Avis

Avis Rent a Car has always tried harder, and continues to offer an astounding array of options, add-ons and perks for travelers in a variety of situations.

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5.3
Grand Score
8
User Score
5.3
Grand Score
8
User Score
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Avis Rent a Car has never stopped trying hard to edge out the competition. Five years ago, the company shifted its focus to a larger market. That said, there are times when the company seems to try too hard and continues to overindulge the business traveler by offering one-way rental deals and frequent-flier mileage programs. While that’s not all bad, Avis customers should know that the company is the most expensive on a per-day basis, and more suitable options may be worth investigating.

Grandfolk Scoring
Cost 2/10
Warranty 9/10
Ease 5/10
Customer support 3/10
Limits to coverage 3/10
Restrictions 5/10
Insurance 6/10
Extras 9/10
Cancellation 6/10
Cost
What is the average cost per day?
Rates vary, but the national average is $60/day
Warranty
Is there a guarantee?
The Avis Best Rate Guarantee includes price matching and discounts
Ease
How easy is it to rent a car?
Easy; reservations are strongly encouraged
Customer support
How easy is access to customer service?
Customer service availability varies by location
Limits to coverage
What services are excluded?
Roadside assistance, refuel options and other conveniences
Restrictions
Cost or difficulty to upgrade?
Upgrades are location dependent
Insurance
What additional coverage is required?
Additional coverage is not required, but strongly encouraged
Extras
What extras are available?
GPS discount to AARP members, spinner knobs, transfer boards and more
Cancellation
Is there a fee to a cancel a reservation?
Yes, be sure to check with an agent for specifics
Age Score:
6
50-65 Years
4
65-75 Years
5
75-85 Years
3
85-Above

Despite Avis just recently having revamped its motto, the car rental company still continues to try harder. That statement is more than just a catchphrase, however, and most certainly pertains to the brand’s promise of making travel easier for seniors. Avis has a partnership with both the AARP and the member-owned organization Accessible Vans of America. The former offers up to 30% off rates for qualified members, while the latter is the go-to company for Avis customers that need wheelchair-accessible vans. 

The website, which offers the most deals, might take some getting used to, as there are an overwhelming amount of options. Ultimately, Avis is best for the tech savvy senior who is willing and able to take advantage of all the perks, discounts and mileage-based programs which are baked into the relatively high daily rental fees.

Health Score:
4
Great Health
5
Good Health
7
Fair Health
8
Poor Health

Avis offers similar health-related savings and considerations when held up against its sister corporations. For example, Avis and Budget both waive additional driver fees for disabled people who need a surrogate driver. Both companies also offer transfer boards, swivel seats, spinner knobs, panoramic mirrors, hand controls and accessible bus services to and from the car rental counter. Avis takes things one step further, though, and offers a bereavement travel consideration for those traveling under less-than-ideal circumstances. 

The company also tries to make travel streamlined for business travelers, which goes double for those with mobility constraints. For instance, the company offers fuel service options, EZFuel and self-service just in case you do not want to risk rushing to get gas in an unsafe area or under poor weather conditions. Finally, Avis is recognized by the Accessible Vans of America organization as one of just a handful of rental agencies willing to coordinate a wheelchair or lift-equipped van.

Pros:

  • Avis offers the most incentives, program rebates and offers for frequent travelers.
  • The company offers AARP members an additional 30% off qualified reservations.
  • Avis is backed by the Accessible Vans of America organization, which helps ensure your lift-equipped vehicle is at the ready.
  • The company makes booking easy online and offers additional discounts for those who use the website.
  • Seniors benefit from a myriad of disability-focused driving aids, as well as waived fees for surrogate drivers.

Cons:

  • Cancellation fees range from $50 to $150 depending on the booking.
  • Avis leverages a No Show Fee of up to $10 plus taxes and surcharges on one full day’s rental fee in the event you are unable to pick up your car.
  • Avis is the most expensive car rental agency and averages over $60 per day for standard vehicles.
  • The company leans heavily on business travelers, with most deals and incentive programs focused on frequent fliers and the like.

