TweetRenting a car is a very expensive part of traveling. It’s often a necessity. When I drive newer cars, or when I need to drive for business, I use a rental car rather than put the miles on my car.
Just because I use someone else’s car does not mean that I want to pay a lot for a rental. Here’s my best trick yet on saving money, a trick that can save you $50 or more on a car rental.
Weekly Car Rental Rate Trick
Rental cars are usually priced by the day, meaning that you are charged a flat rate for the use of their car for a full 24 hour period. Some stores, such as Enterprise Rent-A-Car stores, also offer a weekly rate. I think the rate is usually something like $40 a day or $210 a week.
Anyway, you can see how much cheaper a full week is than a week of single days. For $200 you can get the full use of a rental car for 5 days, or spend just $10 more for two extra days if you agree to a week-long contract.
Now for the secret: Enterprise Rent-A-Car will not punish you for turning in a car early.
This means that you can rent a car by agreeing to a 7 day contract for the discounted rate, and then turn it in early. You will be charged the weekly per-day rate for the days that you use the car. So, whereas you might pay $40 a day to rent a vehicle for 5 days, you could rent a vehicle at a $30 day rate for a week, turn it in two days early, and pay only $150 for the same rental. That’s a savings of $50, or $10 per day.
The savings really adds up. I have used this without fail on several occasions with no complaints from Enterprise for turning my car in early. In fact, I’ve never once been asked to pay the daily rate when I sign for a one-week contract that I terminate early. My friends, who have also used this for two family vacations, have never been asked to pay the full rate either.
The next time you need a rental car remember to sign a weekly contract and turn it in early – you’ll get the cheaper per-day weekly rate for all the days that you use it.
So far I have done this only at Enterprise Rent-A-Car locations – I have not tested it at other companies. If you know of any other places where this might work, please say so in the comments!