Car Rental Companies Comparison: How to Find the Best Rent-a-Car Deal

by Venus Zoleta, on category "Car Insurance,In-Depth Guides,Product Overviews"

February 19, 2018

car rental philippines Looking for the cheapest car rental service in the Philippines? Here's the thing about saving money when renting a car: price isn't the only thing to consider when choosing the best rent-a-car company. Cheaper doesn't necessarily mean better. Of course, you need to you stay within your budget. But you also have to look at other things that drive the prices of car rentals: service, vehicle selection, hidden fees, inclusions and limitations, and other terms and conditions. Check these things between different rent-a-car service providers. There has to be a balance between the price and the quality of service that a car rental company provides. In this guide, we'll compare six car rental companies in the Philippines:

Car Rental Services

car rental service Rent-a-car services serve a variety of purposes, though most companies provide self-driven and chauffeur-driven car rentals as their main products. Long-term leases are also available for personal and corporate transport needs. However, there may be occasions when you need to rent a vehicle for an event, like a wedding or anniversary. Or you need a car that will take you from or to the airport. Look for a rent-a-car company that offers the exact service you need. Here is a table to give you a glimpse of the common car rental services in the Philippines.
Car Rental Services Comparison
Service Type Avis Budget Click  Hertz MIAS Nissan  Viking
Airport transfer  N/A  N/A
City transfers N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
One-way rental  N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Shuttle service/Tours N/A N/A N/A N/A
Weddings and special events N/A N/A
Long-term car lease (personal/corporate)

Vehicle Selection

car rental Narrow down your choices by finding out which companies have the vehicle type you need. But first, determine the kind of vehicle you want to rent. Driving alone around the city? You need a small car such as a compact hatchback or sedan. Need a big vehicle for the whole family or your company team-building? You need an SUV or a van for that.

What's the Right Vehicle Type for Your Needs?

To give you an idea of what exactly matches your needs, here are the different vehicle types available for rent in the Philippines and their seating and luggage capacities:
  • Hatchback - Five persons and one to two luggage
  • Sedan - Five persons and two to three luggage
  • SUV - Five to eight persons and three to four luggage
  • AUV - Seven persons and three to four luggage
  • Pickup - Five persons and five to six luggage
  • Van - Eight to 15 persons and four to eight luggage
  • Minibus - 10 to 26 persons

What Vehicle Makes and Models are Available for Rent?

Now, look at the vehicle selection of each company you're considering to check if it has the car make and model you have in mind.
Car Rental Vehicle Lineup Comparison
Vehicle Type Avis Budget Click  Hertz MIAS Nissan  Viking
Hatchback N/A N/A N/A N/A
  • Chery QQ
  • Hyundai Eon
Mitsubishi Mirage or similar
  • Honda Brio
  • Suzuki Dzire
  • Hyundai Eon
  • Kia Picanto
  • Mazda 2
  • Mitsubishi Mirage
  • Toyota Altis
  • Toyota Vios
  • Altis
  • Vios
  • Honda City
  • Ford Fiesta
  • Nissan Almera
  • Nissan Sylphy
  • Hyundai Accent
  • Nissan Teana
  • Hyundai Sonata
  • Nissan Altima
  • Vios
  • Nissan Sylphy
  • Kia Rio
  •  Vios
  • Hyundai Accent
  • Nissan Sentra
  • Honda Civic
  • Altis MT
  • Vios MT
  • Nissan Sentra GX MT
  • Nissan Almera
  • Vios
  • Honda City
  • Mitsubishi Mirage G4
  • Nissan Almera
  • Hyundai Accent
  • Kia Rio
  • Ford Fiesta
  • Ford Focus
  • Altis
  • Toyota Camry
  • Honda Civic
  • Mazda 3
  • Nissan Sentra
  • Honda CR-V
  • Toyota Fortuner
  • Ford Everest
Toyota Fortuner
  • Nissan X-Trail
  • Toyota Fortuner
  • Toyota Fortuner
  • Ford EcoSport
  • Chevrolet Captiva
  • Mitsubishi Montero Sport
  • Toyota Fortuner
  • Hyundai Tucson
  • Honda CR-V
  • Mazda CX7
  • Nissan Patrol
  • Ford Escape
  • Ford Everest
  • Mitsubishi Montero
  • Nissan X-Trail
AUV Toyota Innova Innova N/A Innova
  • Toyota Avanza
  • Mitsubishi Adventure
  • Toyota Innova
Toyota Innova
  • Innova
  • Honda Mobilio
  • Toyota Avanza
  • Nissan Livina
Pick-up  N/A  N/A  N/A N/A Mitsubishi Strada N/A
  • Nissan Navara
  • Mazda BT50
  • Toyota Hilux
  • Ford Ranger
  • Mitsubishi Strada
  • Hyundai Grand Starex
  • Toyota Hiace GL Grandia
  • Toyota Grandia GL
  • Hyundai Grand Starex GL
  • Hyundai Starex
  • Nissan Urvan
  • Toyota Grandia GL
  • Toyota Alphard
  • Hyundai Starex
  • Nissan Urban Escapade
  • Hyundai Starex
  • Toyota Hiace
  • Foton View
  • Nissan Urvan
Minibus  Hyundai County Deluxe N/A  N/A N/A N/A  Mitsubishi Rosa N/A
  • Toyota Camry
  • Jaguar
Toyota Camry
  • Mini Countryman
  • Mercedes Benz E-Class

