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DebitNM Nov 2nd, 2008 07:05 AM

Help on extending Budget car rental
DH is in Orlando with his elderly mom attending to her health issues.

He was supposed to come home on 11/4. I booked a car with Budget for 1 week [until 11/4] via Southwest Airlines and got a great rate - $95 for week [with fees $155].

He now has to extend his stay 3 days. He called Budget and was told that it would be $35 PER extra DAY!! {I am not even sure that includes all the extra charges or not, either way that sux}.

I told him that he should simply return the car on Tuesday and I would get him another car rental for the 3 day period of time.

I could try Priceline or do Payless or Thrifty for $11 or $12 plus fees [which would come to about $55 for the 3 days].

OF course, there is the 30 minute drive each way to airport, time wasted turning car in and getting new one and the gas.

Budget website says that you have to call either 800 or local number to extend contract.

I have tried calling the Orlando office but no one answers and my call gets switched to 800 number. DH made reservation using 800 number. DH doesn't have internet access, hence my pitching in.

Are we over the probverbial barrel here? Any ideas?


WhereAreWe Nov 2nd, 2008 07:15 AM

Looking at the Budget website, it shows a charge of $147 (including taxes/fees) for an economy car, picking up on the 4th and dropping off on the 7th.

Not sure why it's so high, but that's what it is so if you want to save $100 he'll have to switch cars out and go with someone else. If you can, find out if Payless or Thrifty are close to the Budget lot. If he can just walk over instead of taking the shuttle back to the airport, then shuttle right back to the new car it would save a lot of time.

DebitNM Nov 2nd, 2008 07:18 AM

I ran the numbersfor a new reservation thru Southwest using the same discount code and it came to $85 [before fees] for the 3 days.

I think they really give the best prices on a weekly rental.

Good thought about where Payless and Thrify are located compared to Budget and the whole shuttle back to airport and then to car lot.


rkkwan Nov 2nd, 2008 08:28 AM

Deb - That's how they make money.

nytraveler Nov 2nd, 2008 09:34 AM

Weekly rentals are always more than dailies - and frankly I think $35 per day is a huge bargain. I'm always happy with anything under $100 - but I know Orlando rates are always rock bottom.

I think your only answer is to try to find a better 3 day rate. But - do consider if the tiny amount of savings is worth the aggravation considering what else he's dealing with.

WhereAreWe Nov 2nd, 2008 02:10 PM

Just by what I can gather from the airport map, it looks like Budget's lot is at the airport and the other 2 are off-site. So it should be relatively easy to drop off the car and take a shuttle from there, rather than have 2 shuttle trips.

Alternatively, the other rental agencies right at the airport are: Alamo, Dollar, Avis, National, L&M and E-Z Rent-A-Car.

DebitNM Nov 2nd, 2008 02:36 PM

I've called the local office several times today and got voicemail or the option to switch to call center. I left a message, but no surprise, no one has called me back.

I am guessing we are going to have to just take this one as it is. As if things weren't hectic enough..

Thanks all,

lcuy Nov 2nd, 2008 02:51 PM

I've had this happen a few times - trying to extend and being quoted a significant penalty.

A couple of times I was able to have a supervisor extend my original rate (when I told them I was more than willing to drop off the car and get a new one), and a couple of times I ended up actually returning the car and getting a new one at the SAME company for a reduced rate.

You'd think that unless they are in a sold out situation they would be happy to get the extra income without having to do additional paperwork, wash the car, etc. Often only a manager can do this though, so good luck getting the branch manager.

Depends on how well you bluff over the phone, and/or if husband has the time to do the return.

Good luck.

DebitNM Nov 2nd, 2008 03:25 PM

As I sit here thinking about this, I realized that they didn't have economy car that I had reserved, so they gave him a "free" upgrade to a Sebring which an intermediate I think. So of course, now when they extend and do a daily rate, it is at a higher rate since the car is larger.

Orlando has SO many rental cars, and I would guess that at this time of year, they would be happy to have any business, but I guess it is business as usual.


esm Nov 2nd, 2008 03:43 PM

Deb, does he have to drop the car at the airport location? Just wondering if he can drop the car in the city, get another car (maybe another agency) and drop the second car at the airport so he wouldn't face the extra round trip to airport.

DebitNM Nov 2nd, 2008 04:42 PM

That sounded like a good ideas so I plugged in 3 days with drop off at airport. And yes, most of the absurd fees are gone and they don't even charge a 1 way drop off fee BUT the daily rate was $66!!

I am guessing that this is because I looked in the closest town [ he is outside of Orlando proper].


esm Nov 2nd, 2008 05:18 PM

Yikes Deb! Good luck with your search.

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