What to watch out for when booking your car hire this summer

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Moneymaxim.co.uk, the UK's leading comparison service for car hire insurance, looks at what UK travellers should consider when hiring a car this summer.

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Car hire firms are becoming ever more innovative when it comes to ‘hidden extras on car hire’, and with car-related costs, such as fuel, climbing in many parts of Europe it is important that holidaymakers understand all the small print

With the summer fast approaching thousands of holidaymakers are set to pack their bags for a spot of sun, sea and overseas.

Along with booking flights and organising accommodation many Brits will also be hiring a car to take in the best of their chosen location.

Moneymaxim.co.uk, the UK's leading comparison service for car hire insurance, looks at what UK travellers should consider when hiring a car this summer.

Excess Insurance

Buying car hire excess insurance directly from car hire firms could leave UK travellers significantly out of pocket, with some charging as much as £28.50 per day compared to a comparable policy at just £2 a day through moneymaxim - a staggering difference of 1440%.

Fuel costs

The way you pay for fuel when you rent a car is fast becoming a way car hire firms can profit out of you. Traditionally when collecting a hire you would find it with a full fuel tank, and you would be expected to return it in a similar state.

However now a growing number of companies across Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Malta and Cyprus insist you pay for a tankful of fuel up front (often at an inflated price) and return the car empty. As it’s highly unlikely we will return the car totally empty any fuel left in becomes a nice little earner for the hire firms.

Fortunately more and more rental firms, including many featured on Moneymaxim.co.uk are now highlighting hire companies policies to make the task of assessing the true cost of your hire easier.

Breakdown recovery

A number of car hire firms are not including full breakdown recovery as standard, excluding cover for all but mechanical failure. If your hire car breaks down because of a problem relating to the tyres, wheels or underbody of the vehicle, or other instances not covered on the Collision Damage Waiver (CDW), you may incur an extra charge for recovery.

In the UK Avis has a breakdown extension product called Roadside Safety Net which costs £3 a day, while Dollar in Florida charge around $5 a day to provide this type of protection. Similar policies are also offered by a number of companies in Spain.

Alternatively many car hire excess insurance policies starting from just £2 a day, such as those featured on the moneymaxim car hire insurance comparison service, will enable you to reclaim the costs of breakdown recovery when not covered by your car rental firm.

Cleaning Charges

Another new charge being reported for the first time this year are mandatory cleaning charges. Hertz Firefly in France now levy a fee of €15 to clean the car on its return. Whilst they say the fee is waived if the car is returned clean moneymaxim have received reports to the contrary, suggesting its best to budget for the fee when using the company.

Commenting Mark Bower, Managing Director of Moneymaxim.co.uk, says:

“Car hire firms are becoming ever more innovative when it comes to ‘hidden extras on car hire’, and with car-related costs, such as fuel, climbing in many parts of Europe it is important that holidaymakers understand all the small print so that they ensure they secure the best possible price for their car hire.

“If customers are unsure our advisors are on hand to help customers unravel the small print and find the most suitable overall car hire and car hire insurance package.”

For all your car hire needs this summer visit:http://www.moneymaxim.co.uk/carhire

Notes:

Mark Bower, Managing Director of http://www.moneymaxim.co.uk is available for interview. For Images and interviews contact Dale Lovell on 0845 200 1445/ 0779 1414 681 or email: dale(at)contentamp(dot)com for more information.

The moneymaxim.co.uk car hire excess insurance comparison service compares prices from the following companies: Carhireexcess, Direct Car Excess Insurance, Essential Travel, iCarhireinsurance.com, insurance4carhire.com, insuremycarhire.com, intasure.com, protectyourbubble.com, Questor Insurance, Travel Excess and worldwideinsure.com.

Background Information on the Car Hire Excess Insurance Market:

The car hire excess insurance industry was 'created' back in 2002 when Larry Ursich launched Insurance4carhire. Having a background in the car rental business he realised that the cost of 'insuring the excess' when renting a car from hire firms had grown to such a level that there was potential to create a standalone product offering both better cover and lower costs for consumers.

Since then further firms have joined the market, the latest, Direct Car Excess Insurance, launching earlier this year. The new entrants have brought with them options and innovation and those looking for this type of insurance can find policies covering not just the hire car excess, but baggage loss, carjacking, cancellation and more. Policies catering for car club members have also been introduced.

Moneymaxim.co.uk launched its comparison service in 2010, offering both an online comparison service and a telephone support line which helps customers understand the products, terminology and claims processes.

About moneymaxim.co.uk: Launched in 2008 by Mark Bower moneymaxim.co.uk aims to deliver an impartial and independent service both online and through telephone money saving specialists.

Visit: http://www.moneymaxim.co.uk for more money saving advice and information.

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