How to Find the Cheapest Rental Cars

For the longest time I used as my primary search engine when looking for rental cars. I have recently found several better options to use when searching for a rental car.

Kayak does a really good job of finding rates for all the major car rental companies in a particular area. Recently, I have found several sites than can offer you more options to save even more money on car rentals.

Hotwire is also a great source for determining the lowest price available for a rental car. Hotwire requires that you pay up front so the rates shown are often cheaper than other sites that let you make an unpaid reservation.

As a general rule it is best not to pay up front for your rental. It is better to have the option to pay for your rental when you arrive at the check in counter to pick up your vehicle.

If you want to locate the best deal on a rental car follow these steps:
  1. Search
  2. Search
  3. Search
  4. If you are a Costco member search the Costco Travel site (some additional discounts may be available for members
  5. Select the cheapest car rental
  6. Do a separate search engine inquiry for "discount code" and "promo code" for the particular rental car company that is offering the cheapest rate. Is is usually possible to find an additional 5% to 10% discount code available
  7. Once you have located the cheapest car go to CashBack Monitor to see if the rental car company or the referring site is available for cash back. If so sign up and use the portal offering the highest return to link the the car rental website. Sites such as Hotwire, Priceline, Travelocity offer cashback.
  8. Try to make a non-prepaid reservation.
  9. Go to Auto Slash and add your reservation number under Track a Rental.
  10. If you get a notification from Auto Slash that they have found a cheaper rental re-book and return to step 7.
If you have any comments or suggestions, I'm always happy to hear from readers!

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