The YouGov survey, commissioned by Insuremyrentalcar.com, a new specialist provider of CDW/LDW insurance, also found that long lines may be a reason why travelers are keen to get away. Almost one in five rental drivers (19%) said they were "unhappy" with the length of lines at the rental desk and 21% said they find renting a car stressful.
Not reading the T&Cs, however, could leave rental drivers open to additional costs. For instance, the survey found that 63% of car renters are not aware that some rental companies will charge for gas if the renter cannot provide a receipt for fuel when they return the car (even if the gauge says full). This is often the rule particularly with airport drop-offs where the renter can be required to refuel within a 10 mile radius of the airport or to show the fuel receipt.
Moreover, 54% of car rental drivers are unaware that once the rental vehicle has been collected the driver has responsibility for ensuring the vehicle complies with local and federal driving laws including road worthiness.
Ernesto Suarez, Founder and CEO of insuremyrentalcar.com said: “It's essential to read through all the paperwork when picking up your rental car, even if you're in a rush. For instance there may be airport surcharges, fuel charges or additional fees for equipment rental such as roof racks and child car seats. And always carefully inspect the vehicle and its tires before renting and when you return it. Also try to return the vehicle during regular business hours so you and the rental staff can look at the car together to verify that you didn't damage it."
He continues: “We can’t protect you from some of these extras fees, but we can protect you from having to pay for expensive rental car insurance. Our policies* are only $17.99 per trip, $195 less than the average price of a policy from a car rental company.”
*Not currently available for residents in Alaska, Florida, Hawaii, Massachusetts and Vermont.
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov. Total sample size was 2,358 adults, 1,372 of which have rented a car. Fieldwork was undertaken between May 28 – June 1, 2015. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all US adults (aged 18+).