Before You Rent GPS With a Rental Car

Know What Kind of GPS You're Getting Prior to Renting One

GPS navigational system on dashboard of car
Rebecca Nelson / Getty Images

Most rental car companies offer an option for in-car GPS. These can help you make the most of your time, whether traveling for business or pleasure. In most cases, you specify that you would like the GPS option when you reserve the car, whether you book online or over the phone.

However, before you land on something, read through these summaries for some specifics on major rental car company offerings.​

Important: Remember that rental car companies will charge you a replacement cost if the GPS is lost or stolen.

Hertz NeverLost

Hertz takes its GPS services one step beyond other rental car companies with its "NeverLost" system. In addition to renting you a GPS receiver, Hertz offers an online trip planning utility that lets you plan and save trips online, then transfer your plan to a USB flash drive that you simply plug into your Hertz GPS. Your trip plan is then instantly in place in your rental GPS.

You can also utilize their "NeverLost Concierge" to have an operator help you search for destinations and build trips that and then be sent directly to your device.

Some of the NeverLost features we like is the "Hertz airport return" command that will guide you directly back to the airport. A "favorites" utility lets you download national park guides, city guides and more. Even your rental car information is recorded on the device so it's easy to look up those details.

Learn More About Hertz NeverLost

Avis where2

The Avis where2 system uses Garmin GPS receivers to help you find hotels, restaurants, etc., and even includes traffic alerts and an alternative routing to always give you the quickest route.

Avis's Garmin units feature hands-free calling capability if your phone has Bluetooth.

They also have text-to-speech, providing you with spoken directions to your destination.

Unlike the Hertz NeverLost, Avis where2 lets you plan your trip online but doesn't send the details directly to the device. You have to instead download the trip to a memory card and put that card into the where2 unit.

Learn More About Avis where2

National

National offers rental GPS units based on the popular Garmin GPS devices.

These receivers feature a simple touchscreen interface with automatic route calculation to any destination. Text-to-voice provides spoken directions and the navigator includes detailed maps and points of interest like hotels, gas stations, restaurants, ATMs and tourist destinations.

The receivers also include a one-touch rental return directions feature for easy car return.

Visit the National Website

Enterprise

Enterprise's GPS offering is a customized version of the Garmin 265W. This wide-screen (4.3-inch diagonal) GPS includes text-to-speech directions and hands-free calling with Bluetooth technology.

Visit the Enterprise Website

Budget and Alamo

Budget uses the Garmin where2 system (same as Avis) while Alamo offers a Garmin StreetPilot from its airport locations only.

Visit the Budget or Alamo website for more information.