Money Saving Tips

Worth A Second Look: Amazon Alexa vs. Google Home

Amazon Echo vs. Google Home

AutoSlash's first and foremost passion will always be saving people money on rental car rates, but we'll admit to being fans of futurism, too. We're still waiting for fusion-powered cars (though if company founder Jonathan wants to get us all self-driving Teslas, we'll consider that an acceptable substitute), but in the meantime, we're fans of as much Treknology as we can get our hands on.

And there isn't anything more Star Trek than talking to a computer. Fortunately, we don't have to wait another 300 years for that to happen—as we pointed out last month, Amazon's Echo has very much made that an everyday reality now.

One thing we didn't cover last month was Google's answer to Amazon. Thanks to great holiday sales, I was able to pick up both devices—an Amazon Echo and a Google Home—at a great price, and I've really put them through their paces over the past month so I could share my perspective here.

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Renting a Car in Florida? One company limits Florida Rentals to Only that State

Fox Rent-A-Car Logo

Renters often ask if their cars come with unlimited mileage. In many cases, they would be better served asking whether there were any Geographic Restrictions on the rental car. A rental car with the designation of "unlimited" refers to the number of miles, not that the vehicle can be driven everywhere. We mention these restrictions in various blog posts, such as cross-border U.S. / Mexico rentals and cross-border U.S. / Canada rentals. We even mention why Sixt is never appropriate for long road trips because that company implements state-by-state restrictions. And now that AutoSlash supports some of the third-tier discounters, those Geographic Restrictions become even more clear, such as with Fox Rent A Car. Those discount companies you rarely see tend to have more rules, and those rules tend to be less customer friendly.

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Jucy USA Offers a Limited Time, Post-Christmas Black Friday Promotion

Jucy

Earlier this year, our blog covered Jucy USA campervans on a trip from Los Angeles to San Francisco (well, Oakland), suffering intense inland heat (105 in May!) after multiple mudslides closed Pacific Coast Highway. That trip involved a temporary relocation special, where the company was offering $1 per day rates to transfer vehicles between those stations. It was a new experience to have a vehicle designed to also be accommodations, and those of our team with wanderlust are enchanted by the concept of getting off the beaten path and having the opportunity to quickly "camp". The company is offering a post-Christmas flash sale for trips in January and February 2018 by entering code XMAS50 on their home page between now and December 29, 2017. Visitors to Las Vegas, Los Angeles, or San Francisco can visit regional National Parks, National Forests, and National Wildlife Refuges without worrying about a rental car, buying camping supplies, or paying for hotels!

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Debating a Rental Car, Taxi, or Ride-Hailing? Here are Estimates of Costs from Airports to Major Cities

Car Decisions

We love driving but in our travels, we constantly balance the use of rental cars versus other means of local transportation (rail, mass transit, cabs, and ride-hailing services). There are some cities, such as San Francisco, where we simply don't drive and instead rely upon ride-hailing services and public transportation such as BART. In some major cities around the world, renting a car introduces hassles and additional costs. The car itself, fuel, tolls, and parking costs (plus theft in San Francisco's case) lead us to rent cars only when they are used often -- we see no reason to rent a car to drive from an airport to hotel when the car's simply going to be parked for multiple days! And when the trip is simply from the airport to one fixed point, it's beneficial to compare transit solutions. In a recent article, eTurboNews (a travel industry news source) reviewed and compared the average cost of a basic rental car, traditional taxi, and Uber.

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The Perfect Holiday Gift? The Perfect Holiday Gift? Is There An Echo In Here?

Amazon Echo Line

Struggling to find the perfect holiday gift for those hard-to-shop-for people on your holiday list? We may just have the answer for you. Amazon recently released their new and improved 2nd generation Echo smart speaker, and they just lowered the price across the entire model line. You can now buy the basic Echo Dot for $29.99 (reduced from $49.99), the standard Echo for $79.99 (our recommendation, reduced from $99.99), or the Echo Plus for $119.99 (reduced from $149.99). A few of us at AutoSlash have been testing out the Echo recently and we're more than impressed with this nifty device. It's quickly become a part of our homes--dare we say, a member of the family. So what exactly is an Amazon Echo and why would someone want one? Read on...

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