How to Locate a Car
There are many rental agencies that specialize in antique, vintage and classic cars and other specialty vehicles. Some cater to wedding planners, some focus on the needs of movie productions and some simply rent to anyone who wants to experience a unique ride from a different period of time. The most likely place to find such car rental agencies is in large metropolitan areas, especially cities where movies are made, such as Hollywood, California. However there are also many people throughout the country who will rent vehicles from their private collections if asked.
The easiest way to locate antique, vintage and classic car rental companies is via the Internet. If you're looking for a specific make, model or year start by searching for just those keywords, such as "1932 Model A Ford for rent", or "I want to rent a 1932 Model A Ford", or any other variation of the same keywords you can think of. Each variation is bound to bring up a slightly different list so you might have to try several if you're looking for something unique. Search engines such as Google post their results in an order based on a complicated algorithm that is supposed to present the most popular results first however that does not always happen. Small companies that may have exactly what you want may not not rank as well as others so review at least the first ten pages of results. Then, if you find a good assortment of companies, you can refine your search by including the name of your town or zip code. For example, you might search for "classic cars for rent, Cincinnati, OH".
How to Rent a Car
After you find a company that has what you want you need to be sure that you understand everything about your liability and fees before you sign the contract and take possession of the vehicle.
If you are going to rent a newer vehicle from a large car rental company the prices and availability will vary based on the time of year and day of the week, similar to airlines. The most important thing to know is that the prices are usually flexible and you can save a substantial amount of money by simply offering less than the advertised price. If you're not comfortable negotiating face to face shop on the Internet using companies such as PriceLine.com, Expedia.com, Hotwire,com and Travelocity.com. Just be certain of your needs because you may not be able to make changes or get a refund if your travel plans change when you negotiate a discount. Next you will want to know if you need to buy extra insurance. Every rental company will want to sell it to you and the cost will be from 25 to 40 percent of the rental fee. However your personal car insurance policy may cover rentals and some credit cards provide the insurance as well. Also be aware that most car rental insurance policies carry the minimum amount of liability insurance so if you buy it from them you might want to ask about increasing that amount. You should also think about where you are going to rent the vehicle. Airports will have the largest selection but they also charge the highest prices and in many cities there are additional taxes associated with airport rentals. And finally, read the fine print of the contract and take pictures of anything that appears to be damaged our of concern about the vehicle before you drive away. The penalties for returning a car late or without the proper amount of fuel can be considerable and the last thing you want is to get into a disagreement about the original condition of the car when you return it.
If you are going to rent an antique, vintage or classic car there are a few more considerations. The first is that the older the vehicle is the more expensive it may be to repair because parts might have to be custom made. The owner might therefore require that you pay extra for their insurance to assure that they have adequate coverage. Second, the owner will likely have specific and unique restrictions. For instance they may limit how fast you can drive, how far you can go and who can drive it. They may even require that the intended driver pass a test drive to assure they're qualified to handle it. And finally, as with any vehicle rental, be sure to read the contract thoroughly and in this case particularly, be sure to take lots of pictures inside and out to avoid disagreements when it is returned.