Finding a good deal on Oahu rental cars has been a mission for me especially since the COVID-19 pandemic started. If you’ve been following me on Instagram on have signed up for my newsletter, you would know that I went to Oahu back in November and will be going again next week. The November trip was kind of a bummer since I was supposed to stay with a friend, but then she decided to fly back home that week so I was left homeless.
Since I had to find an alternative place to stay, I ended up having to spend money that I wasn’t prepared for. So, I decided that I was going to forgo the car rental and just take public transportation everywhere. Yes, I said public transportation. To be honest, if anyone is in the same boat, getting around Honolulu is very doable with their bus system. I didn’t have to rent a car or take an Uber once. Just keep in mind that your journey time will easily double though. But this post isn’t going to be about my public transportation woes.
Well, now that I’m going back to Hawaii again next week with my best friend, I decided to research what was the best deal on Oahu rental cars. I was pleasantly surprised by how affordable it was this time around compared to November. Maybe it has something to do with this time of year or maybe the car shortage has subsided a little but I wanted to pass on my findings. Especially when I spoke to my best friend about it, she said that she would have never even thought to look where I did so hopefully it will help some of you out there too.
The Best Deal on Oahu Rental Cars
Without a doubt, I ALWAYS check Costco Travel first for all of my Oahu rental car needs. Or anywhere in Hawaii as a matter of fact. The first time I discovered that Costco Travel had amazing prices on rental cars was when I was helping plan a bachelorette party in Oahu and we needed a van that could fit 12 girls. I’ve never thought to look at Costco Travel before and ever since that trip, this is the site I always stop at first.
The main reason I love Costco is mainly that it comes in cheaper than all the other rental car sites but also because you get one additional driver free! So, the person booking the car doesn’t have to be the one stuck driving it the whole time. Also, there are absolutely no cancellation fees so you don’t have to worry about being stuck with a car rental if your trip gets interrupted.
Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Costco. I just want to share how great their program is to all of my readers!
For people that don’t know, Costco is a private membership club where you can buy a lot of things wholesale and in bulk. Yes, there is a yearly membership fee, but I’ll explain why it’s worth it. Not only do you get the benefits of buying daily goods on the cheap, but Costco has a travel website where you can book a lot of discounted vacations, cruises, and of course, Oahu rental cars. For the basic level, it will cost you $60 annually which comes out to just $5/month. Even if you don’t live near a Costco Warehouse, the Costco Travel site will alone pay back what you’ve spent on your membership. I’ll explain more below!
Costco Travel (Rental Cars) vs. Others
So, just to compare different types of rental cars websites, I’ve taken the prices from Costco, Booking.com, and Alamo.com using all the same criteria: car size, 3-day duration, same pick-up and check-out time.
- Costco Travel: $136.35 (includes additional driver)
- Booking.com: $203.01 (does not include additional driver)
- Alamo.com: $194.64 Pay Now or $203.01 Pay Later (does not include additional driver)
Costco Travel Price Difference and Why It’s Worth The Membership
Looking at the example above, you can already see that Costco Travel comes in much cheaper. You save over $65 dollars! For Booking.com and Alamo.com, I didn’t even add the additional driver yet which would be an extra $15/day. So technically, you are saving over $100 by booking with Costco Travel. This trip alone would cover your $60 annual fee plus extra savings on the side. Hence, why it’s worth the membership!
Costco Travel has been my go-to for my Oahu rental cars since I first found out that it even existed. I am literally telling you about this in real-time because we just booked our rental car for our Hawaii trip next week so I’m giving you first-hand information. I know a lot of you have contacted me over Instagram saying that you’ll be in Hawaii soon so hopefully, this little tip will help you save some money.
Also, if you already don’t know, make sure you read my guide on buying luxury goods in Hawaii since almost everything is discounted over there! Dior specifically will be raising their prices on 1/18/2022 and their Waikiki location will soon be moving out of the duty-free building so no more tax-free benefit.