Are you planning on renting cars this summer?

Summer has begun, and the vacations’ season has started as well.

One of the nicest tips I’ve learned this season is about rental cars upgrades. Bottom line – you shouldn’t pay for them.

It is not a secret that the rental companies try to lure you in with cheap prices on lower classes of rental cars, only to try and convince you to pay an “upgrade fee” which might be more than the original rental price to begin with.

This is exactly what has happened to me on my latest trip.

I’ve booked a trip with Expedia, and as part of the booking, I booked a rental car with Alamo. What class? Economy, the cheapest.

However, when I reached the rental counter (shame on you Alamo, 2 clerks for a line of 10 people… Whatever, the price was worth it), the clerk tried to convince me to upgrade to the next class. She almost succeeded, I must admit, but at the last moment I pulled myself together and rejected the upgrade. After all, an economy car is more than enough for two travelers with a backpack as a luggage.

When we went down to the garage to pick up our economy car – there was none available. As it turns out, the clerk was trying to convince us to pay for what we would have gotten anyway. She was trying to charge us twice as much for the car she would have given us anyway – because she didn’t have any other.

What’s the conclusion? If the rental counter personnel is very keen to sell you an upgrade – think twice. It is very likely to be because they’ll have to upgrade you anyway. And if so – why pay more? Refuse the upgrades. Worst case you’ll get what you’ve paid for anyway. And what’s bad about that?

Enjoy your trip,

Your Little Advisor

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