Turo, formerly Relay Rides, is a peer-to-peer car sharing company that started in San Francisco, California in 2009. Similar to the Airbnb model, local car owners advertise and rent 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 percent 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 per 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.
When owners decline Turo’s insurance coverage, they are considered a Commercial Host. As such, they must have their policy verified by Turo prior to renting any of their vehicles.
Turo’s originally offered three different tiers of protection for owners to choose from. The Premium, Standard, and Basic plans (available before July 1, 2020). All three plans came 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.
As of July 1, 2020 Turo offers five vehicle protection plans: the 60 Plan, 70 Plan, 75 Plan, 80 Plan, and the 85 Plan.
All five plans provide up to $750,000 in third-party liability insurance (offered by Liberty Mutual) and varying levels of contractual reimbursement (reflected in the plan names) from Turo for physical damage and theft. However, bear in mind that the level of available reimbursement will vary depending on the chosen plan.
We recommend consumers thoroughly read Turo’s detailed terms and conditions for more information regarding Turo’s host protection plans.
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. We recommend you refer to the company's website for detailed information on each plan.
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 U.S. 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 difference between standard car rental companies and renting a car with Turo.
Do NOT make an account with Turo. Do not put up any personal information on your account. It is a scam. I had used Turo once, over a year ago, the experience was fine, however a year later, my account got hacked and Turo has done nothing to help me out. The first time my I was charged $800USD, they refunded my the money, minus the exchange rate, therefore still lost out on $100. They told me they would completely deactivate my account, get rid of any of my personal information, including banking information, so the next time I was to use the app, I would be creating a new account all together. Yet, 2 months after that experience, the same account information had been used and charged $150USD to my account. And now, since my account has been compromised, their "team" doesn't know where to start or how to figure out how to actually help me here. Their trust & safety team is absouletly useless, they don't get back to you for over a week at a time and when they do, are of no help. When you call Turo customer service, they had random people speaking to you with no information that will actually help you. They don't have a real customer service team therefore could care less about what you've been experiencing. I am now out about $250, and Turo has done nothing to help me get this sorted. No one to call, and no one to email. Completely disappointed, and now I am left having to change all my banking information since the company itself doesn't seem to care about unauthorized account activity.
I never used Turo in my life, and they decided to block me from the platform. I'm VERY interested to know why as I have been driving for more than 10 years with zero accident. here is the message I just received: Hi Johan, Thank you for your interest in Turo. Unfortunately, after reviewing your information, we have confirmed the decision to restrict your account. Turo considers many factors when determining eligibility and we reserve the right to undertake screenings, checks, and processes designed to help verify the identities and/or backgrounds of our Turo users. Although we do not disclose specific details of our internal review process, our decision to deactivate your account was based off one or more of the following: * Failed background screening * Risk flags triggered by Turo’s internal system * One or more motor vehicle record violations * Violation of Turo’s [Terms of Service] We wish you the best of luck in your endeavors, but this is a final decision on our part. Thank you again for your interest in Turo. Regards, Turo Verification Team
Fight For The Little Guy
Not Even Sure how Turo verifies licenses, keep getting renters who live in my state with way out of state licenses with just questionable aspects that appear fake. Third customer gets into a accident and I had the top tier 60 plan. Nothing major just a cracked tail light and A small dent in the bumper, mind you my car is a brand new 2019 vehicle. Damage came out to $700 and Turo says that they will only cover $100 of it since there appeared to be a small scratch already on the complete opposite side! Are you kidding me? What kind of crap insurance do we get as host? If someone totals my car does Turo you give me less than the amount owed because my tire had minimal wear or because my hood had a previous ding.
I've been a Turo Host for 18 months, and I keep getting subjected to higher fees and less coverage. "Owner Protection" (basic commission) has increased from 25% (Standard) to 30% and now 35% to keep roughly the same "benefits". NOW, even despite the pandemic, they have added a $250 "deductible" - Hosts have to PAY this out of pocket whenever a Guest damages a car! Beyond absurd!! The only way to escape that charge is to fork over 35% to Turo. They also take a cut of EVERYTHING except tolls - that must be illegal. Guest gets and Extras like unlimited mileage, airport delivery, cleaning, whatever - Turo takes a big chunk. They also reduced other coverages or increased their fees for ALL coverage levels. And they reduced their liability coverage from $1 million to $750K. AND worst of all, they started mandating ridiculous daily mileage allowances AND reduced the per-mile overage charges to mere pennies. A Host could rent out a car at 200 miles/day included - since there's no other limits - and accrue an astonishing 73,000 miles on a car in a single year, without collecting one penny in mileage charges. They are truly pricing many Turo Hosts completely out of the market, and any who survive will suffer worn out cars within just a couple of years, while paying on a loan for 4, 5, or even 6 years. It's like buying $100K in casino chips, then the casino unexpectedly devalues them by 25% or 30%. And you're completely stuck because you have car payments on your whole fleet. Customer service is virtually non-existent, for Guest OR for Host. And heaven help you when you have a claim - after you surrender $250 out-of-pocket toward repair, you'll have to fight and fight if you get a claim approved at all. Then you have to endure an inflexible payment system where you either have to have PayPal or the like, or you'll get your claim payment on a prepaid debit card. Ridiculous.
