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Picking Up Your Rental Car Late? Here’s What to Expect

There may be instances where you end up reaching the rental location later than the scheduled car pick-up time. You may even arrive late by a couple of hours for the pick-up due to a delayed flight or unexpected traffic on your way to the rental location. If this is the case, you may have a few questions:

  • Do rental companies allow me to pick up the rental car later than the scheduled time?

  • What are the consequences of picking up the rental car late?

These are the common questions that quickly come to your mind when you reach the pick-up location late.

If you are worried that you may be late for your next rental pick-up, you will need to understand the policies of rental companies related to late rental pick-ups. 

This article will explain everything you need to know about picking up a rental car late.

Can You Pick Up Your Rental Car Late?

Yes, many rental companies will allow you to pick up your rental car late, albeit with some terms and conditions. However, the terms and conditions vary from one rental company to another.

For instance:

  • Some rental companies may reassign you to another car.

  • Some may charge a late pick-up fee.

  • Some may cancel your reservation and consider you a “no-show.”

Let’s dive into the late pick-up policies of a few popular car rental companies below:

  • Enterprise: The car reservations at Enterprise are valid for 24 hours from the scheduled pick-up time at airport rental locations in the United States and Canada. The late check-in charges may apply if you don’t show up at the rental location after 24 hours from the scheduled pick-up time. 

  • Avis: Many airport locations of Avis will remain open 24/7 to allow you to pick up the rental car after hours. Avis will also hold the reservation for up to 24 hours from the stated pick-up time.

  • Hertz: The late pick-up policies of Hertz are stringent compared to its peers. At airport and railway stations, Hertz will honor the reservation for up to two hours from the reserved pick-up time. If the customer does not arrive at the rental location even after two hours grace period, the reserved car will be made available for other customers. At non-airport/railway stations, it will hold the reservation for one hour from the reserved pick-up time. All reservations at Hertz will expire at the closing time of the day.  

  • Alamo: Alamo will also hold the reserved car for an additional day (24 hours) from the original rental pick-up time.

Are There Fees for Late Rental Car Pick-Up?

Many rental companies collect a late fee from customers if they show up late for the rental car pick-up.

  • Hertz, Thrifty, and Dollar will collect an additional fee of $69 if the customer does not show up after two hours of grace period for guaranteed reservations and at the end of the business day for prepaid reservations.

  • Enterprise will charge a NO SHOW fee of $100 if the renter does not show up even after the 24-hour grace period.

  • Budget will charge a late pick-up fee of $75 for guaranteed reservations and $150 for prepaid reservations.

  • Avis late rental pick-up charges will start from $10 and go up to $150  depending on the rental location, car class, and reservation type.

If you arrive late at the rental location for the pick-up, you should be prepared to pay the late fee in addition to regular rental charges on the rental counter at the time of pick-up. 

Top Tips and Tricks for Picking Up Your Rental Car Late

Travelers should avoid picking up rental vehicles late to enjoy the hassle-free rental experience. Here are the top three tips you may need to follow when you think your rental pick-up will be delayed:

Call Ahead

If you think you will be late for the rental pick-up, notify the same to the rental company. It's better to get in touch with the customer service team of the rental company to discuss the options available to you.

When you call the rental company, don’t forget to ask the following questions. These questions will give you a fair idea of the rental company’s policies related to late rental pick-ups.

  • Can my car rental pick-up be rescheduled?

  • Do I need to pay an extra fee for rescheduling the pick-up?

  • Will the same car be available for me even if my pick-up is rescheduled?

You can reach the customer support team of Airport Van Rental (AVR) at 888-204-8014 to reschedule your rental car pick-up time.

Plan Extra Time

Do you know traffic congestion costs each American an average of 97 hours a year? If you are living in cities such as Boston, Washington, Chicago, and Los Angeles and traveling during the peak period of the day, you are more likely to encounter traffic congestion regardless of the purpose of your journey. 

Considering the possibility of traffic congestion, you should allocate extra time to get to your rental location. Start a couple of hours early from your home so that you will have ample time to finish the pick-up formalities and start your vacation journey on time.

Review Grace Periods

Every rental company offers a grace period to facilitate delayed rental pick-ups. If you arrive at the location before the grace period, you won’t lose your reservation. Furthermore, rental companies will charge extra fees only if the driver does not show up beyond the grace period.

Grace periods may start from an hour and go up to a maximum of 24 hours, depending on the rental company and rental location. If you are running behind, review the grace period of the rental company and adjust your schedule accordingly.

Don’t Miss Pick-Up — Let AVR Deliver Your Car!

On-time pick-up of the rental vehicle may not be possible every time. External factors that are not in your control may cause the delay.

Many rental companies allow you to pick up the rental vehicle within the grace period without paying any additional charges. If the pick-up goes beyond the grace period, rental companies may cancel your reservation or collect a late rental pick-up fee.

It is also recommended for renters to inquire about policies related to out-of-hours drop-off and late return fees before visiting the rental office and signing the dotted line of the rental agreement. 

Want to avoid the hassle of visiting the rental location for vehicle pick-up? Then, choose a rental company that delivers the car to your doorstep.

With Airport Van Rental (AVR), you can choose to get your rental car home delivered.

AVR is a leading van rental company with over a dozen rental locations coast to coast. A few of our popular rental locations are California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Nevada, and Texas. Our fleet comprises a range of vehicle classes, SUVs, minivans, and passenger vans.

At AVR, we understand that it is not always possible for you to pick up and drop off the rental vehicle. If you feel you cannot pick up the vehicle, just inform us in advance. We’ll arrange a door delivery of your rental van for a minimal delivery fee (the delivery fee may vary based on the travel distance between your home and the rental location and the type of rental vehicle).

Book a rental van from AVR with a debit or credit card at the best rental rate for your next vacation and get it delivered to your home!

AVR Van Rental

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