We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

London
Level Contributor
57 posts
One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

We are renting a car in Seattle on 10/09/11 and driving down to Salt Lake City (850 miles) where we will drop the car off on 19/09/11. There are 4 of us.

Alamo have quoted a $300 one-way drop-off charge which makes the total hire cost double!

Can anyone recommend a car hire company who either does not have a drop-off charge (but a slightly higher day-rent fee) or is cheaper than the $300 Alamo want?

Edited: 08 August 2011, 10:01
seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
20,246 posts
112 reviews
1. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

look on hotwire.com for one way rentals. Also seemed like Prriceline let you compare one way rates for several companies at one time. Also try Expedia or travelocity and see if they give you a one way option.

Renting away from the airport will also save you in taxes and fees.

London
Level Contributor
57 posts
2. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

Thank you for the reply however we have already looked there an want to know whether anyone already knows a company who does not charge a drop-off fee and/or charges less. Anyone else able to reply with some useful information please :)?

Seattle, Washington
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
7,640 posts
3. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

One-way drop fees are now generally universal among the major rental companies, i.e. those with multi-state branches. David's suggestion for Hotwire is probably your best bet. Sometimes you'll see no drop charge but a high daily rate instead; just do the math to see what's cheapest. Factor the drop fee or higher rates into the daily cost of the rental and decide if it's cheaper to fly instead.

Sedona
Destination Expert
for Sedona
Level Contributor
3,438 posts
60 reviews
4. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

We had to rent a car one way in May and found that CarRental.com had the best price. Recently in Portland "Car rental savers" had the best price for a round trip.. I don't think you can use Priceline for a one way rental.

London
Level Contributor
57 posts
5. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

Thank you for the replies guys. Looks like I got the best deal there is in this case. Bummer as it's twice what we budgeted.

Edited: 16 August 2011, 12:57
seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
20,246 posts
112 reviews
6. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

car rentals like airline fares vary greatly daily so no one company will 'always' be cheaper. Be sure not to fall for the prepaid gas option as it will cost you money, and do check for insurance coverage at home before you get to the airport. Those are the things that really add to your final cost.

Sedona
Destination Expert
for Sedona
Level Contributor
3,438 posts
60 reviews
7. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

That is really too bad! I wish drop charges were not so high.

Burlington, Canada
Level Contributor
307 posts
64 reviews
8. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

Hi, I just reserved a car with Budget on line for our trip from Seattle to San Francisco and paid in advance. There was no drop off charge shown on line or on the print out that was emailed to me. I am not convinced that there will not be one, but we certainly will give them an argument if that is the case. Most drop off charges I found were $300 US, except for Thrifty, they charged $200, but they did not have a location we wanted.

Sedona
Destination Expert
for Sedona
Level Contributor
3,438 posts
60 reviews
9. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

Sounds surprising. I would email to be sure..

Seattle, Wa
Level Contributor
5,832 posts
49 reviews
10. Re: One-Way Car Rental - Cheapest Drop-Off Charge?

Like David said, no one can possibly tell you the answer to your question, because it's different every time--there is no such thing as a company that is always cheapest, or never charges the fee. Rental agencies charge the drop off fee when they know they will have to find a way to get the car back to where they need it. They won't charge one if you are actually taking a car to a place where they need it. So, it depends on the starting and ending city, the time of year, the type of car, etc etc. The only way to know if to spend the time in front of your computer and check with every agency.