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Looking to buy or lease a car but don't want to deal with maintenance hassles? Or do you frequently rent cars for extended periods of time? Hertz may have a deal for you.
The car rental company has launched a new monthly subscription service called Hertz My Car, with two subscription tiers. The $999-per-month tier includes small SUVs, small trucks and full-size sedans, while the $1,399-per-month tier covers large trucks, regular SUVs and luxury sedans. The monthly fee includes two free exchanges, limited liability insurance coverage and vehicle protection damage, roadside assistance and vehicle maintenance. Both tiers include a 2,000-mile limit per month, with each additional mile priced at 35 cents per mile. A two-month minimum subscription is required.
The program is currently only available in Austin, Texas, and Atlanta. Enrollment requires a Hertz Gold Plus Rewards membership and a qualifying credit score, and renters must be at least 25 years old.
Who's the right customer?
With only two locations, this program isn’t geared toward frequent travelers who are renting cars at every destination — at least not yet. If you live in, or often visit, Austin or Atlanta and find yourself renting cars frequently for relatively long periods of time, this could be a great program for you. It provides a reasonably generous mileage allotment plus the flexibility of having, say, a truck one week and a sedan the next. Though it definitely doesn’t come at a low price.
Hertz My Car is designed to work in conjunction with Hertz’s existing Gold Plus Rewards program: Members will earn 1 Hertz Gold Plus Reward point per $1 spent, while Five Star and President’s Circle members will earn their additional 25% and 50% bonuses, respectively.
One of the great benefits of many travel rewards credit cards is the included travel insurance. Hertz My Car includes certain coverage by default as part of the program, so you aren’t restricted to paying with specific credit cards to maintain insurance coverage. Read all of the terms and conditions before electing or waiving insurance.
The way of the future?
The launch of Hertz My Car comes just one month after Enterprise announced its own car subscription service. Car manufacturers have also experimented with subscription services with limited success. Book by Cadillac offered a similar no-strings-attached service to New York residents, but it was halted in November 2018 and is currently being reworked to involve dealers more directly. Other carmakers such as BMW, Volvo, Audi and Porsche are also experimenting with subscription services.
These services are distinct from Zipcar, which is focused more on short-term rentals with a smaller monthly fee, but it’s clear that longer-term rentals are a focus for many companies right now.
As it stands now, many of these programs are still in the early phases of testing and are restricted to certain areas, but it’s clear that the auto industry and consumers alike are interested in subscription car services.
Right now, it's hard to recommend Hertz My Car to travelers due to its limited service areas, high price and minimum two-month contract, but it’s easy to see a future in which a subscription car service makes sense for travelers who need transportation in the cities they frequently visit.
Planning a trip? Check out these articles for more inspiration and advice: The cheapest way to rent a car: 9 tips SkyTeam partners with Hertz, becoming first airline alliance to offer car rental benefits Find the best travel credit card for you