What are you biggest rental car worries?

It used to be that when you rented a car your biggest worry was whether you’d get that upgrade you decided not to pay for when you booked your rental. Now, you need to worry about getting charged for dings, scratches, and extra miles you didn’t drive.

However, there’s an easy solution:

In addition to making sure that things are noted in the previous-damage section of the rental agreement, take pictures of the entire exterior and interior of the car—taking close-ups of any perceived damage. That way you’ll have a record of existing conditions, and anything that might be missing in the rental agreement. Be sure to look over the whole car carefully.

Don’t forget the wheels and tires (signs of wear and obvious nails); and glass and headlights (chips, cracks, or scratches). Check under the hood and in the trunk. Take a video and make mention of any weird smells or stains (cigarettes, leaking fluid). If you take a video, make sure it’s done in one take. If it’s broken into segments, the rental company could argue that it’s been edited.

Take a picture of the odometer to record the mileage of the car, and to document the fuel-level reading. Don’t forget to take a picture of the Vehicle Identification Number.

Save your photos to the cloud, or send them to a friend, so that if anything happens to your phone while you are renting the car, you won’t lose your photos. Many rental companies try to get you to purchase supplemental insurance or damage waivers, but if you are planning on renting a car, give our agency a call before you do. We’ll review your current auto policy to see if you have the coverage for your rental. In some states, if you have a personal auto policy, supplemental insurance on a rental vehicle is not necessary.

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