Author Topic: Renting a minivan for a week?  (Read 4395 times)

jeromedawg

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Renting a minivan for a week?
« on: August 05, 2017, 04:41:58 PM »
Hey all,

So I was wondering if there are particular sites that might be a good resource for renting minivans (Sienna and or Odyssey in particular) either from private parties or companies. I quickly checked Hertz and I don't think they rent out those models. I stumbled across Turo, which seems to be interesting. Has anyone had [good] experience with sites like Turo?

The reason I'm looking to rent, and these particular vans, is twofold:
1) We'll be taking a couple road trips up to the Bay Area within the next two months (one is actually in another week or so) and the tread on our Rav4 is low. I need to get the tires replaced soon but at least for the next upcoming trip, I'm not sure if we'll find the opportunity to take the car in - I also wanted to wait for some of the Labor Day sales that are coming up for $100 back (in Visa GCs) for a purchase of a set of four, etc... and any other deals that might pop up

2) I've been debating between getting either a Sienna or Odyssey, so this would be a good opportunity to practically use and test drive both these cars and figure out what we might want to settle on.


On Turo it looks like the going rental rate for any model within the past 7 or less years is at least $50 or more.

Do you guys think it's worth doing?

sokoloff

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2017, 05:08:07 PM »
You're thinking of renting a minivan for a week (likely $300+) so that you can continue driving around worn tires until you can find a $100 rebate on said tires?

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2017, 05:14:56 PM »
You're thinking of renting a minivan for a week (likely $300+) so that you can continue driving around worn tires until you can find a $100 rebate on said tires?

That's not the only reason - it's to try out one or both minivans for a longer length of time than just a day to see which one we might prefer. We don't drive our car that often either and usually it's local/around town. That's why I don't feel a huge need to rush changing the tires asap. The 2 front tires failed the penny test but the rear two are fine. BTW: the said rebate is during Labor Day. Looks like there are some ongoing $70 rebates, which basically take care of the cost of the installation more or less.

EDIT: the rebate is actually in addition to whatever manufacturer rebates there might be. Source: https://slickdeals.net/f/10423748-discount-tire-labor-day-sale-up-to-320-on-tires-and-wheels-8-29-9-6 - The point is that normally there are manufacturer rebates but the time you typically want to try to purchase is when there are additional rebates. In this case, $100 + whatever manufacturer rebates there are (say $70) for a total of $170.  I guess this is starting to turn more into a risk-proposition type of decision in terms of getting the tires replaced and waiting for a "hot deal" but risking a tire blowout far from home (which is a rarity these days) vs just paying the piper. The other part of this is really just figuring out if doing a "test touring drive" of both minivans to decide on which one we prefer to buy is worth paying for.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2017, 05:41:43 PM by jeromedawg »

Goldielocks

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2017, 09:54:23 AM »
Lots of people rent larger cars for vacation trips in California -- better fuel mileage, reduced wear on your own car, larger vehicle for long road trip, etc.

I think this is a great idea.   I use priceline.com  "Name your own price".   I start at 30% lower than the absolutely cheapest price I can find, and I usually get it.  You get a vehicle from one of the big 5, but may not be guarnteed a odessy, just a large minivan.

Note, a pick up at a non-airport location can be less money, because the overhead costs are lower.  Also look for ways to eliminate buying added insurance from the auto rental company -- add a rental waiver to your own insurance, for example, or use a travel credit card with good insurance.   So much cheaper.

Papa bear

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2017, 12:54:20 PM »
Hey all,

So I was wondering if there are particular sites that might be a good resource for renting minivans (Sienna and or Odyssey in particular) either from private parties or companies. I quickly checked Hertz and I don't think they rent out those models. I stumbled across Turo, which seems to be interesting. Has anyone had [good] experience with sites like Turo?

The reason I'm looking to rent, and these particular vans, is twofold:
1) We'll be taking a couple road trips up to the Bay Area within the next two months (one is actually in another week or so) and the tread on our Rav4 is low. I need to get the tires replaced soon but at least for the next upcoming trip, I'm not sure if we'll find the opportunity to take the car in - I also wanted to wait for some of the Labor Day sales that are coming up for $100 back (in Visa GCs) for a purchase of a set of four, etc... and any other deals that might pop up

2) I've been debating between getting either a Sienna or Odyssey, so this would be a good opportunity to practically use and test drive both these cars and figure out what we might want to settle on.


