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Tag: rental car

How to guarantee a mid-size or full-size rental car at Hertz

by coach on May.04, 2010, under Rental Cars

As a a Hertz Five Star Gold customer, I have been reserving mid-size cars at Hertz for the past four months and they’ve been giving me Toyota Corolla’s, Dodge Stratus, and cars that I would considered compact or economy class. I’ve tried to add NeverLost, Hertz’s GPS device, to my mid-size reservation in hopes to get a real mid-size car and still end up with a Corolla.

Recently I found a new best practice to add to Captain G’s list of best practices for renting cars. If you want a mid-size car or get upgraded to a full size at no extra costs, make your Hertz rental car reservation as a mid-size reservations and add satellite radio (Sirius XM) as an option. Satellite radio cost you about $5 per day depending on the city you’re renting from but it almost guarantees you a mid-size if not full size car. The rationale behind this logic is Hertz will not put satellite radio in their Corolla and other compact size fleet. Regular renters will not rent a compact car and upgrade to a satellite radio. So if you’ve $5 to spare per day and want to ensure you have a midsize to full size car, make sure you’ve Sirius XM radio as an option on your rental reservation. And if you’re lucky (this happens to me about 75% of the time), you’ll also end up with a Neverlost too, at no cost!

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How to ensure you always have a rental car - Rental Car Best Practices

by Captain G on Mar.18, 2009, under Rental Cars

It has been awhile since we have written about rental cars. Similar to hotel reservation rules (see previous post), rental car companies do not penalize you if you do not show up for your car reservation. Since some rental car companies are using the Yield Management model to price their cars, we highly recommend you make your rental car reservations weeks in advanced to avoid higher fees. Unlike hotels, you don’t even have to cancel your reservation. Most rental car companies will just void your reservation without penalty if you don’t show up.

There are however exceptions to this rule. On major holidays like Memorial Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc., some rental car companies will make you pre-pay for a day or the entire reservation. Check with your rental car company before confirming your reservation.

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National Car Rental implementing Yield Management model like airlines?

by Captain G on Feb.15, 2009, under Rental Cars

Over the President’s Day long weekend (and a week school break in some major US cities), I noticed a major spike in rental car prices. Cars are going for $125 to $150 per day in the Great LA area for National Car Rental vs. $55 per day for Emerald Club Members and Corporate rates. I called National and asked why the price was so high and the representative didn’t have an answer.

At the same time, I tried to get a car on Hertz and Budget and noticed they were just completely sold out. Hertz and Budget did not apply any price gauging tactics like National. The bigger question here is:  Are car rental companies implementing yield management models like airlines? If so, this will have an impact on the industry. National is probably ahead of its time on this one strategy.

In summary:  Just book your cars in advance as 99% of the car rental companies do not charge you for a no show.

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