Budget

How To Use Your Points and Miles for Car Rentals

Frequent travelers are well-acquainted with the idea of using airline miles for free flights or redeeming hotel rewards for complimentary nights. But as the popularity of car rentals among travelers continues to soar, you might be wondering if you can also leverage your hard-earned points and miles to rent a car. The answer is a resounding yes!

In this article, we'll explore the various ways you can use your points and miles to book a car rental. Whether you're a corporate traveler or an occasional road tripper, understanding these options can lead to significant savings and a more convenient travel experience.

How to Rent a Car Using Points and Miles

While there are several methods to book a discounted car rental using points and miles, it's important to note that not all options are created equal. Here are the three main avenues for renting a car using travel rewards:

1. Join a Car Rental Reward Program

One of the most efficient ways to use your points for car rentals is by enrolling in a car rental reward program. This approach is particularly beneficial for travelers who frequently rent cars, as it offers a fast track to earning rewards and streamlines the process of booking reward car rentals.

Car rental reward programs operate in a manner similar to airline mileage programs. The more you rent, the more points you accumulate. Additionally, many of these programs provide extra perks such as expedited pickup and drop-off procedures, discount codes for non-reward bookings, and more. Here's an overview of some renowned car rental reward programs:

  • Car Rental Rewards: Hertz offers 1 point for every dollar spent on rentals. You can start enjoying a free rental day with just 950 points.
  • The National Emerald Club rewards you with credits based on rental days, with one credit earned for every qualified car rental. Redeem your free rental days once you have at least seven credits.
  • Europcar's Privilege membership offers 10% off all rental rates to members, as well as a free weekend rental after just three paid rentals.
  • With Sixt's reward program, you earn increasingly substantial discounts as you progress through membership tiers, starting with 10% off the base rate as a Gold member and reaching 20% off base rates as a Platinum member.

2. Use Credit Card Points

If you don't rent cars frequently enough to join car rental loyalty programs, credit card points are an excellent alternative. Many personal and corporate cards offer points that can be used for various travel expenses, including car rentals.

Some of the top corporate cards that provide travel rewards points include:

  • American Express Credit Card: The American Express Business Gold Card offers valuable rewards points that can be used for car rentals and other travel-related expenses.
  • Capital One's Credit Card: Capital One's Venture X Business Card is another option that enables you to earn and redeem points for travel, including car rentals.

These corporate cards often offer the flexibility to transfer your credit card points to participating travel loyalty programs, further enhancing your options for booking car rentals.

3. Use Airline Miles from Frequent Flyer Programs

While not as commonly associated with car rentals, airline miles from frequent flyer programs can also be used to book rental cars. Keep in mind that the value you get for your miles may not be as high as when using them for flights. Additionally, some frequent flyer programs may limit your rental car booking options to airport locations.

Here are some airline loyalty programs that allow you to earn and use miles for rental car bookings across the USA, Europe, Australia, and beyond:

  • Utilize your miles for car rentals through select companies like Avis and Budget, starting at around 6,000 miles per day. Cardmembers and Elite members can enjoy even lower redemption rates.
  • United Airlines offers the opportunity to use United miles for booking rental cars with Avis car rental or Budget, starting at approximately 12,000 miles per day.
  • Southwest Airlines partners with various car rental companies, allowing you to book rental cars with airline miles. Currently, this option is exclusively available to Southwest credit card members.
  • Delta Air Lines permits you to use miles or miles + cash to pay for rental car bookings included in a Delta Vacations package. The miles required for free rental days depend on your Delta status and the specifics of your vacation package.
  • British Airways' Avios miles can be used to book Avis rental cars, with mileage requirements varying based on the base fare and rental locations.

Points to Consider Before Booking a Car Rental with Points and Miles

Before you embark on booking a car rental with your hard-earned points and miles, there are a few essential factors to keep in mind:

Read the Fine Print

Most car rentals booked with reward miles may come with potential restrictions, blackout dates, taxes, surcharges, insurance fees, or other costs that must be covered out of pocket, either at the time of booking or at pickup. Additionally, some reward travel programs may have specific booking caveats or restrictions that you should be aware of before making your car rental plans.

Compare Rates

Before you commit to using your points and miles, it's wise to do two things:

  1. Compare rates from various car rental companies, if possible, especially when using credit card points or airline miles.
  2. Evaluate the value you get from using your points and miles compared to paying in cash.

For instance, when booking through BNW Travel's car rental rewards, you can often get a fantastic deal, spending fewer points per dollar compared to the cash price. However, the value of your points and miles may vary depending on the specific program and the type of travel you're booking.

BNW Travel: Your Partner in Efficient Car Rentals

In the world of corporate travel, every decision counts, and that includes optimizing your car rental experience. If you're looking for convenience, cost savings, and efficiency in your car rental bookings, consider partnering with BNW Travel.

As a travel management provider, BNW Travel offers a suite of solutions tailored to corporate travel needs. With BNW VoyagePro, our comprehensive corporate travel booking and management solution, you can seamlessly book car rentals and access numerous features, including cost control, flexible booking approval workflows, and dynamic policies.

By harnessing the power of BNW VoyagePro, you can elevate your car rental bookings, ensuring

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