So you need a rental car… DCS has you covered
One of the most common questions I get from travelers is “Where can I find the best deal on a rental car?” Rental cars fluctuate greatly in price; just like flights. There are a few things to consider with rental cars…
Are your dates completely firm? If they are, then usually the least expensive method is to book through hotwire.com. You won’t know what rental company you’re getting until after you’ve booked AND your reservation is non-refundable and unchangeable. It’s great for last minute bookings, and can be substantially less expensive than other sites.
Do you need multiple drivers? Multi-driver rates can raise the cost of your car rental significantly, but sometimes it’s necessary or preferable to be able to share the driving.There are a few work-arounds to avoid this fee. Avis, Enterprise, and Budget allow you to add a spouse or domestic partner to your reservation, for no additional charge, when you rent in the US. Thrifty, Hertz, Dollar, and National will waive the fee if you enroll in their rewards programs. Probably the best work-around for the additional driver, especially if the additional driver is not your spouse or domestic partner, is to book through Costco.com. Almost all of their reservations come with an additional driver included, as well as an additional discount. This is often the least expensive site to book a rental car – remember to use your rewards program!
Are you a Rewards Member? If you’re going to be traveling regularly it can pay to enroll in a rewards program. According to TravelChannel.com, the best car rental reward program for business travelers is National Car Rental Emerald Club.
No matter what your rental car needs are, it is always beneficial to do a little shopping around. If you’re pressed for time, just stick to quick searches at Kayak.com, Hotwire.com, and Costco.com. It’s well worth a few minutes of your time! If you’re planning ahead it can pay off to keep an eye on the prices and book when they drop. If your booking has a flexible cancelation policy you may even consider booking when you first start looking, and then rebooking and cancelling your original reservation if the price drops.
Contributed by: Katie Stewart, Consultant Services Coordinator