1. Check all available rental companies from your pickup location- especially if you are renting at an airport or other place with multiple rental companies- there can be quite a difference in price between companies. During my last trip to scotland I save 100 pounds (200 dollars) on the same sized car by choosing enterprise over avis (who I usually rent from). An easy way to do this comarison is on sites such as expedia.
2. If you are unfamiliar with the area, rent a car with gps- and use it. This will help you immensely in finding where you want to go. If you have not used this technology before, you type in the address of your destination and a small computer will give you step by step directions of how to get there. The best feature of using GPS is the fact that if you happen to miss a turn that the computer recommends, it will automatically recalculate another route to our destination.
3. Rent a car using a credit card which will cover your collision insurance. This will save you a lot of money as insurance can easily double the price of your car rental. Bring proof of collision insurance with you. As there are many different credit cards with many different options , and as not all companies are familiar with credit card options, bring proof of this collision insurance with you, or be prepared for the rental agent to call up your credit card company.
4. Before you leave on your trip, check if you will need an international driver’s license. Depending on the place you will rent your car, this may be required. They are usually easy to pick up in your home town and are not expensive.
5. When the rental agent asks you if you will bring the car back with a full tank, get them to explain what they charge for gas. Some rental companies charge the regular gas price to bring the tank back to the same gas level you started with and others will chrge you for a full tank whether you bring it back empty or half full. If you are lucky enough to be renting with the first type of company you will not need to worry about filling up the tank before you return the car. If you have the second type- better to bring it back full. The rental agent will usually tell you what makes more sense