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.

Rental cars

Which Tampa hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
posts: 49
reviews: 2
Rental cars

I am hoping the Tampa experts can fill me in on why rental car experiences seem to be a consistent concern for travelers to Tampa.

I have a reservation at Thrifty for my Tampa stay in May and booked solely on price. My last two Thrifty rentals - neither in Tampa - weren't great...marginally clean vehicles and pick-up was off site. I am able to get a good rate in Tampa from Enterprise but my experience with them, in other locations, hasn't been marvelous...my mid-size reservation got me a silly looking, not too well cleaned, Nissan Cube.

Budget gets some poor comments in this forum as do the super low priced vendors. Hertz, National, and Avis prices are not even close to what Thrifty and Enterprise can offer.

Any insight?

Are both Thrifty and Enterprise both at the airport?

Thanks.

Toronto,Canada
posts: 1,905
reviews: 2
11. Re: Rental cars

I have a rental from the 1st to the 12th i can usually rent for around $20 a day

this time it is significantly more anybody have any idea why?

Saint Louis...
posts: 787
reviews: 29
12. Re: Rental cars

HI- I fly into TPA about 5 times a yr and rent a car. Def. get one that is on site. And joint their loyalty program.

For Thrifty, it's called Blue Chip- you will have a special line at the counter for their Blue Chip members- no waiting. It's free to join. There's been plenty of times when I get to the counter and the normal lines have 20 people standing in them. And the member's only lines have no waiting.

I'd book who ever is cheapest- and all the companies have a loyalty program to join to get a shorter line at check in.

We just did an Alamo rental- and although it wasn't the best, the car was not squeaky clean, I'd rent with who ever gets you the cheapest deal. Look on Hotwire and it will tell you if the car co. is in the terminal or you need a shuttle. They have good prices.

www.hotwire.com

Terre Haute, IN
posts: 231
reviews: 29
13. Re: Rental cars

I have the same question as Post #11. I'm scheduled to rent a car from 6/10 through 6/17. The prices are extremely high with the exception of a few rental companies that have less than stellar reviews. I was able to book with Enterprise for about $300 for the week all fees included. The same rental is now over $500 once all fees are added. I thought the $300 was high compared to previous rentals, but $500 is definitely high. Is there some special event that is jumping rental prices?

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
posts: 8,742
reviews: 59
14. Re: Rental cars

Hautean,

I suggest you keep checking prices on almost a daily basis. I've found that prices often drop, but sometimes only for a few days and then they jump back up again. I've been most lucky at just under a month before my pick up date, like between 20 and 30 days from the rental date. But keep checking now, just in case.

You can always try a bid on Priceline as your travel date approaches. I don't like to bid on Priceline too far out because of course you pay at the time your bid is accepted and you can't cancel or make changes.

Terre Haute, IN
posts: 231
reviews: 29
15. Re: Rental cars

przyk -- Thanks for the input. I regularly follow the pattern you suggest of regularly checking prices. My current price of $300 was a window between the higher prices of $500. I hope that sometime before I fly into Tampa the prices will drop. The last time I flew to Tampa Bay I must have booked and cancelled five different times.

I'm still curious if there is a major event that has prices so high currently.

Calgary, Canada
Destination Expert
for Clearwater
posts: 1,437
reviews: 78
16. Re: Rental cars

I suspect the prices have more to do with the time of year than anything else. The busy season in Clearwater would be from Christmas to the end of April. I've been following the tourism stats for Clearwater - and they are at an all time high - higher than before the recession - so tourism for the whole area is also likely up. Prices likely reflect supply and demand.

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
posts: 8,742
reviews: 59
17. Re: Rental cars

You should be able to find websites that show events in the Tampa area.

I just looked at the receipt from my January trip. I ended up with a weekly rate of $153. including all taxes from Dollar on a mid size car. I'm sure I booked and cancelled 3 or 4 other reservations before I found that rate. I also used a discount code of RCHW5 to get a 10% discount from Dollar. I don't know where I got that code or if it's still good.

Edited: 12:00 am, April 20, 2013
Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
posts: 8,742
reviews: 59
18. Re: Rental cars

Or try promo code OOAG with Dollar. That one often works.

Saint Louis...
posts: 787
reviews: 29
19. Re: Rental cars

Huateen- I found a full size car for your dates for $192. total with taxes. on

Hotwire. (I fly into TPA several times a yr. and Hotwire works real well there). Make note to book one that says the car is located in the terminal, not offsite.

www.hotwire.com

Vancouver, Canada
posts: 293
reviews: 99
20. Re: Rental cars

But, isn't it a problem to book and pay through Hotwire for car rentals when your LDW insurance from your credit card will be used? I would be curious to know if anyone has successfully made a claim through Amex, for example, when their car rental was paid in advance through a 3rd party...

Anyone know?