Thursday, May 17, 2007

How to Save Money on Rental Cars

You can negotiate a better deal on your rental car. Just request a free upgrade or ask for a rate adjustment. That's the world from the May 28th issue of First For Women magazine. When we travel to NYC for a summer wedding, I hope to try these recommended steps for renting a car:

1. Reserve an economy car either online or via the phone.

2. When you show up to pick up the car, request an upgrade. The face-to-face request at the rental desk may result in a free upgrade, according to First for Women.

"Since budget vehicles are the most popular on the lot and frequently run out, you often can get a fancier ride at no extra cost." --First for Women

3. If you opt to stick with your economy rental car, request a lower rate.

"Local agents have more flexibility to cut you a deal."-- First for Women.

Local sales people and agents may also be aware of unannounced sales or surprise promotions. For instance, at a Payless Shoe store in downtown Miami, I went to the cash register with a cute pair of shoes. I asked if the current price was the best price or if the style was eligible for any markdowns.

The cashier checked and found that the shoe was due for a discount--but had not yet been marked down. The final price was about 40 percent less.

Here are great tips for frugally renting cars when traveling abroad, including information about the stick shift vs. automatic.

"A stick shift car can be up to 40% cheaper than an automatic shift. On Europe's many narrow, windy, hilly roads and tight streets in ancient cities, manual shifts give you better control as well." --source:

Here are 7 travel secrets to save you money from the Microsoft Small Business Center. The piece, which features great tips, is written by Christopher Elliott, a travel writer.



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Tarrant said...

One of the best deals we have gotten on a rental car is on a Prius from the local Toyota dealer. They have rental cars available as well as what they call an extended test drives. We have been able to get a Prius for a week at a time for 100.00. (and then of course it is a super gas sipping car, so we save more money.)

Kansas Simplicity said...

You will like this..I was quoted $55 for a rental..Way too much for a trip this week. Then I recalled using one of my memberships via my bank and the same car was $20 yet I had to leave from my banks link to get to the discount!

Amazing. Still reading your posts and hope all is well in Miami.

Simplicity in Kansas