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Old Aug 21, 11, 5:42 pm   #1
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Programs: US Airways Gold Preferred, National Executive, Hilton Gold
Posts: 2,657
Inexpensive weekend rentals- how are prices determined?

I regularly rent cars from National, and I just rented a car for just under 24 hours this weekend. Base price was under $20.

If someone doesn't buy insurance, GPS or other add-ons, how in the world does National make any money that way? Depreciation alone would be over $10 on a typical midsize, plus the costs of maintenance and the costs of running the National facility.

Just curious as to how National determines pricing?
NYCommuter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 21, 11, 6:21 pm   #2
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: PIT
Programs: DL SM, UA, US, AA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYCommuter View Post
I regularly rent cars from National, and I just rented a car for just under 24 hours this weekend. Base price was under $20.

If someone doesn't buy insurance, GPS or other add-ons, how in the world does National make any money that way? Depreciation alone would be over $10 on a typical midsize, plus the costs of maintenance and the costs of running the National facility.

Just curious as to how National determines pricing?
3 or 4 years ago, I had hotwire rentals (usually hertz or avis) for $10 a day. Its all about whether National has their fleet rented for the weekend. Its better to get $20 for the car than to let it sit idle for the weekend.
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Old Aug 22, 11, 6:44 am   #3
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New York suburbs
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Its better to get $20 for the car than to let it sit idle for the weekend.

Not always. If it's a manufacturer buyback, then the incentive is to maximize revenue, and hence not let the car sit idle too long.

However, more rentals today are risk vehicles. The rental agency owns the car outright, and has to sell it themselves at auction. One major issue for resale value is mileage. So there arise more situations where some agencies would rather not rent the car.
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Old Aug 22, 11, 6:50 pm   #4
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
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Originally Posted by Auto Enthusiast View Post
Its better to get $20 for the car than to let it sit idle for the weekend.

Not always. If it's a manufacturer buyback, then the incentive is to maximize revenue, and hence not let the car sit idle too long.

However, more rentals today are risk vehicles. The rental agency owns the car outright, and has to sell it themselves at auction. One major issue for resale value is mileage. So there arise more situations where some agencies would rather not rent the car.
While I agree with everything my esteemed colleague says here - sometimes I do wonder the same thing. When costs are so low, you do have to wonder. Although with National, the prices are as consistently low as say, Alamo. Ironically renting the same vehicles, lol.
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