Thrift may not be your number one reason for renting a car from Thrifty Car Rental, but there are several other good reasons, namely:
It’s quick and easy to drop your car off with Thrifty in the US.
Clients are constantly impressed by the cleanliness of Thrifty cars.
Customers are typically very happy with the level of service received from Thrifty.
Thrifty offers a pick-up service, whereby a driver will pick you up from the hotel or home and bring you to the Thrifty office to finalize your rental.
In this independent Thrifty Car Rental review, we will tell you all you need to know about the company, their products and services, prices, deals and options to help you make up your mind whether it’s the best car hire option for you.
One half of the Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc., Thrifty Car Rental has been serving value-conscious business and leisure travelers since 1950. With a presence in virtually all the main airports in the U.S. and Canada, international travelers under contract with international tour operators make up a large proportion of the company’s revenues.
The Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. is a subsidiary of Hertz, the world-leading global car rental company of 90+ years.
Thrifty Car Rental Prices
In our research, we received quotes for one day rentals on economy, compact and full-size cars. Thrifty’s rates were the lowest one-day rental prices by as much as 50%. Their weekly rates were also typically below average to average.
An Economy car one-day rental at Thrifty was $62, and a one-week rental was $276.
A Compact car one-day rental at Thrifty was $64, and a one-week rental was $280.
A Full-size car one-day rental at Thrifty was $74, and a one-week rental was $316.
Thrifty Car Rental charges $10 for each additional authorized driver, which is cheaper than most other companies.
Thrifty Car Rental Options
Thrifty offers a range of rental car options, including:
Convertibles – Let your hair down with a convertible rental from Thrifty. Impress your favorite sun-worshipper and feel the wind in your hair without having to pay a heavy price tag to own your convertible. This is the perfect opportunity to see whether you want to buy your own Ford Mustang or similar car.
Economy Rentals – If you travel light, you can’t go wrong with an economy rental from Thrifty. The economy range respects your budget while allowing you to travel in style. Take along up to four passengers and two pieces of luggage in a Chevrolet Spark or similar vehicle.
Luxury Rentals – Just because you’re thrifty doesn’t mean you’re not fancy. That’s the beauty of renting a luxury car from Thrifty, the company that gets you. Sink into the luxurious plush seats and look through the panoramic sunroofs of your Chrysler 300, knowing that you’ve arrived.
Prestige Rentals – Live large with luxe for less deals from Thrifty’s prestige range, which includes the BMW X3, available at select airport locations.
SUV Rentals – When you need more space, you can’t go wrong with an SUV rental available in a range of classes, including compact, mid-sized, standard, full-size and premium.
Truck Rentals – If you’re heading for the campsite, you probably need a bit more space. With Thrifty’s truck rentals, you can fit everything you need in the bed, as well as up to five people and four pieces of luggage. Choose from mid-size trucks, standard trucks, full-size trucks or premium trucks.
Van Rentals – Need to get the family, friends and all the in-laws to an event? Make sure everyone’s on time by renting a passenger or cargo van from Thrifty. Choose the standard Ford Transit, full-size Ford 350, or a Nissan NV2500 cargo van.
Wild Card – Every thrifty person likes a good deal. We thrive on surprises, right? Well, the wild card option from Thrifty allows you to try your luck and you may just be in for a nice surprise. Read more about it under Deals below…
Sometimes, we can all use that little bit of an extra discount to sweeten a deal, and although their prices are already great, Thrifty is generous with their deals. They offer car rental deals, association deals and travel partner deals to ensure you get the best deal.
Wild Card Deal: As mentioned, the wild card deal gives you an opportunity to enjoy a possible free upgrade on the lot when you book a wild card deal at a rate equal to a compact car. So, depending on availability, you will either get to choose a compact car or a larger vehicle with room for at least five passengers and two pieces of luggage.
20% OFF Prepaid Rentals: It’s always cheaper to book well in advance, and when you do so with Thrifty, you score up to 20% off.
