#one way rental car deals
West Hollywood, California 27,172 forum posts
#1 of 24
It is not always less expensive if the company has no drop charge because they simply charge you more per day. So, your question should be:
Who has the least expensive rentals from LA to SF?
The other thing to consider is how many days you plan to have the car and whether it will be on a weekday or over the weekend? Often, it s less expensive to rent a car for an entire week (even if you don t need it) than for, say 5 days — in other words: take the weekly rate but return it early.
For example, using travelocity.com to do a side-by-side comparison of the major car rental companies (At travelocity.com, click on the CARS tab, first, and then click on the ONE WAY link at the bottom of the pink area), yields the following results for the least expensive car rentals: NOTE: These are all for the smallest car size offered.
1. One-day: $87.36 — Alamo — no drop charge
2. Two-day $164.70 — Alamo — no drop charge
3. Three-day $242.00 — Budget — no drop charge
4. Four-day (weekdays only): $319.35 — Budget — no DC
5. Four-day (incl weekend days): $281.18 — Thrifty — includes drop charge of $137.88
6. Five-day, six-day rentals are both cheaper if you take the weekly rate (7 days): Alamo — $294.84 — no drop charge
However, if you rented a convertible for 7 days, Thrifty would be the least expensive at $429.57 (including a drop charge of $137.88 compared to Alamo s drop charge free $502.35
Of course, you need to add to that any increased car insurance you desire and the cost of gasoline (about $60, assuming 20 mpg). Even without added insurance, a one-day car rental will cost $87.36 + $60 = $147.36.
Compare that to flying (virgin-america.com has flights for $49 including taxes and fees) so that would cost $98 for the 2 of you to fly (in about an hour, 15 minutes) versus 6+ hours on the road for $147.36.