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Turo, formerly Relay Rides, is a peer-to-peer car sharing company that started in San Francisco, CA in 2009. Similar to the Airbnb model, local car owners advertise and rent out their vehicles to drivers who would prefer to avoid the standard rental car experience.
The company launched nationally in March of 2012 and is currently available in over 4,500 cities and over 300 airports throughout the United States. Turo is supported by top-tier investors, including August Capital, Google Ventures, Shasta Ventures, Canaan Partners, and Trinity Ventures.
Keep reading for pros and cons, plus Turo reviews from real customers.
To cater to individual preferences, the company offers over 800 different car models to choose from. Renters can choose from cars, SUVs, minivans, trucks, convertibles, hybrids and vans. One can also filter by rental period for long-term rentals, the vehicle make, features like all-wheel drives, and more.
Turo has an easy, user-friendly, and customizable rental sign up. In order to sign up for car sharing, create a Turo account by simply signing into your Facebook or email account.
The first time you sign up for a car, all you have to do is enter some general information, choose a car, rental date, and time. You can either decline additional insurance or purchase the Basic or Premium option, each with varying physical damage and liability protection.
In order to get the car and the keys, all the renter needs to do is meet the owner and show them their driver's license. Some owners will even deliver the car right to the renter. Returning the car is simple, as the renter just needs to return the car with a tank full of gas to where it was initially picked up.
Turo rents vehicles priced approximately 35% lower than other car rental options. The price ranges depending on what car one gets. There is no membership fee and cars generally go for a flat rate of $40 a day.
In addition to rental fees, buyers may be charged fees for additional miles, parking tickets and cleaning fees. To get the car's trip price, one must multiply the relevant trip rate advertised on the vehicle by the duration. There are also the following fees:
It should also be noted that payment information, including debit card and credit card payments, are made through the Turo app or website, not the rental host.
With Turo, there are private and commercial hosts. When it comes to Turo’s insurance, owners can either use Turo’s policies or decline coverage to be eligible for a commercial, third-party insurance policy.
Declining coverage: Owners can decline Turo’s insurance coverage. This makes them considered a Commercial Host. As such, they must have their policy verified by Turo prior to renting out any of their vehicles.
Turo’s insurance offers three different tiers of protection for owners to choose from. All three plans come with $1 million in liability coverage and physical damage protection that covers the value of the car, up to $125,000. From there, the plans differ in host deductible, cost, and other amenities.
Just as you would when you rent a car with other rental car companies, before you complete your booking, you have to choose which protection plan you want for your trip.
If you choose a commercial host, then the host will provide you with options. None of the guest plans cover mechanical or interior damage.
If you already have personal insurance, Turo’s coverage will supplement your existing coverage. Policies differ in the amount of liability insurance, deductible payment required, and damage protection.
Basic Package: $3,000 deductible
Roadside assistance is available 24/7 for guests driving a vehicle covered by a Turo protection plan; however, depending on your plan, you may be charged.
Turo will pay for the dispatch fee and there is no charge for tows shorter than 15 miles in the US.
Beyond that, the party that caused the need for a tow will have to pay. Basically, if the car you are renting has a mechanical problem or an issue due to improper maintenance, the owner will have to pay, while locking the keys out or killing the battery by leaving the lights on will leave you, the renter, at fault.
Since Turo does not operate with clients out of a specific agency, it utilizes car owners that do not use their cars on an everyday basis. Renters must meet the car owner personally in order to pick up the car. Renters may have to go out of their way to retrieve the car if there is not a Turo already at the airport.
Additionally, each renter must show the car owner his or her driver's license, which does have personal information that people may not feel comfortable sharing with a random person.
Since Turo does not own the cars, rules and regulations are inconsistent. Some owners allow renters to drive 200 miles a day, while others allow only 100.
Each owner has his or her own set of restrictions, so Turo does not have an overall list of rules for the available cars.
Turo does not offer cars in New York. People under 21 years of age cannot rent a car, and people under age 25 have to pay additional fees.
In fact, people under 25 may need to demonstrate at least two years of current US licensed driving history, and potentially can only rent out certain cars because they are considered "high-risk."
One thing that is different about the Turo experience is that guests are expected to care for the car as if it were their own. So, if the exterior of the car is significantly dirtier or if it has junk food crumbles inside from a road trip, you have to take it through a car wash and vacuum it out before returning it. If not, you may be charged a cleaning fee between $30 and $250. This is a big differentiator between standard car rental companies and renting a car with Turo.
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Great convenience and great value. I enjoy the variety of price points. I was able to rent a 2009 Civic which is a vehicle I was accustomed to driving which made me feel comfortable driving in unfamiliar areas. I was able to conveniently pick up and drop off the vehicle at the airport. Running short on time I was able to text the owner and hand her $20 for gas instead of stopping for gas and delaying the drop off time. I’ll definitely keep using Turo
The services have always been so easy & accurate! I had a great experience using Turo in 2 cities now
TURO experience went off well, I must admit I was a bit hesitant at first, but it turned out very well. My person that I ised was very flexible, knowledgeable & helpful in the use of the vehicle. I would recommend TURO lowering some of the fees. All in all I would recommend.