We love using Turo! The convenience of dropping off and picking up is one of my favorite reasons for using it. I also love the you can look for cars that have a delivery option. My husbands favorite is definitely the selection of cars to choose from. We are always renting Tesla’s when we rent from Turo.
Love this! AirBnb for cars! We used this service on a recent trip, and the car was clean and worked great! owner of the car even got me a drink. Will definitely use this service again!
Excellent variety and prices. Easy to do checkout. Awesome customer service & host communication
I was hung up on, transferred and neglected multiple times by multiple people here at Turo. The worst experience I've had in my life at any customer service. I do not recommend this app if anything I recommend a lawsuit. I got a rock chip in a windshield and the $25 a day "insurance" or "protection" plan did not cover it. They were trying to charge me $500 on top of the $700 I paid for the vehicle $150 I paid for the "insurance" and another $120 I paid personally to the host for the unavoidable act if anything I would give it 0 stars. Never going through this company again. Telling everyone not to either.
I like Turo. All was smoothly and convenient. But the only thing was dissapointed to me, After my first car booking "Turo support" starting ask me to send them ID photo and credt card photo. For understanding, I already did it right after registration before my first booking. So I almost sure that was SCAM. Be careful! They writes from toro.com domain and it seems very fishily and suspicious.
Didnt expect Turo to be this good! Heard about this app from my friend and downloaded it for an upcoming trip! Great prices!! And many vehicles to choose from. Totally recommend!
Awesome experience will do it again in near future the people I dealt with were nice and courteous
Sara Ramirez Montes
It was perfect!. Nathan was great!. He answered all my questions right away and made it super easy for me!. I will for sure rent from him again next month when in Minnesota. Make sure to check all the car options he has!. He has all sorts of options!
I have used them about 5 times. Each time was a smooth transaction. Very convenient!
It was my First time using Turo and I was more than pleased with the ease of the process, The friendliness of Ryan, and the cleanliness of the vehicle. It was honestly, a better Experience than other car rentals used in the past. Thank you Ryan!!
Availability of cars where the biggest problem. I had a good experience with the app overall.
The app was easy to use. I was happy that I didn't need a credit card. My host Jeff was great!
I enjoyed my trip. The car was great, and my host was very considering.
The reservation was very smooth. No issues.
My experience was good. I only had one problem with the vehicle the air conditioning didnt work and we went on a family trip with kids and my mom so that part was a bummer
I really like this business model! I've already recommended this app to anyone who will listen.
Turo is a great, cheap means of car rental that gives you all the amenities of big car rental services in a much cheaper and more personable manner.
Easy check in and out, and a nice clean vehicle. My only complaint is that when booking the vehicle months in advance it was supposed to be for pick up/drop off at the airport...I messaged the owner days before to let him know the flight changed by 30 min and he informed me that I made reservations before they changed it to an extra $120 for airport drop off? I think I should have been told about this, the Uber ride there and back was $60...I would have chosen a different vehicle. Oh well, something to look out for next time.
published review 8/18/20 I started hosting on a Turo less than a month ago. Everything was going well up until the first damage claim on the third rental. The vehicle was returned and pictures were taken accordingly based on what the app requires. Unfortunately it rains a lot and frequently, so I wasn’t able to clean the car immediately. A few days later when it stopped raining, I noticed two things. First the stains on the leather seats were not coming out. Also discovered the rim had been damaged likely from hitting a curb. I contacted Turo in regard to the permanent stains on the seats, to determine how to proceed with a cleaning fee. I was advised that since it was just over 36 hours later, there was nothing I could do. Even though there had been proper pictures of both the seats before and after the trip. It’s unfortunate as instead of trying to get the stains out first by a normal cleaning process, Turo requires that you report and charge them immediately? Clearly being nice to the customer and trying to clean first is not the process they want, poor customer service in my opinion. Next problem was with the rim and after noticing it, I immediately reported it to Turo. This also had clear pictures that were uploaded before after the trip immediately. Unfortunately I didn’t notice the damage immediately since the vehicle was dirty and couldn’t clean it due to the pouring rain. I then receive a call from Turo advising that damage claims need to be reported within 24 hours. I wasn’t aware of this either since they don’t explicitly tell this to you during the setup process. Unfortunately I found this out too late as well. Also their own website says within 24 hours or may not be approved, isn’t that implying they still process over 24 hour claims? Second the lady who spoke with me even confirmed the damage was done by the renter and yet still doesn’t process the claim? Basically the vandalism and destruction of my property is confirmed and they still don’t care. I would not rent my vehicle on Turo or rent a vehicle on Turo.
