The rental car conundrum

Renting a car can be a confusing experience. There are so many things to consider, not least of which is which car rental company to rent from. Do you choose a major brand like Avis, Hertz, Europcar etc? Or should you go with a smaller company that may be offering a cheaper price?
rent a carphoto credit: lonely radio

VroomVroomVroom only deals with major, top-tier car rental suppliers as they provide many benefits

  • Excellent geographic coverage – hundreds of locations all across the country. This is particularly handy if you prefer one brand over another, or if you want to rent one-way (e.g. drive from Sydney to Melbourne).
  • On-airport rental locations – pick your car up in the terminal. Smaller suppliers are usually located away from the airport and you need to catch a shuttle bus or taxi to get to them. Airports charge fees to the rental companies using their facilities, so that’s why the price is often higher (compare a search for Airport location vs downtown/suburb location with the same supplier, e.g. Avis or Hertz).
  • Newer cars – our suppliers cars are generally no more than 2 years old and have low mileage.
  • Unlimited mileage – most of our suppliers’ cars include unlimited mileage, whereas smaller companies often impose a daily mileage limit before adding surcharges.
  • Consistent standards –  each major supplier has consistent standards across the entire country, so whether you walk into a Hertz in Brisbane or Albury, the procedures, quality of service, cars etc should all be standard – you know exactly what you’re going to get. With smaller suppliers it will vary from supplier to supplier. We’ve found that customers really like the safety and assurance of renting with a known brand.
  • Customer service – if you have an issue with a car rental booked through VroomVroomVroom, our customer service team knows exactly how to follow it up for you, as the terms and rules are the same across the country for each supplier. We have established contacts at each, and will follow up issues. We would never be able to do this effectively if we offered tens or hundreds of smaller brands. We have dealt with them in the past; there are too many issues (false damage claims, unexplained excess charges etc) and it causes too many headaches for customers and for us. Certainly there are some great small suppliers just as there are bad ones, but to cover the entire country it’s much better to go with suppliers that have national coverage to begin with.
  • Loyalty rewards – many major suppliers offer frequent flyer or other rewards, which you don’t get with smaller companies.

Let’s look at a smaller brand to see how they compare

This example is Australia, but is the same in other countries. I have removed the brand name so as not to influence anyone.

  • They are a small rental company, with a few locations only in selected areas (Gold Coast, Melbourne, Sydney).
  • Cars have a 200km limit per day (you will be charged 38c for each and every km over this, which can quickly add up if you’re doing some highway driving)
  • Airport locations aren’t actually at the airport (e.g. you need to get a shuttle bus to take you to the rental car depot). I did a search for a car at Sydney Airport, and it said the location is actually in another suburb near the airport.
  • I can’t comment on things like customer service, age/distance of fleet, terms & conditions etc as I have never used them. They may be excellent or they may be poor, but the benefit of going with a known brand is that you know exactly what you’re going to get.

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. Occasionally you may encounter an issue with even the best of car rental providers. The great thing is that VroomVroomVroom customer service can assist to follow up with any of these issues, as we are aware of the terms & conditions and have existing relationships with these suppliers. If you encounter problems with a small car rental company, you’ll be fighting the battle on your own.

If you need assistance with car rental, our team is standing by to help. Here are the links to our contact details for various countries:

Australia | New Zealand | United States | United Kingdom | Canada

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