Toyota Camry

  • BMW 5 Series
  • BMW X3
  • Toyota Camry
  • Chrysler 300C
  • Mercedes Benz S-Class
  • Volkswagen Jetta
  • Volkswagen Passat
  • BMW 7 Series
Note: Exact vehicle makes and models are subject to availability.

Car Rental Prices

Some companies have their car rental price list posted on their respective websites. Others have flexible pricing, so you'll have to call or email them to ask for a quote.

What Affects Car Rental Prices?

Car rentals are priced on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. While daily rates look cheaper than weekly and monthly rates, you'll get to save more when you choose a weekly rate, especially if you need to use a car for at least one week. The car make and model you'll rent also affects the price of your vehicle rental. For example, renting a hatchback or a sedan costs lower than a bigger vehicle like an SUV or van. Premium or luxury cars like BMW and Mercedes Benz, obviously, are the most expensive vehicles to rent. Prices also depend on the service type you choose. Chauffeur-driven comes with an added service of a driver, which is why it costs higher than a self-driven car.

How to Compare Car Rental Rates

When comparing the car rental prices, make sure to do it apples to apples. Meaning, you don't mix up daily rates with weekly rates or compare rental prices for different vehicle types. If, for example, you need to rent an Innova, compare prices of the same vehicle model (or at least a different model but of the same vehicle type.) You can create a car rental comparison table similar to the one below. Let's say you're looking at weekly rental rates for a self-driven, economy sedan, like a Toyota Vios or a Ford Fiesta. Here's how it will look like:
Car Rental Prices Comparison
Company Weekly rate for a budget sedan (self-drive)
Avis Php 18,796.77
Click Php 21,000
Hertz Php 21,700
MIAS Php 9,500
Note: Budget, Nissan, and Viking car rental companies offer personalized or flexible rates, so they don't post them on their websites. Contact these companies for quotation requests.

Package Inclusions and Exclusions

What services are included in the price? Which ones aren't part of the package? The best car rental deal includes all the services and other things you need at the lowest price possible. Many rent-a-car services come with full or partial insurance coverage such as personal accident insurance, third-party liability bodily injury or property insurance, comprehensive insurance for own damage and theft, and collision damage waiver. If you're frequently traveling and need to rent a car from time to time, consider getting a car insurance with a coverage for rental car. Traveling with a child? Be sure to look for a rental company that includes a child safety seat in its package. Read the fine print, too, so you know the limitations of a car rental service. For instance, most rent-a-car companies exclude toll fees and parking fees from their rates.

Extra Fees and Charges

Be on the lookout for any hidden fees that might be charged for certain usage or condition:
  • Security deposit
  • Additional hourly fee for every hour in excess of the basic package
  • Refueling surcharge (if vehicle is returned with less fuel)
  • Pre-payment fee
  • Out-of-town charge
  • Cancellation fee
  • Automatic transmission add-on
  • Cleaning fee (for any smoke odor, pet hair, and dirt found in the returned car)
  • Penalty fee (for violation of terms and loss or damage to the vehicle)
  • Waiting time fee (for chauffeur-driven cars)
  • Stopover fee (for chauffeur-driven cars with multiple stop overs)
  • Driver's meals and board-and-lodging (for chauffeur-driven cars)

Final Thoughts

Whether you need to rent a vehicle for your weekend road trip with the family, a big event you're organizing, or just getting around in Manila (if you're a foreigner traveling in Manila for business or pleasure), research and compare your options so that you can find the best car rental package that will provide value-for-money service.

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