On Turo it looks like the going rental rate for any model within the past 7 or less years is at least $50 or more.

Do you guys think it's worth doing?

I'm 100% a Chrysler minivan guy.  The 2nd row stow in go seating for me is a deal breaker that no other brand offers.   If you find that the stow n go is important, look at a Chrysler product (town and country, pacificas since '16, and dodge caravans).

If stow n go is NOT important to you, a sienna or odyssey will be a fine vehicle.


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Debts_of_Despair

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2017, 02:26:52 PM »
Do you need the seating capacity or just the space of a minivan?  If you just need the space, you can rent a windowless Transit type van for much, much less.

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2017, 06:42:45 PM »
Do you need the seating capacity or just the space of a minivan?  If you just need the space, you can rent a windowless Transit type van for much, much less.

I think we were just set between either a Sienna or Odyssey. Much of the idea behind this came as something where we can reduce the wear/tear on the Rav4 (plus defer the tire maintenance until later when we will have more time to knock it out and not feel rushed) as well as to evaluate between the two. I like the thought of "as many seats as possible" and the 8-seat option on the Siennas but I hear tons of great things about Odysseys.

Hey all,

So I was wondering if there are particular sites that might be a good resource for renting minivans (Sienna and or Odyssey in particular) either from private parties or companies. I quickly checked Hertz and I don't think they rent out those models. I stumbled across Turo, which seems to be interesting. Has anyone had [good] experience with sites like Turo?

The reason I'm looking to rent, and these particular vans, is twofold:
1) We'll be taking a couple road trips up to the Bay Area within the next two months (one is actually in another week or so) and the tread on our Rav4 is low. I need to get the tires replaced soon but at least for the next upcoming trip, I'm not sure if we'll find the opportunity to take the car in - I also wanted to wait for some of the Labor Day sales that are coming up for $100 back (in Visa GCs) for a purchase of a set of four, etc... and any other deals that might pop up

2) I've been debating between getting either a Sienna or Odyssey, so this would be a good opportunity to practically use and test drive both these cars and figure out what we might want to settle on.


On Turo it looks like the going rental rate for any model within the past 7 or less years is at least $50 or more.

Do you guys think it's worth doing?

I'm 100% a Chrysler minivan guy.  The 2nd row stow in go seating for me is a deal breaker that no other brand offers.   If you find that the stow n go is important, look at a Chrysler product (town and country, pacificas since '16, and dodge caravans).

If stow n go is NOT important to you, a sienna or odyssey will be a fine vehicle.


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Haven't heard too much about Chrysler's but how is the maintenance/repair/upkeep on those? E.g. are they known to have issues? Do mechanics dread fixing these vans? Are parts easy to source and fix? That kind of stuff worries me more than the features/options.

Lots of people rent larger cars for vacation trips in California -- better fuel mileage, reduced wear on your own car, larger vehicle for long road trip, etc.

I think this is a great idea.   I use priceline.com  "Name your own price".   I start at 30% lower than the absolutely cheapest price I can find, and I usually get it.  You get a vehicle from one of the big 5, but may not be guarnteed a odessy, just a large minivan.

Note, a pick up at a non-airport location can be less money, because the overhead costs are lower.  Also look for ways to eliminate buying added insurance from the auto rental company -- add a rental waiver to your own insurance, for example, or use a travel credit card with good insurance.   So much cheaper.

How much would you expect to spend renting a minivan in this case? I'm sort of trying to be intentional about renting a Sienna and/or Odyssey but I also don't want to pay and arm and a leg. Renting for about 10 days seems to run anywhere from 600-700 ballpark through Turo, where there are definitely some Odysseys and Siennas available to rent.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2017, 06:45:12 PM by jeromedawg »

Goldielocks

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2017, 07:29:27 AM »
The cost is highly dependent on your location and your week of rental.

