What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

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researcher
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:50 am

traveltoomuch wrote:I disagree.

Maintenance will run $.06-.10/mile or more. The AAA article separates maintenance and tires.
http://newsroom.aaa.com/2015/04/annual- ... a-archive/

Part of depreciation is mileage-based, not age-based. Case in point: when I've had insurance total cars, they based valuations on an expected/average mileage and adjusted ~$.07/mile for over/under.

Adding those together, and taking the low end of the maintenance number, we get $.13/mile. For a 500 mile trip, that's $65. If the rental is only $40, renting makes financial sense. And, again, that's using the low-end maintenance estimates.
This analysis is wrong on several different levels.

First off, your $.07/mile depreciation is simply NOT reality.
- Even if we assume this number is accurate, it only applies IF the vehicle is totaled in an accident!
- If the vehicle is driven 8-10 years and 100K+ miles like most here do, there is zero depreciation from a 500 mile trip.

Regarding your maintenance costs...
- The AAA costs you quoted "Also includes the price of a comprehensive extended warranty with one warranty claim deductible of $100"?
- Including $3000 extended warranties is bogus and artificially drives up the supposed cost/mile for maintenance.

Driving your own vehicle likely costs something south of 6 cents/mile. But let's stick with your wildly inflated 13 cents/mile.
- As you stated, a 500 mile trip in his own vehicle would cost $65.
- The OP has a family of 5, is taking a 4 day trip, and needs a full size sedan or larger.
- There is ZERO chance he can rent for the $40 you quoted. That would be $10/day.

wrongfunds
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by wrongfunds » Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:57 am

If I put $200K kitchen in my house, would I be eating out all the time so that my kitchen won't get dirty?

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deanbrew
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by deanbrew » Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:59 am

BW1985 wrote: Sidebar - you only paid $245 in registration fees over 7 years? I have a 4 year old car and I paid $250 for just this year.

And your insurance is only $500/year?
Registration and insurance vary a lot, depending on location and other variables. If you are paying $250 a year, does your state have a personal property tax or otherwise tax the value of the vehicle?

Here in PA, we pay $41 a year for registration, but it was only $35 a couple of years ago. We have four vehicles in our family fleet, and the annual insurance ranges from $407 to $1,472 per vehicle. The newest and most valuable vehicle, a 2014 Honda Odyssey, has the cheapest annual cost, $407 per year. Now that I look, I'm surprised that it is $145 per year less than my 2011 Subaru Legacy, with the same coverage and no dings on either driver's record. Of course, the vehicles driven by our 22 and 24 year old kids cost the most each year, due to driver age, even though they are the oldest cars.
"The course of history shows that as the government grows, liberty decreases." Thomas Jefferson

patngordo
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by patngordo » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:02 am

We rent a vehicle whenever the one we own doesn't serve the purpose. If one of us is going away for a couple days and needs a car. Or if we need a pickup truck or van for something.

ktd
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by ktd » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:12 am

I don't know if you are Asian but most Asians I know rent a car when they do long trips. I am also Asian and I would never do it. What is the point of owning a car then?

traveltoomuch
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by traveltoomuch » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:33 am

researcher wrote: - At the age & mileage of your vehicle, there is NO depreciation hit for an additional 800 miles.
The vehicle value on KBB is exactly the same at 75K and 75.8K.
Good job checking KBB. I see the same result. However, when I plug in 76k the value drops by $73. And at 77k it drops by another $73. Moving from 75k to 100k the price drops by $1749. That's strikingly similar to the $.07/mile I've seen insurance use. I suspect that KBB is just rounding down to the nearest thousand.

But let's assume that KBB isn't omniscient and consider the more generalized theory that there's no depreciation hit for more mileage. Does that theory hold as you push its limits? Is there a value difference (for this 7 year old Honda Pilot) at 75k v. 100k? or at 50k? Of course there is. The 7 year old Honda with 50k miles will be worth more than the 7 year old Honda with 100k miles. $3500 different? That sounds like a plausible ballpark to me.

You could claim that any single 1k of miles will get lost in the noise of used car prices, and you'd have a case. But just as incremental fees on our investments add up, so do incremental miles on our cars.

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CyclingDuo
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by CyclingDuo » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:39 am

rashad3000 wrote:Basically, I prefer to rent cars every time I go out of town. What is your philosophy on this?
Philosophy?

