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EUROPCAR SEES RENTAL RISE And offers tips for stress free rental for UK Holidaymakers

Whether people are staycationing or getting away for a holiday in the UK, figures from Europcar, the UK’s leading vehicle rental company suggest the UK break has had a renaissance in 2008 with bookings up 18% year on year (based on all bookings made May – August 2008 vs. the same period in 2007).  With this in mind, Europcar is offering UK holiday-makers some valuable advice on how to get the best out of their rental experience – wherever they may travel.  

Early Bird Catches the Deal

Aim to book your rental as early as possible to get the best deal. Larger cars tend to get booked up in the summer months, so customers should book as soon as possible.  Rates do vary from day to day so shop around for the best rate.  Europcar’s rates are price-shopped on a daily basis.

Suits You Sir

Work out how much room you need for passengers and any luggage and whether you need child seats.  These can be booked in advance. Consider hiring a GPS unit to limit the in-car arguments and think about whether you’ll want to share the driving – a good idea for stressed out parents.

Top Up Your Tank

All Europcar’s vehicles are supplied with a full tank of petrol but you have the choice to return it fall or pay for the fuel up front and return it empty.  This is recommended for rentals or 3 days or more and means you don’t have to worry about refuelling before returning the car.  It can also be more cost-effective. Europcar charges 3p under the average high street pump price.

Safe and Sound

All rates are inclusive of insurance but there will be an excess to pay if you do have an accident. Check what this excess is and decide if you would like to reduce or eliminate it through optional covers provided.

Take IDDrivers must bring the necessary documentation and ID with them.  All named drivers need to have held a full driving licence for at least a year, and present a photo-card licence as well as the paper counterpart (the older style driving licence is also accepted). A credit or debit card, plus one of two other forms of identification may also be necessary.

Inspect the Car

When you collect the car, you should inspect the vehicle carefully, looking for any signs of scratches or damage to the interior, bodywork, wheels and windscreen.  If you do spot something, make sure this is recorded on the paperwork you’ve been given by the Rental Agent.

Cross the T’s Before driving away, make sure you check the paperwork is correct and that it clearly states what you have paid for, ie cover to reduce the excess, additional driver, GPS, car seats, etc

Rental Agreement Ensure you keep the rental agreement throughout your rental in case of emergencies and make sure you understand who or what to do in the event of accident or breakdown.  Europcar offers First Call a 24/7 number available free of charge to all rental customers covered by Europcar’s insurance. 

Homeward Bound

Check where and when you need to return the car to – will you be dropping the car off to the same place you picked it up from?  Returning the car late may incur additional charges so make sure you are on time.  Allow plenty of time to drop-off the car and get it checked by one of the rental Agents. Make sure that you both agree on the condition of the car and you note and sign for any damage on all copies of the rental agreement. 

Don’t forget your sunglasses!

Before handing the keys back, check you haven’t left any personal belongings in the car or the boot. .In a recent survey, Europcar found the most common lost articles included Sunglasses, CDs and mobile phones. Catriona Lougher, Leisure Marketing Director comments: “We have seen a marked increase in UK rentals this summer.  Whilst this will be due in part to the work we have done to increase our brand awareness, we are sure an additional factor has been the resurgence of UK holidays, particularly amongst families wanting a bigger, more comfortable vehicle for a trip away. We hope these ten tips will help customers enjoy a smooth rental experience with us.”

Simply call Europcar Reservations on 0871 384 1089 or log on to www.europcar.co.uk to make a booking.

Ends

Notes to Editors

Owned by the French private equity firm Eurazeo, Europcar is the European leader in passenger car and light utility vehicle rentals. Since March 2007 with the acquisition of Vanguard EMEA (National & Alamo brands), its network comprises over 5,300 rental outlets in 160 countries. Europcar serves business and leisure customers throughout Europe, Africa, the Middle East,  Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region. Excluding franchise operations, in 2007 Europcar signed more than 10 million rental contracts, with 7,700 employees and a fleet exceeding 215,000 vehicles.

For more information: www.europcar.com

For further press information please contact: Dominic Dennis, Madeleine Roles, Elinor Puzey or Alison Reeson at HSL, Churcham House, 1 Bridgeman Road, Teddington, Middlesex, TW11 9AJ. Telephone: 020 8977 9132 Fax: 020 8977 5200 or email: leisureteam@harrisonsadler.com

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