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Hertz is planning to increase their award redemption requirements for reservations made on or after October 1, 2013 by 10-15% in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and U.S.V.I. However, awards booked prior to that date at the current rates will be honored, so if you have any Gold Plus Rewards Points you were planning to use, I would suggest booking your awards now, before the rates are raised.
Earlier this year, Hertz sent out the following email to their Gold Plus members:
To continue providing exceptional service to our members, we occasionally make changes to the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards® points program. We are pleased to announce that based on member feedback, coming soon we will be enhancing reward redemption options with new locations and expanded choices.
We also constantly strive to maintain industry-leading reward levels and availability. However, in light of rising costs, we find it necessary to implement our first reward redemption point increase since 2008. Beginning October 1, 2013, point redemption levels for Rewards will increase a modest 10–15% in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and U.S.V.I. This will allow us to continue providing both the quality and quantity of reward options our members have come to value and appreciate.
The good news is you can book rentals up until October 1st, 2013 at the current rates since they deduct the points at the time of booking. For example, instead of using 660-690 points for a standard free rental day under the new rates, you can book at the current 600-point level (weekend days start at 500 points). You earn 1 point per $1 on the base rate of a rental and optional service charges like gas (not including any taxes or other non-optional fees), so you’re looking at having to spend an extra $60-$90 to achieve a standard free rental day that you book post-devaluation. Standard free rental weeks start at 2,500 points, but after the devaluation, that will shoot up to 2,750-2,875 points.
So if you know any of your travel plans for the rest of the year, then go ahead and book your rentals now to be able to lock in the lower rates. One of the best places to use your points is for weekend rentals inexpensive cities such as New York City since one-day rentals can go for nearly $150 ($194 with fees/taxes) even for basic car types, but will only 500 points for a standard weekend award.
For more information on maximizing your car rentals and free award days, check out these posts: