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Help with mini-van or full size SUV rental

lintas1 480 298 May 16, 2016 at 12:43 PM
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Hi,

I need to rent a mini-van or full size suv for 6 people trip on 28th May for 3 days.

I cant seem to find anything below $375 for 3 days. Anyone has suggestions to save some money? I thought this was really really high

I am in Northern VA

Thanks in advance

10 Comments

1

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#2
It's Memorial Day weekend, so I am not surprised it is high. Look at the rental car threads. Flyertalk also has a rental car thread and coupon codes you can try as does mousesavers (which is not just for Disney).

I would book a car at the lowest price I could find -- with no prepayment (don't lock yourself in) -- then keep searching and book a new one and cancel the old. Last minute, try Priceline or Hotwire -- but be careful that it fits your needs. I got a good last minute rate with National in New Orleans last year, so you might check around and look for last minute rates a few days before travel with the rental car companies themselves.

If you don't find one, you will at least have the higher priced rental that you were hoping to replace. If you do find a lower price, don't forget to cancel. Even though you haven't paid, it will release it back into their inventory.

Good luck.
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#3
@lintas1 - In addition to what thumper1 said, I'll also add that Minivans and Fullsize SUVs are generally the most expensive vehicles to rent.

That said, its always possible to save. It always comes down to trying as many discount codes to see which one gives you the lowest rate. I've had great success with https://zalyn.com and I recommend it to everyone.

I checked it out for a Minivan rental in IAD (Dulles Airport) from 5/28 - 5/31 noon and here's what I found:
1. $310 for a Minivan with Alamo using my Amex discount
2. $325 for a Minivan with Dollar using my AAA discount
3. $334 for a Minivan with Hertz using my Delta Skymiles discount + $5/day off coupon

Obviously, it all depends on your specific rental details and the discounts that are applicable to you.
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#4
Try to sign up for Alamo Insider membership. It's free and you can get a decent upgrade from minivan to SUV for free or at extra little cost.
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#5
Zalyn has some good prices, Mel. Thanks. I'm renting in South Dakota in July and it was $9 less for a mid-sized SUV than I paid. It's not worth changing, though, because I did get my price through Hertz direct. With the #1 club and booking direct, we can both drive for no additional charge.

My last Hertz rental was from a travel website and my lower price rental did not include the second driver and at $15/day on a 10 day rental, we decided we weren't going far enough where it made sense.
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#6
Quote from thumper1 View Post :
Zalyn has some good prices, Mel. Thanks. I'm renting in South Dakota in July and it was $9 less for a mid-sized SUV than I paid. It's not worth changing, though, because I did get my price through Hertz direct. With the #1 club and booking direct, we can both drive for no additional charge.

My last Hertz rental was from a travel website and my lower price rental did not include the second driver and at $15/day on a 10 day rental, we decided we weren't going far enough where it made sense.
You can simply add your Hertz Gold Plus Rewards Number to you booking and you'll get the free additional driver benefit, even if you book through a third-party website. You can also book your rental directly on Hertz.com using the coupon code you find on Zalyn.

That said, $9 is a rather mediocre discount, but it all comes down to the discount code you're using. I'd say signup for an account and select all of your affiliations (AAA, Costco, etc). At the very least, I'd select all of the frequent flyer discounts since they're free for anyone to signup for. Also, try out all of the coupons for your preferred rental car (SUV?), not just the first one you see in the list. At times, I've seen the first 2-3 coupons show smaller discounts than the 4th or 5th one in the list.

Its probably a good idea to look beyond Hertz. A number of rental car companies offer free additional driver benefit to spouses & partners. For example, National offers this benefit to members of its Emerald Club rewards program (free to join). If you want, I can help you find a better deal for your rental (I'll need your rental location, date/time and preferred vehicle).
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#7
I have a mini van booked for 7/1--7/10 through BJ's Club at a cost of $391.24 with Hertz out of Jax . I also used the Hertz Gold Plus card. I didn't realize it would give the free additional driver benefit. Thanks. I will look into this.


Edit: LOL just read the free additional driver is for spouse or domestic partner. We are actually renting a van and a rav4. I wonder if my husband and son-in-law could pass as domestic partners so they could swap. We shall see.....
.
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Last edited by riverrat317 May 22, 2016 at 11:46 PM
#8
Quote from lintas1 View Post :
Hi,

I need to rent a mini-van or full size suv for 6 people trip on 28th May for 3 days.

I cant seem to find anything below $375 for 3 days. Anyone has suggestions to save some money? I thought this was really really high

I am in Northern VA

Thanks in advance
Costcotravel has a minivan at IAD for $215 for the 3 days.
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#9
Everyone, many thanks. Since the notifications on SD werent working, I didnt know so many of you responded. Apologize for getting back late. I cant replicate costco deal but I did book using AVIS corporate discount of a friend. Got it for $215 for 3 days, which I think is much better than what I was seeing anywhere else.

I am still going to try Priceline a day before to see if I can lower it further but for now I have acceptable rate. If anyone wants to use the corporate discount code then PM me and I will share. I just dont want to put it out on the web as it was shared discretely

Quote from bta15 View Post :
Costcotravel has a minivan at IAD for $215 for the 3 days.
I couldnt replicate that. What days is this?
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Last edited by lintas1 May 24, 2016 at 06:40 AM
#10
call some of the closer rental places near you and see if you can have them price match or beat the offer. Most are locally ran and if the car is on the lot, they may give it to you.
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#11
Quote from lintas1 View Post :
I couldnt replicate that. What days is this?
It was available yesterday for 5/28-5/31, the days you posted, when I posted but looks like you weren't getting the notices. Is unavailable now.
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