Alternatives that are similar to Rental Cars that may work Better

By: Susan A., Published: Apr 10, 2020 | Related: Charity Cars Program

It can be prohibitively expensive to rent a vehicle for your personal use. This is especially true if you need to use a rented vehicle over an extended period. You not only have to pay for the regular transportation expenses of fuel and other daily costs, but the cost of rental insurance could be higher than what you'd ordinarily pay. In addition, you'll have to make regular payments to the rental agency in order to keep the car in your possession. If you're using a rental car for work and can't make the payments, you may have no way to get to and from work, further compounding the problem. However, if you will only be in the area for a few months, there are alternatives that are similar to rental cars that may work better for you.


Assuming Someone's Lease

Many people wish they could get out their current leasing agreements. The problem is, there aren't many ways to do that without breaking the lease and incurring negative repercussions. However, if one person assumes the lease of another, this transfers the lease without breaking it. Assuming someone else's lease can benefit you and the original holder. You are able to take the remainder of the lease and thus assume use of the vehicle for the life of the lease, and the original holder of the lease is relieved of their contract.

You can find websites online that list vehicles in your area that are eligible for this swap. You will still need to make payments on the lease and apply for approval. If you want to be approved by the holding company, a good credit rating is a must. You will also need to make insurance payments on the car while it is in your possession and in most cases that means paying for a full-coverage plan. There may also be a mileage limit in the contract, so you'll need to plan your work routes or trips in such a way that you do not exceed the allowed miles. The car must still be under this limit once you return it to the company. The good news is, acquiring a car in this way usually means the lease payments for which you'll be responsible are low when compared to most other standard car leases. You can use the vehicle of your choice without resorting to your own lease or other financing options.


Sharing a Car

Sharing a car, in this case, is not just about occasionally using the car of a friend or relative. When we talk about car sharing in this context, we mean you become part of a program with a certified membership. This membership features regulations and entitles you to certain benefits. In the case of a car-sharing service, you are able to use a car for a specified period. A particular vehicle may only be available for a certain number of hours or days. However, you can also acquire a car for your personal use for weeks at a time if necessary. Well-known companies such as Hertz have their Zipcar service that is designed to provide these temporary rides to any members in need.

Other companies like U Car Share do not require membership fees though those that do are often reasonably priced at $50 or so annually. You'll also need to pay a fee to apply for the service as well, which will run you about $25. However, if you are approved, you'll get your own membership card and all the benefits that come with it, including access to a car all day, every day of the week. You'll borrow a car at hourly or daily rates depending on your needs and the price will include the cost of gas and insurance fees. Companies extend car sharing services to those with good driving records and are likely more available in larger cities or college towns.

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Further Options

Public transportation is always a way to get to and from work, or you can put an ad online offering to make a private deal to borrow someone else's vehicle. Your public transport options may include buses and trains depending on how wide and varied the transportation infrastructure is in your city. The company you work for may also have its own carpool service. If you are a senior citizen or have a disability, there are some state programs that can help you get to and from vital appointments.




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