How to Bargain Rental Cars: Negotiate a Cheap Price

by Michael A. Anderson
Bargain Rental Cars

Not everyone may know this, but many car rental locations train their employees to be able to negotiate prices to book more deals and take customers from their competition. If you use this to your advantage, you might score some cheap bargain rental cars.

Trying to bargain rental cars isn’t for everyone, but for those that are interested, it might be worthwhile to know how one negotiates rental vehicles.

Some people like to bargain rental cars merely because they enjoy trying to see if they can get discounts, so it’s not always a financial reason.

Do Some Research

The first thing to do is to find out what the base prices are on certain vehicles in the area from which you will be renting. Unless you know where they usually sit, you won’t know from where you will bargain rental cars.

Be Clear On What You Want Before Beginning to Bargain Rental Cars

Next, decide which type of vehicle you want and at want approximate price. Do you want an economical car, or something more substantial, like an SUV? Will you merely be trying to book a low price on an affordable car, are you trying to get an excellent cheap bargain on an upgrade? They should consider these things when you bargain with rental cars.

Know Where To Bargain Rental Cars

To save time, sometimes it’s good to call around and inquire about prices that way merely. You will know right away if the person you are talking to is trying to book a deal quickly by how aggressive they are. If they are insistent on having you book a reservation for a vehicle and don’t want you to hang up, you have a potential opportunity for bargaining on a price and see if they can give you something better.

A rental car location will be more willing to bargain rental cars when it’s the afternoon, and their lot is full of vehicles. For every car that sits on the lot, that’s money they’re not making, and it makes the branch office’s numbers look bad to higher management. If the lot is full, and it’s afternoon, they’ll be more likely to try to get a deal going.

rental cars

Know Where Not to Bargain Rental Cars

Trying to bargain rental cars at the airport is more or less hopeless. I know airports for charging a high premium on rental cars because they are open late at night and early in the morning for people getting off the airplanes who are just desperate to get a rental car and find their hotel. The prices at airports are more or less locked in unless you have rental car discount coupons.

Know Who to Bargain Rental Cars With

Car rental associates are salespeople, but not everyone that works there can sell. People who are motivated to sell and like doing it are more likely to negotiate.

One way to tell is to see how friendly they are. Sometimes when you first walk into a location, if they start up a conversation quickly and keep a good flow throughout the whole time, it’s because they’re working you up to sell you something later. It’s a lot easier to sell something to someone if there is a good relationship, and it will seem more natural when they ask for the money. With friendly associates, you will more likely be able to secure a cheap upgrade.

Car rental agencies often pick up their customers. This is one of the best sales tools they have because that car ride gives the sales associate time to talk to you and get on your right side. If you’re interested in a cheap upgrade, you can bargain rental cars with this person.

Know Who Not to Bargain Rental Cars With

Avoid people who dislike their jobs and couldn’t care less if the place makes money. You would think this would be the ideal person to negotiate with, but it’s not. They’re more likely to give you a take or leave it to approach or are only not aware enough of clues you’re willing to negotiate because they’re just trying to survive the day.

If you Rent There Often, Score Cheap Bargain Rental Cars

If the staff is familiar with you and you like the location, there isn’t much of a reason they shouldn’t give you cheap discounts and free upgrades. If they know you pretty well, you can ask them to flat out about discounts because you rent there so often.

Know That to Bargain Rental Cars Is a Negotiation

To bargain rental cars, it takes two people, and it isn’t you just stating your demands. You give a suggestion, and the other person has to follow up on it. If you only make demands, you will appear heavy-handed, and the whole thing will be unpleasant for everyone involved.

Know That Car Rental Associates Will Bargain Car Rentals With You For Other Reasons

Good salespeople know that once you’ve opened up your pocket a little, you’re more likely to open it up more. So if you bargain car rentals to get a cheap upgrade, you might have gotten a good discount, but you paid more. Paying more means you’re more likely to pay for car rental insurance later.

Wonder why you only had to pay another 5-8 dollars more a day for a Mercedes or Cadillac? They’re probably getting ready to sell you on the collision coverage later, and it will be easier because your pocket is already open. However, taking rental car insurance is not always a bad option. It would help if you understood the pros and cons before you say no because it might save you money.

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