Thursday, December 7, 2006
More Bang for Your Buck: Car Rentals
Planes, trains and automobiles. As the holidays inch closer, many families will be traveling. If you're planning on renting a car, in tonight's More Bang For Your Buck, we're going to show you how to drive away with a deal.
WSVN -- For Robert Polack the year is finally winding down, and he's earned a vacation. In a few weeks he's off to Jamaica for the holidays. But traveling can be tricky when you're working on a budget.
Robert: "Traveling is expensive, especially for a person like myself who wants to get around, see the sites."
Of course, the cheapest way to do that is with a rental car. And even that can be expensive.
Robert: "Costs are going up. You have to watch your dollars."
Even for penny pinchers, good deals can still be found. Travel agent Carrie Barineau says head to the internet. You might find the best deals by going directly to the car rental sites.
Carrie: "It fluctuates from very little a day for a very small, economy car to a lot a day."
Also before booking, think about the number of days you'll need. Sometimes weekly rates are the cheapest way to go, even if you only need the car for four or five days. Book a compact car if you can but ask for an upgrade at the counter.
Carrie: "They may or may not charge you, but at least you should always book the car you can use and then try to get the upgrade."
Another cost saver: reserve your car in town, since prices are higher at the airport.
Carrie: "As a general rule, the airport is the most convenient, the best selection of cars, the easiest to do and it may be just a little bit higher."
That's because car agencies pass airport surcharges on to you. But you can put the brakes on overspending with a little name dropping. Credit cards, clubs and even corporations offer discounts.
Carrie: "If it's a large enough company, they will have a negotiated rate, if they have enough travelers in their business."
Robert's ready to forget about his business for a while. And by reducing his rates, he now can afford to help spread the holiday cheer.
Robert: "Family, friends, drinking sorrel, going to the beach, partying a lot. It's a really nice time for mepersonally."
Another cost saver: check with your car insurance company before you go, to see if they cover you for a rental car. That way you won't have to buy the high cost insurance from the rental agency.
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