Enterprise - any way to avoid or lessen the one-way drop charge?

 
Old Dec 16, 14, 8:18 am
  #1  
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Enterprise - any way to avoid or lessen the one-way drop charge?

To be more specific, looking at going from Ohio (picking up car somewhere around Dayton area) and then dropping car at New Orleans or Baton Rouge airports 4 days later.

So far, $550 is the best I can come up with thanks in part to the $339 one-way drop charge. Any tips to lessening this charge? Codes?
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Old Dec 16, 14, 9:02 am
  #2  
 
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No. Once upon a time, you could get drop charges waived if you took a car from the destination city. Back then, most locations were franchises, but today most offices and cars are corporate-owned. As such, the cars can randomly circulate. One-way pricing depends on the company's business model.

Enterprise neighborhood stores, like many other "discount" brands, have a different one-way pricing model. They have a low base rate plus a separate taxable drop charge. This allows them to have fewer one-ways that cause inventory fluctuations, consequently lower inventory, and yet a similar profit when they do get one-ways. This can be cost-effective for short distance, long time rentals.

Ironically, the "premium" brands can be cheaper, especially for short time, long distance one-ways. They have larger fleets at more locations, can withstand greater random inventory fluctuations, and so can offer more flexibility. They charge a higher daily rate with no/hidden drop fee, based on demand and estimated mileage. The total price can be cheaper than the "discounters."
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Old Dec 16, 14, 12:36 pm
  #3  
 
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Try a different agency.

Enterprise, especially, is focused on local rentals. Even rentals from an in-town location to the airport can be complicated for Enterprise.

Alamo, National, Hertz and Avis on the other hand regularly do one-way rentals.

I'm doing a trip this week picking up in BTV (Burlington, VT) and returning a week later in BDL (Hartford, CT). I priced all the agencies. Enterprise/Alamo/National share a fleet and Alamo and National share a counter and facility in both locations.

Best I could get with National was $339 total
Enterprise wouldn't even quote it
Alamo was $130 total

And this is for probably the same actual vehicle roughly speaking.

So, it pays to shop around.
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Old Dec 17, 14, 5:28 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
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Agree with Noah's reply. Also, expand your horizon and try not only other car rental companies, but also from nearby cities, it may be worth it.
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