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Any ideas for saving money on a 17 day one way car rental in California?

Any ideas for saving money on a 17 day one way car rental in California?

Aug 7th, 2003, 06:47 AM
  #1  
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Any ideas for saving money on a 17 day one way car rental in California?

We don't often rent cars in the US, but I was a little surprised as we are trying to rent a car in Sacramento and returning it 17 days later in Los Angles. For an intermediate car (we do need four doors) every company seems to be around $ 625 to $690, with the exception of Dollar which is $1200.

I'm ready to bite the bullet and do it, but was wondering if anyone had any money saving tips. So far, most of the discount sites don't seem to quote for one way rentals.
Patrick is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 06:51 AM
  #2  
 
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We jus rented one from San Francisco to return in San Diego and paid around $365. Did you go to Orbitz?
LourdesAlmaraz is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 06:52 AM
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Actually you're going for 7 more days than me so it makes sense, sorry!
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Aug 7th, 2003, 07:35 AM
  #4  
 
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One-way charges in CA vary a LOT depending on where you are going from/to. $625 seems pretty reasonable for your route -- $36 / day. You might be able to do a little better but probably not much.

If you can get by w/ a smaller car it might save you $100 to $200.
janis is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 07:41 AM
  #5  
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Thanks, Lourdes, I guess I hadn't checked Orbitz which does allow one way. But yes, their rates are the same (or slightly higher) in all cases than the quotes I'm getting from the companies. Guess that's the best I can do. I'm spoiled by the cheap car rental prices in Florida.
Patrick is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 07:56 AM
  #6  
 
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$36/day on an intermediate car is pretty reasonable. Make sure you find out what your auto insurance policy and credit cards cover as far as rental car insurance - that way you don't buy more insurance from the rental company than you need. This in and of itself can save you a bunch of money.
J_Correa is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 07:58 AM
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I believe that Hertz doesn't charge extra for one way rentals. For discounts try the Entertainment books, AAA or Costco.
viamar is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 09:17 AM
  #8  
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Thanks for the other comments. As to Hertz, you are right, but they also had the highest quote overall anyway, with the exception of Dollar which I still think is a fluke.
And as to the AAA discount, I've learned that when I call they make a deal about the AAA discount. But when I get a quote on line, then call to see if I can get the AAA discount, I always end up being told that the internet quote was a better rate anyway -- which it generally is.

In any case, we're going with National which was the only one who would guarantee the four door in the intermediate range and also will not charge for a second driver. Total price $ 686.58.
Patrick is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 09:43 AM
  #9  
MileKing
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If you are going to be spending a few days in a few different areas and don't mind swapping out rental cars every so often, you may look into piece-mealing your rentals. For example, if you are picking up in Sacramento but plan to stay in the area for 3 days before moving on, then return the car to Sacramento and pick-up another only for the one day drive to your next destination where you would swap out the car again. That way, you only pay for a one-way rental for the days with the long drives.
 
Aug 7th, 2003, 09:58 AM
  #10  
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Funny you mention that, MileKing. Actually we are returning to the Sacramento airport to send off a friend joining us for the first week after exactly one week of the trip. I checked on returning that car then and picking up a new one for the remaining week and three days, but it wasn't going to save us anything. The phone rep at National told me it really wasn't costing us anything for a "drop" in a different city, which surprised me.
Patrick is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 11:16 AM
  #11  
Mel
 
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Smartliving.com is a good resource for rental car discounts. They offer 10% discounts or a free upgrade, etc. for some of their partners. If you're already using a discount of some sort, it may not apply, but it's worth checking. Have a great trip to CA!
Mel is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 11:57 AM
  #12  
 
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Are you a non-citizen? Are these rates including the insurances that foreigners must accept in the U.S?
clarkgriswold is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 12:06 PM
  #13  
 
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You can get a 10 percent discount off the online rate if you plug in Contract Id 6600334. This is for Ralph's or Kroger's grocery card, which they probably won't even ask to see. I have a card, but have rented at least 20 times from National and have never been asked to show it.
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