Among the greatest Driven by the COVID-19 pandemic: Strong demand for rental cars – but insufficient supply. In recent times, travelers have reported large deals for airline tickets, only to find that rental cars are sold out (or shockingly expensive, as one traveler found when his from $ 570 to over $ 2,300). Some say we’re in the middle of a . It got so bad that in some cases .
Fortunately, holding elite rental car status now could save you from potential rental car fiascos down the road. While the exact benefits vary from company to company, elite rental car benefits include discounts, free upgrades, and the ability to skip the lines. And you might already have elite status, even if you’ve never rented a car before. It’s because grant automatic benefits of Elite status to certain car rental companies.
Here are some of the best credit cards that offer automatic benefits of Elite status at select car rental companies:
If you have , you’ll get free premium status for several car rental programs, in addition to other perks like car rental discounts.
Here’s what you’ll get, broken down by car rental company:
Favorite review: This is the lower of the two levels of earned income status. Its advantages include:
Hertz Gold Plus Rewards: members achieve their own elite status through Hertz with unique benefits. They understand:
National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive: This is the middle of the three status levels earned via . Its advantages include:
You will need to log into your American Express account and access the Benefits Dashboard to sign up for Auto Elite status, and you will need to enter a code from this website when booking to receive upgrades and discounts on your next rental. car.
If you have any of these cards in your wallet, you automatically qualify for President’s Circle status in Hertz car rental company’s rewards program, Hertz Gold Plus Rewards.
You’ll have to to gain these benefits.
Credit cards that are part of the program entitles you to upgrades, discounts and elite status with the car rental loyalty programs of four car rental companies: Avis, Hertz, National and Silvercar. Visa Infinite cards include the and the . Here are the benefits you can expect:
Opinion : As a Visa Infinite cardholder, you’ll enjoy savings of up to 30% off base rates on qualifying rentals, free weekend rentals, and up to 10% off base rates on Select series rentals. You will need to call the Visa Infinite concierge or visit the to reserve rental cars at reduced rates.
In addition, you will benefit from automatic registration as a holder of Avis Preferred Plus status, which is the higher of the two levels of the . Its advantages include:
Hertz: When you hold a Visa Infinite card and enroll in the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards program, you receive benefits such as discounts, faster service, overtime on returns for rentals in the United States, and points. Additional bonuses in the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards program to work your way to free rentals faster. Register via the .
National: When you book a National rental car through , you’ll save up to 25% on qualifying car rentals at participating locations in the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.
You will also receive free membership at the Emerald Club Executive level, which is in the middle of the three Emerald Club Elite status levels. The advantages include:
Silvercar by Audi: is a bit of a where you rent Audi sedans and SUVs from select Audi dealerships (as well as a few other rental locations) across the country. Book a Silvercar through the Visa Infinite page (and pay with this card) to save at least 10% (and sometimes up to 30%) on your rental price.
If you have certain Mastercard cards, you will be entitled to car rental benefits from car rental companies such as Avis, Hertz and Sixt. Some eligible World Elite Mastercard cards include:
Opinion : As the owner of a World Elite Mastercard, you’ll enjoy savings of up to 35% off base rates on qualifying rentals and free upgrades. Plus, you’ll enjoy the same benefits as Avis President’s Club members. That’s pretty amazing, considering President’s Club is otherwise an invitation-only level. The benefits of President’s Club status include:
Hertz: If you have a World Elite Mastercard, you automatically qualify for President’s Circle status in Hertz’s car rental company rewards program, Hertz Gold Plus Rewards.
via the Hertz / World Elite Mastercard page to benefit from these advantages.
Sixt: When you rent a car with Sixt, you save a minimum of 15% (and sometimes up to 25%) on the price of your rental.
If a standard rental car isn’t fancy enough for you, consider a limousine. When you use Sixt Limousine Service you save 15% on chauffeured cars and receive a $ 50 voucher for your next chauffeured service with select suppliers).
Elite status and discounts are great, but those aren’t the other car rental credit card perks you should think about before hitting the road. Perhaps even more valuable than saving a few minutes skipping the line is skipping a lot more headaches if you .
Some credit cards offer varying degrees of when you pay the rental with this card. If your card offers this, there’s a good chance you’ll get collision or damage insurance (which is otherwise the expensive coverage that the person at the rental counter will often try to charge you for). Your credit card may also provide some degree of coverage for expenses such as towing, service charges, and loss of use (which are charges owed to the rental company for the time their car is unusable during repair. damage).
Some of the best travel credit cards can greatly improve your car rental experience and save you money. And some cards, like the , are particularly excellent not only for providing upgrades, discounts, and enhanced service to some rental car companies, but also for serving as primary insurance (as long as you decline the rental company’s collision insurance) when you praise.
Renting a car can certainly be a headache, but it doesn’t have to be. When you hold certain credit cards, you could end up with elite status, discounts, upgrades and more.
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our choices for the , including those that are best suited: