Shop the Internet for quick comparisons of the many rental car companies rates.
Do the same if you may possibly purchase extra items such as insurance. Those rates vary also and you need to comparison shop.
Check the mileage policy to be sure that it is favorable and that you will not incur extra charges.
Remember, airport fees are usually quite high so consider a non airport location. Even if the company has an "off-airport location", you'll probably still have to pay some airport fees.
Check the company's various airport and non airport locations. One may offer better deals than the other. Always ask if what is offered is the best rate they have available.
Book early, as soon as you have decided on your travel plans. Rental car companies raise rates as their fleets become booked. Certain classes of car will sell out faster and you may be forced to pay for a larger vehicle than you need.
Be flexible about your travel plans. It can save you money. All companies have great weekend specials. Also, the best rates are found during the off season and when they have a surplus of cars.
Consider booking your vacation as a package. You probably can save money by booking a car along with a particular airline, hotel or attraction ticket, as a package.
Book the smallest, least expensive car that you will need and hope for a free upgrade. At worst, you may get what you asked for.
Check prices on other classes and sized vehicles. They may be offering discounts for that size or class.
It's OK to use discount coupons, but read them carefully. Many upgrade coupons are "based on availability". Remember to mention any coupons or discounts when making your reservation.
Ask about any discount programs for which you may be eligible (AAA, AARP, military etc.).
Upon arrival at the counter, ask if they are offering any upgrade specials. There may be some good deals that you are not aware of.
If you'll need a car seven days or longer take the weekly rate. If you are going to use the car for five or six days, check the weekly rate. Often the sixth and seventh day work out to be free by using a weekly rental. Even if you don't need the extra day or two, if your plans change, you have it. If the rate for 4 or 5 days works out higher than a discounted weekly price, ask for it ! Most companies will concur. Check the individual rental company’s policy on this.
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