We buy our cars to drive. In town. Out of town. Across the country on trips.

Renting cars is like buying an annuity. The myriad of expenses tacked on always makes it a more favorable transaction for the rental car company, than the renter. :beer

Obviously, if flying to a distant location and a car is needed for local transportation at the destination - then we rent.

However, with the description you provide for your trips - we'd drive our own 10 times out of 10.
"Everywhere is within walking distance if you have the time." ~ Steven Wright

inbox788
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by inbox788 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:47 am

traveltoomuch wrote:
researcher wrote: Any wear & tear expense you might avoid is more than wiped out by the $80-$300 rental cost.
I disagree.

Maintenance will run $.06-.10/mile or more. There's lots of room to argue numbers here, but here are some data sources. The AAA article separates maintenance and tires.
http://newsroom.aaa.com/2015/04/annual- ... a-archive/
https://www.yourmechanic.com/article/ho ... ddy-martin

Part of depreciation is mileage-based, not age-based. Case in point: when I've had insurance total cars, they based valuations on an expected/average mileage and adjusted ~$.07/mile for over/under.

Adding those together, and taking the low end of the maintenance number, we get $.13/mile. For a 500 mile trip, that's $65. If the rental is only $40, renting makes financial sense. And, again, that's using the low-end maintenance estimates.
In general, I wouldn't do it. Too much hassle, even if I saved a few bucks. But if there was a need, like bigger vehicle, higher passenger capacity or more reliable vehicle, it would make sense to rent.

If I had an old or expensive car that I wanted to keep the miles low or cost per mile was high, renting could also make sense.

Financially, if you're leasing, and all the miles are paid for, it costs nothing to put extra miles on the car, so cheaper to just drive the leased car. If you do go over, the overage charge is often $0.10 or $0.15/mile ($0.20 or $0.25 for the luxury cars). That's not too far off from your depreciation & maintenance cost per mile. The rate is mostly for depreciation, but if you did it a lot, you might need extra oil changes and a new set of tires or other additional maintenance. So there's a financial case for renting if the cost of renting is less than the added lease costs.

BW1985
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by BW1985 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:52 am

wrongfunds wrote:If I put $200K kitchen in my house, would I be eating out all the time so that my kitchen won't get dirty?
That's a nice kitchen! Not a good analogy though. Cooking in a kitchen doesn't reduce your property value. Putting thousands of miles on your car does.
"Squirrels figured out how to save eons ago. They buried acorns. Some, they dug up, for food. Others, they let to sprout, in new oak trees. We could learn from squirrels." -john94549

traveltoomuch
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by traveltoomuch » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:54 am

Responding selectively:
researcher wrote: - As you stated, a 500 mile trip in his own vehicle would cost $65.
- The OP has a family of 5, is taking a 4 day trip, and needs a full size sedan or larger.
- There is ZERO chance he can rent for the $40 you quoted. That would be $10/day.
You're mixing apples and oranges. Given the time estimate he provided, rashad3000's trip is likely longer than 500 miles. I had made up a different example. Apologies if that was confusing.

For more clarity, let's return to rashad3000's case. ralph124cf estimated, based on the time, that this trip is 800 miles RT. Using my $.13 number, that's $104 in wear, tear, and depreciation. Feel free to compare that estimate to the $80 rate rashad3000 says he can get on a rental for this specific trip (v. my invented example).

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jharkin
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by jharkin » Wed Mar 29, 2017 10:59 am

BW1985 wrote:
Sidebar - you only paid $245 in registration fees over 7 years? I have a 4 year old car and I paid $250 for just this year.

And your insurance is only $500/year?
Actually, that number is wrong.. It renews every 2 years and I misremembered the fee. I looked it up and its lower than I remembered - $60 every 2 years for the plates. So make that $210.

This is Massachusetts - unlike a lot of other states the vehicle property tax is not buried in the registration fees, but billed separately by the town/city. See the separate line item I listed for $600 in excise taxes over those 7 years. This was a vehicle purchased CPO so I missed the first 2 years of big tax hit, MA uses a very aggressive depreciation schedule for tax calculation - the bill has been flat at ~$80/year tax the last 3 or 4 years.

Yes, insurance is about $500 per year for full boat coverage: 250/500 liability,collision and comprehensive, uninsured motorist, substitute transport etc. Over 40, married, clean driving record and stellar credit. Have all policies with one company so we get lots of multi-car, multi-line, loyalty, etc discounts. And this is Mass so the rates are more heavily regulated than other states.


