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Old Feb 10, 12, 12:48 am   #1
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
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Car rental in Hawaii

Needing a car for 11 days in Kona in April, I'm seeing prices like this:

Price: $172.81 ($16/ day - best rate I've found)
Taxes: $223.51
Total:. $396.32

The taxes (and fees) include a "rental tax surcharge" of $7.50 to $8.50/day, whatever that is. Concession recovery charge - 11%, various vehicle fees and sales tax all add up to more than the base rental.
I don't see any options, as a car is really necessary to get to and around where we stay.
We rent cars in Hawaii two or three times a year but never have seen the fees so high. Something new? Avoidable?
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Old Feb 10, 12, 1:07 am   #2
 
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Sounds High
Surcharges are usually an extra tax to fund either county projects or in some cases to build consolidated car rental centers.
The tax and fee amount WOW. I've never seen those fees be that much over the total weekly charge
Keep shopping
But YES YOU NEED A CAR especially on the Big Island where things are spread out!
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Old Feb 10, 12, 1:14 am   #3
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travlynn View Post
Price: $172.81 ($16/ day - best rate I've found)
Taxes: $223.51
Total:. $396.32
The $172.81 is the weekly rate, it's then charging you $23.99/day for the other four days. Base rate is 268.77. Then taxes are added, more in the range of $127.55. If I understand my math right, the only way for taxes to be higher than the daily rate is if the rate is under ~$9/day. I actually had that happen once.
Try the Island Air Budget Link or the Hawaiian Airlines Avis link (from their websites). $332 all-in instead off $396. That's low season, I'd recommend Priceline closer to your departure.
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Old Feb 14, 12, 11:47 am   #4
 
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If you haven't already checkout Aloha rents
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Old Feb 14, 12, 12:30 pm   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfgiants13 View Post
If you haven't already checkout Aloha rents
+1.
Costco travel also, but generally have found Aloha rents to be cheaper.
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Old Feb 14, 12, 2:20 pm   #6
 
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Hawaii raised their taxes on rental cars in the past 6 months or so; to the tune of a couple of dollars a day. Not much you can do
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Old Feb 15, 12, 9:36 am   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travlynn View Post
Needing a car for 11 days in Kona in April, I'm seeing prices like this:

Price: $172.81 ($16/ day - best rate I've found)
Taxes: $223.51
Total:. $396.32

The taxes (and fees) include a "rental tax surcharge" of $7.50 to $8.50/day, whatever that is. Concession recovery charge - 11%, various vehicle fees and sales tax all add up to more than the base rental.
I don't see any options, as a car is really necessary to get to and around where we stay.
We rent cars in Hawaii two or three times a year but never have seen the fees so high. Something new? Avoidable?
Are you booking through Autoslash? For a rental that long Autoslash shows the weekly price and the total price (which includes 1 week + 4 days + taxes/fees).

I just looked for mid-April and it shows an intermediate at $173/week and a total price of $397.21, which is pretty close to the pricing you noted. Once I clicked through it showed the breakout as:

1 week = $173.38
4 days = $95.96
Taxes and Fees = $127.87

Maybe the booking engine you were using incorrectly lumped the "extra" 4 days into the taxes and fees line.

In general, it looks like you should expect taxes and fees to be ~15.28% +$7.50/$8.50 per day + <$1 per day for licensing out of the KOA airport.
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Old Feb 16, 12, 11:10 am   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfgiants13 View Post
If you haven't already checkout Aloha rents
+2.

You're going to find those taxes everywhere, IIRC, Hawaii just recently passed a new, higher percentage tax on car rentals.
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Old Feb 16, 12, 12:49 pm   #9
 
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OP - I think those rates are fairly good, especially when you factored in the recently bumped-up surcharges, taxes & fees, etc. on top of the base rates - coming out to be about $36 daily, assuming it's for a compact/mid-size with unlimited miles (I know, what they refer to as mid-size today was yesterday's old compact fleet)

We cannot even get a week's worth of rental here for NYC markets (or even some of the major West Coast cities) for under $400 on the final tabs.

Depending on your arrival & departure, have you tried pricing out a split - 3 day weekend plus a week+1 day, or similar matrix, for possible (minor to be likely) savings?

Another site to consider checking is Discount Hawaii Car Rental - a site often used by cruise ship passengers looking for deals -
http://www.discounthawaiicarrental.com/form.shtml

It should match and possibly beat the typical corporate discount rates, maybe even better than AAA or AARP rates with a qualifying code added. April is Spring break time and prices could've been driven up highly already - lock in a fully refundable rate quote like yours, and if you find a better one as you get closer, replace it. Once it's gone, you might regret it and not able to confirm for the lower rates. Don't forget to check for hidden discounts for military, law enforcement, government/contractor, alumni/university, union and similar deals not available to the general public - a direct phone call to the local office often can yield surprises as the 800/call-center don't necessary provide or disclose all the deals.
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Old Feb 16, 12, 12:58 pm   #10
 
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Any advice on getting discounted car rentals over Christmas on Maui? (codes, deals, anything?)
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Old Feb 17, 12, 2:11 pm   #11
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erasmus99 View Post
Any advice on getting discounted car rentals over Christmas on Maui? (codes, deals, anything?)
Book a (non-prepaid) reservation right now and monitor for any rate decreases, new coupons, etc. throughout the year. Most will let you cancel your reservation without a fee until the day before your scheduled pick-up date.

Check out the individual car rental forums for the best codes to use as they will change.
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Old Feb 21, 12, 7:19 pm   #12
 
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Check out the discounts offered from Island Air. Just go to islandair.com and click on the car rental logos. They had the best rates I have found on Oahu and Maui for my upcoming trip in June.

I searched some randome 11 day periods in April and the total with Budget was $332. I didn't check the other companies, but for my trip Avis and Budget were the best.
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Old Feb 22, 12, 1:46 pm   #13
Hoc
 
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Try www.hawaiicarrentals.net I always get the best car rental prices in Hawaii from them. I found $287.93, all in, for a one week rental in Kona in April.
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Old Feb 22, 12, 6:47 pm   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoc View Post
Try www.hawaiicarrentals.net I always get the best car rental prices in Hawaii from them. I found $287.93, all in, for a one week rental in Kona in April.
Thanks for the resource. Only a sample of 1, but for my upcoming rentals in June (HNL and JHM) the Island Air rates were a bit lower.
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Old Feb 25, 12, 9:45 am   #15
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In the middle of doing my research for vehicle rentals on 3 islands.. particularly looking for a mini van..

I found www.hawaiidrive-o.com to have pretty good rates as well, and you can get instant quotes online. Some of the above rental places you've got to call in or submit a request.
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