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Rent car at airport or in town?

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Los Altos...
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Rent car at airport or in town?

My travel bugaboo: I hate car rental taxes, which can verge onto 40 percent of the rental cost sometimes. Does anyone rent in town, and does it make a significant difference, cost-wise? I've noticed there are two airport taxes -- a facilities concession fee which is $4.50 per day, and an 11.11 percent "airport fee" also called an "access fee." (Then, of course, the regular sales tax, county tax, are applied on top of that, which I don't mind paying, and sometimes the amorphous "surcharges").

1. Can I avoid these airport taxes if I get my relatives to pick me up at the airport and deposit me at an in-town, off-airport location?

2. If I go that route, are there other taxes I'm unaware of that would negate that?

3. What local, in-town companies would you recommend? These need not be national chains; I like to support local businesses wherever I go.

NC
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1. Re: Rent car at airport or in town?

Someone may know something I don't, but when I checked on that option there was basically no difference. The taxes slammed on visitors are to fund all the projects in town like the arena. One reason we went to Palm Springs this year instead of Phoenix!

NC
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2. Re: Rent car at airport or in town?

OK- I went to Enterprise and checked on and off airport....you do save some - taxes still too high, though!

Los Altos...
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3. Re: Rent car at airport or in town?

Hey thanks. Since Fox near the airport is still offering a lower rate than everyone else in town, I guess I'll go with them. They have great rates.

Phoenix, AZ
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4. Re: Rent car at airport or in town?

Here's the deal...if you rent a car in the "city of Phoenix" you pretty much have to pay the high fees and taxes.

$4.50 per day City of Phx which is also taxed at the 10.1% rate goes to the city for the construction and maintenance of the new Consolidated Rental Car Facility.

The 11.11% Concessions Recoup fee goes to the airport and is also taxes at the 10.1% rate. That's for having car rental available in the vacinity of the airport.

The 5% State fee is a State Licencing Fee, there's the 3.25% County surcharge (stadium fee) The 10.1% is the sales tax.

Yes compounded comes out to approx. 42 to 43% depending on the duration of your rental.

Even people who live in the valley here have to pay all of the taxes if their zip code isn't far enough away from the airport itself.

If you rent outside the city of Phx proper you may be able to avoid the City Fee and the Concession Recoup Fee. Those are the only two you can miss out on. Meaning you would have to rent in Mesa, Scottsdale, Peoria, Glendale, Gilbert, Chandler, etc.

So you would have to make sure wherever you make your res. that you could get there, and return the car there, and then get back to the airport. Those off-sight locations will NOT take you to the airport. You would have to rely on family or other means of transportation. Family obviously is the best way to go bcause if you pay cab or shuttle you spent more than those taxes you just tried to avoid.

The National Chains have locations in the towns I listed where you can rent. In most cases you will get a more reliable rental car that way. Some times the smaller "mom and pop" type companies cannot afford to change out their fleets like the National type companies can.

Los Altos...
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5. Re: Rent car at airport or in town?

Belatedly, thanks for all the good advice. For this particular point in time, I found that I either got lower taxes by going outside of the airport, but not necessarily lower base rental. The differential was enough so that I ended up with an airport car because the company was offering a lower base. I imagine that at some time in some season, perhaps the lower base rate will be outside the airport, but it would have to be a substantial enough difference to make my relatives to take the trouble to fetch me.

Ontario, Canada
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6. Re: Rent car at airport or in town?

I think the important thing is to really shop around. I spent a bunch of time on the internet today looking around for a Luxury (towncar, etc) vehicle.

However, as has been posted, I think anyone in Phoenix will ding you with these extra fees and even in Scottsdale, if you rent at your hotel, you will see nasty add on fees there for the convenience factor.

I saw a price from my Scottsdale hotel, national agency, for 504 USD for 5 days, all inclusive while the same company had an online rate that was the best I've seen yet, from one of their other locations just a few miles away for only 306. USD for a WEEK, all inclusive but not unlimited miles (but not bad at 1050, fine for us). That's a HUGE difference! I confirmed this voice as well.

Most online quotes will give you the full cost with no hidden fees but a few don't and the very local companies have limited abilities to quote online and some only have a couple of rental choices.

Some will pick you up at your hotel and some will not. Enterprise will, for example.