Important facts described briefly below:
Whoever books a rental car would like to have a clean vehicle. This fact also applies to the next renter of the vehicle. The inevitable question arises: Must the car be cleaned before it is returned. Below we will explain whether the cleaning costs for the rental car are included in the rental price and whether other costs will be charged to you.
Do I get a clean rental vehicle upon pickup?
Yes, usually, the rental contract states that you will get a clean rental car. If you get a dirty car, despite the agreement, you can request the cleaning or a replacement car. If no remedy is found within a reasonable period of time, you may receive a discounted price. However, this usually only applies to heavy soiling, not to crumbs or dust.
Do I have to return the car clean?
In most cases, this is not necessary. You get a clean vehicle, but you do not have to clean it before returning. The car rental company usually cleans its vehicles.
In some countries, however, you must return the car in the same condition in which you picked it up. Otherwise, a special fee will be charged. For example, this can be the case with the provider Interrent.
Is the car rental cleaning cost included in the price?
Many car rental companies include the costs of cleaning in the price. However, please check the terms and conditions of the respective provider in advance to see whether an additional fee is charged for cleaning.
This regulation applies to light and conventional dirtying that occurs during normal use of the vehicle. However, if the car becomes heavily or extremely dirty during your rental period, there may be an additional charge for cleaning the rental car.
Who pays the car cleaning costs after a road trip or safari?
While a city trip usually doesn't dirty the car too much, an adventure through nature usually does. Sand in the car, dirty windows and mud incrustations on the tires are no rarity. Extreme weather conditions also contribute to this. After such trips, the renter usually has to pay for the cleaning costs of the rental car.
What is considered extreme soiling?
This distinction is at the discretion of the car rental company and is interpreted differently. Some providers charge the rental car cleaning costs for extreme soiling if there is just still some sand in the car from a day at the beach. Other rental companies are much more tolerant and only speak of extreme soiling when the color of the vehicle is no longer recognizable because of all the mud.
How can I avoid rental car cleaning costs?
If you want to avoid the cleaning or additional costs, you can clean the car yourself before returning it. Be sure to take out empty bottles, packaging, and other items. You can drive through the car wash and use the vacuum cleaner at a gas station. There you can often find some water with detergent and a windscreen wiper. Cleaning the rental car is often cheaper than the cleaning costs.
What can I do if I was charged unjustified cleaning costs?
If you have the impression that the cleaning costs were not reasonable, you can file a complaint. It is best if you have taken photos of the dirty car and add them to your complaint. However, there is no guarantee that you will receive a refund for the rental car cleaning costs. If no specific arrangements have been made in advance, it is at the discretion of the car rental company.