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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-09-2007, 11:05 PM   #21
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CyclingInvestor
It takes me about 25 minutes to book a car online at Long Beach airport and
bicycle down and get it for $18/day on weekends.

It takes about about 15 minutes on weekdays, but costs about $25 to get it
at the neighborhood branch.

Yes... I used to work with a guy that lived within a few miles of work and did not own a car at all... if he went out on a date, he asked the girl to drive... if he needed car he rented.. saved lots of money..
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-09-2007, 11:21 PM   #22
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl
Could someone clarify the reason for doing this? Is it because you're worried about the reliability of your regular car? Or the fun of tooling around in a nice new car?
It's not to save money, right?
I now think the cost is much closer to break even than I did previously. As cars approach 100,000 miles I'm less confident taking them on long trips. A breakdown in a strange locale would be a major bummer, especially for my wife.

Maybe it's likely that we'll put more than 100,000 on the Camry, but then again I neglected to add 1/30 the cost of a set oif tires earlier....

So if we can rent a car with <10,000 miles on it for a ~2000+ mile run to the Keys for less than $200 for the week I'm inclined to do it, and also not sweat it if every car in our fleet has over 100,000 miles on them. In the past I've tried to stagger replacements so we'd have at least 1 car with less than 80,000 on the clock.

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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-09-2007, 11:44 PM   #23
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl
Could someone clarify the reason for doing this? Is it because you're worried about the reliability of your regular car? Or the fun of tooling around in a nice new car?
It's not to save money, right?
You bet it is to save money.. in the long run. We have two ponies. One an old Infin, the other a Jeep of recent vintage. By the time you factor in depreciation the rental is a lot cheaper than the Jeep. I love my old Infin but the miles from Portland to San Jose and return (typical run) don't do anything for it's future. Besides, when I get to San Jose we may take the grand-baby for a ride. The newer cars are safer and fit a car seat better.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 01:32 AM   #24
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

When I look at Edmund's figures on depreciation/maintenance/repair as a function of age of the car, I find that my 2003 Saturn VUE costs me about $40 per week and my 1995 Dodge RAM costs me about $50 per week. If my trip doesn't involve a need for high clearance, I drive the Saturn VUE which gets ~26 mpg on the highway. So I don't see gas costs making it financially worthwhile.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 03:10 AM   #25
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Enterprise usually has weekend specials (3 days) which we have taken advantage of many times and many places. Other companies also have weekend specials, too.

We don't buy new cars. We buy durable used ones. Two of the last three were bought at Enterprise's used vehicle lot on Aurora in Seattle, and we did a LOT of shopping before we bought there. Very happy with the long-term results.

Once the kids are out of the nest, if we stay where we are, I anticipate that we will go back to one beater and rent something for long trips. We live in a small town and Enterprise is within walking distance.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 03:47 AM   #26
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Car rental is a reasonable approach for a short road trip 1 or 2 weeks. For an extended trip of say... 2 months, it probably be a bit expensive. Especially if you consider... If you have a beater... you are probably not carrying the type of insurance that covers damage if you have a wreck. The rental agency's collision and damage waiver is very high and adds to the cost.

We often rent cars when we do a fly/drive vacation. We tend to keep one of our vehicles in reliable shape for road trips... Therefore we usually drive our own vehicle.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 09:11 AM   #27
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
When I look at Edmund's figures on depreciation/maintenance/repair as a function of age of the car, I find that my 2003 Saturn VUE costs me about $40 per week and my 1995 Dodge RAM costs me about $50 per week. If my trip doesn't involve a need for high clearance, I drive the Saturn VUE which gets ~26 mpg on the highway. So I don't see gas costs making it financially worthwhile.
True...but I'm talking about renting fot exceptionally high-mileage weeks, and the side benefit of knowing we're not going to be parked in Stinking Creek, Tennessee for a few days waiting for Cletus to fix our car if it breaks down.

Cb
PS: My apologies to any members from Stinking Creek named Cletus whom I might have offended.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 10:44 AM   #28
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Let's quantify Sue Js trip (1400 miles, one week):

Personal car (use IRS mileage rate):

.485 $/mile * 1400 miles = $679


Rent Camry from SFO, Apr 18 - Apr 25:

$237 Car Rental
Camry gets 28 MPG, and assume $3/gallon gas:
1400 miles / 28 MPG * 3 $/g = $150


Total Drive Your Own Car Cost: $679
Total Rental Cost: $387

--------------------------

Well, that surprised me. Were my assumptions reasonable? The IRS mileage rate is in agreement with AAA's rate.

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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 10:58 AM   #29
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Given the above assumptions, how many miles (x) do you have to drive to break even (34 is the daily rental rate, .107 is the cost of gas per mile):

.485 x = 34 + .107 x
.378 x = 34
x = 89.9 miles
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 11:16 AM   #30
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Qualifying note: About 40% of the cost per mile calculation at Edmunds.com for driving your own car comes from insurance, taxes and fees, and financing, all of which you would continue to pay while you rent the car.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 11:24 AM   #31
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

I suspect that most of us drive for less $ per mile than national averages...I know I do - often buying used cars, or relatively inexpensive new cars with very few options, keeping them for a decade, etc.

