The first common car renting mistake people make is not performing online or offline research before renting a car.  This is a shame, because there are so many specialized travel agencies and other websites and Smartphone apps, which offer to find the cheapest and best offer for your particular needs as well as possibly offer you discounts.  Think about it, it will literally take seconds to a few minutes to do, and will save you both time and money.

Another tip to avoid paying a load of money for stuff you won’t be needing when renting a car is to think twice and check the conditions before actually agreeing to paying for all the “extra’s” which car rental agents will offer you.  Do you really need a satellite radio, an E-ZPass, a GPS navigation system (which if you own a Smartphone you probably already have)?

A common mistake is paying for additional insurance, when there is a huge probability that your credit card company is already covering for it. Always check your credit card’s coverage for collision and other damage to a rented car before paying those hefty prices for collision damage waiver your car rental agent will offer you.

Even though it may sound a little stupid, but people who have been wrongfully accused for causing damage to a rented car and have been charged to pay them know, that it is always advisable to take pictures with a date and time stamp of the car you are renting both at pick up and on drop off, so that if the car rental company calls you in a few weeks claiming you have damaged their car you will have your photo evidence to dispute their claims.

Of course, if you notice any dents, scratches, window cracks on pick up of a rented car you should discuss this with the car rental agent and make sure this is noted in written form.

Be careful about the terms of the car rental agency for the fuel of the rental car when you drop t off. Fill the tank beforehand, and avoid gas stations near airports, which usually have higher-priced fuel. Otherwise, you risk to be faced with some hefty gas prices charged by the car rental company.