Great experience and easy transaction and fun to try with owners and consumers with direct contact make it more personal and fun.
Honestly I’m not comfortable nor confident in using the application anymore. My first experience was terrible, paid $698 for a different car then the one advertised. Car turned out to be a disaster.
Love how easy and fast you can get a car. We needed a car the next day. I was able to find one and have it delivered to me! So great!
Car smelt like smoke when I got it. Smelled the same when returned it. False pictures of weed were posted and ash. I get a smoking charge. Never using Turo again.
Enjoyed the car, it was a great rental and smooth and easy, came into town and had no issues. Really enjoyed the experience. I highly recommend the pick up and drop off for DFW. Easy to communicate with owners and very accommodating
Awesome available host. Car drove great
Adam was an AWESOME host! He explained everything I needed to know about his Explorer, that was so clean & with all features make our trip easy and Fun. Adam was quite efficient vis text answering my questions and responded right away. It was a pleasure renting Adam’s Explorer. I will be definitely be renting it for our next trip camping or weekend get away!
The only reason I gave it a one star is because I didn't have an option to give 0. I picked up a car drove 1 hour open the sliding door of the Van for the 1st time it broke off we spent the next 5 hours trying to get at throat towed through turo the owner was extremely rude turl wasn't much better. Will never use this service again
Convenient, streamlined, excellent communication, & courteous
Excellent service, wonderful SUV... GREAT OWNER!!!
This was my first time using Turo when I had questions the owner of the vehicle respond very quickly. There was some misunderstanding on my end and the issue was resolved quickly. I would definitely rent from Turo again now that I understand the process.
It was a amazing clean and very communicative service I will definitely use again in the future
Turo is our go to for all of our rentals now. Their selection is huge in most cities and we love getting to meet new owners and car enthusiasts.
The process was very easy got exactly what I wanted
When you do have a problem with Turo it is monumental because you can't really talk with anyone. Like so many companies nowadays, they cut costs by trying to make too many things automated. When Turo works like it is supposed to, it is great! If there were an easier way to speak with someone, it would easily get 5 stars. Due to a lowsy chat feature being your only outlet for contact, it doesn't get that just yet.
Great car! The host was amazing. Definitely will book with him again.
Convenient and easy to book and ride. Enjoyed my experience and didn't have any inconveniences
I love the app but maybe it can only show me cars that are available from my start & end dates.
This is a great way to rent vehicles. My car had to he put in the shop for emergency repairs and I would not have been able to get around without a car. Turo provided a way to get myself and my family around while the car was repaired
host made up fraudulent charge for smoking in his car, while I did not. Turo automatically withdrew a wild amount of money (more than a weeks car rental) without even letting me dispute this charge. Turo makes money off these charges and makes it difficult for you do have any recourse also the company does not scrutinize many hosts who are running obvious scams. doing a lot of research this is a common thing at Turo, I will be organizing a social media campaign to raise awareness about Turo's shady business practices and how they encourage fraud that makes them and the hosts millions of dollars in fees.
Eduardo, charge me $ 36.02 for cleaning fee for sanitary service for his vehicle, which was disputed, thur email and texting . Why should I have to be charge a sanitized fee when this should be done especially due to Covid-19 .
This was my first time renting from Turo and I'm extremely pleased with the service, the car was clean, the instructions to access the vehicle were clear and precise. Overall I'm pleased with the service 😀
everything was overall very easy and less complicated than dealing with other similar apps.
Terrance was great and very nice. Loved the car
The car was great. The process was simple. Highly recommend!
it was good, but very precarious - the hosts are not fully committed to the time frame: one host cancelled on us an hour before, claiming they actually need the car; the second host said it might not be ready on time, though eventually it was. this almost disrupted our entire plans and it seems like there is no penalty for a host to do that, whereas I would have had to pay more had I brought the car back later than agreed. Also, booking fees are very high.
This was our first experience with Turo and it went really well. The entire process was “painless” with everything done right in the app. We’ll be back.