Earn National Free Car Rental Day and Status Credits with Enterprise Car Rentals

I’ve just received an email from National Car Rental that as of May 1 you now earn free rental day credits and credit towards elite status in the National Emerald Club through rentals at Enterprise.

We’re pleased to announce a valuable enhancement to your Emerald Club® benefits. Now you can earn Emerald Club rental credits at participating Enterprise Rent-A-Car locations, including more than 6,000 neighborhood locations in the U.S. and Canada. This vastly improves your ability to achieve Executive® or Executive Elite® status and earn Free Rental Days on your Emerald Club account.

Your qualifying* Enterprise rentals will count toward improving your Emerald Club status and earning Free Rental Days redeemable at National locations only. So whenever you need to rent a vehicle and National is not an option, rent from a participating Enterprise location to keep your Emerald Club rental credits coming.

The benefits FAQ does list a handful of non-participating Enterprise locations.

More options are always better, this adds flexibility to the National program of course. National and Enterprise are jointly owned, though they are very different.

I tend to think of National as being for the road warrior/expert traveler and Enterprise being for the occasional renter. I love the quick service at National, grab your car out of the Emerald aisle and go. I’m not a huge fan of Enterprise, the rental paperwork process always seem to take an interminable amount of time and then there’s the hard sell for the insurance, questions about your deductible and the ‘walk around’ the vehicle inspecting for damage before you leave. That’s not the rental experience I’m after.

Still, there are occasions where I’ve rented from Enterprise, such as needing a van or a pickup for location travel rather than landing in a city and needing an airport rental. And on those occasions it’s certainly nice to get something out of it, even if it’s not my preferred agency. It’s an enhancement to the program, for sure, and without any takeaways so that’s a wonderful thing to report and something that makes National a better program than it was last month!

But even with the free rental day credits I’m not going to find myself at an Enterprise any time soon. At least until Enterprise gets an Emerald aisle.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Agreed on the Enterprise hard sell, but if I can pick up free days on my $9.99 weekend in-town rentals, I’ll bite my tongue.

  2. Are these convertible to airline miles with anyone and is there still a link for the Enterprise elite membership?

  3. I only rented from Enterprise a few times. Once near MSP & once in DT Austin. Both were the $9.99/day weekend specials. Saved alot of $$ compared to airport rentals.

    Also spouse rented a few times when car was in body shop. Dealer went with Enterprise. 🙁 One time, I was able to rent with Hertz HLE & submit rental claim to insurance. Much better experience with Hertz and earned alot of points. Got great prices w/Hertz & saved their insurance company alot of $$ (over Enterprise–well under their $20/day insurance rates!) and earned some points too.) 🙂

  4. Totally agree with your observations of Natl being a valuable quick in-and-out service while Enterprise seems to treat the renter like a dumb Martian whose never rented a car before. There are times when every car rental agency has to go over the fine print with a renter but times when they need to hand over the keys and let us go. But that’s a topic for another time.

    I’ve been a National Elite member for over 10 years & continue to rent with them for the generous free days offered frequent renters. I will only rent with Enterprise if hell is close to freezing over for various reasons including their lack of quality service and their bogus advertising where they showcase an Economy-sized car for $9.95/day but once all the extra are added up, they are often priced similar to other car rental agencies. This year I’ve had rentals with Hertz that have fallen well below $9.95/day so it pays to shop around.

    I have been renting for over 20 years with elite status with all the majors, and Enterprise is always at the bottom of the barrel for me.

  5. enterprise=crooks, not all but many of them. I think that they are not all company owned stores or the mgn puts lots of pressure on them to produce numbers…
    Don’t ever have an issue with one of there cars even the credit card companies cs have often told me they have the most complaints and fight with the most vigor. Anything enterprise tells you with the handshake is useless unless there is paper to back u up.

  6. National with little paperwork? Not for the non-Emerald renter. I recently rented from National at DCA, there was one person ahead of me in line so I decided to check in at the automated kiosk. I ended up going through more than a dozen screens of legalese long after that person had gone, while casually chatting with the agent who agreed it would have been faster for me to just wait in line. So much for express service.

    @Stephen, re: fine print. Reminds me of an experience at Avis in Champaign-Urbana (in-town), when the dot-matrix printer was printing lines on top of one another and all rentals were stopped until it was fixed. The people ahead of me, a pair of Koreans who looked like they had more experience renting cars than the agent had processing rentals, asked the agent to give them the garbled paperwork to sign — “you know we’ll sign it anyway, whatever it says”. Didn’t work 🙂

  7. @Gary, I guess it’s because I am the occasional renter 🙂 I only rent cars a few times a year, and usually from Enterprise or Hertz where my employer has a corporate discount. The recent National rental was the first time I rented with them since 2002 (or possibly 2004), and I figured there was no need to join Emerald Club for just a single rental. I guess I was wrong…

    Overall I consider a rental car to be a hassle (not because of the rental process but because of the need to drive and find parking), so usually when I travel I use a mix of mass transit and taxis; I only rent cars when the inconvenience of not having one reaches a fairly high threshold.

  8. Just rented with Enterprise with the $9.99 weekend special, got a free upgrade from economy to a pick-up, some free gas in the tank, free drop-off at airport – once you rent with them a few times the upselling on insurance stops … I also occasionally rent vans from them (to avoid the crooks at Uhaul…) Best value for the money in a car rental company in my opinion.

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