Going Abroad? Things To Know Before Taking To The Open Road AbroadSaturday, October 15, 2016
Learning to drive is stressful, isn't it? On the horizon, you've got the freedom that comes with being able to get behind the wheel and go. You don't have to rely on public transport and the goodwill of others to get places. All you have to do is remember a lot of rules, and the mechanics of a modern car, and directions. And you need to pass a test based on your ability to reproduce all of that information on a given day. Nothing to it?
Still, once you've got your licence you can relax a little. You get better at driving the more you do it and, as long as you're road-safe, the stress dissipates. And then you go on holiday! Disembark from the plane, pick up your luggage, and off you go to the car hire stand. Now you're driving in another country. For some people, this is enough to trigger all those unpleasant memories from the days when you were learning.
Making Sure You Can Hire A Car Abroad
The first thing to bear in mind when you're holidaying abroad is simple - can I even hire a car here? As long as you're licensed, the answer will usually be "Yes", as long as you meet age requirements. These differ between countries, even ones which neighbor one another.
In Sweden, for example, as long as you're over eighteen you can hire a car. You may need to pay a young driver surcharge if you're under 24, though. In neighboring Finland, you need to be over 20. And under 97, oddly. If you're 96, you're fine. Many countries have the young driver surcharge, so be aware of where the line is.
How Much Will It Cost Me?
As previously noted, the cost of hiring a car can depend on age. If a few of you are traveling and one is over the cut-off age, they should hire the car, but they will then need to take on the driving duties. Some companies will penalize you if someone else is found to have been driving. Your insurance company will deny any claim you make. Yes, they may not find out, but do you want to take that chance?
It's also wise to compare the prices of 7 days car hire between different rental companies. Some companies will let you add a second driver. Although their initial cost may be higher, the fact you can add another driver may mean it's worth it.
What If I Have An Accident Abroad?
This is something you need to discuss with your insurer. As long as they are aware that you are hiring a car and driving in another country, they can make the necessary allowances. If you do have an accident, they can then liaise with the hire company to do whatever needs to be done. Just make sure you know the rules of the road - they differ from country to country, and ignorance is not a defense.