Massachusetts has this reputation as a high tax, high fee state - but yet every time I look at real world examples from other states I find the opposite, for whatever reason I seem to pay a lot less for most of this stuff than average......

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CyclingDuo
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by CyclingDuo » Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:13 am

BW1985 wrote:That's a nice kitchen! Not a good analogy though. Cooking in a kitchen doesn't reduce your property value. Putting thousands of miles on your car does.
Provided you can put out the flames of the Cognac quick enough when searing the chicken in the pot for Coq au Vin? 8-)
"Everywhere is within walking distance if you have the time." ~ Steven Wright

michaeljc70
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:30 am

researcher wrote:
jharkin wrote:Do an apples to apples comparison and then how does it work out? I did the comparison above for our own family car - a Honda Pilot. vs. renting a similar sized 3 row SUV for a 1 week 800 mile vacation.

My actual costs - owning the pilot for 7 years and having put 75,000 miles on it in that timeframe:
Depreciation - $16k
registration fees $245
excise taxes: $600
Insurance $3500
1 set replacement tires: $800
15 oil changes: $600
other repairs, maintenance: $3500
total: $26,245
35 cents/ mile

If I go to some rental companies and price out a rental - 1 week, 3 row SUV I get:
So lets call it $650 average or about 80 cents/mile.

Again, I just dont see how renting is possibly cheaper. Yes I could rent a sub compact and skew the numbers in favor of rental but that's not an apples for apples comparison.
THIS!

Although the actual cost difference is even greater than you stated.
- The registration, excise tax, and insurance are paid even if you rent & your car sits at home. These costs should be excluded.
- At the age & mileage of your vehicle, there is NO depreciation hit for an additional 800 miles.
The vehicle value on KBB is exactly the same at 75K and 75.8K.

Once these costs are excluded, the true cost to take your vehicle on vacation is only 6.5 cents/mile.
Exactly what I was thinking. Those are fixed costs.

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N1CKV
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by N1CKV » Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:45 am

I don't even consider renting a car unless my own vehicle is incapacitated.
I have met a lot of people that claim to love money, but they also seem to be the same people that are in the biggest hurry to get rid of it.

michaeljc70
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:59 am

As I said above, I'd typically use my own car. However, about 5 years ago I was driving to Florida and there were 4 of us. The car was around 10 years old, but low mileage. The car was making some odd noises here and there on the highway and the check engine light came on. Immediately it went through my head what we would do if the car did need repairs. I mean, we were not in any kind of well populated area, who knows how hard it would be to get towed, how long it would take to fix (and get parts if needed), where would we stay, what would we do while staying, and how much of the rest of our trip would it eat up.

In the end I opened the hood. I know little about cars, but noticed the air filter container was missing a clasp and there was a gap. I had the oil changed before the trip and I'm sure when they check the filter (to try to sell you one), they messed it up. I used a bungee cord I had to wrap around the container and close the gap. Everything was fine for the rest of the trip. If it was a rental, I would have just called them to deal with it.
Last edited by michaeljc70 on Wed Mar 29, 2017 1:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

wrongfunds
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by wrongfunds » Wed Mar 29, 2017 1:25 pm

If you don't like my kitchen (analogy), how about buying $50K sofa set for the living room but keeping the plastic on it all the time in case guest might soil it?

The biggest issue for renting the car would be how in the world you get to the rental car? Do you drive to the rental place? Do you hitch a ride to the place? Twice? So when you come back from your vacation, all tired, you rush out to return the vehicle and somebody else follows you in your own car there? And if that place closes at 5:00pm or 9:00pm, you have to be there before closing time or end up paying huge penalty if you miss the deadline? Now you come home after 5 days of vacation and when you left the house you accidentally left the dome light in your own car. What do you do now?

The only place where I can get a good deal on rental car will be at the airport which would be at least an hour one way just to get there and of course I will have to drag my wife in my own car to pick the rental car up and then do the same to return it back. If you find a stellar deal on rental, there is no way delivery and pickup of the vehicle will be included in that price.

Now my brother always rents from the airport but he lives 3 miles from IAD and has total of other 6 drivers and 8 cars in the extended household to manage drop-off and pick-up of the rental car! I do not have that support structure in place and I bet most you don't either.

