On your travels around the world, you’ll likely be renting a car at some point or another. And while you might have been driving for years and years, driving a car that you’re not familiar with in a city that you’re new to can always be a little nerve-wracking.
Because of this, you might be more likely to get in some type of accident or other predicaments with the car you’ve rented than you would be with your own car back home. So to help ensure that you’re able to rent your car, enjoy your trip, and get home in one piece, here are three tips for safely driving a rental car.
Thoroughly Inspect The Car
Once you’ve gotten your rental car from whatever agency you’ve chosen to use, it’s now up to you to ensure that the car you’ve rented is going to be safe for you to drive. While the car rental company shouldn’t be renting out cars that aren’t safe, they might have missed something before they gave the car to you.
For this reason, Nationwide.com recommends that you thoroughly inspect the car before you take it off the lot. Not only should you be looking for dents and scratches, but you should also be looking, listening, and smelling for signs that the car might not be safe to drive. To give yourself time to do this, and to allow you to get used to the handling of the rental car, take it for a spin around the rental car lot before you leave on your trip.
Find A Place To Refuel As Soon As You Leave The Rental Car Lot
After you’ve left the rental car lot, you’ve now got to figure out how to navigate yourself around this area that you’re probably not very familiar with. In situations such as this, it’s easy to become distracted and begin practicing driving that isn’t very safe. This can happen at any time that you’re trying to drive and look for something at the same time, like when you’re needing to refuel your rental car before returning it.
So to help you keep your cool when you’re trying to return your rental car and make good time back to the airport, Ed Hewitt, a contributor to Smarter Travel, advises that you look for a good place to refuel the car as soon as you leave the rental car lot. Doing this can save you a lot of time and stress at the end of your trip.
Don’t Violate Your Car Rental Agreement
If you do happen to get into a car accident while driving a rental car, there are certain protections put in place so you won’t necessarily get stuck with the bill for damage done.
However, Beth Williams, a contributor to Corporate Travel Safety, shares that these protections will only be in place if you haven’t violated your rental car agreement. So to ensure that these protections will be there for you if and when you need them, make sure you’re following all the rules you agreed to when you first rented the car.
If you’ll be renting a car soon as part of your travels, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you be smart and safe about it.