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Possible to rent a car with a temporary license?

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Old May 16, 08, 9:48 pm
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Possible to rent a car with a temporary license?

Here is the story: I unknowingly let my driver's license expire while I was overseas last month (read: forgot). Well I have a MR coming up this Saturday where I specifically planned a 12 hr layover as I would always kick myself for not getting to experience the cities I go to. Hence the need for a rental - I'll be in Portland, OR.

I went to the DPS a few days ago and got the license renewed.. however they will need to mail the new one to me. So all I have right now is the expired card with a piece of paper that essentially says *temporary* with the TX State Seal and all that.

I called Enterprise and explained the situation. They told me to take a hike - literally - "You'll have to walk.. we can't rent you a car.." I then called Dollar who was more than happy to rent me one for a mere $12.

So I'm a bit nervous that when I get to the counter Dollar will change thier minds. Contingency is a day pass to NW World Club (as I won't be able to drive - note I've not yet investigated the almighty Cab). But I would really enjoy exploring Portland (and do not relish the thought of spending 12 hrs at the airport!)

So anyone have experiences with renting a car with a temporary license?


ps: just realized I spelled *license* wrong.. can a Mod update the title? It's my profession.. we're known for bad spelling.

Last edited by Ocn Vw 1K; May 24, 10 at 2:51 pm Reason: Can't spell.../[Note by Mod: edited thread title at OP's req.]
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Old May 17, 08, 12:55 am
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Dollar has the policy on their Web site. So there should not be any problem.

They also have the capability to do DMV checks to verify that you have a valid license.
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Old May 17, 08, 7:19 pm
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I can't answer your question, but PDX has a light rail line that runs to the airport. If I recall correctly, it should be about 40-45 minutes from the airport to downtown. One-way is $2.05 and a day pass is $4.25.

TriMet MAX

There's a bunch of great restaurants around the city, so don't waste your day in the NW WC.
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Old May 17, 08, 7:54 pm
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Hi - I recently relocated to TX from GA. I had to give up my GA license when I went through the process to get my TX license. Just like what happened to you - I had a piece of paper - and I did rent a cars from Hertz during this time. I am in the Gold Club (or whatever the frequent renters club is called) and they usually ask for your ID when you approach the desk.

FWIW, when I presented my "license" (and passport for photo verification) I told them the situation and that it was a valid license and that I am just waiting for the state to deliver my permanent license. It was a never a problem. Good luck!
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Old May 17, 08, 10:59 pm
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Have never had a problem with a temporary Massachusetts license. It's a real license, after all. Has all the rights and obligations of the permanent kind.
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Old May 18, 08, 8:40 pm
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Thanks all for the input. Ended up working out just fine, no questions asked.

Newbie - thanks for pointing out the train option (I did see it after I had posted this thread). I probably would have given it a go if the car didn't go through.. dreading the day stay in the WC (which turns out closes at 4 pm plus or minus). Car option worked great, though - $16 a/i for a Subaru Forrester.. can't beat that for cheap.

Had a great time - did Nob Hill, Saturday Market, Tram, OMSI and Niketown (sorta) - as well as a leisurly drive through the hills. Next time.. Mount Hood.
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Old May 18, 08, 9:32 pm
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Make sure you have a valid photo ID to go with it and you should be OK.

Dollar states:

The following motor vehicle drivers licenses are generally acceptable in the U.S.

A valid motor vehicle driver's license issued by any state, territory or possession of the U.S.
A valid temporary driver's license issued by any state, territory or possession of the U.S.


and a bunch of other things.

See here - http://www.dollar.com/AboutUs/GeneralPolicies.aspx
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Old May 24, 10, 1:51 pm
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I just had a bad experience from Enterprise for renting a car with my learner's permit in Nashville, TN. I have an expired WY driver's license and a valid TN learner's permit. I called my buddy to rent a car with his name and asked them to add me as an additional driver.

First they said they will be charging extra for the additional driver(me) and when he is on the way, they changed the story. They told me that even additional driver must have a valid driver's license. The interesting thing is I went there for a car since few of my friends having only learner's permit rented a car a few months back.

When I was in WY, I rented a car from enterprise with a learner's permit before taking my driving test. It's pretty obvious to me they change their policies from time to time in different locations.

Is there anybody who rents a car for permit holders?
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Old May 26, 10, 10:51 pm
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That's odd that Enterprise told you to take a hike. When I worked there, especially when I worked at the PHX Airport, we had a book listing all licenses incuding temporary ones with photos. I saw at least a dozen temporary licenses and I never turned one away or saw anyone do it either.
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Old May 27, 10, 8:44 pm
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Originally Posted by jaykaybe View Post
I just had a bad experience from Enterprise for renting a car with my learner's permit in Nashville, TN. I have an expired WY driver's license and a valid TN learner's permit...
The simple fact is that you did not have a valid driver's license, period. An additional driver may, as far as they're concerned, drive their car. You could not legally do so.

Could they, in theory, have a special contract for additional drivers who may only use the car when there's a licensed driver in it? Perhaps, but I doubt they do. I also doubt they'd want to, since they probably don't want their cars used for driver training (which is the usual learner's permit situation).

Originally Posted by CMK10 View Post
That's odd that Enterprise told you to take a hike. When I worked there, especially when I worked at the PHX Airport, we had a book listing all licenses incuding temporary ones with photos. I saw at least a dozen temporary licenses and I never turned one away or saw anyone do it either.
The above poster did not have a temporary license. He/she had an expired license from one state and a learner's permit from another. Those do not add up to a valid license.

Regarding temporary licenses, which most states now issue on renewal because they've gone to digital imaging systems: Suppose you renew your license every five years and have the temporary one for a week. That means one week out of 260 you have a temporary license. Since this is equally true of everyone else, one renter out of 260 on the average will have a temporary license. This translates to several renters a week at an active airport location, one every few weeks at a slow in-town agency. It's safe to say that nobody reading this post will be the first to show up at an agency with a temporary license. It happens often enough for every car rental company to know about them and accept them.
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Old Oct 18, 17, 3:28 pm
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Angry Enterprise lost my business

Originally Posted by CMK10 View Post
That's odd that Enterprise told you to take a hike. When I worked there, especially when I worked at the PHX Airport, we had a book listing all licenses incuding temporary ones with photos. I saw at least a dozen temporary licenses and I never turned one away or saw anyone do it either.
I, too, had a problem with this. I have been an Enterprise customer for YEARS,and yesterday when I tried to rent with my temporary license and my expired card, they showed me the door. No more enterprise.
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Old Oct 18, 17, 3:45 pm
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To the OP, your answer is simple: delay your trip for 9 years and you can Uber/Lyft all over Portland with no hassle at all!
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Old Oct 18, 17, 6:50 pm
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Originally Posted by Mary Kay Caristo Glunt View Post
I have been an Enterprise customer for YEARS
But were you a customer when this thread started?

I'd contact Enterprise's Customer Service and ask why they don't accept a valid state license?
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Old Oct 19, 17, 8:27 am
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Enterprise is the least-customer-service oriented agency I can think of. (I don't care to explore the Payless/Advantage/etc. world enough to prove who if any of them are worse.) Chasing them in hopes of renting with a temporary license is going to be more hassle than it's worth, especially given that there appear to be other agencies out there that seem to handle this better.

Granted, this thread is quite dated, but it appears that the Hertz/Dollar/Thrifty group handles temporary licenses fine. Maybe try one of them?

Enterprise doesn't care whether you've been a customer for years. They don't even particularly care if you're Exec Elite. Their processes and culture seem much more single-location-based than other chains that are based more around airport locations.
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