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.
DO NOT EVER USE TURO!!!!!! HOST REVIEWS ARE RIGGED. COMPLETELY UNPROFESSIONAL. Booked a car weeks in advanced, TALKED WITH THE 5 STAR HOST and confirmed for a 3 day trip. EVEN Sent the host a reminder as I'm on the way to the pick up location, which the app supposedly does. I used my own money to Uber to the location. Got there early, as the pickup time passed, I figured she'd come out any minute and decided to wait a-little longer and tried to contact her in any ways possible but to no avail. Waited over an hour, past the designated time. ITS BEEN DAYS AND SHE HASN'T EVEN GOTTEN BACK, NOT EVEN AN APOLOGY. Got in contact with the customer support and said they can't compensate for any of my Uber payments that I had to spend going and leaving that pickup location. MORE IMPORTANTLY, THERE'S NO WAY OF LEAVING A REVIEW IF THE HOST CANCELS ON YOU. SO I CAN'T EVEN LEAVE A REVIEW ON TURO AS MY TRIP HAS BEEN CANCELED BY THE HOST HOURS AFTER THE BOOKED TIME. TTURO AUTOMATICALLY LEAVES A REVIEW IN YOUR PLACE JUST STATING THAT THE HIOST HAS CANCELLED, TURO EVEN LIED ON THE HOSTS BEHALF SAYING SHE CANCELED 20 MINUTES BEFORE WHEN IN FACT I HAD TO CANCELED HOURS INTO THE SUPPOSED RENTAL AGREEMENT. HOWEVER THE HOST IS ABLE TO REBUTTAL A TURO CANCELLATION NOTICE GIVING HER SORRY EXCUSE, JUST THE SAME AS ALL HER OTHER REBUTTALS. DO NOT USE TURO, SKETCHY, AND NOT FOR THE CUSTOMERS. AVOID AT ALL TIMES.
I loved that the company is partnered with Porsche. I travel often and whenever I get a chance, I love to rent cars that I can enjoy and my first time renting a car was perfect. I am definitely, someone that would love to use this app as often as the opportunity presents.
I enjoy my trip and it was easy to reserve a car. Car was clean and ran really smooth
Given that this was my first experience with Turo, I can’t compare it to much, but it was a terrible first experience. I left a review for the owner, and, I thought, a separate review for Turo, but here I go again in the hopes that someone will reach out to me this time. In short, here were my biggest issues: 1) The car was not ready when I arrived. Not only was it not ready, but it took 20 minutes to even get the owner to respond to me when I called/messaged that I was at the pickup spot. Pickup ended up being 40 minutes late because the car wasn’t clean (spoiler, it still wasn’t clean when I picked it up). 2) The car was dirty, and smelled like marijuana. Gross, and very uncool. 3) There were a few warning lights on in the vehicle. This gave the impression that the vehicle needed work or at least maintenance, and was potentially unsafe to drive. 4) When I arrived early for drop off (after being assured the owner would be home all evening), I once again COULD NOT GET AHOLD OF THE OWNER. My goodness. I called, I messaged, but nothing. In a final effort, my husband knocked on the door and delivered the keys. Overall, this was a very negative experience. The car was in bad shape, even had it not been dirty and smelly and maybe broken. It was not as pictured. More than that, the pickup and drop off experience was terrible. With the car not even being ready on time, I believe I should be entitled to a partial refund. The owner told me that would be up to Turo, so I’m hoping that someone will reach out to me before these owners receive all of the money for only doing part of the work on their end.
Great experience overall. Car was in good shape, as shown in the pictures. Great customer service.
Turo is the best. Easy to use. Great deals on all types of automobiles.
Great cars, easy bookings and hassle free pickups and returns.
How easy and great it is everything was so smooth my trip was real quick and I worried about different stuff then the rental
Really innovative and cool company which provides a convenient alternative to traditional car rental. I love the uniqueness of the cars available too.
Great way to rent cars with out paying a lot of money.
Was actually a great experience overall, my host delivered and picked up.
Love using turo. I had a credit with you but then it disappeared on me. That I was not pleased with. Also the referral program was beneficial to introduce your company to others. Certainly more of an incentive to do so. What happened to that?
App was easy to use, and had a great host.
I love turo it's very convenient and fast respond time.
I absolutely love the Turo experience! Having your car waiting for you at the gate when you get off your airplane is a replaceable. Every host I have met so far has been genuine and has provided a great service.
