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ReelfasterReelfaster Posts: 15 Greenhorn
My father and I and many other family members and friends have been coming down to the Keys and Key West annually for probably over 15yrs now. We usually always fly into Fort Lauderdale and rent a car and drive down to the Keys.

Maybe it's just me but for the past few years I feel like I've been getting royally screwed by the car rental companies. I am not loyal to one company and try to get the best price to always make our trip more affordable. I reserve a vehicle only to always get down there and upon checking it out or sometimes returning it I get hit with a ton of fee's. Either it's purchasing the gas up-front, or having to pay a fee for SunPass or whatever it maybe. It's usually always $125-$200 more then what the reserve price is.

Just wanted to pick anyone's brain who has alot of experience with renting a car down in Florida and if there is something am missing or if this is just the way it is and they are gonna screw ya no matter what. For example do I have to get Sunpass? and is it worth it to pay for gas up front? Thanks in advance!
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Replies

  • toomertoomer Posts: 344 Deckhand
    If you are a Costco member they have links to rental cars on their website at (usually) lower prices.
  • dolfanjoeydolfanjoey Posts: 1,174 Officer
    I always rent thru Orbitz
  • MelbourneMarkMelbourneMark Posts: 2,193 Captain
    I was listening to some news program the other day; and they were talking about how those companies are losing money big time. I think the causes were uber, cheaper used car market, and some other ones.

    Might just be what it is.
  • ReelfasterReelfaster Posts: 15 Greenhorn
    Thanks fella's for the info! Reading some tips online they are saying not to pre pay for the Gas, gonna scout out some places to stop on way back and fill up! Going to call them directly about the SunPass/Tolls stuff that is another scam they get you on!
  • GrizGriz Palm Beach Gardens, FloridaPosts: 9,904 Admin
    You can always purchase a Sun Pass for yourself on line or once you arrive. All the grocery stores carry them near the check out.
    The early bird may get the worm, but the Second Mouse gets the cheese. SW

    :Griz
  • ReelfasterReelfaster Posts: 15 Greenhorn
    Griz wrote: »
    You can always purchase a Sun Pass for yourself on line or once you arrive. All the grocery stores carry them near the check out.

    Thanks Griz!
  • King_MeKing_Me Delray Beach, FLPosts: 6,555 Admiral
    I was in a big shock when I received my recent automobile insurance bill, it went up near a thousand dollars! Called the insurance agency(Allstate) and they said they had to up the rates because of sudden increase in the FL and GA market area. Went with Geico instead and save 800+ dollars. Rental companies are probably seeing the same effect.
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 27,752 AG
    Reelfaster wrote: »
    Thanks fella's for the info! Reading some tips online they are saying not to pre pay for the Gas, gonna scout out some places to stop on way back and fill up! Going to call them directly about the SunPass/Tolls stuff that is another scam they get you on!

    Google independent auto rentals around the airport and check them out. I know there are at least four or five.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • SAENoleSAENole Posts: 11,198 AG
    Do not trust this guy:

    ce9ae948cea929d1faeb19e2760104d0.jpg
    Warning Level 2
  • Billy No MatesBilly No Mates Posts: 3,187 Captain
    Reelfaster wrote: »
    Reading some tips online they are saying not to pre pay for the Gas, gonna scout out some places to stop on way back and fill up!

    On most cars you can buy gas about 20 miles away and the gas needle wont move. :grin

    It is usually much more convenient finding gas a little farther away.
  • Bottom LinesBottom Lines Posts: 1,105 Officer
    If you own a car, and have your own insurance, do not let them talk you into buying their insurance. Another scam. And whatever you do, DO NOT rent from Dollar.
  • SAENoleSAENole Posts: 11,198 AG
    If you own a car, and have your own insurance, do not let them talk you into buying their insurance. Another scam. And whatever you do, DO NOT rent from Dollar.

    What happens if you wreck their vehicle and it's in the shop for 2 weeks being repaired? Who pays for their loss of income?
    Warning Level 2
  • King_MeKing_Me Delray Beach, FLPosts: 6,555 Admiral
    I have been using https://www.sixt.com/ which seems to beat the competitors by a large amount. Not sure if they're in the south FL market yet.
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 27,752 AG
    SAENole wrote: »
    What happens if you wreck their vehicle and it's in the shop for 2 weeks being repaired? Who pays for their loss of income?

    Make them prove their loss.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • Bottom LinesBottom Lines Posts: 1,105 Officer
    I'm not going to pay it, and if they were to send me an invoice I'd tell them to talk to my insurance company and/or to stick their "junk fee" where the sun doesn't shine...

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/advice/2016/10/30/rental-car-loss-of-use/92878126/
  • SAENoleSAENole Posts: 11,198 AG
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    Make them prove their loss.

    They're without a vehicle to rent each day. Can't rent a car that's in the shop getting repaired. That's $$ lost.
    Warning Level 2
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 27,752 AG
    SAENole wrote: »
    They're without a vehicle to rent each day. Can't rent a car that's in the shop getting repaired. That's $$ lost.

    That's speculation, not proof. Are all their rentals booked every day, seven days a week? Is the rental rate the same every day? Individual or corporate rate?
    Vote for the other candidate
  • cadmancadman Home of the Gators Posts: 32,734 AG
    If you own a car, and have your own insurance, do not let them talk you into buying their insurance. Another scam. And whatever you do, DO NOT rent from Dollar.

    I always buy the insurance. Then beat the hell out of the car. Rental cars are where you can get answer to those nagging questions, like what would happen if I put it in reverse while driving 40mph forward.

    Mini Mart Magnate

    I am just here for my amusement. 

  • cadmancadman Home of the Gators Posts: 32,734 AG
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    That's speculation, not proof. Are all their rentals booked every day, seven days a week? Is the rental rate the same every day? Individual or corporate rate?

    Compacts, the lowest priced rental, are usually 100% booked around here. Rent midsized or full size and less likely to be gone and easier to get.

    Mini Mart Magnate

    I am just here for my amusement. 

  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 27,752 AG
    cadman wrote: »
    I always buy the insurance. Then beat the hell out of the car. Rental cars are where you can get answer to those nagging questions, like what would happen if I put it in reverse while driving 40mph forward.

    I always buy the DCW, just to avoid the hassle if I am in an accident.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • Westwall01Westwall01 Posts: 5,453 Admiral
    cadman wrote: »
    I always buy the insurance. Then beat the hell out of the car. Rental cars are where you can get answer to those nagging questions, like what would happen if I put it in reverse while driving 40mph forward.

    LOL
  • SAENoleSAENole Posts: 11,198 AG
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    That's speculation, not proof. Are all their rentals booked every day, seven days a week? Is the rental rate the same every day? Individual or corporate rate?

    No
    No
    No
    Maybe
    Perhaps


    But you know what happens when someone wrecks their vehicle and they can't rent it. The rental car company will act as if the Earth is about to stop spinning on its axis.
    Warning Level 2
  • inshoreinshore Posts: 255 Deckhand
    I've got the best deals by naming my price on priceline.
  • SAENoleSAENole Posts: 11,198 AG
    inshore wrote: »
    I've got the best deals by naming my price on priceline.

    giphy.gif
    Warning Level 2
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,309 Admiral
    Never pre-pay for gas. I don't know how sunpass works on rental cars but for one trip to the keys it's all pay by plate, if you don't have a pass, and like a $2.50 postage and handling fee plus the toll. The rental agency will most likely add their own charge.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • Billy No MatesBilly No Mates Posts: 3,187 Captain
    cadman wrote: »
    I always buy the insurance. Then beat the hell out of the car

    Interesting way to spend your discretionary income. :huh I buy fishing equipment with mine.
  • Angler719Angler719 CrawfordvillePosts: 531 Officer
    cpr wrote: »
    Never pre-pay for gas. I don't know how sunpass works on rental cars but for one trip to the keys it's all pay by plate, if you don't have a pass, and like a $2.50 postage and handling fee plus the toll. The rental agency will most likely add their own charge.
    Since its the rental car plate they charge them and the rental company charges you more for the convenience. the pre paid gas is generally a good deal if you are going to use it, just return it empty.

    I have rented cars twice a week for the last ten years.
  • joekat46joekat46 North PortPosts: 2,516 Captain
    inshore wrote: »
    I've got the best deals by naming my price on priceline.

    So have I. Last rental Priceline offered their own type of damage waiver "insurance" for a nominal fee.
  • ResinheadResinhead Posts: 10,987 AG
    We do National Emerald Club. Last rental was 3 weeks ago in Tampa. Thurs - Sun. Got a Dodge SUV for $128 total. As mentioned, pay for your own gas.
  • cadmancadman Home of the Gators Posts: 32,734 AG
    ferris1248 wrote: »
    Read the contract you signed.

    We have demonstrated that Mister does not read contracts he signs.

    Mini Mart Magnate

    I am just here for my amusement. 

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