Car Rentals: Find the Best Deals for Your Next Road Trip

Planning an exciting road trip but worried about the expensive car rentals? Don’t worry, this guide will help you find great deals. You’ll learn how to save money on car rentals for your upcoming adventure. We’ll cover using memberships, checking loyalty programs, and other smart strategies.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, road trips are back, causing a 53% jump in rental prices in the U.S. by March 2023. Despite this, there are ways to snag budget-friendly auto rental services. With a few key tactics, amazing deals on temporary car leasing are within reach.

So, what’s the secret to unlocking the best prices on short-term car rental and car hire companies? We’re going to help you discover these secrets. By looking for the best vehicle rental solutions and tapping into automotive rental providers, you can afford a stylish journey without overspending.

Key Takeaways

  • Leverage memberships and loyalty programs to access exclusive car rental discounts
  • Explore alternative rental options like Turo for more affordable and flexible choices
  • Avoid unnecessary fees and extras by opting for economy cars and declining additional insurance
  • Compare prices across rental car companies and aggregator sites to find the best deals
  • Be flexible with your rental location to avoid pricey airport surcharges

The Importance of Comparing Car Rental Prices

Looking at different car rental pricing can really change what you pay. It’s smart to check out prices from many places. This way, you can find the best deal, even if you’re a regular with one company.

Rental Car Companies vs Aggregator Sites

It’s a good idea to start with a big rental car aggregator site to see prices. You should also compare these to what you find with different car rental companies. You might get a great discount by booking straight with a company, especially if you choose to pay in advance. Just remember that this kind of booking usually can’t be changed.

Understanding Pricing Factors

Where you’re renting can change the price a lot, like at the airport. Places like airports often have extra fees. Thinking about pick-up and drop-off locations can save you money.

Rental Car Provider Average Base Rate Airport Surcharge Total Rental Cost
Hertz $50/day $15/day $65/day
Avis $45/day $12/day $57/day
Enterprise $40/day $10/day $50/day
Budget $35/day $8/day $43/day

The table shows how rental prices change depending on where you rent and from who. Knowing how these prices work can help you choose better and save on your next car rental.

Costco Travel for Costco Members

Costco Travel is a great option for Costco members looking to rent cars. They work out good deals with top rental companies. This means you can easily find the best price and car for your needs from Alamo, Avis, Budget, and Enterprise.

Costco Rental Car Booking Process

Booking a car through Costco Travel is easy. You need to be a Costco member, but extra drivers don’t. Also, everyone driving the car must be 25 or older. With Costco Travel, you pay at pick-up, making it simple and no stress.

Age Requirements and Additional Drivers

If you rent a car via Costco Travel, the main driver must be a Costco member. But others who drive don’t have to be. Remember, everyone driving should be over 25, no matter their membership.

AutoSlash: The Car Rental Aggregator

AutoSlash is a game-changer for people looking for the best car rental deals. It’s a smart AutoSlash car rental aggregator that searches for discounts you can get through your memberships or credit cards. This means more savings for you.

Entering Memberships and Discounts

AutoSlash can find discounts using your memberships and loyalty programs. Just tell it what you’re part of, and it will see if any deals apply to your rental. This way, you save without any extra work.

Tracking Price Drops with AutoSlash

AutoSlash also watches prices for you. You can pick which rental companies to keep an eye on. If it finds a better price for you, it will let you know so you can save more money.

By combining searching and watching prices, AutoSlash helps smart travelers save on their car rentals.

Turo: The Peer-to-Peer Car Rental Option

In today’s car rental market, Turo stands out as a major game-changer. It’s known as the “Airbnb of rental car sites.” Turo connects car owners with people looking to rent. This system, known as peer-to-peer car sharing, has become very popular coast to coast. It offers a different and often cheaper way to rent a car compared to traditional rental companies.

Advantages of Using Turo

Using Turo can mean lower costs, especially for young drivers under 25. It also provides the option for the car to be delivered to you. This avoids the hassle of picking it up. What’s more, renting from someone local can be handier than going to a rental store.

Earning Points and Miles with Turo

Turo’s partnerships with airlines aren’t as big as those of major rental car companies. But, using Turo can still help you earn rewards with Turo. When you rent through Turo, it’s seen as a travel purchase by your credit card. This means you can collect points and miles through the card’s travel rewards program. For those who travel often, this adds value and cuts down rental costs.

Expedia: Booking car rentals Along with Other Travel Components

Planning a road trip is easy with Expedia. It’s a one-stop-shop for everything you need. You can find top Expedia car rentals and book flights, hotels, and more in one place.

The Expedia car rental page is easy to use. You can pick options like refundable rentals and how you pay. This helps a lot if plans change during your trip.

Expedia has a new rewards program called One Key. It brings rewards together from Expedia,, Orbitz, and Vrbo. This will give travelers more chances to earn and use rewards when booking car rentals and travel packages on Expedia. The new program is launching soon.

Use Expedia to plan your trip easily and save. By including car rentals with other bookings, you might save more. Plus, with the new rewards program, there are even more benefits. Expedia is a great choice for your next adventure.

AAA Discounts and Benefits for Members

AAA car rental discounts

Are you an AAA member? If so, you’re in luck for your next road trip. You can get great discounts on your car rental. With AAA, you get up to 20% off in the U.S. and Canada. In other countries, you can enjoy up to 10% off. These savings are thanks to special AAA deals.

