National Car Rental is bringing back the same lucrative promotion that they had last summer where you can earn one free rental day with every two rentals of two or more days between August 20, 2012, and January 31, 2013. So it’s basically buy four get one free. This is in addition to your standard Emerald Club rewards.
In order to qualify, you must first register. It does not look like there is any limit to the number of free days you can earn– just that you can only use 3 free days per rental when it comes time to redeem and that the free rental day credits must be used by June 16, 2013.
One, Two, Free – kind of like Hyatt’s Faster Free Nights promotion but with car rentals instead.
National also status matches elite members of its competitors. Avis Preferred First and Hertz #1 Club Gold Five Star can match to National Club Executive Level, which normally takes 12 rentals or 40 rental days to achieve. I just took advantage of this status match using my Hertz account number. Avis President’s Club, Avis Chairman’s Club and Hertz #1 Club Gold President’s Circle are matched to National Club Executive Elite level, which otherwise would require 25 rentals or 85 rental days within the calendar year. Having elite status with National means better upgrades, and elite members earn free rental days quicker.
National offers status matches from Hertz and Avis.
National gives Emerald Club members the option to earn free rental Days, frequent flyer miles or hotel rewards. For non-elite Emerald Club members, you get one free rental day for every seven rental credits. Rental credits are given per qualifying rental or two or more days, or one credit for every four consecutive days of longer rentals. I get one every six since I’m an Executive member, and Executive Elites get one for every five rental credits.
The National Emerald Club Executive benefit of picking any car sounds interesting and I’ve been meaning to try it out, so this is the perfect opportunity. Per National:
- Simply reserve a Midsize car at participating locations in the U.S. or Canada.
- When you arrive at the location, go directly to the Aisle or Executive areas.
- Choose any car – any size, color, make or model (all cars are Fullsize or higher classes) – and only pay the reserved Midsize rate. The keys are in the cars.
National is also offering a referral bonus for getting coworkers/friends/family to join the program. For each referral who actually rents a car, you get a free rental day (10 free day max). Feel free to use my link for your status match.
The entire process; enrollment, bonus sign-up, and even status match application is electronic and took me about 5 minutes in total.
Overall, this is a decent deal, especially since rental cars can be so expensive in some cities like New York. In essence, instead of taking me 6 separate rentals of two or more days each to earn a free rental day, it will now only take me 2 rentals of two ore more days to earn one, cutting my earning requirements by 67%.
However, there are two other promotions with Avis and Budget that end in August and September respectively that I’m going to take advantage of first. With the Avis promo, which ends August 31, when you use the discount coupon code MUAA035, you get 3,000 bonus American Airlines miles for rentals of 1-2 days, and 5,000 miles for rentals of 3 days or more, plus you can up to 35% with Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD) number K817165.
I’d also rather earn up to 10,000 bonus American miles and a 30% discount on car rentals at airport locations in the US and Canada between now and September 30, 2012, with Budget where get 1,000 bonus miles per rental day up to 10 rental days. You must rent the car for 2 or more consecutive days to qualify for the bonus, and use the promotional code MUAZ013. It’s valid on all car groups. At the same time, you can also score a 30% discount by using American’s discount code in the BCD box when you make your reservation. The code is U072421 (though you can often find better deals by using other codes such as an AARP or AAA membership number).
So before I take advantage of National’s offer, I’m going to try to rake in as many American miles as possible with Avis and Budget, and then consider moving my rental activity to National to rack up some free rental days.
For more information:
Terms & Conditions
One Free Rental Day will be awarded for every two qualifying rentals made after the date on which the member has registered and which occur between August 20, 2012, and January 31, 2013. Credit will not be given for rentals made prior to a member’s registration date. A qualifying rental is the paid rental, via the Emerald Club, of a Midsize or larger vehicle at participating National Car Rental locations in the 50 United States, including the District of Columbia, for a period of two or more consecutive days during the promotion.
Earned Free Rental Day fulfillment will begin on September 10, 2012, (solely by email to the email address provided at the time of registration) and thereafter will occur within 1–2 weeks after the second qualifying rental. To redeem a Free Rental Day, visit emeraldclubpromos.com/12Free/2012 to view your free day certificates, click redeem and then rent a Compact through Fullsize car starting after September 10, 2012, and before June 16, 2013. To take advantage of this offer, make a reservation at least 24 hours in advance. No more than three Free Rental Days may be redeemed toward one rental of three or more days. Unfortunately, we cannot combine this offer with any other discount and cannot apply the offer to a previous or existing reservation. All standard rental qualifications apply. Be aware that taxes, surcharges, recovery and recoupment fees and other charges may apply, and that optional products and services (such as damage waiver and additional driver fees) are extra charges. Please check your auto insurance policy and/or credit card agreement for rental vehicle coverage. The availability of this offer is limited to participating U.S. locations and is subject to change without notice. Blackout dates may also apply. We cannot accept the coupon if it has been purchased, bartered or sold for cash.
Referrers of friends and colleagues through our email form and social media links will earn a maximum of ten Free Rental Days, regardless of how many friends and colleagues enroll. In order to receive credit, referred friends and colleagues must use the email address provided by the referring party at time of enrollment and conduct a rental by January 31, 2013.
To be eligible for the complimentary credit toward a Free Rental Day, you must electively opt in to receive emails from National. Offer expires January 31, 2013, and is valid for new opt–ins only.