All this to save wear and tear on something which you already purchased to drive?

researcher
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 29, 2017 1:38 pm

traveltoomuch wrote:Responding selectively:
researcher wrote: - As you stated, a 500 mile trip in his own vehicle would cost $65.
- The OP has a family of 5, is taking a 4 day trip, and needs a full size sedan or larger.
- There is ZERO chance he can rent for the $40 you quoted. That would be $10/day
You're mixing apples and oranges.

ralph124cf estimated, based on the time, that this trip is 800 miles RT. Using my $.13 number, that's $104 in wear, tear, and depreciation.
Actually, you are the one mixing apples and oranges.

- The trip I described above was the OP's family trip of 4.5 hrs and approximately 500 miles.
- Ralph's estimate was based on a different longer solo trip in a compact car.

The OP has already stated that a rental for the family trip would cost $175-$300.
You can't possibly argue that renting would be cheaper.

michaeljc70
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 1:45 pm

wrongfunds wrote:If you don't like my kitchen (analogy), how about buying $50K sofa set for the living room but keeping the plastic on it all the time in case guest might soil it?

The biggest issue for renting the car would be how in the world you get to the rental car? Do you drive to the rental place? Do you hitch a ride to the place? Twice? So when you come back from your vacation, all tired, you rush out to return the vehicle and somebody else follows you in your own car there? And if that place closes at 5:00pm or 9:00pm, you have to be there before closing time or end up paying huge penalty if you miss the deadline? Now you come home after 5 days of vacation and when you left the house you accidentally left the dome light in your own car. What do you do now?

The only place where I can get a good deal on rental car will be at the airport which would be at least an hour one way just to get there and of course I will have to drag my wife in my own car to pick the rental car up and then do the same to return it back. If you find a stellar deal on rental, there is no way delivery and pickup of the vehicle will be included in that price.

Now my brother always rents from the airport but he lives 3 miles from IAD and has total of other 6 drivers and 8 cars in the extended household to manage drop-off and pick-up of the rental car! I do not have that support structure in place and I bet most you don't either.

All this to save wear and tear on something which you already purchased to drive?
I've noticed the same thing here. There are a million car rental places, but the airport always seems to be the cheapest.

Another thing is if you are running late you will be charged an extra day. If your trip is 4 days and 3 hours, you pay for 5 days typically. Sometimes the best rates are also only on weekly rentals.

Then there is the whole discussion on insurance. Is your own and a credit cards good enough for a rental? Where I live, the tax on car rentals is around 20% too.

I have also seen limitations on leaving the state or mileage limitations per day on rentals.

tic
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by tic » Wed Mar 29, 2017 2:03 pm

I tried to figure this out a few years ago. At that time, I decided I would rent when I could do it for $0.08/mile or less, as long as the rental's fuel efficiency was equal to or better than my car. The rentals were always much nicer and newer than my car, so I enjoyed it.

For a while, the local rental place had a bunch of Prii (Toyota's official plural name for the car, in case you didn't know) for rent, but they were quite expensive, so few people ever rented them. I could reserve an intermediate car for $10/day, upgrade for free to a Prius because they had so many, and actually MAKE money on the car rental due to gas savings from the fuel economy of the Prius versus my car. Eventually, they wised up and ditched the hybrids.

wrongfunds
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by wrongfunds » Wed Mar 29, 2017 2:24 pm

Am I the only one who has brought up the logistics involved in picking and dropping off the rental vehicle? Do you put a value to your and another person's time to make two trips to the rental place in your own car to pick up the rental vehicle? I mean unless the rental place is walking distance or is trivially accessible via public transport, this should be your biggest hassle for weekend rental.

