Sunday, December 9, 2007
Secret Car Rental Tips for Las Vegas Cha Ching!
I always rent a car in Las Vegas. Driving in Las Vegas is not that difficult as long as you can ignore the cabbies, the boom boxes, the gawking tourists and you can deal with the thousands of people walking on the strip. If I can do it, you can do it. Las Vegas isn't that hard to navigate and there are parallel roads to the strip, like Paradise that can help you avoid the congestion on the strip.
Renting a car has its benefits. I like to travel around the city and I love driving out to Henderson to the Station Casino's. A taxi will cost a bundle back and forth to the strip. If you are planning to see Red Rock Canyon, rent a car.
All the hotels and even the Fashion Show mall have free valet parking. Just tip your valet. And if you are planning an evening of drinking, get a taxi.
I consider getting the best car at the lowest price hitting the lottery. Rental cars in Las Vegas are not that expensive, its the taxes added on at the end that are budget busters.
Here's how I always score a good price. Check out sites like Cheap Rental Cars at Kayak, Orbitz Car Rentals Tab or Travelocity to get an idea of car prices when you'll be in town. Expect prices to fluctuate if a big convention is in town. Prices change all the time, so keep at it.
has rental desks in all the MGM properties: The Luxor, Mandalay Bay, Excalibur, NY NY, Bellagio, MGM, Mirage and Treasure Island. If you want to rent a car for the day, this is the way to go. Daily prices may be higher than at the airport, but renting off premises will have lower taxes since you won't have to pay the airport taxes.
Once you've found the lowest rates for your trip, check the rental car site directly to see if it is really the lowest rate. Sometimes the lowest rate is on their web site.
Now here is the fun part: Go to Bjs.com or Samsclub and print out the coupons for car rental discounts. Don't book directly through their sites, because you will have to show that you are actually a member when you pick up your car. Use the discount code when you book and you'll get a corporate discount. Plus, you can use an additional coupon you've printed for an upgrade, a free day or a dollar amount off the rental. I've never had anyone ask me for a membership card to either warehouse club, only the printed coupon. Input the coupon number to see if they will accept the coupon. Most times they will and you end up with a DOUBLE discount! Woo Hoo!! The exception is Thrifty's Wild rate, you don't get to use a coupon, but they'll accept the corporate discount.
Last week I scored a Chrysler Pacifica for $116.32 including all taxes from the airport for an entire week. Now that's a real deal. Cha Ching!!
This is really important: Before you leave home, check with your car insurance or your credit card to find out about rental car coverage. Some credit cards include it in your card agreement. If you have complete coverage, you won't have to buy the additional rental insurance that the agents will insist you purchase with the car rental. There is no reason to pay twice if you are covered. If you aren't covered, buy the insurance.
The agents are trained for a hard sell. The last agent I used was a master at selling. He lowered his eyes, he muttered under his breath about how car damage would bankrupt me and he wouldn't want to be in my shoes if there was an accident. It didn't work on me, I KNOW I'm covered. Check BEFORE you leave home.