Renting a car can provide convenience and flexibility, particularly when you’re traveling. However, the costs can add up if you’re not careful. Budget Car Rental is a popular rental service with a wide range of vehicles to choose from. Here are 15 practical ways you can save on Budget car rentals:
Book Early: Car rental rates tend to rise as the pick-up date approaches. By booking your vehicle weeks or even months in advance, you can take advantage of lower rates. This is particularly beneficial during high demand periods like holidays and summer vacations.
Look for Discount Codes: Budget often provides discount codes that can save you money. These can be found on their website, in promotional emails, or on various online coupon platforms.
Join Budget Fastbreak: This is Budget’s loyalty program. It’s free to join and provides benefits such as skipping the line, faster reservations, and exclusive member-only discounts. You can also earn rewards for each rental.
Opt for ‘Pay Now’: Budget offers discounted rates for customers who opt to ‘Pay Now’ rather than at pick-up. Keep in mind that this option might be non-refundable or come with cancellation fees, so it’s best when your plans are firm.
Avoid Airport Locations: Car rentals at airports often come with higher rates due to added concession fees. If possible, consider renting from a non-airport Budget location. Even with the cost of a taxi or rideshare to the rental office, you might save money overall.
Limit the Number of Drivers: Budget charges an additional fee for extra drivers. If feasible, stick with one driver to save on costs.
Check Your Own Insurance: Before accepting Budget’s insurance coverage, check your personal car insurance policy and credit card benefits. Many already include rental car coverage, so you might be duplicating coverage unnecessarily.
Choose the Smallest Car: Unless you need a lot of space, choose the smallest car. Not only are these the most economical, but if the location runs out of smaller cars, they may offer you a free upgrade to a larger model.
Refill the Gas Tank Before Returning: Avoid the premium charges that Budget applies if they have to fill the tank upon return. Plan a stop at a local gas station and fill up the tank yourself before returning the car.
Return on Time: Late fees can add up quickly. Always return the car at the agreed-upon time. If you need to keep the car longer, contact Budget to adjust your reservation. It might be cheaper than paying late return fees.
Explore Long-Term Rental Deals: If you need the car for a week or more, look into Budget’s long-term rental options. They usually offer lower daily rates for rentals of a week or longer.
Use a Cashback Credit Card: If you have a credit card that offers cashback on purchases, use it to pay for your rental. This can net you some money back on the cost.
Use Corporate Discounts: If you’re traveling for work, your company may have a corporate discount with Budget. Some companies even allow their employees to use these discounts for personal travel.
Compare Prices on Booking Sites: Online travel agencies and comparison sites like Expedia or Kayak often have deals with car rental companies. It’s worth checking these prices before booking directly with Budget.
Look for Partner Deals: Budget partners with several airlines, hotels, and other businesses. Booking through one of these partners might get you a discounted rate, bonus points, or other benefits.
By incorporating these strategies into your car rental process, you can make significant savings on your next Budget car rental. Whether you’re on a business trip or a family vacation, these savings can help ensure you have more money to spend on the things that matter most to you during your trip.