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Tag: dropoff charge

How to save on car rentals in NYC

by on Sep.11, 2009, under Rental Cars

Here’s a tip that can save you at least $40 a day on your next car rentals in New York City! If you live or work in NYC ((Manhattan or even one of the other four other boroughs) and want to rent a car for the weekend or a day, you would normally pick up the car in the city because it’s the most convenient location. Picking up a car from Manhattan generally comes with a price. Renting from one of the major car rental companies such as Hertz, Avis or National will cost you $90 to $120 per day if you choose to pick up the car from a Manhattan location.

To save up to $40 per day (and sometimes even more if you shop on Hotwire or Priceline), choose LaGuardia Airport (LGA) or JFK Airport as your pick up location and pick any NYC location as your return. Cars rented from JFK and LGA generally cost $50 to $85 a day, depending on availability.

Concerned about one way rental drop off fees? You won’t need to worry. All major car rental companies treat their NYC locations, including Manhattan, as one return location. Most car rental companies actually want you to bring cars from the airport into the city because the NYC rental car locations are usually parking lots, too small to hold enough cars during busy times like weekends. Some car rental companies, like Avis, also reward you for bringing cars back to the airport (see my previous post about one way rentals from/to Newark).

In summary, reserve your rental car to be picked up at LGA or JFK and set the return location to be somewhere in NYC. Hop on a train from Manhattan after work, and head to LGA or JFK to pick up a rental car; drop it off at NYC after you’re done. Here’s one of my previous posts on: How to take public transit to/from JFK.

For a 40 minute train to bus ride, you can save an extra $40 a day to pay for gas! You can mail me a check with a thank you note (actually leaving a comment on this post is fine).

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Rental car companies making one way rental expensive with dropoff charges

by on Apr.12, 2009, under Rental Cars

Car rental companies are eliminating flexible one way car rental returns. Major car rental companies like Avis, Hertz and National used to treat a Metro area as one car rental facility. With corporate and leisure rates, customers used to be able to rent from one metro area and return to another – i.e., rent at SFO and return at SJO. As recent as January 2009, I rented a car from National at LAX and returned the car at SNA without penalty.

Since March of 2009, I began to realize the major car rental companies are charging their customers for returning to a different car rental facility. I was looking to rent a car from Hertz or National at Burbank airport and returning the car to LAX and noticed extra charges for dropping the car off at a different location. National Car Rental adds a drop off charge with unlimited miles while Hertz charges a standard daily rental rate plus $0.30 per mile.

There are however exceptions on the east coast. Due to the competitive nature of the one way rentals in the greater New York area, you can still get good rates when you rent from NYC and return it to New Jersey/Newark. I have also rented from downtown Philadelphia and returned the car to PHL without any penalties or extra mileage charge.

I recommend you read the fine print of the car rental quote before you commit to the contract. Flexible return policies are out the window in this tough economy.

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