BW1985
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by BW1985 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 2:53 pm

wrongfunds wrote:Am I the only one who has brought up the logistics involved in picking and dropping off the rental vehicle? Do you put a value to your and another person's time to make two trips to the rental place in your own car to pick up the rental vehicle? I mean unless the rental place is walking distance or is trivially accessible via public transport, this should be your biggest hassle for weekend rental.
Some of them will pick you up and drop you off, Enterprise does for sure. I live less than 5 minutes away from one so it's not a hassle personally.
"Squirrels figured out how to save eons ago. They buried acorns. Some, they dug up, for food. Others, they let to sprout, in new oak trees. We could learn from squirrels." -john94549

Rotarman
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by Rotarman » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:01 pm

I didn't read through all, but I think I'll be one of the few people who has actually done this (once) before. About 800 miles roundtrip 3 days just like you. The rental got better gas mileage, and the total cost difference I estimated at ~ 20 bucks or so (altho I did my own maintenance so maybe some time as well). Mostly it was because I was younger and it was fun to drive a different/newer car for a few days. Kind of like when you take your friend's new car for a spin. If that's not a factor at all, I'd probably just drive what you own.

researcher
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:06 pm

BW1985 wrote:Some of them will pick you up and drop you off, Enterprise does for sure. I live less than 5 minutes away from one so it's not a hassle personally.
Even if you happen to be one of the few people who "live less than 5 minutes away" from a rental facility, you still have to structure your vacation around their operating hours. Here are the hours for the one nearest me...
- Mon-Fri (8am - 6pm)
- Sat (9am - Noon)
- Sun (Closed)

It seems very inconvenient to plan my road trip vacation around these hours.
Especially when I could just walk into my garage and come/go whenever I want in my own car.

rashad3000
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by rashad3000 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:10 pm

I forgot to mention:

Part of my decision was made because I have a $75 reward certificate for AVIS for my American Express card. So after adding satellite radio, the total will be $89. Take away $75 and it's costing me $14 out of pocket, plus gas.

We will definitely take the family vehicle on our family trip this summer!

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by carguyny » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:13 pm

Always take one of our own cars. I would rather Uber than rent.

Our cars are higher end, but when it is time to replace it a few thousand miles difference means less than 1% in used value.

We sold a 3 year old car with 4,000 miles within $750 of where 25,000 mile cars were selling a few years ago. It probably sold faster, but that is really the main benefit in my experience.

researcher
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:23 pm

rashad3000 wrote:FYI:
We will rent the car for $80 to take the 7 hour trip next week. My wife and I will be the only ones going, so we will do the same thing we did last time and get a compact.
Could you explain the rationale you used?

You didn't say how many miles the 7 hour road trip will be. I'm going to guess about 900 miles.
- If driving your own car costs you 10 cents/mile (which I think is too high), your total cost would be $90.
- Instead, you plan to rent a compact car for $80, a "saving" of $10.

For this $10 savings, you get the privilege of driving a crappy, stripped Nissan Versa (or similar) instead of your Toyota Highlander.
You must also find a way to get to/from the rental company AND design your trip around their operating hours.

I don't get it.

rashad3000
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by rashad3000 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:36 pm

researcher wrote:
rashad3000 wrote:FYI:
We will rent the car for $80 to take the 7 hour trip next week. My wife and I will be the only ones going, so we will do the same thing we did last time and get a compact.
Could you explain the rationale you used?

You didn't say how many miles the 7 hour road trip will be. I'm going to guess about 900 miles.
- If driving your own car costs you 10 cents/mile (which I think is too high), your total cost would be $90.
- Instead, you plan to rent a compact car for $80, a "saving" of $10.

For this $10 savings, you get the privilege of driving a crappy, stripped Nissan Versa (or similar) instead of your Toyota Highlander.
You must also find a way to get to/from the rental company AND design your trip around their operating hours.

I don't get it.
Rationale posted a couple of posts above.

I almost cancelled and decided to take my vehicle, until I remembered about the $75 certificate.

I've been convinced that renting a car may not be the best idea all the time. Maybe it's never the best idea. Who knows? But this is why I made this post, for a dialogue. There have been great points made.

BW1985
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by BW1985 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:37 pm

carguyny wrote:Always take one of our own cars. I would rather Uber than rent.

Our cars are higher end, but when it is time to replace it a few thousand miles difference means less than 1% in used value.

