What to look out for when renting a car

Tips on what to do to take all the potential complications out of the rental process, making it as quick and easy as possible so that you and the family can hit the road.

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Road trips are all the rage at the moment. In fact, car rental searches have increased by about 267% since the beginning of 2022 compared to the same period pre-pandemic, according to Cheapflights.

They share some insider tips on what to do to take all the potential complications out of the rental process, making it as quick and easy as possible so that you and the family can hit the road.

  • Are you old enough? You need a minimum of 18 years old with a valid driver’s licence for at least one year to hire a car.
  • If you’re younger than 25 years, you might also be slapped by a Young Drivers Surcharge. Have your valid driver’s licence and proof of identification ready. If you are not South African, get your international driving permit and passport out.
  • Be prepared for the deposit. The driver needs a credit (or in some cases a debit) card in their name to pay for the holding deposit (a fee to reserve the car that will be credited to you when you return it again) on collection of the car.
  • Look out for a Collision Damage Waiver (CDW). It is often included in the full cost of the booking, which means the company cannot charge you more than the excess specified, should you have an accident.
  • Check for a Loss Damage Waiver. This includes both a CDW and Theft Protection policies, so the cost for the replacement of the vehicle will be covered if it gets stolen.
  • Third Party Liability insurance is important too! This will cover damage or injury to other parties. Ask whether there is any other excess insurance you can purchase if you are held liable for any accidents.