Renting a car as a college student is not always easy. Many rental agencies do not rent cars to people under the age of 21. And those who do, often charge a premium for those who are under 25 years of age. However, nowadays there are options for students who need a car for a trip or other occasion. Here are some car rental tips for college students:
- Use a ZipCar or other sharing system
Zipcar and Enterprise offer special programs and rates for students who need a car. Most times, these services charge hourly, but those who need the car for a couple of days may also benefit from such a service. Look to see if Zipcar or Enterprise have a partnership program with your school or university. There may be deals you are eligible for!
- Get auto insurance discounts
Often, students and younger drivers will find that if they want to rent a car, then they will need to have insurance. While insurance for rental cars can be tricky, it will always be beneficial to have your own auto insurance policy. Whether you still use insurance from your parents or not, you may be eligible for a car insurance discount from your insurance agency. Student discounts are often available.
- Check your state laws
Some states allow students to rent cars under the age of 21. For example, in New York, 18 year olds are able to rent a vehicle. However, these states with lower rental car age requirements still may charge a premium for those under 25 years.
- Shop around for rates
As mentioned above, those who are under $25 may experience a rate increase. It’s always a good idea to shop around for different rental car prices. Depending on the days and companies you are looking at, their prices can vastly differ. Especially if you are on a budget, look at the big brands. Take some time to browse the options available in your town or city.
- Don’t rent from the airport
If you are planning a Spring break trip, try to avoid renting a car form the airport. They often have the priciest rentals. If you are trying to save money on rentals, try looking at other locations away from the airport.
- Consider other transportation options
Sometimes renting a car is not the most budget friendly option. Consider other modes of transportation such Uber or Lyft. There are other car sharing services, such as Turo, that may suit your college budget better. You should also consider different modes of public transpiration. Many cities have walkable city centers where cars may not be required!
As a student, renting a car may not be the easiest option. But, sometimes it may be a necessity. Take some time a do research on the best option for you. You should consider getting your own auto insurance policy or be listed under your parent’s policy. Ask your insurance agent the best option for you if you plan on driving or renting a car. They can help answer any questions or concerns you may have!