It was great. Car ran great. Service was great . Hope to use again.
The easeness of the transaction and quality of service has been the main reason for using app several times to book my transportation when I travel.
Turo has been a wonderful discovery! I love that the prices are generally lower than those of a traditional rental company. I love being able to pick out the exact car I wish to rent. And the ability for airport door service? Awesome! No crazy shuttles or rental car lines! Every person I've rented from has been professional, communication has been prompt and clear, and the cars have been as advertised! I'd highly recommend Turo!
Turo is an amazing company. We recently rented a car in Orlando, the owner, Freitas, was very helpful and accommodating, great communication, great car, prompt drop off and pick up service. Turo has made renting a car low stress, we look forward to using them again with future trips!
We had heard good things about Turo. Unfortunately our experience was terrible. After returning the car, the owner claimed we had mildly scratched the car in four places. We disagreed. Turo only sided with the owner and we were charged with thousands of dollars for repair - basically to get the car detailed for the owner. Apparently the fine print reads that the owner has 24 hours within the drop off time to report any scratches. Because the drop-off point was a public street, the owner (or any other bystander) could have scratched the car after the drop off... and with no question we would be stuck with the charges. As far as we know, this is what happened. Turo was not helpful at all, and would not discuss the issue with us. Instead, they tried to charge our credit card right away before the case was settled. We will NEVER be using Turo again. This was the most expensive car rental experience of our lives.
I hear it's a great service, but I'll never know, because something in my picture of myself got my application revoked. I went through the checkout process before being told: "You are not approved You’re currently unable to rent cars on Turo. If you believe there has been an error, please contact customer support." So I contacted Support. They verified my identity by asking my name, date of birth, and email. They then said that my approval needed additional review. They told me they would need a picture of my driver's license, a picture of me holding my driver's license, 7 years of my driving history, and proof of insurance. I said the 7 years of history might take some time for me to get, and the agent told me not to worry about it for now, that we could start with just the pictures. When I'd uploaded the picture of myself and my ID, he told me that no other identification was needed, that he would start the approval process and that he could do it faster if we ended the chat and he emailed me in 10 - 20 minutes. I offered my proof of insurance as I had it ready to send and he said not to worry, that he had everything he needed. I never fully agreed to end the chat, but he did anyway. Almost immediately I was sent a message from the agent, saying: "Unfortunately, we’re not able to approve you to participate in the Turo marketplace. Please note that this is our final decision." I returned to customer support assuming there must have been some mistake, explaining that all I provided to them was a picture of my Driver's License (which they had the number of on file, already) and a picture of myself. Logically, if the issue was in information they had before (including my driver's license information), they didn't need anything new from me. If the issue was a lack of information, I was willing to provide whatever they needed. The only thing that had changed was a picture of myself and I didn't want to assume any kind of discrimination was going on. This, second, support agent gave me the run-around for a while, then tried to explain that my driver's license and the picture of me were to validate my identity, not to grant me approval. There are two problems with this explanation: 1) They didn't ask for them with the account verification information (my name and date of birth and email), they asked for it along with my driving history and proof of insurance (clearly needed approval information) 2) It directly contradicts the email I was sent, which says "We have carefully reviewed your account, along with the additional documentation you submitted." (the "documentation" in question is how they referred to the pictures I sent them)
The whole renting process was easy the car and the host were great and easy to communicate with. Great verity of cars and priced. Extremely convenient. Do deposit! Will def use this app moving forward for all car rentals.
I really liked my vendor, but was not happy that I spent an additional $100 in fees. Between the car insurance fee ,the platform fee and over millage fee. For a one day rental that was very excessive.
This was my first time using Turo. Highly recommend as it is much easier than renting cars with regular rentals. And cheaper! The experience was great. the car was in perfect conditions and Dante was very attentive to all of our needs and requests.
Renting cars has been great.... I like the options of vehicles. I may start renting out my car too.
Great communication via Turo and my selected car's owner. Being picked-up at the airport, and at the end of the trip to be dropped-off at your airline's terminal, are added benefits. We will definitely utilize Turo at our next vacation destination whenever/wherever it is possible!
Turo was convenient, easy to use and a much better deal than renting through big rental car companies.
Courteous and lenient. Very pleased....
This is really a best alternative of online renting cars like enterprise, hertz etc. I got great price and car. There was no problem with the car.