Just check out priceline.com for what you are interested in, and then take away 20% of that for "name your own price".  (Start with 30% less, however)

slappy

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2017, 07:43:13 AM »
I just rented a minivan on priceline for $350 for a week. The language says "such and such minivan or similar", which leads me to believe that I will get a minivan but the make/model is up in the air. It seems like most places had similar language, so if getting a certain make/model is important to you, turo may be the best option.

Papa bear

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2017, 12:44:17 PM »
Do you need the seating capacity or just the space of a minivan?  If you just need the space, you can rent a windowless Transit type van for much, much less.




Haven't heard too much about Chrysler's but how is the maintenance/repair/upkeep on those? E.g. are they known to have issues? Do mechanics dread fixing these vans? Are parts easy to source and fix? That kind of stuff worries me more than the features/options.


I only have anecdotes here.  Though not much in the way of the newer vehicles (haven't put the big miles on yet).

The minivans that I have had or family or very close friends, routinely get the Chrysler vans to 200k+ mileage without any major work. 

To me, stow n go isn't so much just an option. It materially changes the van. It is infinitely more customizable when needed, as I use vans for switching between cargo and people sometimes within the same trip. 
Hard to do that if you have to take your seats out.


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jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2017, 01:23:17 PM »
Do you need the seating capacity or just the space of a minivan?  If you just need the space, you can rent a windowless Transit type van for much, much less.




Haven't heard too much about Chrysler's but how is the maintenance/repair/upkeep on those? E.g. are they known to have issues? Do mechanics dread fixing these vans? Are parts easy to source and fix? That kind of stuff worries me more than the features/options.


I only have anecdotes here.  Though not much in the way of the newer vehicles (haven't put the big miles on yet).

The minivans that I have had or family or very close friends, routinely get the Chrysler vans to 200k+ mileage without any major work. 

To me, stow n go isn't so much just an option. It materially changes the van. It is infinitely more customizable when needed, as I use vans for switching between cargo and people sometimes within the same trip. 
Hard to do that if you have to take your seats out.


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Interesting... I think the Sienna 8-passenger is "stow and go" but only for the third row or something like that right? But you're saying, for the Chrysler, that *all* seats are stow and go? So you could put down *all* the seats in the back if you want to use it purely for moving a bunch of items/furniture, etc?

What about Dodge Caravans? Those seem to have the same/similar type of stow and go possibilities as the Chryslers. The other thing I noticed is that Priceline seems to only rent Dodge Caravans, Nissan Quests or Kia Sedonas. They *may* have Chryslers but it's never a guaranteed thing. Part of the point of all this is to try to rent a van we might be interested in purchasing. Turo is tempting but renting via Priceline for potentially half the price is better of course if we didn't care so much about the type of van.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2017, 01:32:40 PM by jeromedawg »

Papa bear

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2017, 06:10:17 PM »
Do you need the seating capacity or just the space of a minivan?  If you just need the space, you can rent a windowless Transit type van for much, much less.




Haven't heard too much about Chrysler's but how is the maintenance/repair/upkeep on those? E.g. are they known to have issues? Do mechanics dread fixing these vans? Are parts easy to source and fix? That kind of stuff worries me more than the features/options.


I only have anecdotes here.  Though not much in the way of the newer vehicles (haven't put the big miles on yet).

The minivans that I have had or family or very close friends, routinely get the Chrysler vans to 200k+ mileage without any major work. 

To me, stow n go isn't so much just an option. It materially changes the van. It is infinitely more customizable when needed, as I use vans for switching between cargo and people sometimes within the same trip. 
Hard to do that if you have to take your seats out.


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Interesting... I think the Sienna 8-passenger is "stow and go" but only for the third row or something like that right? But you're saying, for the Chrysler, that *all* seats are stow and go? So you could put down *all* the seats in the back if you want to use it purely for moving a bunch of items/furniture, etc?

What about Dodge Caravans? Those seem to have the same/similar type of stow and go possibilities as the Chryslers. The other thing I noticed is that Priceline seems to only rent Dodge Caravans, Nissan Quests or Kia Sedonas. They *may* have Chryslers but it's never a guaranteed thing. Part of the point of all this is to try to rent a van we might be interested in purchasing. Turo is tempting but renting via Priceline for potentially half the price is better of course if we didn't care so much about the type of van.

