Every car rental company offers an app these days with the aim to streamline the car renting experience. But not all apps are created equal. Here's a rundown of the hits and misses.
Car Rental Apps: Top Tier
When it comes to rental car apps, there are three clear leaders.
- Avis's app shows off the brand's knack for tech with a smooth interface and great features. The pickup experience is a dream, where you can choose your own vehicle upon arrival, skip the counter and not only see your assigned car but also to manage exchanges from within the application.
- Enterprise's app lets you update and manage your credit card payment info, make a reservation, find Enterprise locations, contact customer support and roadside assistance, view and manage upcoming and past reservations, and manage your Enterprise Plus account—all with a few swipes.
- National's app didn't reinvent the wheel. It is effectively the same as the app for Enterprise, its sister company. The pre-rental experience on the National app is almost identical to that of the Enterprise app.
Car Rental Apps: Second Tier
The second tier of apps are still very helpful and well worth a download, even if they don't quite rise to the level of the top tier.
- Budget's app is just a step behind sister company Avis's exceptional app, mainly due to a drawback of its loyalty program. Unlike the Avis Preferred program, which is designed to allow members to earn free rental days, Budget FastBreak does not allow members to earn rewards.
- Hertz's app has been redesigned with a slew of new features that makes managing your car rental smoother and easier.
- Alamo's app lets you update and manage your credit card payment info, make or modify a reservation, and get directions to your rental location. You can also sign up for Alamo Insiders loyalty program and save five percent off rates when you book. Lastly, you can use the app to contact 24/7 customer support.
Car Rental Apps: Third Tier
Finally, there are some apps that aren't worth the data they use up.
- Dollar and Thrifty's apps are in their own category. They created an unhelpful app for one company and then duplicated it for the other sister company with a just change in the color palette.