Triangle Trip

Is there a difference between National & Alamo?

by Captain G on Jan.13, 2009, under Rental Cars

Many of you are probably thinking what is the real difference between National Car Rental and Alamo since their bus is half green (National colors) and half blue (Alamo colors).  The answer to this is simple:  they are the owned by same company — Vanguard.

I recommend you always book Alamo unless you you have the following with National:

  1. Speedy checkout because you’re an Emerald Club Member (Alamo requires you to go through a person or their kiosks)
  2. Rent from them so much that you are a National Executive Emerald Club member which allows you to select a nicer car
  3. A Corporate account that offers discounts
  4. Want to earn the 1-2-Free (rent two times, get one free) promotion
  5. Want to return your car to a location that only has National

If you are using your own nickle, here are more reasons why you should rent from Alamo vs. National:

  1. When you rent from Alamo, you usually get the same car selection from National as the two brands share the same rental facility.
  2. Alamo is roughly 20% to 30% cheaper as they target vacationers vs. corporate travel. Alamo also has great weekend rates.
  3. Ease of booking on its website. You do not need to register, etc. All you need to do is enter your name and email address.

In summary, Alamo offers you the cheaper and easier way to make your reservation if you don’t mind spending a little time at the counter before you pick up your car. National is for corporate impatient travelers and where you can leverage your corporate discounts and earn more perks.

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