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Priceline for rental car
Old 07-28-2015, 07:34 AM   #1
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Priceline for rental car

Recently I had to rent a car for 4 days at an airport. I used Priceline to bid and got it for $15/day compared to $34/day. Pretty good deal BUT what I didn't know before was that if I wanted my wife to drive it I needed to pay $11/day for her! Normally that would be included in the normal rate. Still it would have been a better price. Wasn't a problem just wanted to point that out.
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Old 07-28-2015, 08:21 AM   #2
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Are you a Costco member? You get an additional driver for free. Also a one-class upgrade.
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Old 07-28-2015, 09:59 AM   #3
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Plus 1 for Costco car rentals. Also well worth it to pick car off airport if there is cheap transportation from airport to car rental.
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Old 07-28-2015, 11:30 AM   #4
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They'd be doing me a favor not letting my wife drive. She scares me to death behind the wheel.

I broke both legs 5 years ago, and my wife drove me to appointments for 2 months. That was close to torture.


She recently flattened the next door neighbor's mail box and I had to have a fender replaced on our new SUV.
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Old 07-28-2015, 02:49 PM   #5
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+1 I would prefer that DW not drive. I have used Priceline for car rentals over the years. What I found is that while I could get a good price, that there is no flexibility to make changes without them looking to put it to you.

I recall late one night getting to the Austin, TX airport only to discover that I had put the wrong date into Priceline and our car rental did not start until 24 hours later and they wanted an arm and a leg for the extra day. I walked down the hall and found a more reasonable one-day rental and luckily we had to return to the airport the next night to pick up DD so it all worked out, but I am now very careful about dates and times if using Priceline. That said, I have not used them recently, but did somewhat enjoy the "game" of starting with a low bid and bumping it little by little until it was accepted.
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Old 07-29-2015, 02:50 PM   #6
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Try Autoslash.com get the lowest price and it will up date if prices go down prior to your trip. It searches availability from several sites and picks the lowest options
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Old 07-30-2015, 08:54 PM   #7
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Another fan of costco travel for car rental!
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Old 07-30-2015, 10:54 PM   #8
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For those who have rented via Costco, supposedly you get a free 1 class upgrade.......e.g. rent/pay for midsize and get std size instead for free.
Did that actually happen voluntarily or did you have to drag it out of the local car rental place?
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Old 07-31-2015, 07:34 AM   #9
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For those who have rented via Costco, supposedly you get a free 1 class upgrade.......e.g. rent/pay for midsize and get std size instead for free.
Did that actually happen voluntarily or did you have to drag it out of the local car rental place?
As I recall, you book using a Costco website and the upgrade is reflected in the choices that you are offered. The additional driver allowance is printed in the confirmation.
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:00 AM   #10
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Another +1 for Costco car rentals. I'll add that with Costco you do not have to pay in advance to secure the rate, like many of the Priceline/Expedia/etc. sites.
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:09 AM   #11
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I would never admit my wife was an additional driver. If she had an accident, our personal auto insurance would be paying for the repairs anyway. Paying for an additional driver is just another rental car rip off--like their optional CDW costs they pocket as complete profit. Remember, most rental car companies don't even have insurance--self insured.

And I do everything possible to avoid my wife driving any vehicle. She scares me to death behind the wheel.
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:17 AM   #12
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...And I do everything possible to avoid my wife driving any vehicle. She scares me to death behind the wheel.
+1 and too much risk too.
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Old 08-01-2015, 10:26 AM   #13
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As I recall, you book using a Costco website and the upgrade is reflected in the choices that you are offered. The additional driver allowance is printed in the confirmation.
travelover.........thanks for your input. After much agonizing, not aided by a Costco rep who had the same wrong idea that I did, I have concluded that you are correct........when you pick intermediate, you get intermediate at the counter. I guess I was the victim of overthinking the T&C...indicating a one class upgrade. I thought if I picked intermediate, I would get a standard size at the counter ......the one class upgrade. Fortunately the prices shifted downward so I could get the full size rental cheaper than the original mid-size one. Your input helped me avoid what would have been a very disappointing outcome.

If I compare the car rental site(e.g. Alamo) vs Costco, it looks like in some cases the savings aren't really that large....e.g. for a particular rental,
Costco is $287. Alamo is $319 (pay later) but is $287 for their pay now option so the same as Costco except you have to pay now. There is a small fee for cancellation ( $5 or $10 depending on how in advance) and perhaps an additional charge for additional driver so Costco is always better but the difference may not be that large.

