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Rental Car Experiences?

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    Then talk them to rent from someone who allows you to choose, at least. I think my employer gets "standard" or "full size", I see lots of Malibus and Fusions in the lot, smaller SUVs too. And if you rent a lot, you might get to choose from a better lot, National works that way.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,628
    there are a few outfits that are allowed. Avis, Hertz, and maybe budget/national.

    But I wanted something close to my house. I had no desire to schlep into Philly to go to the airport to get a car, considering I had to eventually drop it off and get back home!

    the Hertz desk was at my local AAA office, which I could walk to if I really felt like it.

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (daughters college car)

  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 31,067
    My company uses National... I almost never need to rent a car for work, but for personal use, I use the corporate National account... There is almost always something decent in the Emerald Aisle (which is the base for the account)... and, at least I get a choice without asking..

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    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • Anyone have any experience - good or bad - with Hertz customer service? Need to choose rental company to stick with for a while...
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    edited November 2012
    Got a letter in the mail from Sixt today, sent direct from Germany. I forgot they use this method as a way to give a receipt - seems expensive, but maybe not really. Listed no extra charges, so apparently I didn't damage the car.

    Interesting thing about this letter is a pile of random info at the bottomr - everything from license plate number to mileage to emissions. One number is "BLP" which is "bruttolistenpreis in EUR", which is MSRP. For the A8, it was 100,700 Euros, roughly $130K. Not bad, as it cost about the same price as a "luxury" rental from an American carrier, and less than any of the "prestige" choices.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    I got one of those a couple of months after renting a car in Puerto Rico a while back. Took them a long time to figure out how much I owned them for the toll roads I guess.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • berriberri Posts: 4,261
    Hertz tends to cost a bit more, but you generally don't get anything all beat up. Register for Gold status and you can go right to your car, plus that usually means you get the better vehicles. Avis cars don't seem as nice any more. Enterprise seems to vary a lot. At least that's my recent experiences.
  • jpp5862jpp5862 NCPosts: 376
    We reserve Intermediate, but I'm part of the Emerald club and rent enough to be in the Executive selection, although I can't tell a huge difference between the two and as often as not I just pick what I want from the Emerald aisle.

    Denver was pretty disappointing this week, they had a ton of Chrysler 200's, no thanks. I started to grab a base model Prius, but then switched to a 2013 Escape. Not a bad ride, but for the week I only averaged 19.9 mpg, I expected a little more from the Ecoboost in a 50/50 mix of city/highway driving and not driving aggressively. I want to like the new Fords but I've noticed most of the ones I rent have a rattle here or there, one Escape had a piece of weatherstripping loose on a rear window and the glove box in a Fusion was pretty flimsy.

    I'm off to Pittsburgh next week, haven't been there in years so will see what their National fleet looks like.

    I do agree with you on traveling personally, I pay more for a better car, it's definitely worth it.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    I just rode in an Avis CX-7 driven by an out of town friend who is visiting. Pretty basic spec, seemed to have to work pretty hard to get moving. Or maybe I am just used to high torque vehicles with effortless acceleration.

    Hotel parking lot was rental car fantasyland - Fusions, Sonatas, Camrys, Malibus, Altimas, 300C and Genesis, and many smaller things, small SUVs, the whole world of normal rentals.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,628
    probably the newer non-turbo model. That is not going to be fast.

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (daughters college car)

  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    It really had to work (or sounded like it was working) to get moving - if I want to deal with that, I'll ride a motorcycle :shades:
  • jpp5862jpp5862 NCPosts: 376
    I've had the CX-7 for rentals a couple of times, I wouldn't choose it again. Like you said it really struggled to get going, and overall was just blah.

    I was in Pittsburgh this week, pretty slim selection. I ended up with a base Grand Cherokee, which was fine. When we turned it in there was a Dodge Dart in front of us in a powder blue color, while I like that you can get something besides white, black, beige or silver this blue was a little offensive.

    Back to Denver next week, we'll see if they're still overrun with 200's.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    Could be worse - I saw a rental Galant yesterday. Didn't know those were still around. It's like a new old car.

