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Car Hire America - 4 Things To Remember When Hiring a Car in America

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Car hire in America is getting trickier ever day. With the economy at a standstill, getting a good deal is not easy. Car manufacturers have reduced discount sales to big fleet buyers and in turn, American car hire companies have adjusted their rates upwards. Services which used to be free are now charged and counties have come up with new taxes.

On the other hand, if you choose to upgrade to a bigger car, you may land into money problems since many rental cars are not covered in your auto insurance. Before you hire a car in America, keep the following in mind:

1. Do not limit your search.
When looking for a car hire company in USA, do not settle for the first one that you come across. Browse different websites to get the best deal. Check major travel websites like Orbitz, Expedia and Travelocity for deals on car hire. Also, compare prices at Priceline and Hotwire.com. Finally, make sure you also visit the websites of different car hire America firms for more deals and exclusive discounts.

If you book online, make a point of checking back at the websites periodically before your pickup date in case some specials are advertised. Booking early is always a good way to go if you wish to avoid future price increases. In case the prices drop, you will still have an advantage as you can cancel and make a reservation at the new price without any penalties.

2. Factor in all taxes
Rental car drivers are taxed heavily by both state and local governments. In many states, government mandatory charges make up 20 to 40 percent of the total cost of America car hire. Airports, including those which previously did not have rental charges like JFK and LAX, have introduced parking taxes in the form of “customer facility” and “airport concession” fees.

Some of the fees are used to maintain the airports, subsidize municipal projects and cover building costs. Rental car drivers have to pay these forms of taxes whether they live in the area or not. To avoid such taxes and reduce you cost of car hire in USA, consider renting cars off-site and look for full fees discourse from the agency’s website.

3. Be wary of add-on fees.
American car hire companies have looked for all sorts of ways to squeeze extra bucks from you. For instance, most companies will charge you “late fees” if you return the car a few minutes after your deadline. Make sure you check the weather conditions and factor in things like traffic jams during your drop off date.

If you return the car without filling it up, you may incur fuel charges. America car hire companies usually charge over $5 per gallon for the fuel. Getting the car without fuel may be your best alternative. However, keep in mind that you will not be refunded in case you return it with extra fuel. To save on fuel costs, do not opt for the fuel pre-pay option. Simply get the car to the nearest gas station when you leave the airport.

4. Do not pay for damage that you have not caused.
Most car hire USA companies hold renters responsible for damages caused by naturally occurring events such as floods, hail storms, hurricanes, tornadoes among others. Be wary of these and always check weather channels for conditions in your area or places you intend to drive to. Apart from this, consider less catastrophic damages such as minor scrapes. These can cost you hundreds of dollars.

Before you drive off with the vehicle from an American can hire company, walk around it and insect for any damages that may have been caused by the last driver. When you return the car, take pictures or videos with a camcorder to act as proof that you returned the car in perfect condition. In case you are given a repair bill, find out whether your insurance policy will cover it.

There is no short cut to getting a good deal from a car hire USA company. You have to research, compare prices, factor in taxes and consider other things that will inflate your total rental cost.

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