I'm looking to rent a car from Avis or comparable agencies at MCO in May, with my Amex Plat while on business travel.
I have my reservation booked with a corporate code, but I have to pay for the rental myself and was wondering, since I'm only 22, if there was a way to get the $27 daily surcharge for underage (under 25) drivers waived over the phone or at the counter?
I've read some conflicting reports on this and how much discretion the agents really have.
Is it at all possible to get this waiver in the reservation process, and have this noted in the reservation document ahead of time?
I'm looking to rent a "Standard SUV" for a few days, so the charge really would add up to a substantial part of the rental cost. My driving record is flawless, but I doubt that I can flash that successfully..
Try a mom-and-pop used car shop. Their underage fees will be less or nonexistent. You will most likely have to deal with: no one-way rentals, older junk, geographic restrictions on mileage, mileage caps or show your airline pass to get free unlimited miles, a letter from your insurance company saying you have liability insurance and don't need to purchase their expensive one, etc.
Avis used to not allow underage rentals, period. Hertz and Budget did, for a high price, and now Hertz has a coupon to waive the fee for weekly rentals, so Avis lately decided to match them. Alamo has a smaller underage fee, typically an extra $9-$15/day. Enterprise, which was conceived to compete with the mom-and-pops, allows underage renters to add the charge when they book their reservation.
Many corporate contracts waive the underage fees, and can be used for both business and personal travel. (Personal travel doesn't cost the company a dime, and the rental company gets more business.) Inquire with your corporate travel department.
Regardless of whom you book with, underage renters are typically not allowed to drive large specialty vehicles, like minivans and SUVs. I suggest calling before you reserve something only to be turned away at the counter.
Programs: Avis CHM, Hertz Plat, National EE, SPG Plat, Hyatt Diamond, Le Club Plat, CX Gold
Use an Avis AWD or Hertz CDP that has the underage waiver included. A lot of corporate ones allow underage drivers to drive the nicer vehicles as well.
Just ensure that you actually qualify for the AWD/CDP, especially if you're underage. Ask your company if they have one or see if any of your frequent flyer/insurance/credit card etc. have this included. I never had a problem renting the nicer stuff when i was younger.
"Unlimited mileage within contiguous states." It sounds like an Enterprise coupon. Probably it's an employee discount. I'd stay far away. You might get caught at the counter, if this is a legitimate seller in the first place.
FYI, if you go on Craigslist, you'll find people hawking answers to CDL written test questions. You tell me, is this a good idea, just because it's there?