September 22, 2016

Drivers reminded to refuel rental cars at end of hire

Extra costs to business can be avoided by simple measure

Company car drivers are being reminded of the need to refuel any rental cars at the end of the hire period to avoid unnecessary costs for their organisations. Businesses are spending thousands of pounds unnecessarily each year on vehicle rental and, in many cases, paying for things that could easily be avoided.

One of these is the cost of fuel. Most rental companies provide a hire car with a full tank of petrol or diesel. Return it with a full tank after your trip and there’s nothing to pay.

However, if the driver neglects or forgets to refuel at the end of the hire, then an extra charge for fuel will be incurred, often at less than preferential rates, as well as a refuelling service charge.

So, as a general rule of thumb, drivers should always follow the terms and conditions relating to fuel from the supplying rental company to the letter.

When refuelling at the end of the hire, drivers should always keep the receipt from the filling station where they filled up the car on the final day. It acts as a record should there be any disputes afterwards and, for business trips, can be used to make a claim within allowable expenses.

However, it always pays to check the terms and conditions thoroughly as some rental hire firms, especially in mainland Europe, operate a full-to-empty policy.

Some drivers have been caught out by the policy which charges the driver a pre-payment for a full tank of fuel at the start of the hire, often at much higher rates than local pump prices, and then requires for it to be handed back empty.

This disadvantages the driver in two ways, Firstly, then cost of the fuel is much higher than if bought locally at the petrol pumps, and secondly, the trip may not be long enough to use a full tank of fuel.

CLM’s advice to drivers abroad would always be to use car hire firms that allow you simply to return the vehicle with the same amount of fuel it had when you picked it up – a full-to-full policy.

To help avoid some of the pitfalls associated with vehicle rental, CLM has produced a handy guide to avoiding unnecessary charges which can be downloaded free of charge here

Avoiding unnecessary vehicle rental costs

If you need more information on this topic, then please get in touch.