Tap to Read ➤

Finding Cheap One Way Car Rentals

Aparna Iyer
One way car rentals offer the convenience of a different pick up and drop off location. However, this convenience comes at a price. Read on to know more.
One way car rentals are useful for people whose itinerary does not include retracing their travel route. This may be due to a number of reasons. For instance, a person may choose to travel by car, one way, and use a different mode of transportation on his way back.
Sometimes, an avid traveler may have planned a long circuitous tour involving multiple destinations. In this case, it would be impossible for the globe trotter to return the rented car at the pick up place. It's evident that one way car rentals are indispensable for making the journey a truly enjoyable experience.

Are One Way Car Rentals Expensive?

A one way car rental is expensive than renting a car for a round trip because, car rentals would require the car company to make arrangements to pick up the car from a different location, rather than having the car dropped off back at their doorstep. For companies that do operate nationwide, pick ups from a different location become a source of concern.
Most websites that allow a person to bid for a rental car of their choice, do not allow one way car rentals, thus preventing them from availing huge price reductions that could have otherwise been possible. Even companies operating nationwide may charge a drop off surcharge for a one way car rental. In addition to the surcharge, the base rates are also high.

Finding the Cheapest Ones

Travel Within the US

In the US, one way car rentals cost slightly more than cars dropped off at the same location. However, the convenience of being able to travel without having to worry about the drop off, is well worth the additional amount that one may have to pay in order to avail this facility.
One should ensure that the car agency is fairly big and operates throughout the country. This would ensure a reasonable drop off surcharge. Generally, companies offering such deals have conveniently located drop off boxes for the car keys. One can make use of seasonal discounts and avoid peak travel seasons.
In case the car is rented for a long period of time, the discounts are substantially higher. Students, seniors, and military personnel are generally eligible for discounts. Renting a GPS (Global Positioning System) to help navigate and opting for 24-hrs roadside assistance will add to the cost of the renting.
Car insurance may be mandatory in case of people less than 25 years of age. This will again increase the cost of renting the car.

International Travel

For international travel, the cost of a one way car rental depends entirely on the destination. They are expensive throughout Europe. However, considering the convenience of traveling by road, the traveler can choose to buy a car and sell it to the manufacturer for a guaranteed price, instead of paying for a one way rental.
Strangely enough, this is a cheaper option as compared to renting. This arrangement is also known as a 'French Lease'. Instead of renting the car from the local rental car agency, one should try to find a domestic player in the international market.
There was a time when local companies offered better deals, but today, a rental company that is operating across countries has a better chance of offering competitive rates. In Australia, one way car rentals are a common feature, since it is the easiest way of traveling across the continent.
The preferred mode of travel by the residents of a country would influence the cost of travel. For instance, if most people use cars to travel across the country, the cost of car rentals will be low. In other words, a cost conscious traveler should opt for the most commonly used mode of transportation in order to navigate the chosen path.