How to Get Car Rental Status with Credit Cards (CSR + Amex Platinum) and Tricks to Save Money

Status at car rental companies can come in handy if you rent often for work trips or vacation. Some premium credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve and the American Express Platinum cards offer automatic status and rental discounts. 

Chase Sapphire Reserve

  • Signup bonus: 50k points after $4,000 in spend within the first 90 days  of account opening
  • Earn 3X on travel and dining
  • $300 Travel credit
  • Airport lounge access via Priority Pass
  • $100 Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit

Chase Sapphire Reserve

  1. National Car Rental = Emerald Club Executive status + 25% off with code 5030849
  2. Avis = Preferred status + up to 30% off with code S107100
  3. Silver Car = 30% off on rentals of two days or more with code VINFINITE

For all three programs, you need to use promo codes to receive the discounts. 

American Express Platinum Card

  1. National Car Rental = Emerald Club Executive status + 20% off with contract ID 5028695
  2. Avis = Skip the lines and get a free weekend rental certificate when you use code AWD#A756900 and rent twice within 6 months
  3. Hertz = Gold Plus status

You can view credit card offers by going to the "Credit Card Offers" tab. Find offers for the respective cards in "Point Rewards Credit Cards." You don't have to use our links, but we're grateful when you do. Thank you for supporting AskSebby!

Pro tips for renting a car

Costco Travel Portal
If you're someone that has a Costco membership, be sure to compare the retail prices to the Costco travel portal. Often times, booking through Costco is cheaper than making a reservation directly with the rental agency. 

Primary CDW
If you're someone who has personal car insurance, be sure to use a credit card that has primary CDW so it doesn't affect your insurance premiums. The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers primary CDW and the Amex Platinum has secondary CDW. 

Check your benefits guide to see if your credit card offers CDW.

Comparing prices
To get the best car rate, I usually make one car reservation when I book my trip, and then check the prices a week before or day of the trip to compare prices. Car reservations are usually free to make and free to cancel. 

Car accessories
Car rental agencies make money from car accessory up-sells like USB cords and car chargers. Be sure to pack your own and get a good quality one that you can use on multiple trips. 

Google Maps
Another up-sell offering are GPS rentals. Instead of paying $15/day to rent a GPS, download Google Maps on your phone so you can access maps even when you don't have cellular service. 

Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, vendors or companies, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. 

UGC disclosure: These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.