Earlier in the week I detailed National Car Rental’s new “One, Two, Free” promo — rent twice (mid-size or larger, two day minimum) and get a free rental day which is running through January 31.
Several other bloggers have subsequently noted that National is also offering to status match you if you have elite status in another car rental program. That’s a unique departure from past practice in the car rental industry — airline and hotel status matching has been a long-standing practice but car rental companies haven’t routinely done it.
As I observed in my earlier post, at the base signup level I like National better than the other car rental firms because of their ‘Emerald Aisle’ (choose your own car) concept. But I don’t make National my own rental company of choice because I’m too addicted to the treatment I get from elite status elsewhere.
Apparently National ‘gets that’ and has a strategy to address it.
Now, through a promotion last summer I did pick up Executive status with National, but when the company offered me comped Executive Elite status I gave it away to a reader instead.
Avis First or Hertz Five Star matches to National Executive. Avis Presidents Club or Chairmans Club and Hertz Presidents Circle matches to National Executive Elite.
Honestly, while I think National’s status benefits are good, I maintain that they’re best for the non-status member and that they’re competitive at the first level of status. But their Executive Elite (top tier) level doesn’t compare with the benefits of Avis Chairmans or Hertz Presidents Circle.
For proof of status they’re taking anything which shows Avis or Hertz elite levels between January 1, 2010 and now. They’ll take a scanned member card (with expiration date), screen shot or scanned image of a monthly statement, or a scanned copy of status welcome letter. They’ll take it is jpeg, png, tif, or gif graphics formats or doc, docx, rtf, or pdf file formats, as long as the file does not exceed 5 megabytes. They’ll also take a fax if you can’t manage the upload.
A very aggressive play by National in conjunction with a very aggressive free rental day offer.