Getting around L.A. with a car you like to drive in is one of the best ways to enjoy your next trip to the city. Bringing your own vehicle isn’t always an option, though, and it can be tricky to pick from lots of different rental car options.
This article will break down the best rental cars to choose from for your next trip to L.A. so that you spend less time on research and more time having fun driving!
Pick Something Economic
You’re going to be doing a lot of driving to see as many views and sites in L.A. as possible. A car that goes easy on its gas mileage helps make long trips around the city a lot more affordable and less stressful. More economic cars tend to be on the smaller side, which is something you should bear in mind before you decide on your rental choice.
Some models do a better job of compromising between size and efficiency in gas mileage than others. A good example of compact rentals that you can enjoy an affordable road trip in is Ford’s line of Focus vehicles. The Focus model enjoys much higher-than-average mileage rates and is still comfortable to drive in for longer trips.
This model from Ford also tends to be easy to find from major rental dealers and is a great economic rental option for your L.A. trip. If you do end up choosing a smaller rental car, remember that newer models usually leave out built-in features like CD players and radio systems.
You can consider more intermediate-sized cars that sometimes add back in things like sunroofs and radio systems that work for XM satellites. These cars can still net you affordable rates that deliver a quality driving experience. Some intermediate-size Chevy Cruze models, for example, can also include these built-in features while keeping their extra size.
Consider a Convertible
Chances are if you’re going to be driving around L.A., you’ve considered choosing a rental convertible at some point or another. There’s simply a natural attraction between L.A. and a muscle car, just like the ones your grandparents used to drive. But is renting a convertible the smartest choice for your next trip to L.A.?
The answer is that it depends on what you want to get out of your driving experience the most. If you want to save money where you can but still comfortably drive around for long stretches of time, convertibles probably aren’t your best bet.
Convertibles, especially older models, guzzle up gas because of bigger engines. On the highway and on long road trips, they can also get especially noisy and can let in dirt and debris if the top is down.
On the other hand, convertibles truly get to shine if you’re driving them around the city in shorter bursts. Take the Mustang or Camaro for example – these cars can get pretty loud when you rev up the engine, sure. But driving them around the city just to take in some sights is the single best way to make their horsepower shine.
You also get to take advantage of driving with your convertible top down, which doesn’t work out nearly as well on the highway. Driving a convertible can be a fun, albeit expensive way to drive around L.A. If you do end up driving a rental convertible, try to look for deals in advance before your trip.
This way, you can give yourself time to factor in extra costs like gas fill-ups and rental premiums. A travel agent, which we will cover in just a moment, can go a long way in helping you find a great deal on a rental convertible.
Have Fun with a Hybrid Car
Arguably the most exciting rental car option to choose from is a fully electric or hybrid car. These cars offer a cutting-edge design that gives them advanced fuel efficiency and performance and even automated driving capabilities like those in the Tesla Model S. These car models perform best in cityscapes like L.A. and can also work for your budget with the right planning.
Renting a hybrid or electric car model is easiest when you work with a travel agent. This advice applies to renting a car for your next trip in general. Travel agents can usually connect you with a rental company they’ve worked in the past. And more often than not, this relationship can lead to discounted rates on your rental car. But specifically for hybrid and electric models that can be tougher to find and rent, travel agents are your best bet for finding lower prices.
Of course, it’s not as easy to find hybrid cars at rental outlets as others. But for the value they offer in terms of efficiency and range of benefits, you should definitely consider renting one if you can find the right deal. Get in touch with a travel agent before your trip to L.A. to see what options are available to you.
Save with an SUV
SUVs may not be on the same level of aesthetic as a decked-out muscle car. But what they do bring is added value, especially if you’re going on a trip with a lot of people. SUVs simply can’t be beaten when it comes to balancing affordability with value for big groups.
On top of that, SUVs are typically easy to find and rent from most car rental companies. Your travel agent should have no issue finding and connecting you with a rental company that offers a range of options. Certain models, like the Chevy Spark or Toyota Yaris, offer impressive horsepower with the added room of standard SUVs.
Keep Your Needs in Mind
Remember that at the end of the day, you shouldn’t let the car you rent define your experience. There are plenty of rental car options to choose from, and knowing what kind of driving and how much you’ll be doing will help you choose the one that’s right for you. Get in touch with a reputable travel agent who can help you decide on a rental car model that makes sense for your next trip to L.A.