Car rental is a hot topic for vacationers headed to Costa Rica. Recent research conducted by the Costa Rican Institute of Tourism (ICT) indicates that, after accommodations, renting an automobile is the largest expense, averaging $702 for an eleven-day vacation.
THE WEB is buzzing with negative reviews discussing overcharging, poor customer service and mechanical breakdowns. You may have even written one yourself!
A typical midsize (3 – 4 adults) 4X4 rental runs between $58 and $65 daily with third party insurance and rates can vary as much as 20 percent among car rental companies, so reading an instant review will undoubtedly be time well spent once you calculate the savings.
So the question is; which rental company supplies the best balance of fair price, capable customer support and reliable vehicles? I’ve researched everything for you, so continue reading!
Disclosure: This research was conducted in-may – July 2013. The next companies were selected because they are the most trusted in Costa Rica. Some are local companies; others are international franchises of recognized brand names. Comparisons include: customer support, pricing and the reservation process. The firms are listed alphabetically and not predicated on personal or online preferences.
Consider this information before renting:
One of the primary causes for complaints is from the stack of unforeseen charges presented to the renter once standing at the rental company’s counter. Vacationers are usually tired following a long flight and are confronted by costs that were not anticipated, explained or budgeted.
Topping the set of grievances may be the non-disclosure of fees linked to the mandatory third-party insurance at the time the reservation is made.
According to Costa Rican law, every driver is required to carry liability coverage to insure against injuries to third parties. Car rental companies generally avoid disclosing the price of this policy in the quoted rental rate to seem more competitive. Mandatory third-party insurance can often be up to double the vehicle’s rental cost. rent a car in NY The only guarantee against insurance confusion is to inquire if your estimate includes the 3rd party insurance and insist on a written quotation.
Cost of Mandatory Insurance (also known as Third Party or SLI)
Expect to pay between $12 and $15 daily for this insurance, with respect to the make and style of the rented vehicle and the rental car agency. This is the legal condition of your rental agreement and is generally not covered by bank cards and cannot be waived. It’s a fact of renting an automobile in Costa Rica.
Collision Damage Waiver (CDW)
As the name suggests, this is not insurance, but a waiver, which relieves the renter from any liability for damage to the rental car following the deductible is paid (usually from $750 to $1,500). Some agencies require renters to purchase their CDW policy; thereby negating any charge card program. For yet another fee, many agencies do provide a zero liability option where in fact the renter will be free of paying for any harm to the automobile. Some companies may put pressure upon renters to get the zero liability coverage; however, it really is entirely optional, unless it is in the fine print of their rental agreement.
Charge card insurance programs may cover the CDW for accommodations vehicle. Consult with your chosen rental car company to find which proof of insurance is necessary and then request that from your credit card company prior to arriving. If you are using your credit card’s CDW policy, be prepared to pay an increased deposit on the vehicle; around $1,500 to $2000 is common. The bigger deposit ensures that the credit card holder has enough financial reserves to cover damages if needed. You should consider that when using CDW coverage provided by a credit card (instead of the rent an automobile operator), all damages will undoubtedly be billed to the renter’s charge card. The credit card company will then reimburse the card holder for damages.