Hiring a car is the perfect way to get around during your trip abroad. When choosing a hire car, remember to consider the size and type of car, and any extras that you may need. Extras should be ordered in well in advance, so that you can be sure that the car hire company will have them available. Don’t turn up at the rental desk and expect to obtain extras that have not been pre-booked, as it won’t always possible for the car hire company to fulfill your request. Not all hire cars will be fitted with everything that you want; the availability of extras will depend on the class and size of car you have requested.
The extras that are commonly available when you hire a car include:
Navigation systems – These give you step-by-step directions from your location to your destination. Some units have touch-screen controls and/or a voice recognition feature, and will alert you to traffic hold-ups, road works, detours and any other problem. Very few car rental companies in Uganda do have these gadgets so first inquire with any company that you wish to hire from whether they have such gadgets in order you don’t be caught by surprise.
Music systems – A broad selection of music will make driving in your hire car more enjoyable, especially on longer journeys. Some car hire companies offer radios with CD players, MP3 or iPod connectivity, satellite radio etc.However, some smaller hire cars won’t even have a CD player, so bear this in mind when booking if music is important to you.
Safety restraints for children – Child seats must be used for children at all times. You will find that these seats are a legal requirement in most places, but even if they aren’t, you should still use them. You will normally have to fit the chair into your hire car yourself, so take care in doing so and always check it afterwards. Remember to check that the belts fit correctly and are done up securely.However,most companies offer these amenities at relatively cheap extra costs. Children who are too old for an infant carrier or child seat may still need extra help to be safely buckled in. A booster seat ensures that the child is at the correct height for safe travel in the hire car. Never take a chance with children’s safety; it is against the law to not comply with the local regulations.
Fast-track service – Many car hire companies offer an upgraded check-in option, where you are fast tracked through the process of picking up your hire car. Everything will be ready for you, and there will be no standing in line, which is great after you have disembarked from a flight and just want to get to your hotel as quickly as possible.
Hire Car Fuel
This is also another contagious issue when it comes to car hiring especially in East Africa. Very many clients can not specify the kind of option fits them when it comes to fuel whether to receive a car totally empty and return it in the same state or get a fully topped up vehicle and return it as well in the same state. When you hire a vehicle in a different country, you need to know all about refueling and the rules regarding the return of your hire car and thoroughly talk about it and strike a compromise with your car hiring company.
Here are some tips on refueling your hire car:
Before filling up your hire car, make sure that you know which type of fuel you need to use. It’s a good idea to check with your car hire representative at the pickup desk. For more tips on things to ask about when collecting your hire car, take a look at our checklist for during your trip. The main fuel options will be unleaded or diesel, but in some locations you will also find leaded petrol and LPG, so it’s important to use the correct one for your hire car. If you put the wrong fuel in your car, you will be liable for repair costs.
Make sure that you know how to open the fuel tank. Some cars may have a lever to pull, and you will need to know where this is. Again this is something you can ask about at the car hire company before leaving in your hire car. Always remember to replace the cap securely before driving off.
Make a note of which side of the hire car the petrol cap is on, so you won’t need to stretch the hose across the car to fill up.
In some places, you have to pay for your fuel before you fill up your hire car. If you are paying by card, remember that some card-equipped self-service pumps may not take the card you have so check before filling up. It’s always a good idea to carry enough cash with you to cover the cost of refueling in case your card isn’t accepted.
If you are going on a long journey, always start out with a full tank and fill up your hire car where you can. On some routes it could be a long time before you come across another service station, especially if you are driving late at night or in a remote country location.
Prices will differ everywhere, but wherever you are, it always seems to cost more to fill up on motorways or in the vicinity of airports. So, to save money, wait until you are out of the area to refuel. The same applies to filling up your hire car before returning it.
Car hire companies differ in their policies regarding the refueling of hire cars before their return. You may need to return the hire car with the same amount of petrol that it had to begin with pay for a full tank before you take the hire car and return it without having to refill it simply pay for the fuel you have used when you return your hire car.