I later checked another location and the difference between Costco and the car rental site is huge so
I guess it depends................where/when
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Old 08-01-2015, 11:43 AM   #14
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My wife recently used Priceline to rent a car in San Diego. Hertz ended up being the company that accepted her bid. The experience was horrible. She said she had to wait in a long, long line to get the car, and found out when she finally got to the counter the reason for the delays. The Hertz rep. was giving everyone that rented a car with them through Priceline, the "hard sell" to upgrade the car, buy additional insurance from them, etc, etc.. If you declined the upgrade and extra insurance, they lectured you about what a big mistake you were making, etc.. My wife finally had to stop the rep. and tell them that they were making her late for a meeting, and to PLEASE just rent her the car she had pre-arranged, without the extra stuff they were trying to sell. After that, they were rude to her, and even yelled at her as she left the counter with the key. She says she will never, every rent a vehicle through Hertz again.

She ended up renting another car (later in her stay out there) directly through Alamo, and had a very pleasant, painless experience. No wait, no hassles, service with a smile.

When she got home, she called Priceline to tell them how Hertz treats customers who rent cars through them, and they were supposed to get back to her with a response, but never did.
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Old 08-01-2015, 11:49 AM   #15
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Another +1 for Costco car rentals. I'll add that with Costco you do not have to pay in advance to secure the rate, like many of the Priceline/Expedia/etc. sites.
Simple question here. If I have a reservation using Costco (and had to use my credit card to secure that reservation) but change my mind at the airport and go through another rental agency, will I be charged for any of the reservation? Sometimes when picking up luggage at airport, there is an in airport rental car counter that tries to get your business by matching the rate of your reservation. Usually it is a more upscale rental car agency with no line.
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Old 08-01-2015, 12:01 PM   #16
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What I do is check Priceline to find the lowest price rental company. I then go to that company's site to see their price, after a quick search for any discount codes that might work. If it's a good price, I'll make the reservation, assuming it can be cancelled. I'll either have pre-checked or will check Costco for their rates. One thing I've noticed is that rates will vary as you get closer to the rental date. I've been able to save $50-200 on a rental and many times I have more than one reservation. If my dates aren't certain, I'll go ahead and make reservations for the dates I think we might be traveling, canceling the others once the dates are locked in. All told, about 90% of my reservations are made at the company websites, 9% at Costco and the remainder via Priceline or other travel sites.

Oh, and while my wife's driving is not too scary, I tend to do all the rental driving because she doesn't like to drive in unfamiliar areas.


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Old 08-01-2015, 12:04 PM   #17
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Simple question here. If I have a reservation using Costco (and had to use my credit card to secure that reservation) but change my mind at the airport and go through another rental agency, will I be charged for any of the reservation? Sometimes when picking up luggage at airport, there is an in airport rental car counter that tries to get your business by matching the rate of your reservation. Usually it is a more upscale rental car agency with no line.

Read the terms. You might be responsible for one day's rental.


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Old 08-01-2015, 01:14 PM   #18
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I thought you didn't have to prepay (or secure) Costco reservations......but if you were late, you might have to communicate to them what was happening so they didn't release the car.
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Old 08-01-2015, 04:09 PM   #19
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My wife recently used Priceline to rent a car in San Diego. Hertz ended up being the company that accepted her bid. The experience was horrible. She said she had to wait in a long, long line to get the car, and found out when she finally got to the counter the reason for the delays. The Hertz rep. was giving everyone that rented a car with them through Priceline, the "hard sell" to upgrade the car, buy additional insurance from them, etc, etc.. If you declined the upgrade and extra insurance, they lectured you about what a big mistake you were making, etc.. My wife finally had to stop the rep. and tell them that they were making her late for a meeting, and to PLEASE just rent her the car she had pre-arranged, without the extra stuff they were trying to sell. After that, they were rude to her, and even yelled at her as she left the counter with the key. She says she will never, every rent a vehicle through Hertz again.
This has happened to me several times in the last year or two. My last two trips to Las Vegas on business have been particularly bad first at Budget and then at Thrifty/Dollar. Had to wait more than an hour in line. I think they also take advantage of the international tourists in Vegas. One guy was at the counter for more than 30 minutes and I later saw him driving a Mustang convertible.
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Old 08-01-2015, 04:34 PM   #20
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............ The Hertz rep. was giving everyone that rented a car with them through Priceline, the "hard sell" to upgrade the car, buy additional insurance from them, etc, etc.. If you declined the upgrade and extra insurance, they lectured you about what a big mistake you were making, etc.. .........
I've had this happen with various car rental companies over the years. It seems like it is a local problem with an asshat manager trying to meet some quota.

I regularly use Hertz off airport and they never even mention insurance or upsell. On this last trip, I reserved a Toyota Corolla and was given a new Dodge Charger at no extra charge.
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