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Why Are Dollar Rental Cars So Cheap? This is why…

Dollar Rental, otherwise known as “Dollar Rent a Car”, is a car rental company that operates as a subsidiary of Hertz. The company currently does business in 1,500 franchise locations in over 70 countries with their sister company Thrifty Car Rental. One of the reasons people continue to use the company is because of their low prices, but why are Dollar Rental cars so cheap? 

Dollar rental is a medium-tier rental company and because they save money by running cars longer, advertising less, and up-selling add-ons they can pass their savings on in the form of lower prices to the customer.

Keep reading to find out more about Dollar Rental and why their cars are so cheap.

Dollar rental desk

How Is Dollar Rental Able to Have Such Low Prices?

There are several strategies that companies use to keep their prices low, and some of these are specific to the rental car industry. So how does Dollar Rental manage to keep its prices so low?

Older Cars

Car rental companies buy their vehicles in bulk from the manufacturer. In fact, according to CNBC, rental car companies buy anywhere from 1.5 to 2 million vehicles a year. Since they buy their vehicles in fleets, they can buy them at a reduced price and pass those savings to the customer.

Dollar Rental is unique because its parent company is also a large rental car supplier. The more popular rental car companies will often sell cars that have 25,000-40,000 miles on them. However, Hertz will often send these cars along to their subsidiary company, Dollar Rental.

Less Staff

It’s no secret that reducing the number of staff can save a company quite a lot of money. This may mean longer wait times for the customer, but most people would agree to spend a few extra minutes in line if it meant spending less money.  

Less Advertising

If asked, most people could identify Hertz’s iconic yellow and black logo. However, how many people could mentally picture the logo for Dollar Rental? This content is owned by moc.sotuaytsur. Companies spend a crazy amount of money to make sure that when someone needs a rental car, they think of them first. However, since Dollar Rental is not Hertz’s main company, they don’t need to invest in as many competitive advertisements, which translates into savings for the customer.


Another reason that Dollar Rental can offer such low prices on rentals is by supplementing their income with added features. The company asks employees to up-sell these features as much as possible. However, they’re still a choice and you do not have to add them to your rental agreement.

Is Dollar Rental a Good Company?

Based on the 1370 verified reviews on ConsumerAffairs website, Dollar Rental has a customer rating of 3.7 out of 5.0, with an average customer satisfaction rating of four stars. However, their current Yelp review fairs much worse, with a customer rating of only 1.5 out of 5.0 from 419 reviewers. To be fair, though, their ratings have improved some since being bought by Chrysler in 2016.  

Among the worst ratings reported by customers, hidden fees are the most common complaint. Many customers have said they were charged fees that were either never explained to them during the rental process or should never have been added. Among these extra expenses, toll fees and administrative fees top the list.  

Among their best ratings, customers gush about the quick, friendly service and overall quality of the vehicle they rented. Additionally, many customers enjoyed the reasonable prices.

How Much Does Dollar Rental Charge Per Day?

Your final rental price will be calculated based on a variety of things, such as the location, the type of car, any added features, insurance, mileage, and other individual factors.

The table below reflects Dollar Rental’s average daily price. Also, the company offers a “Best Rate Guarantee” and will not only match any lower price that you find but will also take an added 10% off your entire purchase. However, this is limited to certain occasions.

Type of VehicleDaily Price to Rent
Small Car – 4 Adults – 2 Bags$77/day
Medium Car – 4 Adults – 2 Bags$74-$88/day
Large Car – 5 Adults – 5 Bags$80-$181/day
SUV- 5 Adults – 3 Bags$73-$85/day
Van – 7 Adults – 5 Bags$246/day
Luxury – 5 Adults – 5 Bags$111/day

Source: (Prices in Mobile Alabama).

Are Dollar Rental Cars Reliable?

Car rental lot

Although Dollar cars are more likely to have over 25,000 miles on them, they’re just as reliable as any other rental car. All vehicles are inspected upon return and maintained on schedule. If you’re still worried about reliability, you can choose to add their Premium Roadside Assistance to your rental agreement.

According to their website, people who choose to add roadside aid may call their emergency helpline for help with:

  • 90-minute Roadside Service Guarantee
  • Keys locked in the vehicle
  • Lost keys
  • Out of gas
  • Flat tires
  • Boosts

Also, if a service problem delays your vacation, Dollar offers up to $1000 in Travel Interruption Reimbursement.

Do They Offer Any Discounts?

Dollar Rental does offer some exclusive members-only discounts for anyone affiliated with one or more of the following associations:

  • AAA Members—Members can take advantage of up to 10% off their rental price, a free added driver (who must also have an AAA membership), a free child seat, and 10% off prepaid fuel. 
  • Union Plus—Members can enjoy discounts on mileage cost and daily rental prices.
  • BJ’s Wholesale Club—Although the website claims to have a discount for people with a membership to BJs, the link to the membership page was inactive. 
  • AICPA—Members may receive discounted prices, but discounts do not apply to taxes, surcharges, or optional products and services. 

It may be worth asking when you rent your vehicle if they have any other discounts or deals available.

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