We sold a 3 year old car with 4,000 miles within $750 of where 25,000 mile cars were selling a few years ago. It probably sold faster, but that is really the main benefit in my experience.
Did you look up the blue book value of both? It's hard to believe that all else being equal the same 3 yr old car with 20K less miles on it is only worth $750 more. Maybe the comps at 25K miles had better options than yours did, or maybe you just priced too low.
Last edited by BW1985 on Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:40 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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BW1985
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by BW1985 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:38 pm

researcher wrote:
BW1985 wrote:Some of them will pick you up and drop you off, Enterprise does for sure. I live less than 5 minutes away from one so it's not a hassle personally.
Even if you happen to be one of the few people who "live less than 5 minutes away" from a rental facility, you still have to structure your vacation around their operating hours. Here are the hours for the one nearest me...
- Mon-Fri (8am - 6pm)
- Sat (9am - Noon)
- Sun (Closed)

It seems very inconvenient to plan my road trip vacation around these hours.
Especially when I could just walk into my garage and come/go whenever I want in my own car.
That is a good point, I could see how that could be inconvenient. In the past I've rented for a full week or weekend and have never had an issue with hours but I could see how that could be an issue for some trips.
"Squirrels figured out how to save eons ago. They buried acorns. Some, they dug up, for food. Others, they let to sprout, in new oak trees. We could learn from squirrels." -john94549

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by zuma » Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:54 pm

orca91 wrote:
rashad3000 wrote:Basically, I prefer to rent cars every time I go out of town. What is your philosophy on this?
My philosophy is, I would never do that. Why own a car, if not to drive it?

If I fly somewhere and need a car while there, sure.... But, if I'm driving, my own vehicle works fine.
+1

I don't own a vehicle anymore, but if I did, it would never even occur to me to rent a car for a road trip like this. I hate dealing with rental car companies anyway. They're usually terrible.

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dm200
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by dm200 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:02 pm

BW1985 wrote:
carguyny wrote:Always take one of our own cars. I would rather Uber than rent.

Our cars are higher end, but when it is time to replace it a few thousand miles difference means less than 1% in used value.

We sold a 3 year old car with 4,000 miles within $750 of where 25,000 mile cars were selling a few years ago. It probably sold faster, but that is really the main benefit in my experience.
Did you look up the blue book value of both? It's hard to believe that all else being equal the same 3 yr old car with 20K less miles on it is only worth $750 more. Maybe the comps at 25K miles had better options than yours did, or maybe you just priced too low.
I looked up NADA retail values for a 2012 Toyota Camry (basic 4 cyl) with different mileage.

10,000 miles ADD $4,700
25,000 miles ADD $3,275
70.000 miles ADD $175

70,001 add nothing subtract nothing

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by Church Lady » Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:50 pm

On long road trips, we always rent and buy insurance at the rental counter. I'm not sure why that tradition got started; probably due to someone's old, undependable vehicle. It does have its advantages.

- It is obvious what each person's share of the cost is. We have no interest in quibbling over whether to reimburse someone 7 cents a mile or 23 cents a mile.
- We find leisure travel is rougher on vehicles than commuting and errands.
- We get to drive low mileage, relatively new vehicles with more options than we put in our own cars
- We get to try different types of vehicles.
- Minor incidents, such as spilled coffee, don't ruffle any feathers.

Doubtless we're wasting money, but it seems equitable and helps keep peace on the trip.
He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. Ecclesiastes 1:8

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by Doom&Gloom » Wed Mar 29, 2017 5:33 pm

anonforthis wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:
Raymond wrote:Personally, if it's a seven + hour drive each way, I would just fly there and rent a car at the destination.
I would fly or take a train, too. The sedentary lifestyle is a curse of the modern age, and being sedentary in a car is the worst of it.

Victoria
:D Road trips are best. I love stopping at small towns, taking pictures and chatting with locals.
Absolutely! Unless pressed for time, I am driving every time unless the distance is just too great. I abhor dealing with TSA.

I have never considered renting a car for a round-trip from home. That is part of the reason I own a reliable and functional vehicle. I would consider renting if there were unusual circumstance, such as more travelers than my vehicle could accommodate.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by jlawrence01 » Wed Mar 29, 2017 6:18 pm

I rented a car March 3rd-13th for $167 including all taxes and fees. I drove approximately 2800 miles. In June, I will rent a car for 30 days for $460 and drive about 4,500 miles. Low rental car prices are one of the joys of living in Arizona.

I prefer driving the rental as I generally get a brand new car that handles the mountains better than my current drive.

I want to keep my current ride for a minimum of 5-8 more years.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Mar 29, 2017 7:04 pm

researcher wrote:
rashad3000 wrote:FYI:
We will rent the car for $80 to take the 7 hour trip next week. My wife and I will be the only ones going, so we will do the same thing we did last time and get a compact.
Could you explain the rationale you used?

