When we went to Washington State last month I made reservations for a full-size car with Budget rent-a-car. I chose them both because they were cheap and because supposedly they were located at the terminal. It was a BIG, BIG mistake. While I was getting our luggage, Mike and the two kids (3.5 yo and 7 months) were in line at the Budget counter. They only had one person there, who worked at a pace that would have embarrassed a tortoise. Then, after half an hour in line, when he was the next person in line, she closes the counter and says he has to go downstairs. When we finally get there (with two kids, a stroller, a suitcase and a couple of car seats it took us a while), there was a line of about ten people in front of the Budget counter, and again, only person working. It was almost like a Far Side version of hell.
We quickly noticed that the other car rental company counters were pretty much empty, so I held our place in line while Mike went to see if anyone else had cars. A couple of them were out of cars, but Avis not only had them, but were willing to match Budget’s price. Because they didn’t have a full-size car (what I’d reserved) they bumped us up to the “mini SUV” category for the same price. That ended up being a Pontiac Vibe, a.k.a. the Toyota Matrix, a car we’ve thought about buying.
We loved the car and we loved the service we got at Avis. Next time we have to rent, there is no question who we will go with.