When you are working hard to pay off debt at every turn you have to look for savings. If you are about to spend money in any area when the receipt reaches your hand on it should be a discounted price. Many people who rent cars think that the price on the screen is the best price available and that they don't have any other option, but to pay the full price. It has become easier and easier to save with rental cars whether it is for a business trip, vacation, or a family emergency.
I travel a lot and when I have the opportunity to drive I do because I love the time it gives me to think. My trips are usually more than one day so I need to make sure I am saving the most money as possible. Thanks to websites like Expedia and Groupon I am able to knock a lot off the final price. I also employ other strategies that end up saving me 35-50%off!
Everyone by now knows about Expedia, but it is how you use the search criteria on the site that will help in saving you money. When searching make sure to widen your search. Don't just search the car rental companies on the next highway exit or down the street from you. Look twenty miles out and if you think that is far, what if those twenty miles save you $80 on your trip? That is $80 that can be used for gas or a nice gift while on vacation! Also if you live near an airport include it in your search. Majority of the time the price will be less expensive at the airport because there are so many options in one place.
If you decide to pick a car that is not close to your home make sure you have someone who can drop you off and pick you up especially if it is not a place where you can leave your car for free. Saving $30 on a three day rental car at an airport means nothing if you have to park your car there at $8 a day during that time. You are eating up your savings!
Another way to save money is to start with Expedia, but end up on the actual car rental site. When I search on Expedia I see which car rentals are the least expensive and then I go and look for coupons. For example Budget may be the least expensive rental on Expedia so I will search for a coupon on Groupon that gives me an extra 20% off and then go to Budget's site. Using that coupon on Budget's site will give me more savings than renting the car on Expedia. By going to the site you also have the opportunity to see what specials they have on the site. Some rental car official sites will save you 20% without a coupon just by going to their site.
Other than saving money contrary to popular belief you don't have to go into debt to rent a car. What I mean by that you don't have to go into debt is that you can use your debit card to rent your car and not a credit card. So many people think that you only can use a credit card at the rental counter when in fact you can use a debit card with every company. Using a debit card at rental car companies usually calls for a hold on your card which can be 15% of the full price, or $100-200. If that $100-200 hold on your bank account makes you pause then maybe you are not in a financial position to rent a car.
Renting a car is a great opportunity to save money. Each year I save thousands of dollars by using the tips above. Whether you rent once a year or forty times a year you should not pay full price to ride away in style.
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