My first trip was a disaster, and I still haven’t received a refund for my groupon that I purchased, which is the only reason I decided to try this out. But my last two trips with Charles have been perfect, otherwise I would have given zero stars. If it wasn’t for him I probably wouldn’t have been back. Customer support is hard to get ahold of and difficult to deal with.
Was a much good experience. Responsible service, clean and quality cars. Permanent provision to assist customer requirements.
Our Host Daniel was really helpful in our pick up and drop offs. He kept in touch with me before and during the rental time. Vehicle was nice and clean and it could accommodate me and my family comfortably. I would recommend this App and Host to everyone I know..
I was hesitant to use Turo, but after researching the company, I decided to use Turo for my recent vacation. I couldn't have been more happy with the experience and Host and will definitely use Turo in the future!
Usually better prices than a regular rental companies. Lower fees for underage drivers. Better experience overall than the traditional route.
So convenient easy and fast to do and cheap
A lot of hidden fees, unprofessional and unknowledgeable claim representative, who just trying to get rid off you. Rented out my car ,and it was returned with scratches and mechanical damage , even the report made by professionals didn’t convince them that car was misused. Be aware!
I am so happy that someone came up with this car rental idea. My first experience with Turo was to my trip to Las Vegas! It was my 21st birthday and I wanted to ride out in style. I was able to rent a 2018 range rover for 38$ a day! It has cars all the way from kia optimas to mercedes G wagon! I like this company so much because you literally get to choose the exact car that you want to rent, and the people who cars you are renting will meet you wherever you're at to ensure the best experience!
Love Turo. I enjoy being able to rent a variety of cars that you just can't get at a normal rental car place and I love not paying all the stupid fees that they tack on. I use it quite a bit and have been very satisfied with all of my rentals.
The car owner communicated well and the vehicle was great. We did have an incident that badly flavored the whole experience. During our rental the trunk latch stopped working. It was slightly inconvenient but we had small luggage so it was not too big a deal. The owner said she was turning it in per Turo contract as damage. Turo charged $500 on our credit card without contacting us. Thankfully the owner is honest and when it was covered by her warranty she told Turo and the $500 was refunded to our card. Again, however , without any communication from Turo to us. With a regular rental company the car would have been replaced by the company so as not to inconvenience us with a normal wear and tear issue that we did not cause and only happened to stop working whilst we had the car. I probably will never rent from Turo in the future after this incident.
Turo is a great place to rent cars that are cheaper than enterprise or other rental places. Its more comfortable because you are dealing with actual people and they are way more lenient. Also, you have wide variety of the kinds of car you can rent.
Best experience great price rate looking foward to renting again
Entire transaction was incredibly smooth
Angel D Lallave
As hosts, Turo takes complete advantage of the car owners. They will never side with the car owner. Requesting reimbursement is a miserable process. If the customer disputes reimbursement, you are screwed. They allow them to get away with unpaid tolls by making the process unbearable to complete. If you request reimbursement for cleaning, Turo will pretend to not see any dirt in the pictures and rule it as "light dirt" that can easily be cleaned. The car can be covered in mud and bugs and they pretend that it's not dirty. Sadly this is not an exaggeration. Hoping to bring awareness to all social networks so that people interested in hosting their vehicles don't get exploited. Customer service for hosts is non-existent. Not kidding, go ahead and call the only number they have and request host services and they refer you to online chat that reply's with generic short sentences every 5-8 minutes (about 45 minutes for a simple question) It should be illegal for companies to operate like this. No way to escalate matters or speak to a manager. The names of the representatives are fake and no way to verify.
First timer and I was super nervous. But everything was great! Hassle free check in/out. Will rent again. Highly Recommended!
Love it. Super quick and easy. Cheaper than ANY rental here in Honolulu. And much cooler vehicles too! Hosts have been great so far.
Easier than I expected. Great car, host was super easy to work with.
The app is easy to use lots of options in my area for a lesser cost than other options. I will use and recommend Turo!
Great experience, easy to use and great deals.
First time to use this service. This was a positive experience. Like any service you must get a feel for the person your renting from before finalizing.
Was nervous at first using Turo. Not any more. It is so easy. Plug in the destination, scroll through the available vehicles, select and request a reservation, then show up. I had pre-arrival emails with the vehicle provider to coordinate the hand off of the car, and it was seamless from there. Much easier than using an airport rental car company. I will never go back to that way of renting a vehicle.