You didn't say how many miles the 7 hour road trip will be. I'm going to guess about 900 miles....
That must be some compact car that gets 128 miles/hour with no stops. :P
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by tinscale » Wed Mar 29, 2017 7:20 pm

orca91 wrote:
rashad3000 wrote:Basically, I prefer to rent cars every time I go out of town. What is your philosophy on this?
My philosophy is, I would never do that. Why own a car, if not to drive it?

If I fly somewhere and need a car while there, sure.... But, if I'm driving, my own vehicle works fine.
This ^^^^.

I'd take a 7-hour drive in my own vehicle with seatmates of my choosing over the joys of flying any day. Cost of getting to the airport or parking your car there, getting to airport 2 hours early, waiting in lines, the flight itself, deplaning and getting your luggage, getting a rental car, and so on.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 29, 2017 7:28 pm

cheese_breath wrote:
researcher wrote:
rashad3000 wrote:FYI: We will rent the car for $80 to take the 7 hour trip next week. My wife and I will be the only ones going, so we will do the same thing we did last time and get a compact.
Could you explain the rationale you used?
You didn't say how many miles the 7 hour road trip will be. I'm going to guess about 900 miles....
That must be some compact car that gets 128 miles/hour with no stops. :P
That is 7 a hour trip ONE WAY, so 14 hours total, or 65 miles/hr.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by dm200 » Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:08 am

As far as any incomvenience or hassle when renting a car, we have found that renting from Enterprise has always been very convenient. They will evel pick you up and drive you home. Most of the time, we get a better category of car for the same price as the smaller one we reserve.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by LadyIJ » Thu Mar 30, 2017 5:06 pm

Another consideration: What about having a fender bender in your own car? That devalues your car as it is reported on CarMax. As with leasing a car, when you rent, you have the fender bender, pay the deductible and you are good to go. Not that one plans to have an accident, but I don't think anyone has brought that point up. Also, I own a sportier car, but I would want a heavier car for a road-trip only.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by dm200 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:16 am

LadyIJ wrote:Another consideration: What about having a fender bender in your own car? That devalues your car as it is reported on CarMax. As with leasing a car, when you rent, you have the fender bender, pay the deductible and you are good to go. Not that one plans to have an accident, but I don't think anyone has brought that point up. Also, I own a sportier car, but I would want a heavier car for a road-trip only.
If you keep a car for a very long time, then I think a small ding on Carfax would be noise level.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by RoadHouseFan » Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:29 am

rashad3000 wrote:My wife and I just bought a 2015 Highlander. We are going on a 7 - 8 hour trip for her grad school class next week (it will just be us 2). We will rent a car for those 3 days and it will cost around $80 after taxes and satellite and fees. We prefer to run a rental car into the ground on this beast of a trip rather than our own.

We are taking the kids to the Houston/Galveston area in the summer. It's about a 4 1/2 hour trip from us. We will be there for 4 days. To get a full-size rental car, it will be around $150. To get an SUV equivalent to our Highlander, we are looking at around $275-300. In this situation, we may just take our own vehicle, unless I can convince the wife that the full-size will be ok with our 3 kids. She probably won't go for that. It would probably lead to the kids arguing the entire time, having to sit so close.

Basically, I prefer to rent cars every time I go out of town. What is your philosophy on this?
In both of those scenarios, a rental vehicle is a good idea. Also, a rental is always a better option than Uber, etc.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by deanbrew » Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:39 am

RoadHouseFan wrote:In both of those scenarios, a rental vehicle is a good idea. Also, a rental is always a better option than Uber, etc.
While one could argue that renting a car for $80 might be worthwhile, there is no way that renting a vehicle that is similar to one you already own for $275-300 makes any sense at all.

As for your second sentence: Huh? :shock: If I am somewhere that I need one or two rides to a restaurant, convention center, etc., it would be better to rent a car than use Uber? Are you kidding? What if I want to go out in the evening, and perhaps have a couple of drinks? Better to drive my unfamiliar rental car in an unfamiliar place than take Uber? I'm not a routine Uber user, but I've used it several times while visiting other places, and have been very satisfied. I think it's a terrific alternative to most taxi services.
"The course of history shows that as the government grows, liberty decreases." Thomas Jefferson

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:46 am

LadyIJ wrote:Another consideration: What about having a fender bender in your own car? That devalues your car as it is reported on CarMax. As with leasing a car, when you rent, you have the fender bender, pay the deductible and you are good to go. Not that one plans to have an accident, but I don't think anyone has brought that point up. Also, I own a sportier car, but I would want a heavier car for a road-trip only.
I don't understand these irrational concerns. Using this rationale, you'd never let the car leave your garage, for fear that something might happen.

