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Rental car payment

Rental car payment

Old Apr 19, 02, 8:23 am
  #1  
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Rental car payment

I was wondering if one of you good people could help me out here. I am looking to rent a car in Boston for two days when I am out there at the end of May, as I am driving out to Orange to visit friends.

Now the question. Am I able to pay for the rental car with a debit card? It is a Visa debit, tied in with a UK bank, and I have had no problem using it in the past anywhere I have seen the Visa sign, but do you think I am able to use it for a rental car?

Any help would be appreciated.

Cheers,
Matt
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Old Apr 19, 02, 8:40 am
  #2  
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Matthew,

I think probably not, certainly for the big chains.

I normally rent thru' Hertz, and their t&c's state clearly that, while you can settle your final bill post-rental with a debit card, you need to have a credit card pre-approved to drive the car away.

It may be that you could find an independent operator who would accept a debit card, but not sure how widespread they (debit cards or suitable operators) are in the US.

Stewart
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Old Apr 19, 02, 9:55 am
  #3  
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From National's web site:

Debit and check cards may only be used as a form of payment at the end of the rental (once the vehicle has been returned). National Car Rental will not accept debit cards at the start of a rental. A credit card or cash qualification is required.
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Old Apr 20, 02, 12:35 pm
  #4  
 
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US rental companies are pretty strict about requiring a credit card to "rent" a car, although most will accept various forms of payment at the end of the rental.

Drivers under 25 tend to have this problem as well. There is a web site: www.bnm.com that has a section called College Age Rentals. There are 4 companies listed under "Boston". I'd contact each one, explain your situation and see if they can help.

Good Luck and enjoy Boston!

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Old Apr 20, 02, 10:00 pm
  #5  
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isn't businesstraveler's sig line for a commercial enterprise??

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Old Apr 21, 02, 12:51 am
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As others have mosted, most US car rental agencies require a non-debit credit card at time of rental, although a debit card may be used at the end of the rental to settle the charges.

I question whether a car rental agency would be able to tell that a MasterCard/Visa from Europe was a debit or a credit card. Maybe I'm wrong, but I've just assumed that this was determined by knowing the unique card number prefixes used by US banks for debit cards, rather than anything that goes on real-time during the authorization process.
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Old Apr 22, 02, 1:35 pm
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I believe that the US car rental agencies cannot differentiate between a foreign-issue debit and "true" credit card. BTW, many overseas MasterCard and Visa cards function like US-based debit cards.
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Old Apr 22, 02, 10:44 pm
  #8  
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by fastflyer:
I believe that the US car rental agencies cannot differentiate between a foreign-issue debit and "true" credit card. BTW, many overseas MasterCard and Visa cards function like US-based debit cards.</font>
in overhearing conversations at DOllar and at Avis over te past year, it seems they CAN and DO differentiate between debit and credit cards form Europe. Not the most reliable info but FWIW.

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Old Apr 23, 02, 9:23 am
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by squeakr:
isn't businesstraveler's sig line for a commercial enterprise??

</font>
My site started as, is and will be a free resource for road warriors. I've been a business traveler for 20 years and started the site 6 years ago when I could not find another site like it on the web. My goal has always been to provide a resource that makes business travel safer, more productive, efficient and enjoyable while perhaps helping to save a buck or two. While I hoped that belonging to affiliate programs would help cover the cost of web hosting, throughput, link testers, etc, I still foot the bulk of the costs myself.

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[This message has been edited by businesstraveler (edited 04-23-2002).]
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