    The color thing reminds me of a German annoyance - it seems 95% of rental cars are black. Every German rental car I have had has been black.
  • the '12 Nissan Altima I'm renting right now in Alamogordo, NM, is indeed....black! Don't cha know that black, though not a color, is America's favorite car color right now?

    No.2 is silver and red comes in 3rd. Correct me on that if anyone knows but that is what I read several months ago if memory serves me.

    Wow, huh? :)

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    edited December 2012
    Most recent tally was white, silver, then black, gray, then red....

    America's top 10 car colors

    I'm surprised they had anything to rent in black down there. :shades:

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    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    Too bad you didn't get a 2013, they are in the fleets now, and apparently are a big step up from the old style.

    Hmm...rental car colors. I've had a few white rentals in the US, then silver/grey. Can't think of a black one.
  • berriberri Posts: 4,261
    I think white is generally number one because of fleet sales. Not just rentals, but sales to companies that may apply logo's on them afterwards.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    Maybe so, didn't consider that factor.

    I like white cars but my wife isn't so hot on them.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    White works on some cars, not so bad to maintain either.
  • Altima, though the car doesn't look bad in black, neither. I liked it but the steering was kind of numb compared to my Lancer GTS. And the turning radius was too large. Other than that I drove some 265 miles in those two days and paid only $25 in ghastly ta fill it back up. 8 odd gallons in to 265 miles gives you, what, 33 smiles to the gallon? Not bad, eh? :)

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    I'd bet it is a very numb car. You'll get a basic spec as a rental too. But, it's a rental, reliability and mileage trump all for 90% of renters.

    I saw a Passat and Avalon rental this morning - I wonder how much fleet sales are padding the stats of both those companies.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    edited December 2012
    My sister was thinking of doing exactly this last month. She wound up taking her '05 Forester in for a bunch of work.

    "Holiday-travel hassles and aging family vehicles may be pushing more people toward renting cars, which may seem more reliable than flying, riding the rails or even driving their own cars."

    As Cars Age, Do Consumers Swing to Rentals? (Wall St. Journal)

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    People do that in Europe, especially those (a huge amount) who can commute via mass transit. They often rent cars for weekends or special trips, it's a normal thing.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    In my sister's case, her Subaru has ~130,000 miles and she didn't much trust it for the nine hour drive to Chattanooga for Christmas (especially after I kept harping on her overdue timing belt change).

    I'll have to mention to her that part of the maintenance cost will be defrayed by the amount she saved not renting a car.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    If she relies on it as an every day car out of necessity too, it is kind of wasting money not fixing or replacing it, as she'll need a car anyway.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    edited December 2012
    Yeah, but unlike the road she can call friends for a lift around home if she breaks down, and knows what shops to avoid. That was her justification for not doing the timing belt.

    The other thing I kept harping on was that a $1,000 repair bill was only three or four car payments. For months and months I was afraid she was going to just go buy a MINI (with no nearby dealer) and get back on car payments - or use the ruined engine as an excuse. She finally decided she wanted to put off that hit to her pension for a while longer, bless her. :shades:

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • berriberri Posts: 4,261
    I think her rental car approach can actually work. It gives her a nicer ride for distance travel and helps her put off major car outlays. Meanwhile, sometimes you can rent for less than the 30 plus cents a mile car driving can cost. Depending on the deal, sometimes I rent for a trip rather than tacking on the mileage to my own vehicle. Gotta do the arithmetic. Of course, being a woman by herself and given all the nut jobs out there, a reliable vehicle can be a good safety insurance policy as well.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,891
    edited December 2012
    Good points. But she's a well traveled retired flight attendant and she'd probably flatten any joker that got in her face. Breaking down isn't much fun though, anywhere it happens.

    There is an Enterprise in the next town.

    And a Rent A Wreck. :D

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • berriberri Posts: 4,261
    Maybe those experienced flight attendants toughen up from putting up with pilots. Kind of like nurses with surgeons I think.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,294
    I guess I was thinking most people can't randomly call people and get rides. She's in a lucky position there :shades:

    If she has no real reason to replace the old car, and isn't an enthusiast, maybe just talk her into using the cheap route - fix old car, and if she feels unsafe, still rent for long trips.
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