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Advice for Car Rental from CLT


thetrim1
By thetrim1,
in

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Hi,

On Monday, I saw car rental deals from CLT (Charlotte airport) for a mid-size car for $26.59 on hotwire. Of course now when I go to hotwire, the price has jumped to $38.60. I really don't want to spend more than $20 on a car rental and wanted to see if I could get your help. I offered $15 on priceline on a mid-size car and was rejected so I'm not sure what kind of games I can play there either. Here is my info:

Fly into CLT at 9:50pm on 6/11

Fly out of CLT at 11:25am on 6/16

Got any advice? Should I wait for prices to drop again? Will they drop again? Or am I hosed? Thanks and BTW, I used the links from better bidding to access both priceline and hotwire - Cheers - Mike

PS - What is also weird, is that if I try to pick up or drop off the a day earlier or a day later, then the prices drop drammatically (back to $21.99 for a mid-size) why would the price go up if I wanted to rent the car for 5 days instead of 4 days???

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What is also weird, is that if I try to pick up or drop off the a day earlier or a day later, then the prices drop drammatically (back to $21.99 for a mid-size) why would the price go up if I wanted to rent the car for 5 days instead of 4 days???
Extending the stay probably tips the scale of a 4 day rental to a weeklong rental (although it appears that you're actually looking at a 5 nite rental and checking for an extra day extends it to a 6 nite rental).

Does the lower rate for 6 nites have a lower total rate than the 5 nite search?

Please use this HOTWIRE and these PRICELINE LINKS: HOTELS, CAR RENTALS, and AIRFARE to begin your travel purchases

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Here's what I found - note that all of these are over a weekend...

Total for 5 nights 7/11-7/16 is 273.56 total

Total for 6 nights 7/10-7/16 is 184.61 total (How does it work if we have the rental for the day before we arrive???)

Total for 6 nights 7/11-7/17 is 278.53 total (This doesn't get us any extra)

So if we could, the rental from 7/10-7/16 is the best rate, but I have no idea how it would work from the stand point of picking up...

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I took a look and those are HOTWIRE "retail" rates (where you're shown the car rental company before your purchase)... these are just like regular car rentals thru any agency or car rental company. With these types of rentals the car company has the right to charge you an early return fee, which usually involves them recalculating the rate based upon the true rental time (which in this instance is going from a deeply discounted week-long rate to a 'simple' multi-day rental)

Please use this HOTWIRE and these PRICELINE LINKS: HOTELS, CAR RENTALS, and AIRFARE to begin your travel purchases

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When HOTWIRE shows the "retail" rate it's because they don't offer opaque rates in that city.

You can continue to try bidding on PRICELINE but chances are you'll have to bid based upon the higher rental rate (and not the weekly rate.

Not sure if you want to go down this path as it would be an uncertain outcome, but if you use your correct start date and extend a day on the end (in order to try for the week long rate), PRICELINE states that you can return the car any date you'd like (but no refund will be given for unused days) The following is current at time of posting and applies to the 'opaque' rental side of things:

You can always return your car earlier than your scheduled drop-off time but priceline cannot issue any refunds for unused time. Our rental car partners choose whether to accept your offer based on the exact combination of pick-up date, drop-off date, car type and location you select while on our website. As a result, your accepted price reflects savings that may not have been offered to you with any other combination. We know our no refunds policy is strict, but it's the agreement that keeps this great service available and the reason the major car rental companies allow you to save so much money with priceline.

HOWEVER... the user in this PRICELINE CAR RENTAL thread wasn't sure how long he'd need the car so rented for two days. Ended up only needing it one day and was hit with a large bill for early return. Seems to me the rental agency went against PRICELINE's terms, but not sure how it was ultimately resolved (or if the user pursued the matter)

Caveat emptor.

Please use this HOTWIRE and these PRICELINE LINKS: HOTELS, CAR RENTALS, and AIRFARE to begin your travel purchases

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