10% OFF Weekend or Weekly Base Rates: Book your weekend or weekly car rental and save 10% until December 31, 2019.
Partner Deals: Thrifty Car Rental has partnered with Southwest Rapid Rewards, Alaska Airlines, AAdvantage, and LifeMiles to bring you a variety of savings valid until the end of 2019.
AAA Deals: No payment is due for additional drivers who are AAA members when you apply your AAA discount to Thrifty car rentals.
AICPA Deals: If you’re an AICPA member, you will receive a discount on rentals of all car types.
National Society of Collegiate Scholars: Reserve any car type at participating U.S. or Canadian locations and enjoy an exclusive discount.
Union Plus Members Deals: Book in advance through participating locations and enjoy time and mileage discounts.
Blue Chip Discount Program
Thrifty offers a member rewards program, known as Blue Chip, which is free to join. Blue Chip offers a range of standard benefits. Although the program is less expansive than other programs, it is still worth joining if you frequently rent cars.
As a member of the Blue Chip program, you have exclusive access to the members-only line, which means that you get to bypass the regular line. This makes car rental quicker and easier than ever.
In addition to the convenience of red carpet treatment, you also earn points for each dollar spent on qualified rentals, and the points are redeemable in free rentals. As is average for most companies, you need to earn 500 points to get a free one-day weekend rental or 625 for a one-day weekday rental, and you earn one point for every dollar spent. Unlike some other programs, Thrifty does have blackout dates which restrict your options for redeeming your rewards points.
Thrifty Car Rental Locations
One of the drawbacks of Thrifty is that the company only has 470 locations across the U.S. and many of them are located at airports. Bear in mind that when you rent from airports, you can pay up to 10% more due to the concession fees charged by airports. However, if you make use of the discounts options mentioned above, that could well make it worth your while. Also, the handy pick-up service saves the cost of a taxi, so that’s quite handy.
Although the company is quite small compared to some major players in the industry, Thrifty doesn’t seem to have a low inventory issue when it comes to last-minute reservations.
Thrifty Car Rental has done away with credit checks, and no longer require travel plans when you book more than 24 hours in advance.
When making a last-minute reservation, or when you want to rent a luxury, premium or convertible car, you can pay by non-prepaid Discover, Mastercard or VISA debit card even if you are under 25 years of age. Be sure to bring along your return travel plans and government-issued ID. Thrifty Car Rental will not perform a credit check, however the transaction is contingent upon meeting the requirements and having the available funds to cover charges plus a US$200 authorization. You can use a debit card that draws funds directly from a linked bank account from the outset to pay for your rental, provided the reservation was made 24 hours prior to pickup. If the reservation was not made ahead of time, or if you’re renting a convertible, premium or luxury car, you can still use a debit card, provided you can show a valid driver’s license and another form of identification, and proof your return travel (airline or cruise) ticket to coincide with your rental.
The company will place an incidental hold waiver of $200 plus the cost of the rental on the card for your first rental, but it will be waived after your first rental if you are a Thrifty Blue Chip member with a VISA on your profile. You cannot use a debit card at the outset in areas of Philadelphia, areas of Manchester, areas of Boston, areas of Detroit, areas of Hartford, and the New York Metropolitan Tri-State Area (CT, NJ and NY).
It’s easy to rent a car from Thrifty Car Rental using your American Express, MasterCard, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, Visa or China Union Pay credit card. The company will place a hold on your card during your rental.
You can also pay for your Thrifty rental car in cash, if you are prepared to pay an upfront deposit and you are in possession of a Cash Deposit Identification Card.To apply for a Cash Deposit ID Card, you must be at least 18 years of age in New York or Michigan, or 20 years or older elsewhere. Applying for the Cash Deposit ID Card can take up to 30 days, and requires a $15 non-refundable processing fee that offsets the cost of a modified credit check.
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