The complete guide to car rental elite status matches
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Like airline elite status, rental car status can make your travels more enjoyable. Most of these elite status programs offer great benefits like increased point earnings, free upgrades and other money-saving perks. That said, your rental car elite status only works with a single rental car company. So, unfortunately, you’ll be without your perks if you opt to rent with a different company for the best deal.
That isn’t always the case, though. Many rental car companies offer status matches to elite members of other companies, giving them the equivalent elite status free of charge. For example, matching your Hertz President’s Circle status to Enterprise Platinum. This can be a great way to test the waters with new rental car companies and save money if you find a better rate with a competitor.
We’ll show you all of the ongoing rental car status matches offers available.
Let’s dive in!
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Enterprise: match up to Platinum status
Enterprise recently rolled out a status match for Avis and Hertz members, matching status levels all the way up to top-tier Enterprise Plus Platinum. Higher status tiers will be eligible for higher status with Enterprise and status will be valid through Feb. 28 of the year following the status match.
To match your rental car status to Enterprise, sign up for an Enterprise Plus account. Head to the status match website, enter your information and take a photo of your Avis or Hertz statement. Upload it to the status match website and you’re done.
Enterprise status isn’t as lucrative as Hertz President’s Circle or National Executive, but it still has a handful of benefits you can use to improve your Enterprise rental experience. Platinum members get 20% bonus points and four annual upgrades.
As of the time of writing this article, the Enterprise status match has no published expiration date. That said, we’d recommend taking advantage of the match sooner than later, as your status expires in February of the following year, regardless of when you enroll.
Hertz: match up to President’s Circle status
Hertz President’s Circle is one of the more lucrative rental car statuses. These top-tier elites earn 50% bonus points and are guaranteed one-class upgrades at participating locations. President’s Circle members also have access to the President’s Circle lot at Hertz Ultimate Choice locations worldwide.
Currently, Avis, Enterprise and National members can status match to Hertz, with higher-tier elites being eligible for President’s Circle status. To do this, you’ll need to create a Hertz account and head to the status match website. Enter your info, provide proof of your existing rental car status and press the “Match My Status” button. You should see your matched status shortly.
National: match your airline, hotel or rental car status
Finally, we have National. It’s the car rental company of choice for many TPGers, in large part due to its excellent Emerald Club program. Top-tier Executive Elite members can enjoy benefits like a free rental for after five days and upgrades in the U.S., Canada and Europe. As an added bonus, top-tier elite get Executive Area access at airports in the U.S. and Canada.
The interesting thing about National’s status match is that you can match status from airlines, hotel programs and rental car loyalty programs. National lists American AAdvantage status, United MileagePlus and Hilton Honors as eligible programs, but notes that “more than 40” programs are eligible for status matching.
Matching your status is easy — just create a National account and fill out the status match form. Your status match is valid until Feb. 28 of the second calendar year following your approval. You have the option to extend your elite status by meeting the standard elite status requirements.
Unconfirmed: Sixt matches in the U.S.
Sixt is a relatively new rental car company here in the U.S., but it’s rapidly expanding its footprint. Sixt has three elite status tiers, with each offering bonus points, upgrades and other useful benefits.
According to the Sixt website, you can match your existing rental car, hotel or airline elite status by emailing proof of status. The website doesn’t list specifics on which programs are eligible, but we’d assume Sixt will match from all major travel loyalty programs.
Sixt doesn’t mention how long a status match is valid, but you should hear more on the specifics after your match is processed.
Saving on rental car insurance
Having elite status makes your rental car experience more luxurious, but you’ll still need to pay for insurance. Make sure to pay for your rental with a credit card that offers primary rental coverage. The best examples of these are the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Chase Sapphire Reserve cards.
The Sapphire Reserve offers up to $75,000 in coverage while the Sapphire Preferred provides coverage up to the cash value of the car. This can save you some serious money, especially if you usually pay $10-$20 per day to buy a damage waiver from your rental car company of choice.
Plus, both of these cards earn bonus points on travel purchases, so you’ll earn more points the next time you rent a car.
That’s a wrap for all the rental car status matching opportunities for 2020. Take advantage of these status matches the next time you rent with a new rental car company. It’s the easiest way to bring your existing elite status benefits with you when you rent elsewhere.
Featured photo by Thomas Barwick/ Getty
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