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The New Year is already painful for travelers; as for one all those frequent flyer annual balances reset back to zero. Making things a little bit worse is the news from Hertz, as the rental car giant is upping prices and raising rates just in time to bust out the new 2015 calendar.
We can only assume that a reservation is a reservation, so if you’re booked at a current rate you should be good to go; however, it never hurts to check. What it does sound like is that Hertz has increased rates for vehicles being picked up after January 1. The financial types seem to like this kind of news, as the company’s stock has been headed up in recent days—but clearly not the best news for those looking to pick up a car for the weekend.
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We might be a little bit weird in our love for rental cars, but seriously, picking up the car after getting off the plane still gives us a little thrill each and every time—especially when we score a good one.
Good news if you feel the same way, since there are a few good rental car deals kicking around right now. The fall is the perfect time for a road trip, so check out some of these rates, book something, and get driving.
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From renting cars by the hour to picking up rides with strangers there’s always something new in the wild world of rental cars. Hertz is often one of the leaders when it comes to thinking up new ideas—or borrowing good ones from other companies—and now it looks like they have a new plan to get you into a car when you need a ride.
It looks like things are being worked out in some corporate boardroom, but the plan is to put Hertz rental cars right in the parking lot at your local Walgreens pharmacy and drug store. They actually just finished up a test in where they offered up cars at around 30 locations in the greater Chicago area as well as the area in and around San Antonio.
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There’s nothing worse than a dirty, smelly, or otherwise not up to par rental car. We always get a little thrill getting in our rental for the first time, and that’s especially the case if we’re doing a good chunk of driving. Thankfully Hertz understands our passion for an awesome set of wheels, and they’re introducing a new set of promises and certifications.
In a way this just sounds like they’re putting a new spin and marketing angle on something they should—and might be—already offering; however, we’ll try to give them the benefit of the doubt here. Basically the new Hertz Certified Clean & Safe program is a 35-point checklist to ensure the car you’re picking up is truly good-to-go.
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There’s been plenty of deals to drive rental cars out of certain states and into other states as well; however, we’re not sure that has been the case at the same time. Hertz is either confused, or they just are really excited about the state of Arizona. The rental car company is now offering up one-way deals for those looking to depart from or arrive to the Grand Canyon State.
Heading into the state is the better option, so we’ll start with that. Drive into Arizona deals can be had starting at $5 per day on economy cars, and if you’re looking for something a little better—they also promise a good deal on other car classes. You need to book your reservation sooner than later, and pickup the car prior to March 10. Just utilize RQ “ICFLT1” to score the deal, and be sure to grab your car at a participating location. This includes options rented in and around Southern California, Las Vegas, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, and the state of New Mexico.
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While they’re not exactly an exotic or sports car, we certainly wouldn’t mind testing out the newest and trendiest rental car, the electrically-powered Tesla Model S, with a
couple donuts quick cruise down the coast to see just how good the gas mileage is.
Advertised as approaching 100 miles-per-gallon, the electric hybrid is now available via Hertz at two airports over in California, as both Los Angeles and San Francisco will be adding these rechargeable vehicles to the rental car lot. Road trip, anyone?
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Next time you're looking at rental car rates, add another company to the list, as it looks like Hertz is bringing its budget brand stateside. Firefly Car Rental is now available in the nifty fifty, and is already busy on an expansion plan.
The very first outpost was down in Orlando, but it looks like Firefly is already keen to take on large cities around the US. Reservations are now open to one and all in Ft. Lauderdale, as well as Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, and more. Weekend rates are as low as $9.99 per day in Orlando through much of October, as we can only assume they’re eager to introduce the brand and get butts into driver's seats.
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Much of the new stuff we see in the rental car market has to do with new ways to rent cars, share cars, and borrow cars; however, the latest news from Hertz is taking the traditional rental car model to the next level. For once what they’re doing has nothing to do with the rental car, but it’s more about the whole process.
Over in California they just announced a new look to their rental car counter, as they have just unveiled what they’re calling Road Trip by Hertz over at San Diego Airport. In some ways they have brought the idea of an airline lounge—or business center—to the rental car office, as they have kind of reimagined the way things should work and flow.
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If you want a car from the airport, a car by the hour, or anything especially unique, we’re pretty sure Hertz has you covered. It seems like each year the rental car giant expands into more and more areas, as they do their best to be all things to all customers. Well now it looks like they’ve got some new vehicles on the menu, as Hertz Dream Cars is now an offshoot of the main brand.
It’s exactly what it sounds like, as Hertz is now renting out cars that you’ll just never be able to own. Think Ferrari, Aston Martin, and Lamborghini. There’s some Porches, Audis, and Mercedes in there as well, as those are pretty good if you’re looking to make a little bit less of a statement.
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As far as rental car companies are concerned there’s plenty of copycat strategies when it comes to keeping up with the competition. The latest news comes from Hertz, as it looks like the company is totally taking a page from the car sharing industry in order to breathe a little extra life into their usual business model.
Through the Hertz 24/7 service they’re looking to make plenty of cars available to plenty of people exactly when they need them. Right now there’s around 35,000 cars available for the taking at any given time, but they’re getting ready for a decent sized expansion. Once 2016 rolls around they might just be pushing roughly 500,000 ready-to-go vehicles worldwide, as these cars are prepared and equipped for anytime access.
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Earlier this year we saw the annual return of the one-way rental car deals out of places like Florida, but this year the deals weren’t as extreme as in years past. Thankfully the rental car companies must have come to their senses, as it looks like the deals have expanded and become an even better deal.
Up first is Avis, as they have too many cars down in Florida and need to move ‘em elsewhere. You’ll be paying $9.95 per day for subcompact through standard car options, and you have through June 30 to book things and to get moving.
Enter AWD # S705900 when you’re ready to confirm, and you should be all set. All the details including the pickup locations can be found right here, as well as the drop off locations which include spots like New York, Connecticut, Michigan, Illinois and Colorado.
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Once again we’re a little bit jealous when it comes to rental car options outside of the nifty fifty. Sure we’ve got some decent options and the PT Cruiser is thankfully no longer one of them, but putting the pedal to the metal just isn’t the same when you’re stuck inside a Chevy Impala.
Over in Europe it’s quite a different story, as the continent seem to get all the good cars—as long as you’re willing to pay extra for them. Hertz is the latest company to add some exotic and fancy pants options to their Euro rental car lots.