If you want to enjoy your Hawaii vacations to the maximum, you must go for renting a car. It is necessary because public transport is not easily available in various cities of Hawaii (except Honolulu) and taxi service is quite expensive. But before booking a car from a car renting agency, you must do some homework to avoid inconvenience.
Here are some important tips while going for car rentals in Hawaii:
All the major car rental agencies accept international credit cards only. Some may accept even debit cards. Only a few agencies accept car rentals in cash. But you should avoid making the cash payment as reputed car rental agencies only prefer payment through credit cards. Agencies accepting cash may not be having a good reputation.
Throughout Hawaii, you can move about in a regular car. SUV or 4×4 are not required (except you are moving to the summit of Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawaii. So, renting 4×4 or SUV is the sheer wastage of money and you can save a lot of dollars by hiring a regular car.
The car rental agencies are very strict about the damage was done to the car. So you should drive the rented car very cautiously. The agencies check the rented cars thoroughly e.g. even the mirrors under the car also checked when you return it.
You must not drive the car off the road. Technically, if you will drive the car off the road, you are violating the rental agreement. And if you have violated the rental agreement, car insurance becomes invalid. Many tourists had to pay heavy penalties for damaging the cars or their car is stuck somewhere on the off-road. Remember, you will not be allowed to leave the state until you clear all your debts. So, to be on the safer side, avoid making costly mistakes i.e. don’t damage the car and always drive it on the road.
Many agencies provide online booking of cars which is comparatively cheaper as there is a lot of competition on the internet. You can save even more if you book your car while you are booking your air tickets and/or accommodation.
Booking a car well in advance will also help to save on your pocket. The rental rates fluctuate depending on the demand for cars. And once you have booked your car, you get immunity towards these fluctuations.
Always book your car for not more than a week at a stretch. The packages beyond a week generally cost higher rental.
Always opt for prepayment for the fuel at the rental counter. And refuel the car at the airport filling station before returning. If you return the car before refueling, the renting agencies charge exorbitantly high once the car is back in their possession.
Before going for temporary car insurance, check it up with your own insurance company. It is possible that you may already be been covered by rental insurance. If it so, you can save the money which you were going to spend on you temporary insurance. Some card companies also provide such insurance, so also check it from your credit card company. The salesman at the car rental agency generally insists on going for insurance. But be sure that you already covered or not before shelling out your money.
For under aged tourists (below 25 years), the underage fee to cover the risk is very high (anything between $25 to $75). Also, in Hawaii, the car is not given on rent to a tourist who is below 21 years of age.
In case of break down of the car immediately call your car rental agency otherwise your expenses will not be covered.
On your arrival, if the car rental agency shows its inability to provide you the booked car model, you must negotiate to provide the higher model at the same rate which was settled at the time of booking. Certain car rental agencies make such excuses just to give you higher model at much higher rates. You have every right to get the model you have booked with the agency. Or if they still insist, better to move to another agency. Remember, there is cut-throat competition, as far as car rental is concerned.