Do you ever have something on your mind to do and then KNOW that today is the day? That’s how I’m feeling about this post on AutoSlash, the rental car tracking and booking company. Why today? Well, recently Brian Cohen at The Gate wrote a blog post about saving money on a car rental. It was a good read and I’ve also had the same experience where using a different location in a city makes a huge difference in price. But I kept waiting for AutoSlash to be somewhere in the post.
Ian at Points with a Crew may forget to fill up his gas tank before he returns cars, but he’s a total AutoSlash convert. Dan, the PWAC chief, is an AutoSlash cheerleader as well, but his post on AutoSlash is two years old now.
Then I realized at TWG, we don’t have any posts on AutoSlash. When I told Grant what I was writing about today, he replied: “I love AutoSlash. I just book the easiest rental car reservation, send AutoSlash my reservation details and wait for them to do their magic. My car rental in PDX went from $150 for 2 days down to ~$60 for 2 days.” So that confirmed it. Especially because I receive quotes like Grant’s from lots of family and friends whenever I tell them about AutoSlash.
And just so you don’t think AutoSlash only works its magic in easy locations, here’s a quote I got from a friend about his rental on the Big Island of Hawaii. If you’ve ever been, you’ll know Hawaii is a tough-to-get-good-deals car rental market. He said, “I love these emails!” He was referring to this part of the email he got from AutoSlash that read: “You were originally booked at $345.45 USD, and the price has now dropped to $248.21 USD. We’ve automatically re-booked your rental at the lower rate. You’ve saved $97.24 USD without even lifting a finger!” And I can tell you the price continued to go down even more in the months before he arrived in Hawaii.
I just looked at my own emails from AutoSlash and I realized I started using them way back in August 2011. I have no idea who even told me about them, but whoever you were, I owe you a big thank you! You may recall I am now a car rental company agnostic after breaking up with Hertz. But what I used to do was book a car on the Hertz site so my Hertz number was on the reservation. I didn’t really care what price was quoted because I knew I’d be feeding the reservation to AutoSlash and letting them work on a better deal.
AutoSlash has two options when you enter your reservation, and one of them is for a rental you’ve booked elsewhere. It’s just so easy. AutoSlash continues to monitor the rental and send you updates when it finds better prices. What I really appreciate is that when they send you the better price options, they include ALL the rental companies, and not just the one you’ve booked your car with. Before I was a car rental agnostic, I was partial to the lower rates they found with Hertz, but now I’m looking more closely at all the options they send me!
Another option they provide, which sometimes you may have to pay close attention to in order to notice, is options for different locations which are cheaper. Meaning that you’ll get options for an off-site location if it’s close to the airport. Or as has happened to me, if I’m booking a car and using a location that’s no where near the airport, they’ll provide a few options that differ in price. This is always curious to me, but because different locations, even for the same company, have different demands, so prices vary.
I know people will comment that they’ve never gotten a better deal with AutoSlash, and you may not believe me, but I’ve ALWAYS saved money by letting AutoSlash work with my reservations. One time back in 2016, I had a car reserved in Phoenix during the Phoenix busy season. I noticed I wasn’t getting any emails from AutoSlash reducing my rate. I decided to be proactive and email them.
I asked them if there was anything we could do to lower my rate. They told me not for Hertz, but if I was willing to go with another company and maybe pick up a car offsite, I could get a better rate. That saved me $41, so I decided to forfeit those Hertz points and let them rebook the rental for me. I consider that to be fantastic customer service!
As you know, I’m all for using services that save me time and money and never hesitate to add them to my travel toolbox. Certainly AutoSlash belongs right up there with Hotel Hustle, and Juicy Miles. I’m much better at spending my time deciding what travel sites to enjoy and where I’m going to enjoy the local culture and food!
Are you an AutoSlash fan? What’s been your biggest savings so far? Grant’s savings on his PDX rental is hard to beat at $90 :)
P.S. AutoSlash also has a weekly newsletter, filled with helpful travel and car rental tips. Their latest weekly newsletter is shown below. Check out their articles, they are excellent!