Henry Caruso founded Dollar Car Rental in Los Angeles in 1966. In 1990, Chrysler picked it up as a business holding. Today, they have more than 358 rental locations in the United States, renting mostly Chrysler and GM brand vehicles with many different American carmakers represented on the market.
- Low, competitive prices
- Available in 48 states
- Online check-in
Economy Price Range
Dollar's rates are extremely low and very competitive in the industry.
Note: While they may have some of the lowest prices in the business, extras fees and taxes are sure to bring the price range up. Dollar offers a Best Rate Guarantee, meaning that if a customer finds a lower rate on another website that they will match the price and give a ten percent discount.
Dollar also has a program for businesses, called Dollar 4Business. Dollar 4Business provides small- to mid-sized businesses with discounts, as well as waiving fees for multiple drivers or underage drivers, free rental points and more.
Dollar locations can be found in 48 states. Customers can find a Dollar location in the majority of the U.S. There are some companies that have locations in all 50 states and others that only have locations in less than 25 states.
Dollar has rental counters at most major airports throughout North America. Almost anywhere you land in the U.S. and Canada, a Dollar site is there. Dollar has one of the highest number or locations available for car rentals, increasing availability and convenience for travelers.
Toll Prepay Option
Dollar offers what they call PlatePass T, a toll pass you can order and prepay through their website during the check out process. This makes a customers' commute much easier and saves time compared to ordering it at the rental counter last minute. This also saves the driver from having to pay cash at toll booths and waiting in a long line to pay.
Dollar offers online check-in through their RapidRental check-in platform which requires a customer's driver's license, date of birth, and other vital driver's information. This speeds up the rental process without having to do it in person.
- Lack of transparency with cancellation policy
- Roadside assistance programs
- No instant return
Luxury Price Range
Luxury vehicle rates are average in the car rental industry. Some companies in the industry offer better rates for luxury cars.
Dollar does not appear to discuss a cancellation policy in their Terms and Conditions or anywhere on their website. You can cancel a reservation online, but we are not clear whether there are associated feeds or not.
Dollar offers their roadside assistance or Premium Emergency Roadside Service (PERS), as part of what they call protection packages-either the Risk Eliminator, Risk Reducer or Risk Freedom package. It's not the best option because you have to pay for a whole package to get one feature. Most companies in the industry offer roadside assistance for as low as $4.99 per day. Also, you can't know how much it costs until you contact the local rental location you plan on using. This is due to the fact that this service is not guaranteed at every location.
On-Site Fuel Discount
Dollar does not offer an on-site fuel discount. If the traveler uses the car for less than 100 miles and fills the fuel off-site, they will only need to present a fuel receipt and not be charged a service fee.
Dollar requires that you return the car in person. There is no instant return. Most companies make you return the car in person. Dollar customers should be aware that they will be charged a $20 fee for returning vehicles before their scheduled drop-off date and time. Some customers have even reported receiving an early drop-off charge for returning their car a mere twenty minutes before the scheduled time.
The Bottom Line
If you are traveling on a budget, you won't find many places with lower prices than Dollar's economy car rental rates. In fact, if you do find lower Dollar rates on another site, you will receive an even greater discount on your rental. These kinds of rates are ideal for frequent travelers not looking to break the bank, or for business travelers who can receive discounts and benefits with a membership. Dollar's online check-in feature is a valuable time-saver for busy travelers. However, some of their additional features (or lack thereof) are not ideal, but the company's low pricing makes their services worth considering.