- Read up on the driving laws of the country you are visiting. Ignorance of the law is no excuse in any country and every country has a different set of rules and regulations that drivers must follow.
- Put the number for the rental agency in your phone. If you have a breakdown, they can tell you where to take the car for repairs and what to do next.
- Ditto for the local emergency numbers – 911 works in America, but not so in other countries.
- Read up on your auto insurance policy back home and get travel protection with car rental coverage, if necessary. Your coverage back home may or may not cover you abroad, and even if you have ‘coverage’ it may not include ‘loss of use’ which is the term applied to the time that a damaged vehicle is being repaired.
It’s important to note that if you damage the vehicle and it takes a week or so to repair, the rental car company will tack on additional daily charges for every day that vehicle is not in use, i.e., not rentable. This is where travel insurance plans with comprehensive car rental coverage is handy, but it’s important to verify that the travel insurance plan has adequate coverage as well (including loss of use).
Oh, and one final tip: never drink and drive. If you are found over the local legal limit, your travel insurance will be completely invalidated leaving you to foot the entire bill.