Should You Rent a Car for Your Next Road Trip?

If you are planning a road trip, you may be facing an interesting dilemma: whether you should use own car or whether renting a car makes better sense. There are a number of factors to take into account when making this decision, but they can be reduced into these two main ones:


Costs can often be the biggest determining factor in deciding whether you should use your own car for the trip or rent one, and there are a lot of different costs to calculate when making this determination.

If you decide to rent a car, you will pay a rental fee, which can be much cheaper if you pay by the week. But this is not the only cost. You will also have to pay insurance fees, which could add considerably to the rental rate. You also have to account for how much gas you will use, by determining approximately how many miles you will drive during the trip and how many miles per gallon your rented car will get.

See Also: auto insurance

There are, of course, costs involved when you use your own car for the trip. Like with a rented car, you need to determine how much you will spend on gas during the trip when using your own car. But the expenses do not end there. As is the case with a car rental, your personal vehicle needs to be covered by insurance at all times, so look up online insurance quotes to make sure you’re getting the best rate. You also have to account for maintenance and depreciation costs.

Fortunately, there is a very easy way to determine which car option makes the most financial sense. You can use this handy road trip calculator.

couple driving open top car

What Type of Car You Own

There are many reasons for not using your car for a road trip. If your car is too old and reaching the end of the line, it may not be prudent to take it on a long road trip. If your car is too new, you may also want to forgo using it for the trip, especially if it still has that smell and look of a new car, which it may not continue to have after the trip.

Another factor that could lead you against using your own car is if you do not really like it for some reason. Perhaps you want to show off a bit during the trip and your car is not the show off type. Or perhaps your car is not fast enough or has some other flaw.

Other reasons for not wanting to use your own car may include that it could be too small to comfortably carry all your passengers and gear on a long trip. Or perhaps it is not well suited for the terrain you will driving over, such as mountains. If you lease your car, you may also want to forgo using it on a long trip, as you could end up paying a steep penalty at the end of the lease for going over the contracted number of miles.

But if your car somewhere between brand new and way too old and suitable for the journey you are taking, and if you own it instead of lease it, driving it may make more sense than renting a car. This is especially true if you really like driving your car and if you find it particularly comfortable. Besides, you can never be absolutely sure how good or comfortable a rented car will be.

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