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Turo now available in every state — here's all we know about this car rental alternative

June 02, 2022
7 min read
Mobile phone with Turo app displayed
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In case you've missed it, Turo, the service that allows you to "borrow" a local’s car via peer-to-peer car-sharing, is now available in all 50 states as an alternative to renting from traditional car rental companies.

June 1 marks the company's official peer-to-peer launch in New York, with bookings available starting June 27, including in New York City.

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With some locations again facing high prices and tight demand for traditional rental cars this summer, it may make sense to consider Turo for your next trip. However, before you book a car through Turo, there are a few things to consider.

From how car insurance works with Turo to ways to earn miles with credit cards and airline partners, here's everything you need to know before booking.

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Turo only works for round-trip bookings

(Photo courtesy of Turo)

As of June 1, Turo is the only peer-to-peer car-sharing marketplace available throughout the country. Although Turo opened in New York last summer, bookings were restricted until now to commercial rentals instead of peer-to-peer services.

"Commerical hosts" act as independent rental companies, providing their own insurance and registering through the state.

Turo is available in 8,000-plus cities across North America and the United Kingdom for round-trip bookings only, since rentals must be picked up and dropped off in the same location. (You can also pay an extra fee to have a car delivered to you at the time of booking.)

Users can choose from a wide range of more than 217,000 active vehicles, including lower-cost options such as Toyotas and Nissans and luxury vehicles like Lamborghinis and Teslas, starting as low as $25 per day in select markets.

To get a sense of how Turo prices compare to other rental car options, availability is plentiful in the San Francisco area for June 30-July 5, ripe for looking for last-minute July 4 holiday bookings.

Rentals for these dates start at $34 per day, with several cars listed for between $150 and $300 per day, plus taxes and fees.

(Screenshot from turo.com)

For example, you could rent a 2016 Tesla Model X through Turo for just over $1,000 for the week.

(Screenshot from turo.com)

Or, you could rent a similar, yet slightly smaller, Tesla for the same dates through Hertz, starting at $732.

(Screenshot from hertz.com)

Related: Renting a car in Hawaii with Turo during rental ‘apocalypse’

Booking process

The booking process for Turo is quite simple. New users must set up a Turo account and verify their identity before browsing availability based on city and dates.

(Screenshot from turo.com)

24-hour cancellation policy

One pro for potential users is that Turo offers a rather generous cancellation policy refunding trips entirely as long as they are canceled up to 24 hours prior to the scheduled pickup. Turo offers partial refunds for bookings canceled outside of that 24-hour predeparture window. Unless you choose a prepaid rate, traditional rental car companies often have no cancellation penalty, which is something to factor in if your plans are really up in the air.

Credit card rental insurance doesn't cover Turo

Many credit cards offer rental car insurance. However, according to Turo, "it's very unlikely that your credit card company provides coverage for damage to a car booked through Turo because Turo is not a rental car company." If you want complimentary rental car coverage that is included with your credit card, we recommend booking with an official car rental agency, such as National Car Rental or Hertz.

Otherwise, Turo users can pay to add one of three Turo protection plans to their booking.

The minimum plan costs between 18% and 25% of the trip depending on the price of the rental, but you can expect to pay a minimum of $10 per day for the third-party liability insurance coverage required by the state where the car is registered.

If you want your trip covered entirely, you'll pay between 65% and 100% of the trip price, or at least $14 per day.

If you don't elect coverage, you receive the minimum amount of third-party liability insurance coverage required by the state where the car is registered while fiscally responsible for all costs, including those related to physical, mechanical and interior damage.

Related: Are Turo car rentals covered by credit card insurance?

Ways to earn miles by using Turo

As of January, Delta SkyMiles members can earn miles when renting cars with Turo by adding your SkyMiles number to your new or existing Turo profile.

All users can earn 2,000 SkyMiles on their first Turo rental on the account and 500 SkyMiles on every rental thereafter. If you've previously rented from Turo and didn't have your accounts linked, you'll earn 500 miles per rental.

Bear in mind that Delta also has a partnership with Hertz, awarding Silver and Gold Medallion members 1,300 SkyMiles per rental and Platinum and Diamond Medallion travelers 1,550 miles per rental. Plus, Gold Medallion status holders and higher get automatic elite status with Hertz Gold Plus Rewards.

Also, select Capital One customers can earn bonuses on Turo rentals as of May. Specifically, Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card holders earn 10 miles per dollar on rentals and Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card holders earn 5 miles per dollar on bookings made through May 16, 2023.

Similarly, you could earn even more bonus points through your credit card because Turo codes as travel. For example, you could book a Turo rental with your Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and earn 2 points per dollar. Consider other credit cards that award bonus points for travel purchases, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve with 3 points per dollar.

Bottom line

(Photo courtesy of Turo)

Turo is an alternative to traditional rental car companies and is now widely available across the United States.

Given the prominence of Teslas and other electric vehicles on the platform, Turo is worth considering for your summer car travels, especially as gas prices continue to increase and we are again facing traditional rental car shortages in certain areas.

No one platform or company is always best, so be sure to test your dates and desired vehicle type on the various car rental booking sites to find the best deal for your needs.

When cars are hard to find, as we've seen to varying degrees throughout the past two years, you may want to keep Turo in mind.

Featured image by Bloomberg via Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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    For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

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The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

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  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
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  • World Elite Mastercard benefits, extended warranty, damage and theft protection.

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  • $95 annual fee
  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases