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Information To Consumers

Car Rental Guide

Why renting a car?

Whether it is holidays or journey or a business trip, Car Rental is a very convenient way to get where you want.

On holidays or on a trip, Car Rental is often cheaper than using your private car or choosing another means of transport – particularly in peak periods – and of course, it offers greater flexibility.

Combining Car Rental with travelling by airplane or train, leads to less fatigue and thus, reduce the possibility of an accident.

Rent-a-Car Companies give you the option to choose the type of car according to your needs: small car for city trips, SUV for travelling with family or friends, jeep for excursions on the mountain; and always with the equipment you need: child carrier/seat, roof rack, anti-skid (snow) chains …

By choosing Car Rental for business purposes instead of buying a car, you only pay for using it and only for the time you need it. All expenses, such as maintenance, insurance, repairs, traffic fees etc. are included in the rent. And if the car is immobilized, it is replaced, meaning you can continue your business without interruption.

Whatever the reason, Car Rental is meant to be a pleasant experience, with no unexpected and unpleasant surprises. The following tips for each stage of rental, from reservation to the return of the car, will help you with this.

Be very careful when booking and ask for clarification on what is included in the offer price, for example:

  • Is the offered price for unlimited mileage?
  • Are VAT and other taxes included?
  • What insurance coverage is included? Is there a deductible amount?
  • Are there additional charges for receiving from this specific desk (usually desks at airports have such charges)?
  • In case of special offer price, are there any limitations (e.g. on time of return)?
  • Is there any delivery and receipt charge?

Be sure of your actual needs and choose the car that suits you every time. Rent-a-Car Companies are not required to offer specific car brands or models but categories (depending on the capacity) or car type (city car, SUV, mini-bus, jeep etc.). If you need extra equipment, such as a child carrier/seat, anti-skid (snow) chains, navigator, ask for it when booking and find out what the extra cost is.

What documents are required?

Most Companies request your credit or debit card to make a reservation. They are also likely to ask for your Driving License and your ID or passport.

Warning!!! For tourists from outside the European Union, the International Driving License is necessary. Find out in the booking phase what driving license you will need.

Is travelling abroad with a rented car allowed?

To travel abroad, the Rental Company must provide you with the necessary documents issued for a specific trip each time.

The process of issuing them takes a few days to complete, so you have to inform the Company enough time in advance.

Lease Contract

The Lease Contract is the official agreement between you and the Car Rental Company. This includes the terms of the rental and all details: commencement and expiry dates, rent agreed, insurance coverage, etc.

Take some time to check it and, before signing it, make sure you have understood the terms.

Pay attention to the following:

Additional driver

If the car is to be driven by someone else in addition to you, you must state so and enter his/her details in the contract. Otherwise, insurance coverage does not apply and in case of damage or theft, you will be liable to pay compensation to the Company.

Mileage

Be sure whether the agreement includes unlimited mileage, how many miles are allowed to travel and how much each extra mile is charged. Check if the mileage on receipt indicated in the contract agrees with the mileage shown on the dashboard, both before departure and at arrival.

Insurance coverage

Material Damages: when using a Rented Car, you are liable for damages that may be caused on the car until its return and the inspection by an employee of the Company is completed. To protect yourself against possible charges, you may request Collision Damage Waiver (CDW). By doing so, you will limit your financial liability to the excess amount indicated in your contract.

Theft Protection: covers the car user (provided that he/she is mentioned as driver in the contract) in case the car is stolen. Here also, by accepting this coverage, you limit your financial liability to the excess amount.

Exclusions/exemptions: Ask for clarifications on what exactly the extra coverage covers. Check for exclusions that are not covered, such as damage to the bottom of the car, tires and wheels, etc.

Fuel

Most companies offer various options for fuel management. The most common options are:

– Pay the value of a full tank and return the car with the tank empty

– Receive and deliver the car with the tank full

– Refund the fuel consumed at return.

 

Before departure, confirm what fuel you have to use. If you put gasoline in a diesel car, it will damage the engine and you will be liable for its repair.

Check the level of gasoline at departure and arrival.

Minor damage inspection

Rent-a-Car Companies are responsible for renting safe, modern cars, thoroughly inspected before each rental.

Take a few minutes to carefully check the car being delivered. Walk around and look for minor damages (e.g. scratches or dents) and, regardless how small they are, make sure they are recorded in the lease contract. Inspect the interior of the car and make sure that the spare wheel and tools are in place.

If it is not possible to check the car – due to bad weather or poor lighting – you must ask for it to be recorded in your contract. In any event, you must check within a reasonable time and, if you find an unrecorded damage, inform the Company immediately.

Clean

It is to your benefit to return the car clean. This facilitates inspection and prevents from charges imposed after your departure and disputes with the Company.

Damages

Make sure you have enough time to check the car, especially if you return to a busy desk (e.g. at airports) and seek, if possible, to hand it over to a representative of the Company.                 If you have had an accident during rental, you shall fill an Accident Statement.

If you suffered minor damages, it is likely that the Company will not repair them immediately but at its discretion. However, it will charge you with the amount corresponding to repair expenses. In addition, if the damage is such that the car cannot be rented, the Company may also charge you with an amount that covers the loss of revenue for the duration of the repair.

Return outside working hours

We always suggest returning the car during the company’s working hours.

Some companies offer the option to return the car outside working hours. However, you have to be aware of the respective risks of this: you are responsible for the condition of the car until it is received by an employee and you may be charged for damages afterwards.

What to do in case of a breakdown?

Most Rent-a-Car Companies have contracts with a Roadside Assistance Company and are obliged to give you their contact telephones. In the event of a breakdown, contact the Roadside Assistance Company and then inform the Rent-a-Car Company. If there is no Roadside Assistance Company, contact the Rent-a-Car Company directly.

What to do in case of an accident?

In any case, do not acknowledge any liability before any third party. Collect as much information as possible from those involved and witnesses and notify the rental company immediately. Be sure to fill an Accident Statement as soon as possible.

Road Traffic Offenses?

Remember that as long as you use the Rental Car, you are responsible before the Authorities for the fines you will have to pay but also for any additional charges (e.g. towing the car from the point where it was illegally parked and safekeeping etc.)

HOW TO FIND A RELIABLE COMPANY?

STEEAE as the representative body of the Industry has as its main concern the implementation of high standards by all Car Rental Companies.

For this reason, it has established a Professional Code of Conduct that its Members have accepted and committed to adhere to.

The Code also provides for the functioning of an Ethics Committee to consider consumer complaints or charges and impose the sanctions provided.

STEAAE is the only Association of our Industry and one of the few Professional Associations in Greece that applies a Professional Code of Conduct.

Therefore, choosing one of its members ensures you a high level of service provided.

STEEAE Members have at their office the Special Member Certification which is renewed each year while they have the STEEAE logo posted on their web pages and printed on the stationery they use.