Why would you be so concerned about a possible fender bender during a 500 mile (mostly highway) road trip vacation, but not for the other 10,000 miles of around-town driving you do the rest of the year?

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by dm200 » Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:19 am

With Enterprise, what I find interesting is that the daily rental rates (unlimited mileage) seem to be a real bargain for the 2-3 lowest cost vehicles , but for vehicles like minivans seem to be disproportionally higher (based on prices of the different vehicles).

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by wander » Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:55 pm

When i take a flight, I have no choice but to rent a car at the destination. For other times, I would drive my car. I prefer to drive my cars (doesn't matter old or new).

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by inbox788 » Sat Apr 01, 2017 12:03 am

researcher wrote:- There is ZERO chance he can rent for the $40 you quoted. That would be $10/day.
Probably low, but NOT zero.

$9.99 per day Enterprise Rental Car Weekend Rate good until 5/22/17
https://slickdeals.net/f/10008364-9-99- ... il-5-22-17

https://www.google.com/search?q=%249.99 ... %2F22%2F17

If cheap rentals can be had, it might tilt the equation towards renting.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by CaliJim » Sat Apr 01, 2017 12:26 am

rashad3000 wrote: Basically, I prefer to rent cars every time I go out of town. What is your philosophy on this?
I think that is a silly thing to do.

I only rent if I'm flying to get there, otherwise I drive my own car.

If you like giving your money away to big businesses for no good reason, great, go rent.

Otherwise - drive your own car. You are not really protecting the resale value by avoiding a few thousand miles of driving.

Change the oil and check the fluids before you go, drive safely, wash and vacuum when you get back, and it will be fine.
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by researcher » Sat Apr 01, 2017 6:48 am

inbox788 wrote:Probably low, but NOT zero.
$9.99 per day Enterprise Rental Car Weekend Rate good until 5/22/17
https://slickdeals.net/f/10008364-9-99- ... il-5-22-17
If cheap rentals can be had, it might tilt the equation towards renting.
Does anyone actually read the posts they are responding to?
The sentence JUST ABOVE the one you quoted notes that the OP needs a full size car or 3-row SUV...
- The OP has a family of 5, is taking a 4 day trip, and needs a full size sedan or larger.
- There is ZERO chance he can rent for the $40 you quoted. That would be $10/day.
The link you posted is $9.99 for a COMPACT CAR. A full size car would be double that, plus taxes & fees.
In addition, this deal only includes 100 miles per day.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by traveltoomuch » Sat Apr 01, 2017 8:19 am

researcher wrote: Does anyone actually read the posts they are responding to?
The sentence JUST ABOVE the one you quoted notes that the OP needs a full size car or 3-row SUV...
Yes. Some even follow the whole thread. The $40 number came up in the context an example I had made up, separate from the OP's trip. I was imagining a different trip, one likely shorter than four days. And the $40 is a throwaway number - it was a placeholder for "something less than the cost of maintenance+depreciation". I tried to clarify the difference on Wednesday.

Please do not allow your confusion over my example to lead to you flame new contributors to the thread.
The link you posted is $9.99 for a COMPACT CAR. A full size car would be double that, plus taxes & fees.
In addition, this deal only includes 100 miles per day.
The mention of car size is not relevant, yet again, because my made up example does not presume to require a full-sized car.

Good spot on the mile limit. Indeed, the mile limit (sadly common with Enterprise) makes this rate unhelpful. Even so, I appreciate inbox788 giving the concrete example and there's still a point to found in it. Sometimes rental rates are relatively low.

Personally, I have often gotten weekend (2 or 3 day) rentals for around $40 all-in with no mile limits. I've usually gotten vehicles larger than I reserved. I reserved a compact (or sub-compact) and got a Cadillac once. Another time it was a (small) Volvo. Those are exceptional cases, but getting a mid-size car for $40 for three days is very plausible, even if one can't reliably pull it off in every place and on every weekend.

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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by wrongfunds » Sat Apr 01, 2017 8:26 am

Are all these example with free pickup and drop off from your home?

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