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Turo verses old school car rental

Updated: Nov 6, 2023

Have you seen commercials or ads for Turo? I bet you have, and they are up and running in all US cities and have been for a while. Turo is a car sharing app that was founded in San Francisco and is definitely most popular out west. It lets the vehicle owner rent out their vehicles to customers via an app or website. This is an option in the US, UK, Australia and most of Canada.

I will go over some reviews, my test rental in Sacramento CA, Charlotte NC, and Bluefield WV. The Good, and The Bad. Price comparisons and so much more.

Basic Info

-The most popular city for rental is Los Angeles, and that city has been the busiest for 4 years for Turo.

-3 standard protection plans: Premium Standard or Minimum

Minimum is a $3,000 deductible, and costs 15-25% of rental car price

Standard is a $500 deductible, and costs 40% of rental car price

Premium offers 1 million dollars in liability coverage and costs 60% of rental.

-You do not have to buy the insurance but if you do it is 750,000 in coverage.

-You can cancel for free up to 24 hours before the trip.

-Register on app or website early to get approval to drive a vehicle. If you have a second driver, have them register also.

-24 hour roadside assistance

-US residents must be at least 18 years old and have a valid driver's license.

-Each car is different with different owners so some owners may offer discounts depending on early booking or length of trip.

-You can even buy Turo gift cards for gifts.

-If you are a younger driver you will be charged an extra fee to rent

Sacramento CA

Sacramento CA has over 200 vehicles available. With prices ranging from $27 to $1,615 per day (Maybach luxury car being most expensive). I have never even heard of that expensive car.

I picked the option for airport delivery, since I was arriving by plane, late in the day and did not want to deal with a rental car counter that late. Just get the car and go to the hotel as quickly as possible.

It was great, you communicate with the owner, and they give you details on where to meet or pick up the car. They tell you everything you need to know. I picked unlimited miles and ended up with $52 a day for a 2022 Volkswagen Jetta. Mainly because the owner had so many trips taken, and good reviews. The app has filters to show AllStar hosts, or if they have taken the training course for cleaning the vehicle. I was grateful there was not a delay in flight since I was meeting the person, which was a miracle.

I chose this option because I was new to Turo, and to Sacramento. I did not want to rent an Uber to take me to my rental car that was 10 minutes away. To do this always communicate with the vehicle owner, some might do it for free especially if they are close by. Or some may do it for a small fee. You will just have to shop around on the site, sort by the filters to help you out.

I deferred getting any insurance coverage, I know that is scary to think about, but I did it

anyway. It worked out for me, but I usually don't recommend this. I learned afterwards that because this is car sharing, typical coverage for rental cars from your credit card or personal car insurance you have on your own vehicle most likely will not cover it. If I had looked into this before my trip I maybe would have gotten the insurance. I just read that AMEX offers deals on Turo so they will offer coverage. If you have AMEX, something to look into if you don't have this card.

When my trip was done, I just dropped it off in the lot for the owner, where he suggested. It was such an easy process.

As for price I found it cheaper, a lot cheaper than the typical rental cars. $377.20 from Hertz or $216 from Turo......

More booking info

Charlotte NC

Charlotte NC over 200 vehicles are available on 6/16/23-6/19/23. With prices ranging from $37 to $1,424 per day (LMFAO, Lamborghini Urus is the most expensive here in Charlotte NC).

Bluefield WV

Bluefield only had 4 cars available for 6/16/23-6/19/23 with prices ranging from $53 to $85 a day.

The Good

-I love the thought that the owner sets up their own deals. Maybe it is a multi-day discount, or early booking discount, the car owner sets the rate. This will help you price shop between vehicles.

-Also, the drop off location. You can pick the airport, or your hotel, or wherever you want to pick up the vehicle.

-No hidden fees.

-Typically, Cheaper than rental car companies.

You see exactly what vehicle you are getting, where if you used a rental car company it will just say large sedan or SUV you don't know which one you will get.

The Bad

-Where they consider this a ride sharing it isn't like a car rental, so your personal car insurance or insurance for rentals on your credit card are typically not covered.

- If you are being too specific for your needs it can limit you. Like my Sacramento rental I was lucky. But if you narrow down like I did by having delivery to the airport with the owner there, it will usually cost you a lot more or limit the amount of cars to choose from.

-Not as many cars to choose from in small cities.

-Also with my original booking I had to cancel twice, because on the app I thought I picked airport drop off, but it turned out I didn't, or there was a glitch in the app at that moment. It still was not an issue, I canceled no problem and found one that worked. But it did take some searching.

I hope you have found this useful. Go on and check it out the next time you need a rental. You might be surprised. I will definitely be using it again.

This post contains affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

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Debbie Amos
Debbie Amos
May 29, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

This is so neat I had no idea such a thing as car existed.

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