Yes exactly. The dodge caravans (since 2008?), chrysler town and country (since 2008?) and the Chrysler pacificas since 2016. 

Both the third row and 2nd row are stow n go.  Makes it incredibly customizable.  You might not need it. But for me, that's what the van is for.  We may have a load of furniture to bring somewhere, then need to carry 6 adults, then head to Home Depot for plywood, all offsite of the original departure area. Can't do that if you have to take seats out.

For the odyssey or sienna, the 2nd row seats should pull out, but you need to store them somewhere. 


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jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2017, 09:27:30 PM »
Do you need the seating capacity or just the space of a minivan?  If you just need the space, you can rent a windowless Transit type van for much, much less.




Haven't heard too much about Chrysler's but how is the maintenance/repair/upkeep on those? E.g. are they known to have issues? Do mechanics dread fixing these vans? Are parts easy to source and fix? That kind of stuff worries me more than the features/options.


I only have anecdotes here.  Though not much in the way of the newer vehicles (haven't put the big miles on yet).

The minivans that I have had or family or very close friends, routinely get the Chrysler vans to 200k+ mileage without any major work. 

To me, stow n go isn't so much just an option. It materially changes the van. It is infinitely more customizable when needed, as I use vans for switching between cargo and people sometimes within the same trip. 
Hard to do that if you have to take your seats out.


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Interesting... I think the Sienna 8-passenger is "stow and go" but only for the third row or something like that right? But you're saying, for the Chrysler, that *all* seats are stow and go? So you could put down *all* the seats in the back if you want to use it purely for moving a bunch of items/furniture, etc?

What about Dodge Caravans? Those seem to have the same/similar type of stow and go possibilities as the Chryslers. The other thing I noticed is that Priceline seems to only rent Dodge Caravans, Nissan Quests or Kia Sedonas. They *may* have Chryslers but it's never a guaranteed thing. Part of the point of all this is to try to rent a van we might be interested in purchasing. Turo is tempting but renting via Priceline for potentially half the price is better of course if we didn't care so much about the type of van.

Yes exactly. The dodge caravans (since 2008?), chrysler town and country (since 2008?) and the Chrysler pacificas since 2016. 

Both the third row and 2nd row are stow n go.  Makes it incredibly customizable.  You might not need it. But for me, that's what the van is for.  We may have a load of furniture to bring somewhere, then need to carry 6 adults, then head to Home Depot for plywood, all offsite of the original departure area. Can't do that if you have to take seats out.

For the odyssey or sienna, the 2nd row seats should pull out, but you need to store them somewhere. 


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So it seems the Caravan and Town & Country are virtually the same but he Caravan is more of a 'budget'/value type of a configuration vs Chrysler. What's the difference(s) then between the Town & Country and Pacifica? Also, are all of these capable of holding 8-passengers?
« Last Edit: August 07, 2017, 10:52:55 PM by jeromedawg »

chemistk

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2017, 06:25:54 AM »

So it seems the Caravan and Town & Country are virtually the same but he Caravan is more of a 'budget'/value type of a configuration vs Chrysler. What's the difference(s) then between the Town & Country and Pacifica? Also, are all of these capable of holding 8-passengers?

The Caravan is in fact a "budget" version of the T&C. In practice, if chrome and wood trim don't make or break things for you, you can usually get a better-equipped Caravan for the same $$ as a similar T&C. Be aware though that the newest models of Caravans are much more limited in their options when compared to Chrysler equivalents.

The Pacifica is an all-new van as of last year. There is almost nothing that it and the outgoing T&C/Caravan share other than features. The Pacifica, in almost every way, is the better van and if you're looking to invest $$$ into a new van, that is the best option (in my opinion).

Any van with stow&go is not an 8 passenger. Stow & Go vans are a 2+2+3 configuration (Front Seats, 2 captains' chairs, 3 row in the back). You will not be able to fit 8 people.

