If you intend to hire a car when you jet off on your holiday this summer, car rentals will require you to pay a deposit.
But why do you need to depart with your precious pennies, how should you pay for it, and when can you expect to get it back?
Here we’ve delved into the topic of car hire deposits so that you can know all that you need to when you’re at the rental desk.
Rental companies require a deposit for the period that you rent a car from them. This is to protect themselves in the event something goes wrong, such as if the car is damaged, returned late or in a state that requires excessive cleaning.
There is no set fee regarding how much you could be asked to deposit, as it varies depending on the rental company, the type of car and on where you’re renting.
It’s worth noting that if you hire a luxury or larger vehicle, you can expect the deposit figure to increase accordingly.
Typically, the deposit is similar to the excess figure that would be included on the Collision Damage Waiver that is provided as part of the basic insurance cover when you rent the vehicle.
The majority of rental companies will require a credit card in the name of the lead driver and will block the deposit on that card.
While the money does not leave your account, the deposit will count towards any spending limit you have on the card in the event they do decide to charge you.
Some rental companies may accept a debit card in the name of the main driver, but in this instance, the money will leave the account before being returned later.
It usually takes between 5 and 15 working days for your deposit to be returned, although it may take longer during peak times such as at Christmas or at the height of the summer holidays.
As deposits vary from company to company, it’s important to compare the makes and models of vehicles as some may have lower deposits than others, even if the specifications are similar.
Companies may also reduce the deposit if you purchase car hire excess insurance through them.
However, this type of cover – which protects against the excess, is often available for less elsewhere.
It may therefore be worth finding low-cost excess insurance elsewhere and paying a higher deposit to see if you could save in the long-run.
Date Created: 24/07/2018