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

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
traveltoomuch
Posts: 516
Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 5:48 am

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

Post by traveltoomuch »

wrongfunds wrote:Are all these example with free pickup and drop off from your home?
My examples are not, though presumably the Enterprise example is. Enterprise tries to make that a selling point. In my experience, other companies offer the service "as available". It's not so reliably available that it's included in the price quote. For my own rentals, I try to avoid Enterprise (for other reasons), and I tend to plan on pickup/dropoff service not being available - I'll plan to get myself to/from the rental facility. Doing otherwise is risky.
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dm200
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Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

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

Post by dm200 »

traveltoomuch wrote:
wrongfunds wrote:Are all these example with free pickup and drop off from your home?
My examples are not, though presumably the Enterprise example is. Enterprise tries to make that a selling point. In my experience, other companies offer the service "as available". It's not so reliably available that it's included in the price quote. For my own rentals, I try to avoid Enterprise (for other reasons), and I tend to plan on pickup/dropoff service not being available - I'll plan to get myself to/from the rental facility. Doing otherwise is risky.
My experience with Enterprise has been excellent in recent years, and occasionally have used the pickup/dropoff service. The nearest Enterprise is not that far away, so sometimes I just walk (need the exercise) if the weather is nice.

One thing I learned is that some car repair places have agreements with Enterprise that discounts the rental if the repair place calls them. I also received a discount with a AAA Visa card, even though it is not "formally" recognized.
LadyIJ
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:00 pm

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

Post by LadyIJ »

dm200 wrote:
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.
But we don't - plan to trade in in a year or two - so in our case, we would rather not chance it.
mattsm
Posts: 233
Joined: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:27 am

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

Post by mattsm »

bottlecap wrote: Tue Mar 28, 2017 12:16 pm
mattsm wrote:Also weigh in that sometimes it's useful to rent for an older car, where you are concerned it might break down and don't want that to happen while you're on a 8 hour drive.
Or save the money on the rental and use it to maintain your older vehicle in its proper working condition...

Just a thought. :wink:
Sure do that or rent a car for an absurdly low price and put 1000s of miles on it. I'm sure you can make a ss to figure out what works best and how much a day or two of down time waiting on a repair will cost your time and money.
silvercertificate
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Joined: Sat Dec 10, 2016 8:13 pm

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

Post by silvercertificate »

This is an interesting discussion. I drive 40k per year for work (4 hours just today) in a personal vehicle and another 10-15 for pleasure so, I never consider renting for any personal trip. Trips as you describe are a weekly event for me.

The Highlander is an excellent car (though I choose to drive Hondas). My gut is that overall you likely put relatively few miles per year on a car. If properly maintained, I would guess that you could easily put 300+ thousand miles on the Highlander. That likely means you will grow tired of it or just want something different before you wear it out. The miles for this trip are nothing compared to the potential life of that vehicle. Drive your Highlander and enjoy it. Safe travels.
JBTX
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Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

Post by JBTX »

We take a couple round trips each year that over 2000 miles RT each (family in FL and MN ). Most times take our own cars. A couple of times I did take a rental and on a weekly basis wasn't a bad deal. One time i did it for work reimbursement purposes (doing work on trip also) and the other my car was in the shop a week or two from accident.

I figure maintenance is probably about 3-5 cents a mile first 100000 miles and could be 5 - 10 cents a mile over next 100k miles. Depreciation for a $25k car over 200000 miles is about 12.5 cents per mile (and depreciation is real to the extent market values decrease as mileage increase). Total incremental mileage expense 15-20 cents per mile. 2000 mile trip times 20 cents = $ 400 which was roughly the cost of a week or two rental.
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