Which rental car companies are the same?

Although there are a lot of car rental brands, there are really only three main companies. Enterprise is the owner of National and Alamo. Avis owns Budget, Payless and Zipcar. The cheapest and most expensive car rental companies belong to the same parent company.

Enterprise Holdings owns and operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car brands, which together comprise a fleet of nearly 1.7 million vehicles through a network of more than 9,500 rental locations worldwide. Emerald Club Executive Elite members receive one day of free car rental for every five eligible car rentals, in addition to other benefits, such as free delivery at the private airport. But generally speaking, deal seekers will want to start their search with Enterprise, Budget, Hertz or Dollar, which are among the cheapest car rental companies. However, unexpectedly, Hertz has simpler rental procedures than Thrifty, though not by a wide margin.

Although you won't find these low-budget rental providers in every city, nor should you expect the newest fleet of cars, sometimes you'll find rock-bottom prices. Customers with prepaid Hertz rentals who booked before March 13 can cancel their reservation free of charge and transfer their balance to use on a future booking within 24 months. More expensive than competitors; additional costs, such as GPS navigation, satellite radio and car seats, are priced higher than other companies. Members of National Car Rental's Emerald Club loyalty program can get a free rental car after seven rental credits (one credit per rental) with either brand, avoid queues, and get a rental authorization for an additional driver for free.

Whether you're planning a road trip, attending work meetings, or just visiting a new city, here's how to select the right car rental company for you. Their prices are slightly higher than the competition, but they include extras such as GPS, XM Sirius Radio, Wi-Fi and a car seat for children, as well as an easy rental process. These companies are parent companies of subsidiaries that are grouped according to their price levels: low, medium and high cost. If you don't need the car for a whole week, look for weekend rentals, as they tend to be cheaper than on weekdays.

Best of all, luxury is reasonably priced, sometimes comparable to the cost of a compact rental car from popular competition. If you have any questions, call the branch directly to check if there is a delivery fee for one-way rentals. If you want something other than your usual rental car, Budget has it too: rent hybrids like the Toyota Prius, convertibles like a Chevy Camaro, and trucks like the Jeep Gladiator. You can usually pay in cash or with a debit or credit card when you rent on both cheap and larger rentals.