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Renting a car is one of the notorious frustrations that travelers worldwide experience. There are few exceptions; car rental companies are known to be expensive, slow, and frustrating, especially when you just want to get to your destination, but you now have to stand in a long queue and wait for your rental car. Turo car sharing aims to change all of that, but is it effective? Let’s compare Turo with Hertz and see.
Turo beats Hertz in the arenas of convenience, getting the car that you want and price. All admin is done before your journey, so there are no long queues to wait in when you arrive at your destination. But Hertz has a well-established reputation, whereas your Turo experience depends on your host.
There are many factors to consider when choosing which option is best. Turo sells itself as cheaper and more convenient than Hertz, and it achieves that. But the fact that Hertz is a well-established international brand counts for something since Turo also lets you deal directly with a host instead of a company representative. Let’s compare the two on all levels in more detail.
Turo Vs. Hertz: A Comparison
All the differences between Turo and Hertz lie in two facts. The first is that Turo is app-driven while Hertz is still primarily an in-person business despite having an app. The second and more critical aspect is that Turo allows you to rent cars from private vehicle owners, whereas Hertz owns and operates a fleet of vehicles that they rent to customers.
Turo: Car Rental For The App Generation
Turo is an excellent concept, and it’s perfect for our modern app-driven era. It is often described as AirBnB for your car, which is a fitting description. Anyone can offer their car on the Turo app for others to rent. So what are the pros and cons? Let’s see what Turo has to say and what its customers think.
The Pros Of Using Turo
The creators of Turo did so with some of the shortcomings of traditional car rental agencies in mind. They solved many of the problems that we face when renting a car in the process of developing the Turo platform. Here are some of the advantages:
- Pricing. Turo claims to give you more value for money, and in many cases, this is true. Turo’s rental rates compare favorably with those of Hertz and other car rental agencies, and, when comparing apples with apples, Turo’s rates tend to be lower than Hertz for the same car.
- Convenience. There’s no standing in queues with Turo. When you get off the plane, the last thing you want to do is stand in long lines waiting for other people to get their car rentals finalized. Car rental offices are often a bit of a walk away from the airport terminal, so it could even take 30 minutes to an hour or more before you can finally get to your car.
Turo has none of these problems. All the admin can be done over the app before going to the airport. Also, you can often arrange delivery by the host so your rental car could already be waiting for you just outside the airport, saving you a lot of time along with the added convenience.
- The added bonus of contact with a local person. Car rental agencies like Hertz usually employ local staff, but very few of them will be able to spare the time to talk to you about the area.
With Turo, you get someone who lives locally with whom you can have personal contact. They could make recommendations about the area or give you directions to your hotel. You can find out anything you’d like to know about your destination directly from the person that you’re renting your car from.
- You know what you’re getting. Because you book a specific vehicle for a particular time and date, that’s the car you’ll get if it’s available. There’s no doubt about it. So if it’s a Jeep you’re looking for, it’s a Jeep you’ll get.
- You have more control over how, where, and when you get the car. You don’t have to go to a car rental agency’s lot to fetch it; it can be delivered to you wherever you are at any date and time that suits you.
The Cons Of Using Turo
There are also some cons to Turo, as with anything in life. These won’t be deal-breakers for many, but it’s still something to be mindful of.
- Turo is not necessarily cheaper. Though they claim that there are no hidden fees, some customers claim that the rate as advertised is hardly ever what they pay. Often, insurance or other expenses are added once the deal goes through. This is unconfirmed by Turo, but many customers have experienced the same thing.
- Insurance must be double-checked. In some cases, the insurance is covered by the vehicle owner at no additional charge, but some vehicles require that you pay for insurance separately.
- There’s no guarantee about the condition of the car. Unlike car rental agencies, Turo doesn’t have fleet management to ensure that vehicles are serviced regularly and adequately. You could get a vehicle that hasn’t had a proper service in a long time.
- With Turo, there’s more emphasis on small details. For example, a light scratch on a rental car may go largely unnoticed. On a Turo vehicle, where the owner himself checks the vehicle, it will be noticed much more quickly, and it could be seen as a big deal.
Hertz: How Does It Weigh Up Against Turo?
Hertz is a well-established brand in the car rental market with branches worldwide. Despite being a bit more old-fashioned, this corporate giant must be doing something right if it’s still around.
Hertz – The Good
Let’s look at a few things that Hertz does well:
- Hertz has a fleet of vehicles. I mentioned earlier that Turo not having a fleet counts in their favor, but as you will see now, there are benefits to having a fleet as well.
- You are guaranteed a vehicle with a solid service record. The fleet management team is responsible for ensuring that every car is serviced at the right time and performing regular quality and performance checks.
- There will always be a replacement vehicle. If the car you want isn’t available, there will be something else. It might not be exactly what you wanted, though, which is where Turo has the advantage.
- There are fleets at multiple branches, and if your branch doesn’t have the right type of vehicle, it is often possible to get one from another branch.
- Their prices are competitive. As we’ve seen, in many cases, Turo isn’t really cheaper than Hertz, especially if you rent a car for a week or longer, since Hertz has discounts that apply for more extended rental periods.
- Insurance is covered by the company and included in your rental price.
Hertz – The Bad
There are some downsides to Hertz as well.
- Long queues and lots of admin. This is part and parcel of the car rental experience, and we all loathe it.
- Long walks to get to the car rental lot. Though most agencies, like Hertz, have offices inside airports, the lots where they park their cars are often a long walk off. This can be an inconvenience and a further time waster.
- There’s a good chance you won’t get the car you requested. Since Hertz works mainly on a “first come, first served” basis, if someone else takes the Jeep before you get there, it’s simply your loss and that person’s gain.
- Little or no personal contact. The staff at Hertz are paid to be professional. They often want to get through the rush of customers just as quickly as you would like to get to the front of the line, so they hardly ever make time for small talk or to give you information about the area. This could frustrate many people visiting somewhere for the first time.
Turo and Hertz both have a lot going for them. But the many things that count in their favor are balanced out by a solid set of cons on both sides as well. Generally speaking, if it’s a specific vehicle you’re looking for (other than a motorcycle) or you have special requirements, Turo is definitely the best option. For anything else, though, you’d probably be just as well off with Hertz. They both excel at what they do.