The surprisingly low cost of unlimited mileage rentals makes me a bit more inclined to keep cars even longer than I have in the past.

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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 12:00 PM   #32
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
Qualifying note: About 40% of the cost per mile calculation at Edmunds.com for driving your own car comes from insurance, taxes and fees, and financing, all of which you would continue to pay while you rent the car.
Yeah. That's the point I was going to make. You don't stop paying depreciation, insurance, taxes and fees on your car just because you keep it in the garage.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 03:30 PM   #33
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Yep, most of the cost of owning a car is fixed... insurance and purchase cost. Even when I went on my round the world trip for 7 months, I still had to pay the same insurance on my car sitting at home as I would pay before and after. The insurance company has no way to verify that I won't let someone else drive the car.

Mileage doesn't affect final value much. I experimented on edmunds.com and it looks like on a 10 year old Camry, having an additional 10k miles only reduces the used value about $100. So a 1400 mile drive reduces the value of the car $14. Hardly even worth considering when contemplating a $400 rental.

The only significant marginal cost you pay for not leaving the beater at home is maintenance. Unless there is some huge nascent mechanical problem that you're hoping to sliently hand off to the next owner of the car, there's no way that maintenance will on average cost more than a rental. Or unless your beater is a Ferrari with expensive parts.

In my mind the real reason for renting a car for long trips is comfort: peace of mind that you're less likely to break down and the comfort of driving a more pleasant vehicle.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-10-2007, 03:39 PM   #34
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
Qualifying note: About 40% of the cost per mile calculation at Edmunds.com for driving your own car comes from insurance, taxes and fees, and financing, all of which you would continue to pay while you rent the car.
You could use the IRS "volunteer" rate. It's $.14/mile. The moving/medical rate is $.18/mile.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-11-2007, 11:49 AM   #35
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

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Originally Posted by free4now
Mileage doesn't affect final value much. I experimented on edmunds.com and it looks like on a 10 year old Camry, having an additional 10k miles only reduces the used value about $100. So a 1400 mile drive reduces the value of the car $14. Hardly even worth considering when contemplating a $400 rental.
My experieance with cars (mostly Toyota's) is that they are good for at least 200,000 miles. While I have found most people think of old cars as simply old and uncool. So I look for low miliage(30k-70k) older cars, and drive them for 200k miles. This strategy seems to cut the cost of a car to 1/8th of my friends.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-13-2007, 11:16 AM   #36
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

I was mistaken about the rental cost. My wife rented a Pontiac G6, drove it 1400 miles in 6 days, and paid a total of $149 for the rental, or $.11 per mile.

I'm not sure how she'll react when I tell her about my plan to replace our current cars with a couple of '87 Dodge Omni's (well down the depreciation curve, I figure) and just rent whenever we have to go outside the beltway.

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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-13-2007, 12:03 PM   #37
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

I redid my personal car cost/mile calculation, and estimated it costs me 20 cents/mile. So, redoing my calculation from the previous page:

Personal car (My rate (Toyota Echo)):

.2 $/mile * 1400 miles = $280

Rent Camry from SFO, Apr 18 - Apr 25:

$237 Car Rental
Camry gets 28 MPG, and assume $3/gallon gas:
1400 miles / 28 MPG * 3 $/g = $150


Total Drive Your Own Car Cost: $280
Total Rental Cost: $387

And the breakeven miles calc:

.2 x = 34 + .107 x
.093x = 34
x = 366 miles/day




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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-13-2007, 04:17 PM   #38
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

A dissenting voice here...
We bought a car that we enjoy driving around town and on long trips, so we consider the extra cost to be part of the "travel experience." We could also take either the beater 1998 Camry, or the nice 2005 Camry, but they're less enjoyable.
On the other hand, tire costs alone for the fun car are about 8 cents per mile. I haven't worked that out yet for our SWR.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-14-2007, 08:56 PM   #39
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

If tires cost 8 cents per mile, and last 50,000 miles, that means a set of tires costs $4,000. You must have a monster truck.
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?
Old 04-14-2007, 10:49 PM   #40
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Re: Own a beater & just rent cars for travel?

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl
If tires cost 8 cents per mile, and last 50,000 miles, that means a set of tires costs $4,000.&#160; You must have a monster truck.
Set of tires from Tire Rack (discount store), mounted & balanced locally, cost $1,600.&#160; Tire life is about 20,000 miles or a little less, hence the 8 cents per mile.&#160; &#160; But they stick like Velcro.
Corvette with optional handling package, runflat tires.
As mentioned, it's all part of the "travel experience", although sometimes the scenery is a blur.&#160;
We do have to make some other financial adjustments to cover this extravagance.&#160; This is probably one of those expenses that will decline drastically when we grow up, oops, I mean get older.
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