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Old Mar 14, 10, 6:22 pm   #1
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 5
Thumbs down Discover Card certificates for car rentals do not work

Discover Card offers to let you redeem $20 of cashback bonus for a certificate that is supposed to be worth $40 at Enterprise, a certificate that is supposed to be worth $40 at Thrifty, or a certificate that is supposed to be worth $40 at Alamo.

Enterprise's website said they had cars. On Discover's site, I found the code (DISCBB) to tell Enterprise's website that I am using one of the certificates ( https://www.discovercard.com/cardmem...modeCode=CP092 ), and it says that "No black out dates apply" ( https://www.discovercard.com/cardmem...lPartnersTerms ). However, if I try to reserve online with the code, it says that they sold out and there will be no cars available; if I then start another browser window and do not mention the certificate, it says that there are cars. So they do have cars, just not for anyone using the $20/$40 thing. I thought of calling on the phone, confirming that a car was available, and then saying, "oh wait, I have this certificate", but the rules for the Enterprise certificate require you to use a special phone number and say that you cannot use it at the regular phone number. So they know as soon as your dial. Clever.

I next tried Alamo. Discover's site ( https://www.discovercard.com/cardmem...lPartnersTerms ) admits "Blackout dates may apply", but does not say what those dates are. Also, it says that you do not receive the code until you redeem the cashback for the certificate ( https://www.discovercard.com/cardmem...modeCode=CP198 ), so you cannot check in advance to see if you will be able to use it.

The only other rental car company for which I can get the certificates is National, but National charges over $40 more (without the certificates) than other rental car companies at the airport where I am going, so it would cost more using the certificates at National than renting from another company without the certificates.

I do not think that you can even get back the $20. I think you lose it.
Stephen Weinstein is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 10, 7:04 am   #2
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 133
Discover has been horrible about their ways lately. I'm not surprised their certs are a pain just like their caps/rewards structure.
Eurosport is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 15, 10, 8:44 am   #3
mia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen Weinstein View Post
...it says that "No black out dates apply"
Welcome to Flyertalk.

This statement, which often appears in marketing materials, means only that there are no predetermined dates on which the offer is invalid. It does not mean that there are no capacity controls, which limit the number of redemptions on a date. You will encounter the same with most airline, hotel, and car rental programs.
mia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 7, 10, 7:26 pm   #4
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1
Almo

I had used Discover certificates at SEA for Alamo atleast 6 times recently and never had any issues.
mkir888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 7, 10, 8:15 pm   #5
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
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Sadly, Discover has gone from being one of the best credit cards to being one of the worst.

I havent used my Discover in 8 months now. It used to be my primary card 3 years ago.
rajuabju is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 7, 10, 8:57 pm   #6
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Ohio
Programs: Priority Club Plat
Posts: 370
I had no problems using a $40 one for Alamo back in sept for an Orlando rental.

I got an amazing deal because I combined it with the $10 a day promo they
were running back then.

Just booked the car as normal and on payment screen clicked something like "have a coupon/certificate (I dont remember) " and it applied the $40 off.

Total was like $13 after certificate for a 4 day rental (off-airport at the sheraton) was a great, great deal.

Was not questioned at the rental place about it either. Charge on my CC was for $13 as promised.

Sounds like enterprise is more sneaky about it though. Have not tried 1 of those.
darkhunter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 20, 10, 12:09 am   #7
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: San Jose, CA
Programs: Hilton Gold; UA 3P; Cattle-Class on everything else.
Posts: 261
I've used both Alamo and National $20 --> $40 certificates numerous times at SJC.

It works GREAT!!!

I prefer National because even though their rates are a couple bucks more, I'm Emerald Exec, so I get to pay for the next lower class and YET use the certificate.

Also, if the rental ends up being > $0 (before taxes / fees), it counts as a paid rental and is counted as a credit to the National Emerald, rent 6 times, get 1 day free thing.

Enterprise has ALWAYS been a problem though.

I like Discover. hope you can get it to work for you!
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