I am thinking of renting a car in a few weeks and was wondering if Rioters could offer some advice on the best and cheapest rental cars in Canberra.
I want to rent the cheapest car possible – a small four cylinder model.
Is there any red tape to go through? What is the usual procedure to rent a car?
From experience, you can do reasonably well if you get some referral coupon or whatever to the rental company. NRMA is a good example. If you choose Europcar, say you’re a Virgin guest. Yuo can often also get the government leisure rate if you’re a public servant (and not like they can check either).
Regarding the liability insurance they’ll try to sell you, its up to you but it’s a bit of a crock. The big companies self-insure. If you don’t take it and crash, you pay $3000+ and they refund you if it cost less to fix. Depending on the liability otherwise you just pay that (often $300 or sometimes nil). The liability is often better on the corporate/referral rates too.
And if you can pick the car up from the city you avoid paying a 11% commission to Snowtown. Ironically with Europcar I remember they had to transport the car to civic for me to pick up (at their cost) but it was cheaper for me because I didn’t pay the airport tax.
Try to jump on to someone’s corporate rate. Late last year I hired a fairlane for 38 bucks a day!
Oh, another tip if you are going away is to buy domestic travel insurance that covers hire car excess as part of the policy. Instead of paying $22 a day to reduce the excess to a low amount, you can generally buy travel insurance over the Internet that covers the same (and more), for about a third of that cost, and also covers your family for other travel related issues (including theft of your stuff while away).
Yellow Pages is your friend.
For the easiest way to compare rates for the big hire companies, try http://www.vroomvroomvroom.com.au/locations/canberra/
Most, if not all car rental companies require a credit card as security in case you damage the car and/or do a runner.
I think there’s a dodgy (cheap?) car rental place at Dickson, down the laneway in the old Dominoes Pizza building behind Bridgestone Tyres in Cape St.
Edit: Pretty sure the company is called Pronto Car Rentals. I just looked it up on Google and they only seem to have a listing for an office at 167 Crawford Street, Queanbeyan.
Should Canberra get it's own .canberra domain name?