Comparing the T&C/Caravan to the Sienna and Odyssey - You will get more van for your $ with the FCA products, and since you live in CA, one of those vans' biggest issues is moot for you (rust). be aware that reliability on FCA products is generally poorer than most others int he segment but Stow & Go is truly a game changer as far as flexibility goes. Resale is also lower, as you might expect.

Comparing the Pacifica to the Sienna and Odyssey - the Pacifica is the better van, easily. Long term reliability is still unknown since it was only introduced last year but if you were to do a side-by-side comparison, you would see that the Pacifica is all-around better than the other two.

If you go between the Sienna and Odyssey, folks I know say that the Odyssey is better.

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2017, 08:55:22 AM »

So it seems the Caravan and Town & Country are virtually the same but he Caravan is more of a 'budget'/value type of a configuration vs Chrysler. What's the difference(s) then between the Town & Country and Pacifica? Also, are all of these capable of holding 8-passengers?

The Caravan is in fact a "budget" version of the T&C. In practice, if chrome and wood trim don't make or break things for you, you can usually get a better-equipped Caravan for the same $$ as a similar T&C. Be aware though that the newest models of Caravans are much more limited in their options when compared to Chrysler equivalents.

The Pacifica is an all-new van as of last year. There is almost nothing that it and the outgoing T&C/Caravan share other than features. The Pacifica, in almost every way, is the better van and if you're looking to invest $$$ into a new van, that is the best option (in my opinion).

Any van with stow&go is not an 8 passenger. Stow & Go vans are a 2+2+3 configuration (Front Seats, 2 captains' chairs, 3 row in the back). You will not be able to fit 8 people.

Comparing the T&C/Caravan to the Sienna and Odyssey - You will get more van for your $ with the FCA products, and since you live in CA, one of those vans' biggest issues is moot for you (rust). be aware that reliability on FCA products is generally poorer than most others int he segment but Stow & Go is truly a game changer as far as flexibility goes. Resale is also lower, as you might expect.

Comparing the Pacifica to the Sienna and Odyssey - the Pacifica is the better van, easily. Long term reliability is still unknown since it was only introduced last year but if you were to do a side-by-side comparison, you would see that the Pacifica is all-around better than the other two.

If you go between the Sienna and Odyssey, folks I know say that the Odyssey is better.

Thanks! I was looking at some videos of the Pacifica and it looks pretty nice. I saw there are some configurations for that one too which allow an 8th seat - not sure what model but there is a removable middle seat for the second row depending on the trim - the thing is, it's not stow and go so you'd have to physically remove it. But it looks small enough to where that's not really a big deal. I'm going to have to be on the lookout for one of these... unfortunately, I wasn't looking to spend more than $16-17k on a van in addition to buying used. Maybe if I wait a year or two...

retiringearly

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2017, 09:11:04 AM »
I have had great luck renting through Costco

https://www.costcotravel.com/Rental-Cars

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2017, 09:20:17 AM »
Thanks! I was looking at some videos of the Pacifica and it looks pretty nice. I saw there are some configurations for that one too which allow an 8th seat - not sure what model but there is a removable middle seat for the second row depending on the trim - the thing is, it's not stow and go so you'd have to physically remove it. But it looks small enough to where that's not really a big deal. I'm going to have to be on the lookout for one of these... unfortunately, I wasn't looking to spend more than $16-17k on a van in addition to buying used. Maybe if I wait a year or two...
Keep in mind the width of that 8th seat as well.  In our '06 Odyssey, the "plus one" seat is really narrow and not particularly comfortable for a grownup.  That's a generation or two ago, though, so the newer models are likely better.

The Honda Odyssey has kind of been the model to beat for the last 15 years or so in terms of quality.  The Pacifica has gotten a lot of great reviews, though.  We've owned two Odysseys (a '01 and a '06), and they've been outstanding in terms of reliability, comfort, and utility.  I'll admit that it's a pain to remove the 2nd row seats when I'm moving large stuff, but it's infrequent enough that I'm ok with it.  And I imagine I remove the seats more often than most people.

researcher1

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2017, 09:27:13 AM »
Seriously?
Just replace the damn tires and drive your current vehicle!

