By Spreet Aulakh on October 12

Half term holiday makers experience doubling rental costs

Irish holidaymakers hiring a car in warmer climates this half term could find themselves paying double for their hire car.

Hiring a car for a week this autumn in Faro with Budget only costs €75, however Budget will also offer the car hirer Super Damage Waiver for €115, Super Theft Waiver for €121 and Tyre and Windscreen waiver for €12 - adding an additional €248 to the bill. Without this extra cover, the car hirer is liable for the €1,426 excess if the car is stolen or damaged.

The new study by iCarhireinsurance.ie, a leading provider of car hire excess insurance, looked at five European holiday hotspots, Bodrum (Turkey), Faro, Larnaca, Tenerife and Barcelona, to hire a medium, compact car for a week, from 27 October to 3 November 2018, from six car rental companies (Enterprise, Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz and Sixt).

The study found this doubling of costs in all the destinations:

  • In Larnaca, Avis charges €167 for the rental, but €156 for Super Damage Waiver and €31 for Tyre and Windscreen Waiver, adding an additional €187 to the final bill.

  • In Bodrum, Sixt charges €93 for the rental, but €52 each for Super Damage Waiver and Super Theft Waiver and €37 for Tyre and Windscreen Excess, adding an additional €141 to the final bill.

  • In Barcelona, Hertz charges €153 for the rental, but €194 for Super Damage Waiver and €68, for Tyre and Windscreen Waiver, adding an additional €262 to the final bill.

  • In Tenerife, Europcar charges €183 for the week’s rental, but its Combined Super Waiver is €199, as it does not offer separate waiver products.

Additional ‘extras’ bought from the rental desk escalate the cost further. For example, in Tenerife, the average price for an extra driver (€65), a sat nav (€64), a car seat (€61) and excess waivers (€154 including €97 Super Damage Waiver, €17 Super Theft Waiver and €40 Tyre and Windscreen Waiver) adds an additional €344 to the hirer’s bill, a doubling of the original rental price of €156.

Car hirers can save money buying an independent car hire excess insurance policy before they travel. iCarhireinsurance.ie sells a week’s excess waiver policy for Europe for €31.92 (or from €3.99 a day / €46.99 annual policy), compared to the average price of a week’s policy from the rental companies of €156*. All of our policies come with €7,500 excess insurance and cover damage to bodywork, tyres, roof, windscreen and undercarriage.

Ernesto Suarez, Chief Executive and founder of iCarhireinsurance.ie, said: “Holidaymakers need to watch out for low headline prices sucking them into thinking they have a good deal, only to arrive to collect their hire car and find they are shelling out on hundreds of additional Euros. Where you can, take your own sat nav, car seats and keep extra drivers to a minimum, or not at all, and always buy car hire excess insurance before you travel from a proper insurance company rather than the rental companies.”

*The average cost across the study for a Super Damage Waiver policy (€98), a Super Theft Policy (€22) and a Tyre and Windscreen Excess Policy (€36), totalling €156.