Exclusive AAA Rental Car Discounts

AAA members get more than just money off the base rate. They can also use a safety seat for free. Plus, they can add up to four more drivers at no extra cost. This is perfect for big families or groups. These extras show how joining AAA benefits you.

AAA Partnership with Hertz

But the savings don’t stop there. If you rent from Hertz with your AAA discount, there’s more. You get 10% off gas at local prices and can return the car with any fuel left. For young drivers aged 20-24, the extra fee is dropped. This Hertz AAA offer is full of value for AAA members.

car rentals: Strategies for Finding the Best Deals

Finding a cost-effective car rental for your road trip is smart planning. A source of wisdom shares tips on spotting top deals.

Avoiding Airport Surcharges

First off, it’s wise to avoid renting at the airport. Doing so can ramp your costs up by around 26%.

This high price is due to extra surcharges and fees. It’s better to rent downtown or somewhere away from the airport. This way, you dodge extra taxes and fees.

Shopping Around Online

Our source strongly suggests checking the web. compare prices on car rental aggregator sites and rental car company websites. Doing this can pay off and help you find a deal that won’t stretch your budget.

Comparing Rental Car Brands

Don’t think “cheap” brands are always the best bet. Our advice? Look at a few different rental car companies. This way, you’re sure to get the most value for your money.

Following these wise steps, you can cruise through the car rental scene. It’s a way to dig up the best savings for your upcoming journey.

Leveraging Memberships and Loyalty Programs

leveraging memberships for car rentals

Savvy travelers maximize their benefits through memberships and loyalty programs. They find great deals on car rentals this way. By using resources like the Costco Travel portal or airline programs, you can save a lot on your next car rental.

Costco Membership Benefits

Costco Travel is a standout for gaining car rental advantages through memberships. It offers special deals with top rental companies. Members often get better prices here than from the rental companies or other sites.

Airline Frequent Flyer Programs

Don’t forget about airline programs’ benefits on car rentals. American Airlines AAdvantage, for instance, gives 35% off at Budget and Avis. But, remember, these deals are usually for airport pickups.

Money-Saving Tips for Car Rentals

Renting a car for your next adventure can be pricey, but there are ways to save. Picking the right car, using your own insurance, and more can lower your expenses on car rentals.

Opting for Economy Cars

Choosing a small or economy car is a great money-saving tip. These cars are usually less expensive to rent. Plus, you might get a free upgrade.

Sticking to One Driver

Rental companies often charge for extra drivers. You can avoid this fee by having only one driver. This could save you $12-$13 daily.

Using Your Own Insurance

Think about using your personal auto insurance or credit card coverage instead of the rental company’s. This choice can save you $30 or more each day on extra insurance.

Forgoing Unnecessary Extras

Rental companies offer extras like GPS and car seats. Bringing your own, if you can, is a smart way to avoid these costly add-ons.

By using these tips, you can pick an economy car and save by not adding extra drivers. Also, using your own insurance means spending less. Lastly, skip the unnecessary extras to lower your rental’s total cost.


This article wraps up by giving you a detailed look at finding the best car rental deals. It highlights the need to compare prices, use memberships, and avoid extra charges. It also suggests being open about where you pick up your rental car.

Using the strategies shared here, travelers can cut back on rental expenses. They can then focus on their trip. The car rental business is changing fast. It’s embracing new tech like digital tools, IoT, and AI. This means better service and more options for customers.

Planning a long trip or a short one? The tips in this article will help you find the ideal car rental deal. By choosing smart, you can save money and enjoy your journey more. Make sure to use the best tips and services available. This will ensure a great experience on your road trip.


What are some websites beyond the major car rental companies to compare prices and find the best deals?

You can find great deals not only from Enterprise, Avis, and the like. Websites like Costco Travel, AutoSlash, Turo, and Expedia also offer competitive rates.

How have rental car prices been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?

The COVID-19 pandemic caused a rise in road trips, pushing rental prices up. While costs are coming down, they’re still higher than before the pandemic. In March 2023, the prices were up 53% compared to March 2019 in the U.S.

What are the benefits of booking rental cars through Costco Travel?

Booking with Costco Travel can save you money. They get special rates with top rental companies. You can compare and book without paying until you pick up, but the main driver must be a member.

What are the unique features of the AutoSlash car rental aggregator?

AutoSlash helps you find discounts by checking your memberships. It tracks prices and alerts you to cheaper rates, potentially saving you money through rebooking.

What are the advantages and limitations of using Turo for car rentals?

Turo works like Airbnb for cars, offering unique and local rentals. It’s good for under 25s and offers delivery. But, it doesn’t support one-way rentals, limiting some travel plans.

What benefits do AAA members receive for car rentals?

AAA offers up to 20% off in the U.S. and Canada and 10% off internationally. Members can rent cars with bonuses like child safety seats and free additional drivers. There’s also a discount on gas with Hertz and no young renter fees for those 20-24.

What are some strategies for finding the best deals on car rentals?

To save money on car rentals, try these tips:
– Avoid airport rentals for cheaper prices
– Compare online for the best deals
– Look for economy cars, they’re often the cheapest
– Stick to one driver if possible to avoid extra fees
– Use your auto insurance or credit card for coverage
– Say no to extra gadgets and services like GPS or car seats

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