I am a huge proponent of Avis except in one area: Earning free rentals.
I rent a car from Avis for 4 days / week pretty much every week. I love the service, the cars, the upgrades, etc. However, my one issue is the lack of a proprietary point system that would allow an exchange of points for free rental days.
IMO, Hertz obliterates Avis in this area. As a President's Circle member, i earn 1 point for every dollar i spend on a rental at Hertz (plus a 30% bonus on all points). These points can be used for free rentals.
One might argue that the Avis First "free weekend" coupons are comparable; however, I disagree. The Hertz points system allows you to not only get a free standard car for a few days, but it allows you to spend more points to reserve a specific car (ie a camaro convertible for those summer vacations, or a nice SUV when you need more space). In fact, with Hertz points, you can reserve a vehicle for a single day or an entire week.
I really wish Avis had something like this available. Since I travel weekly, I am able to get free hotel rooms, free flights, etc, but rental cars are the one thing i still find myself paying for when i go on vacation. I end up reserving a full for a decent rate and hoping I get upgraded to a nice car. I usually end up getting pretty good upgrades b/c of my PC status, but if I wanted to reserve a specific car, I wouldn't be able to.
In the end - is it worth it to put up with (imo) crappier service / cars on a weekly basis to earn the free rentals of awesome cars through points (Hertz) - or is it better to continue renting with Avis and getting great service / cars but still paying for my personal rentals and not being able to specifically request that Camaro SS Convertible when I want it for a weekend (unless I pay the big $$).
Alternatively, many of you may feel that the best use of rental rewards is to accumulate airline miles (ie, the US Airways 3000 miles / Avis rental promo going on right now).
Any and all opinions are appreciated - sorry for the long rant. Also, feel free to chime in with any good partner miles promos that are going on right now. I typically fly United, so I would love a good mileage promotion with Avis.
Thanks for reading,