Communication was very straight forward and the app was easy to use. Will use again for sure!
Was very easy to use! I had a great experience.
The GUY. WAS SIMPLY PERFECT the car was clean I was alll behind schedule he wait for me vehicles was also fully charged gave me the do”s and don’t of the vehicle and let me get on my way checked on for one time and that was all.
Thro was so convenient. It really makes renting interesting cars way easier than anyone else. My host was quick to communicate and incredibly helpful throughout the entire process.
It was a really nice experience. Being able to just meet up with someone and take their car instead of going through a big expensive company was great. It especially helped that they tell you to take pictures of the car before and after the trip to ensure that whatever goes wrong during the trip it’s documented.
This is definitely a budget friendly alternative to rental companies. It's quick, easy, fast process with more flexibility on pick and return times.
easy pick up, i have the lenders information so we could talk easily and i liked that insurance was covered in the rental.
Actually I won't be using Turo again. I was charge an extra $35 to clean the vehicle. We got caught in a rain storm driving back across the desert. There were bugs on the front of the car because it is spring. If I had the same experience with a rental car agency cleaning the vehicle is part of their costs and are not passed along to the customer. I shouldn't have go get the car washed for the owner and certainly should not be charged for the cost of doing business. The car was rented and taken car of and being charged for the car being dirty from weather and environment is not something I am interested in doing again. I read the rules after and it's clear that user are responsible to keep cars clean. I believe the rules should match rental car agencies. I was scolded by the owner when asked why I was charged and I feel this is poor customer service all around from the rules to the way I was treated. I would have started her one but I had already rated her before I was charged. My mistake and one I will not be repeating. The rules are setup to charge customers for general business expenses and I will not be using this service again.
The experience was easy, fast and a wonderful way to rent a car that’s not available through commercial rental companies. The host was wonderful and the car was amazing!
Great app easy to use good customer service
Great customer service, they were very helpful after our first car canceled, great car too.
Very easy to use; pick-up & delivery was very simple.
First time using Turo, in the future very debatable to use again. I was shown what my charges were going to be for a rental. Yes, I was charge 100. 00 deposit as well. I also got double charged again. I also had bank fee because of the double charge. When I called Turo customer service. "oh billing is not available and I will need to send my bank acct. to them in the morning. And it may take a couple day's to process the problem. Really! I got the rental to take a trip and now I have additional charges. What in the World!!!
Turo recommended by family. Zac my host responded time was FAST. The Turo lot convenient to airport. Turo attendants was quick and efficient. The text asking if I needed additional time was exactly what I needed. I loved the vehicle I had, I came home and purchased one. Would recommend to everyone vice a car rental.
Turo was a God Send! I was able to find a vehicle that I wanted and easily book thru the app. Best thing about it is there was no catch to it!
Only negative is the new 100mi limit which is new from the last time I rented. In California you can't even even go to the beach and come back in 100mi let alone have milage to return the car. Almost doesn't make sense to pick Turo over a rental car company with unlimited miles. Still giving 5 stars cause of the car selection, but it's unlikely I'll be able to rent again in California given the milage restrictions.
Most of my experiences using Turo have been positive. That being said, my recent rental did not go well. The owner claimed damage to his vehicle, although photos indicated scratches were done prior to my rental. Turo didn’t even contact be to get my opinion; without advance notice, just 24 hours after my rental,Turo took almost 1K out of my bank account. Over inflated repair cost for damage I didn’t do. Someone is getting a kickback. They have lost a previously happy customer.
I rented my extra sports car on turo, I followed the business plan I was told works. Turo authorized a man to rent out my car, who stole it. My car was not paid off, I waited over 85 days for turo to Compensate the value of the car. In this 85 days I payed 3 car payments, totaling $1,800. I paid $397 in insurance on my own end. I lost out on over $500 worth of scheduled trips that were to take place after the car was stolen. Then to further explain the lack of respect turo has for its hosts they offered to pay 24,000 on my car. There’s a 30,000 bank loan owed. Considering turo Accepted this man to rent my car, how am I out over $9,000 because I followed Tito’s business plan. Do not rent on turo, they will not recover your car and they keep it out of the media but cars are stolen regularly, they do not take care of their hosts, nor do they compensate when they have made a huge mistake. Furthermore turo has been in contact with the police department and are not pressing charges on the man who stole my car.
Turo was easy to use and the rental pickup was very smooth
TURO. For my first time I had a whole different experience running around in my head. That was incredibly easy to navigate, actually everything about my experience was easy. Pick up, drop off, the communication with the owner. I had a couple issues that I caused happen, my host was so patient explaining how to deal with the situation, he went above and beyond. FIVES STARS ACROSS THE BOARD! Thanks. Happy driver.