I assume the purpose of this vehicle is to actually drive it, right?
And what is the big deal about "having more time" and "feeling rushed" to replace the tires? 

Spend 30 minutes tonight researching what tires you want and the prices, then carve out 1 hour of time to get them replaced! 
This isn't rocket science, nor does it take all that much time.

You will spend WAY more TIME and MONEY researching minivan rentals, reserving the vehicle, driving to/from the rental location.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 10:48:46 AM by researcher1 »

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2017, 10:50:48 AM »
Seriously?
Just replace the damn tires and drive your current vehicle!

I assume the purpose of this vehicle is to actually drive it, right?
And what is the big deal about "having more time" and "feeling rushed" to replace the tires? 

Spend 30 minutes tonight researching what tires you want and the prices, then carve out 1 hour of time to get them replaced! 
This isn't rocket science, nor does it take all that much time.

You will spend WAY more TIME and MONEY researching minivan rentals, reserving the vehicle, driving to/from the rental location.
You're right.  However, I think OP is also wanting to have an extended test drive with various options, to get a better feel for which would make a better (future) purchase.

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #19 on: August 08, 2017, 11:08:23 AM »
Seriously?
Just replace the damn tires and drive your current vehicle!

I assume the purpose of this vehicle is to actually drive it, right?
And what is the big deal about "having more time" and "feeling rushed" to replace the tires? 

Spend 30 minutes tonight researching what tires you want and the prices, then carve out 1 hour of time to get them replaced! 
This isn't rocket science, nor does it take all that much time.

You will spend WAY more TIME and MONEY researching minivan rentals, reserving the vehicle, driving to/from the rental location.
You're right.  However, I think OP is also wanting to have an extended test drive with various options, to get a better feel for which would make a better (future) purchase.

Yes, this is exactly what I'm looking into doing. Figuring out the tires isn't such a huge deal... we will do that regardless and whether that happens now or later, I'm not as concerned - as long as it's within the next couple months (and of course, scoring extra rebates is always a huge plus). Renting the minivan really more to get a feel how one would work out for our family, and I'd like to try out different vans, if possible, for more than a day or two. I suppose we could always do a weekend rental as a last resort. But long road trips would, IMHO, give us the best idea.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 11:12:40 AM by jeromedawg »

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #20 on: August 08, 2017, 11:12:04 AM »
Thanks! I was looking at some videos of the Pacifica and it looks pretty nice. I saw there are some configurations for that one too which allow an 8th seat - not sure what model but there is a removable middle seat for the second row depending on the trim - the thing is, it's not stow and go so you'd have to physically remove it. But it looks small enough to where that's not really a big deal. I'm going to have to be on the lookout for one of these... unfortunately, I wasn't looking to spend more than $16-17k on a van in addition to buying used. Maybe if I wait a year or two...
Keep in mind the width of that 8th seat as well.  In our '06 Odyssey, the "plus one" seat is really narrow and not particularly comfortable for a grownup.  That's a generation or two ago, though, so the newer models are likely better.

The Honda Odyssey has kind of been the model to beat for the last 15 years or so in terms of quality.  The Pacifica has gotten a lot of great reviews, though.  We've owned two Odysseys (a '01 and a '06), and they've been outstanding in terms of reliability, comfort, and utility.  I'll admit that it's a pain to remove the 2nd row seats when I'm moving large stuff, but it's infrequent enough that I'm ok with it.  And I imagine I remove the seats more often than most people.

Thanks! I think I recall you posting about your Odysseys in another thread (possibly another one I started asking about the Mazda 6). But yea, in terms of stow and go vs removing the seats - I know that's a huge deal for Papa Bear, and it makes sense. I'm just not sure how often we'll need to fold down all the seats to the point that it's a deal-breaker for us. It *sounds* more like a nice-to-have based on what our needs are (right now this is just transporting kids + adults more than it is transporting furniture, etc for moving). Of course, needs can change and I do like the idea of the flexibility in stow and go and *quickly* converting into a 'moving van' without worrying about where to store the seats in the meantime.

