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 a car may be the largest expense, averaging $702 for an eleven-day vacation.
exotic rentals miami is buzzing with negative reviews discussing overcharging, poor customer service and mechanical breakdowns. You might 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 up to 20 percent among car rental companies, so reading an instant review will be time well spent as soon as you calculate the savings.
So the question is; which rental company offers the best balance of fair price, capable customer service and reliable vehicles? I’ve researched everything for you, so keep reading!
Disclosure: This research was conducted in May – July 2013. The next companies were selected because they’re the most widely used in Costa Rica. Some are local companies; others are international franchises of recognized brands. Comparisons include: customer support, pricing and the reservation process. The companies are listed alphabetically rather than based on personal or online preferences.
Consider this information before renting:
One of the biggest causes for complaints is from the stack of unforeseen charges presented to the renter once standing at the rental company’s counter. Vacationers are typically tired after a long flight and then are confronted by costs that were not anticipated, explained or budgeted.
Topping the list of grievances may be the non-disclosure of fees associated with the mandatory third-party insurance at that 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 refrain from disclosing the expense of this policy in the quoted rental rate to seem more competitive. Mandatory third-party insurance can often be just as much as double the vehicle’s rental cost. The only guarantee against insurance confusion is to inquire if your estimate includes the third party insurance and insist upon a written quotation.
Cost of Mandatory Insurance (also known as Third Party or SLI)
Be prepared to pay between $12 and $15 daily because of this insurance, depending on make and model of the rented vehicle and the rental car agency. This is the legal condition of one’s rental agreement and is normally 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 isn’t insurance, but a waiver, which relieves the renter from any liability for harm to the rental car after the deductible is paid (usually from $750 to $1,500). Some agencies require renters to purchase their CDW policy; thereby negating any credit card program. For an additional fee, many agencies do provide a zero liability option where in fact the renter will be free of paying for any harm to the car. Some companies may put pressure upon renters to get the zero liability coverage; however, it really is entirely optional, unless it really is in the fine print of these rental agreement.
Charge card insurance programs may cover the CDW for a rental vehicle. Consult with your chosen rental car company to find which proof of insurance is needed and then request that from your credit card company prior to arriving. If you are using your credit card’s CDW policy, expect to pay a higher deposit on the automobile; around $1,500 to $2000 is common. The higher deposit ensures that the charge card holder has enough financial reserves to cover damages if needed. It is important to consider that when using CDW coverage supplied by a credit card (instead of the rent a car operator), all damages will be billed to the renter’s credit card. The credit card company will reimburse the card holder for damages.