It was a great experience. I had no problems and my host was awesome.
This was my first experience using Turo, so I was a bit nervous. Rafael , was definitely a goid contact and he made the process very easy. I chose to have the car delivered. Rafael allowed me to pick the vehicle up an hour early which was great and when I arrived he was waited outside. We shook hands and he briefly explain any details I needed and I was on my way
Great service. I was able to get the exact car I needed for a great price.
Always convenient and a innovative way to earn if needed. You’re creating opportunities for everyone and the possibilities are endless!
I tried Turo app this past weekend and I was surprised how easy and affordable is rent a car. The pick up and drop out went smooth. For sure will use it again.
As a host, you better hope a renter never damages your car--because Turo has a SLICK SYSTEM to avoid paying for anything. The illusion of your being covered by insurance borders on being a scam... My renter gashed in the trim on the driver's side along with multiple deep scratches in the paint. He actually concurred that the damage was done during his trip--but Turo doesn't care. Because I was not able to provide a photo BEFORE this specific trip of the exact same area of the car that was damaged, I was informed I had no proof that it happened when I said it did... and thus, sorry, buster, out of luck. As a renter, Turo is the best--especially knowing that you can pretty much wreck and owner's car and walk away... as a host, DO NOT DO IT!
I wish more people knew about Turo. I have rented the car twice, once a Mercedes and once a BMW for fraction of the price I would have paid with the car rental folks. Both times experience was amazing- even though I was really apprehensive in the beginning since it was a car from a person just like me, but my fears were unfounded. Turo concept is a great idea and I hope it continues to do well.
Instant booking is great! When planning a trip, it’s nice to know things are confirmed. It is great to try out different cars and, with Turo, I get a better car for less money. I recommend Turo for sure!
The vehicle was perfect ! Very clean. I wish I owned it ! Couldn't be happier ! John was a perfect person to rent from !
The app crashed many times. It was particularly difficult while trying to check in to start the rental.
Amazing experience with this platform, such a simple and hassle free app. Will recommend to all my friends and will forever be a user!
This is some straight up bull! The guy who was suppossedly renting the car would not answer not respond to messages confirming. After talking to a Turo rep the night before, he assured us to go to the home and pick up the car. They took 15 minutes to respond to the door and then a woman came out and I told her what we were there for and she shook her head. The car looked like crap once we got there and the contact person came out looking like who done it and why. He acted like he didn't know what I was talking about and that his phone was messed up. Needless to say, the trip was ruined because we didn't have a way to get there. Hotels were booked etc.. and this bull ain't cool at all! Never again!
Was a great and easy experience. Worked very smoothly. Would do it again.
Turo was great! Very professional and easy to get out on the road
Great experience. Much simpler and economical and more variety than traditional rental car services.
I had an awesome experience with Turo renting from you guys. The Toyota Tacoma that I rented was simply awesome! I would definitely use this again whenever I travel by plane. Everything about the description and the promptness and the courtesy cleanliness easy to drive overall great experience awesome! Will definitely share Touro with my friends and family.
Turo the company itself is great, you just have to be aware of some host, beware if you have to pick up a car and the host is not present but leaves you instructions to where to find the key, make sure you take pictures of EVERY LITTLE MARK ON THE VEHICLE. Because the host will try to file a claim for everything, even if was there when you get the vehicle.
Pickup and return were easy at Fine Auto Parking. The Jeep is a little older so it’s not in perfect shape but overall pretty good.
Jake was very nice and didn't mind explaining how to let the top back. The car was very clean and rode really smooth. I would most definitely choose Turo again.
Turo is so easy to use. Convenient pick up and drop off. I used a self serve car pickup and drop off. Easy to follow instructions. Less expensive than traditional car rentals. Customer service was great as it is the owner of the car. Fast response.
Amazing app my first time using was a charm very affordable
If I could put 0 stars I would. The driver of my car got into an accident that was costing 1,700 to repair. Turo said they will only pay me 300 and the rest I should cover out of pocket and they asked him to pay them 500. So they are making a profit out of the accident?? Their insurance doesn’t cover anything. It’s a complete fraud
Variety of cars to choose from, seeimg the actual car, great price and so easy to rent. I pay a little more and they bring it to me and pick it up. So easy to use!
The app worked seamlessly, and everything about the transaction was great! Appreciate the reminders too!
Very convenient service! I liked being able to decide which car I wanted and have all the prices, etc. up front.
I wish I could give less than one star. The WORST car rental service around. Customer Service is a true nightmare, I am pretty sure no one there has any type of training. No one wants to talk to you on the phone and they do not return calls. They will charge your card with no authorization. They cannot send proper documents to support "claims." SPEND the extra money and use an actual car rental service. AVOID TURO AT ALL COST!
April was very flexible with the pickup and return of the vehicle. It was clean, and just the right car for my trip. This was my first Turo experience, and I will use again next month on my trip to Florida