Unusually High Rates (LAX in particular)

 
Old Dec 16, 08, 8:34 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Falls Gulch VA
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Unusually High Rates (LAX in particular)

I've been checking rates on LAX rentals for a trip Jan 8-20, and finding that all the companies, even Hertz/Avis/National/Thrifty are just about double what I paid for similar rentals in April and October of this year. What's going on? They're not making enough money on fuel refills these days?

Is this happening all over? I've been checking rates for a few weeks now, and there doesn't seem to be more than a few dollars variation.
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Old Dec 17, 08, 4:15 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: ATW
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how much did you pay back then?
Other possibilities are checking the pick up at nearby airports, e.g., BUR, LGB, BUR, SNA, SBA with drop off at LAX.
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Old Dec 17, 08, 7:54 am
  #3  
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Join Date: May 2001
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Try a nearby Hertz Local Edition.

If you arrive during business hours, rent at a nearby Hertz Local Edition (HLE). One that is fairly close (approx 4-5 miles) is 2519 Lincoln Ave, Venice and drop off at LAX. I just check a booking (pickup HLE, drop off at LAX) for a midsize car using the CDP code 706900 and I get approx $267 for the 1 week, 5 day rental. (fullsize $309) They are open 7AM to 6PM. They will do pickups but not sure if they would pick up at the airport. Can't hurt to call. Their number is (310) 578-9700. I never rented from this location but it is close to LAX.

Another close HLE (6-7 miles away) is the Redondo Beach HLE. They may charge a little more. I have rented from there before and always treated me welll.

I saved almost $100 for a 2 day rental for a Seattle HLE vs. SEA airport. They even paid most of the cab fare!

It may be worth the inconvenience to rent at the HLE & drop off at the airport. The HLE is a lot cheaper & only taxes is the 8.25% sales tax. No contract fee, airport access fee, tourism tax, etc. Even if you had to pay $15to take a cab, the savings IMHO is worth it.
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Old Dec 18, 08, 5:21 am
  #4  
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Good thought about Hertz Local. The "extras" are just small change under $100 from all of the airport agencies.

As a point of reference, in October, I had a Chrysler Sebring (not a bad ride) from Thrifty for 1 week ($104) plus 2 days ($17/day) for a grand total of $164. The current quote from Thrifty for 2 weeks (1 week + 5 days actually) is $212.70 per week, grand total of $532.29. Quite a difference.

After some brain squeezing, I finally remembered kayak.com and did a search for rental cars at LAX. Ace offered a Nissan Altima (or similar) for $296 for the 12 days, more than $200 less than the minor majors (or even major majors). Has anyone here used them? It seems that they're acting as an agent for Rent-4-Less. You reserve through Ace, then go to Rent-4-Less for your car, sort of like how you could rent a car from Sears, but it was actually Budget. Curiously, a visit to the Rent4Less web site yielded rates pretty close to what I've been seeing from the other companies.

Last edited by Mike Rivers; Dec 18, 08 at 5:14 pm
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Old Jan 5, 09, 10:10 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2008
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Ace in LAX

This morning, Mr. hat attack was looking for a 2 day rental at LAX starting tommorrow and finding high rates ($200). I told him to try Kayak and he reported that he got a $40 2-day rate on an Altima from Ace. I've never heard of them either.
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Old Jan 5, 09, 3:34 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Brit expat lo these many years: Now in CT USA
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Florida, too

I had a nasty surprise when checking out car rental rates for our 2-week vacation in Florida in early February (NOT school vacation week). The quotes per week this year are about what I paid for the whole 14-day vacation last year. What gives?

I would have thought that with leisure travel down due to the economy, they would be more competitive to attract business. Maybe that's not their business model for some reason...
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Old Jan 8, 09, 10:17 am
  #7  
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Rates are all over the place, even for the same booking. I find Avis rates that vary by 50% for the same date and location, depending on the booking engine -- absurd! Generally Hotwire is the best if you don't care about which specific agency. But it varies a lot by date and location. And yes, many rates are double now compared to a year ago, until you find the "right" deal (and then it is less than a year ago). Product differentiation at its finest, I suppose.
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