Below you will find a few tips on obtaining the best car rental deals. Because travel plans and rental companies may vary, some of these ideas may not give you the same results.

Get an Early Start

It’s never too early to get a good rate locked in. As soon as you have the dates of your vacation or trip arranged, start researching your ground transportation options. Many times you will still be able to take advantage of a good deal closer to the time of your trip.

Using a spreadsheet can help you to keep track of your research information. If you are having trouble finding the information needed, do not hesitate to call the rental company and ask for it as this is often faster than sending them an email. Make sure to note the name of the person you spoke to and the time and date of the call in case there are questions later about your bill. (Tip: when disputing charges, do so in writing and never over the phone.)

Making Multiple Reservations to Save Money

Because most rental companies will not require a deposit to make a reservation, it might be a good idea to make reservations as you are researching. In the end, you will be able to keep the best rate and cancel all of the rest. (Tip: be sure to read and understand the “Terms and Conditions” before making a reservation.)

Make a Connection

If you or someone you know works for a car rental company, you may be eligible for an employee or “friends and family” discount.

Search for Discounts

Membership in groups such as AARP, CAA and AAA often allow for car rental discounts of up to 30 percent. If you live in the UK you might want to search under something like “cheap car hire UK” to find the best deals in the United Kingdom.

Read Everything

The fine print is very important to read. Here you will find information on all of the fees, taxes and other charges that can make a huge difference in your bill, especially if you are surprised by them.