Bottom Line:

Avis is a high-end car rental agency with a lot of options for those who find themselves on the road often. The company has a lot of incentives and perks that may be appealing to seniors, but unless you are willing and able to take advantage of them, then the average $60 per day price might be a bit unsavory. Avis is a great partner to the AARP, and has a strong relationship with the Accessible Vans of America organization, which has discounts and services that might be appealing to seniors with mobility concerns or difficulties. 

No doubt Avis tries harder than most, but the sheer magnitude of offerings coupled with the potential for unexpected cancellation charges and fees might just be enough to steer you toward a more simple and straightforward solution.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Does Avis require a deposit?  

The company requires a debit or credit card to hold the vehicle, as well as for use in the event of an accident. Of note, Avis does offer a customer the ability to receive their receipt electronically right from its homepage.

Can I return a car early?  

The answer is, yes, of course, but this may not be prudent given that when reservations are booked online, the entirety of the estimate is charged to the cardholder.   

What are the restrictions of use?  

Avis is one of the few rental car companies that encourage one-way trips, but other restrictions may apply, so customers are cautioned to investigate their particular needs prior to booking.

More Information:

Product Details

Overview:  Avis has such an assortment of add-ons and bonus options that it may be hard to pinpoint just where to start. The agency offers the Avis e-Toll and Fuel Plans alongside its app, which features TripIt and other handy tools. All of these features are well worth the cost if you know they exist, but in the event you just want a rental car, then the price might seem a bit high based on industry standards. Of note, Avis has partnered with the AARP and Accessible Vans of America to make sure everyone who wants to travel can do so in style and safety.

Package Details:  Avis Rent a Car not only guides you through the car rental process swiftly via phone or mobile app, it also offers additional perks. Bonus features include programs where you can earn mileage points toward future purchases, as well as information regarding driving tips, protections and coverages that few other rental agencies offer.

Add-on Services:  Avis is very clear that its add-ons come at a price, but are valuable in the sense that they give the consumer unprecedented peace of mind. For example, its Extended Roadside Assistance includes Lockout Service, Flat Tire Assistance & Replacement, Jump Start and Fuel Delivery options. On top of all that, this company offers discounts on GPS for AARP members, as well as a host of driving tools to help you navigate the roads safely.

Additional Company Details

Contract Details:  Avis Rent a Car is known for its business-friendly travel options, perks and point programs. Journeys do not have to be business-related, however, for customers to optimize their savings. Avis has great options when it comes to one-way rentals, as well as pre-refueling options to save you time at the airport or at your local counter. Finally, the company has great long-term and monthly rental contracts to save you the most dough when you may be without your regular car for longer than expected. 

Warranty:  Avis does not guarantee the availability of a certain type of car or add-on, as each location operates autonomously. That said, customers are strongly encouraged to investigate their potential rental location in order to see what, if any, warranties might apply. Of note, Avis does offer a Best Rate Guarantee. If you find a lower fare, the company will match the price and throw in an additional 10% discount. 

Accreditations:  Avis Rent a Car is just one business that falls under the ever-growing car rental corporation now known as the Avis Budget Group. The parent company, which also owns Budget Rent-A-Car, Budget Truck Rental, Payless Car Rental, Apex Car Rentals, Maggiore Group and Zipcar, carries an overall rating of C- from the Better Business Bureau. Despite attempts to shore up its reputation as a car rental agency focused on business travelers, the company continues to be seen as one of the more expensive options out there.

Company Details:  Avis Rent a Car was founded in Ypsilanti, Michigan in 1946. The fleet primarily rented General Motors vehicles until the late 1970s, and continues to struggle to introduce and increase eco-friendly rentals to it customers. The company-owned locations are almost all located at major airports, with franchisees carrying the bulk of off-site rentals. The company started to expand in 2001 with acquisitions that continue to this day, and now include other rental agencies such as Budget Rent-A-Car and Zipcar.

Contact: 

Avis Rent a Car
P.O. Box 699000
Tulsa, OK 74169-9000
Tel: (800) 352-7900
Website: https://www.avis.com/en/customer-service

Kate Papenberg - Senior Advisor

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