HipGnosis

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #21 on: August 08, 2017, 01:07:31 PM »

 But yea, in terms of stow and go vs removing the seats - I know that's a huge deal for Papa Bear, and it makes sense. I'm just not sure how often we'll need to fold down all the seats to the point that it's a deal-breaker for us. It *sounds* more like a nice-to-have based on what our needs are (right now this is just transporting kids + adults more than it is transporting furniture, etc for moving). Of course, needs can change and I do like the idea of the flexibility in stow and go and *quickly* converting into a 'moving van' without worrying about where to store the seats in the meantime.
I think stow-n-go seats/capacity is a feature you don't appreciate until you have it and learn how valuable it is.  Then you don't want to do w/o it.
I will not have another car w/o elect. seat because I LUV being able to adjust the seat just a little bit in distance and/or angle when driving long distance.
My car is a stick shift - so I can't have remote start, but it does have elect. seat warmers.  I'll never have another car w/o at least one of them.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #22 on: August 08, 2017, 02:07:06 PM »
I think stow-n-go seats/capacity is a feature you don't appreciate until you have it and learn how valuable it is.  Then you don't want to do w/o it.
I will not have another car w/o elect. seat because I LUV being able to adjust the seat just a little bit in distance and/or angle when driving long distance.
My car is a stick shift - so I can't have remote start, but it does have elect. seat warmers.  I'll never have another car w/o at least one of them.
This sounds an awful lot like hedonic adaptation IMO :)

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2017, 12:02:38 AM »
Lots of people rent larger cars for vacation trips in California -- better fuel mileage, reduced wear on your own car, larger vehicle for long road trip, etc.

I think this is a great idea.   I use priceline.com  "Name your own price".   I start at 30% lower than the absolutely cheapest price I can find, and I usually get it.  You get a vehicle from one of the big 5, but may not be guarnteed a odessy, just a large minivan.

Note, a pick up at a non-airport location can be less money, because the overhead costs are lower.  Also look for ways to eliminate buying added insurance from the auto rental company -- add a rental waiver to your own insurance, for example, or use a travel credit card with good insurance.   So much cheaper.

With Priceline, are they pretty flexible on pick-up and drop-off locations for name your price? Or are you locked into whatever they give you for name your own price? e.g. If I live in Orange County and do name your own price but only get an offer for a pick-up/drop-off at LAX, would I have to commit to that?

Goldielocks

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #24 on: August 10, 2017, 12:18:07 PM »
It will tell you.   Normally name your price is for locations with mulitple rental agencies, so they can compete, etc.   not for neighborhood independent locations.   But orange county airport versus LAX should work.

You do need to name your location, and it tells you if it is not available for name your price.  Then you name a price and commit to paying, then you see if you got it or not.

jeromedawg

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Re: Renting a minivan for a week?
« Reply #25 on: August 10, 2017, 05:34:21 PM »
It will tell you.   Normally name your price is for locations with mulitple rental agencies, so they can compete, etc.   not for neighborhood independent locations.   But orange county airport versus LAX should work.

You do need to name your location, and it tells you if it is not available for name your price.  Then you name a price and commit to paying, then you see if you got it or not.

I ended up booking a rental at a neighborhood enterprise location for $455 (either for a Dodge Caravan or Town and Country). They have a couple of Pacificas but those are on long-term lease apparently, and unfortunately. Picking up from the neighborhood location would just be easier for us because it's closer and a couple exits down the freeway. Otherwise, if we lived closer to the 405, I'd probably just opt to get it at John Wayne. I went as high as $395 for our itinerary w/ SNA in the search and it still couldn't find anything (at least for that price). So I think $455 is probably the best I'm gonna get at this point. I do have Autoslash setup (I actually found the $455 by setting up an Autoslash alert on a Costco reservation I made that's $497).

At this point, being able to try out a Pacifica would be great but it seems both the Caravan and Town and Country will give us a rough same idea of how it is - the biggest thing that interests me is the stow and go, which it seems we'll have the opportunity to check out in either case. And right now, with the Pacifica brought to my attention, I'm much less interested in the Odyssey or Sienna.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2017, 05:36:41 PM by jeromedawg »