, click here to learn more.
Small choices can lead to high money savings. The following considerations can help you understand what comprises the price for rentals and assist you in making the right choice:
Category Of Car
The first choice of consideration would be the car’s category. This is a significant determinant of the price. The kind of car chosen will judge the number of people you can carry, the duration of the journey, the comfort, the facilities, the locations suitable for driving, and a lot more, in addition to the price. The type can range from small cars to medium ones, to large-sized ones, an SUV, or premium ones. Each has a different price range.
Of course, the first mantra to keep in mind is to choose efficiently. Small cars are cost-friendly and have efficient fuel usage depending on the area you want to explore and your budget. This car is the best option unless you want to drive on hilly and irregular roads.
Pick-Up And Drop-Off Spots
It can be a surprise that alternative locations for picking up and dropping can increase costs. This brings you to the next tip, make your starting and ending spots the same. Mind that making the locations a bit inaccurate and dissimilar is alright, but ensure they stay within the country. Further, the sites are apart from each other, and the higher the additional charges are applied, which can be unnecessary most of the time.
Many tourists often forget to consider cross-border fees and find themselves surprised when they travel further down the arena. The rates depend on the car rental company chosen, but most charge you for traveling between non-European countries.
Manual Vs. Automatic Transmission
There are essentially two different varieties of cars you can rent- one being automatic and the other being manual ones. When trying to reduce your costs on renting, you must know both have different pricing tags. However, this decision must also be made based on your driving expertise. International roads may be fresh for a novice driver looking to explore Europe, so that automatic cars may look attractive. But they cost significantly higher than manual ones. Additionally, automatic transmissions are rare in Europe, making it difficult for you to drive.
If your eye is on the price, then make sure you rent a manual one instead.
Debit Card Vs. Credit Card
Opt for a credit card, always. Many rental businesses even deny the use of debit cards over credit. Moreover, credit cards eliminate the need for paying additional authorization fees. Make sure you have at least two credit cards while renting a car in Europe so that you have a plan-b at all times. Also, don’t forget to keep the tax rates in mind before making the purchase.
Another consideration most young tourists forget is that age below 21 or 25 can make you liable to pay extra. As driving is legalized only from 21, ages above 25 prove that you are an experienced driver, ensuring the safety of road rules and car operations. Prices usually range from $16 to $45 for a single day.
Other factors to remember are gas expenses, parking locations, toll fees, and additional costs. European gas prices are getting much higher recently, ranging from $8 – $10 per gallon of fuel. Having a fuel-efficient car can help bring it down a notch or two. As for tolls, they can cost you from $3 to $30. Don’t forget to familiarize yourself with the European tax structure before you make your rental purchases. Due to the abundance of toll roads in Europe, research these costs based on your desired location.
Look through other extra fees that you might need to consider:
- Exiting in a different country ($200 to $300)
- Additional drivers
- Child seats
- VAT Taxes (ranging from 10% to 20% over base cost)
- GPS installation
- Protection from thievery
Tips To Reduce The Price Of Renting A Car In Europe
Apart from the above consideration, the following tips can make your Europe trip inexpensive and hassle-free:
Avoid Busy Streets
Most European countries are not built on grid systems, making it a devilish experience for novice drivers. Additionally, parking locations in these cities can heavily cost you. As mentioned, renting a car is the best way to explore the countryside and small villages, but it can be an expensive ordeal on busy roads. So, make sure you avoid the city areas.
Avoid Airport Locations
Picking up or dropping in an airport location can increase your rental fees by a marginal amount.
Avoid Dropping Your Car Off Late
Most agreements show the tremendous fee they charge you for potential delays. Make sure you adhere to their timings and save these avoidable costs.
Make sure you are extra careful when driving the car. Most rental companies charge you heavily for any foreseen damages on their assets. On the same note, check your rental car if it is damaged before driving. There are many situations when they charge clients for damages that were present from the beginning.
Book In Advance
Booking a rental car 2-3 months prior can reduce the prices significantly as prices go through the roof when bookings are high. Certain companies can also let you get away with the cancellation fee if the booking is made further in advance. So, this is a cost-friendly option even when you are uncertain about your trip.
Thoroughly educating yourself about the cost structure of car rental services in Europe can help you avail maximum cost-saving ordeals. Whether planning a trip to explore European countries or just trying out rentals for a holiday, renting a car online can help you gain more exposure to prices and facilities like GPS, fuel efficiency, and many more. As long as you keep the factors mentioned above while choosing a car rental, you can explore the depths of European culture and locations without worrying about high prices.