Top 10: Things To Look Out For When Renting A Vehicle

Submitted by: Adam Friedman

Fact – every single one of us will be renting a truck, van or car at some point in our lives. We’ll all experience the stresses of moving homes and the renting of a truck to handle the furniture removal, we’ll all require a van rental at some point for that overdue family vacation and we’ll certainly arrive at that moment in our lives where you find yourself standing in front of a car rental desk.

The problem arises as to the affordability, or lack thereof, of the various vehicle rental products and services that currently exist. What I recently experienced in South Africa with a car rental agency inspired me to write such an article.

So there I was, standing in front of a world-renowned car and van rental agency in Durban. I needed to rent a small van for a 3 day period. I was quoted a price which was fair and signed it on the spot. The vehicle was in great shape and all pretty much went very smooth until i received my invoice 3 days later. Low and behold, there were hidden costs from top to toe of my contract that ended up charging me double what I thought I was paying.


So, I have created a top 5 list to look out for when renting a vehicle. Hopefully this will help, protect and guide someone through the slippery process involved with renting a vehicle, something I never had the luxury of.

#1 Scrutinize your quotations- many vehicle rental quotations claim to be affordable but hide many costs within the so called ‘inclusions’ and exclusions’ of your contract.

#2 Be aware of the specific fuel consumption of the vehicle you are planning to hire. This way you can be double check the fuel charge after you have handed the vehicle back. I have a sneaky suspicion that many car, van and truck rental agencies overcharge on the fuel bill.

#3 Take note of how far you will be traveling. This can be done by going onto Google Maps and clicking on ‘Directions’, then punching in your various stops of your planned journey. If you calculate that your trip will be 100KM, and the fuel consumption of your vehicle is 15 liters at a Fuel price of $5- then you should be paying 15 x 5 = $75.

#4 Be sure to read the fine print of your contract. Most truck and van hire companies charge a $10 contract fee and conveniently whisper the excess mileage charge, Making it hard for most to be aware of.

#5 Understand the insurance implications, costs and liabilities. Insurance is a difficult road to navigate even for those who work in the industry, but a concerted effort to know what you are in for should something go wrong needs to be made.

In South Africa, vehicle rental companies in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town are under direct legal threat due to unfair consumer practices. At the end o the day, the consumer matters and without us no company can survive.

About the Author: We have revolutionized the truck and van rental industries in South Africa in order to truly cater to individual consumers. We strive for absolute transparency and fairness, if you are interested to learn more, visit


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