4 Expert Tips on Renting a Car for Thanksgiving

Headed to Grandma’s for Thanksgiving but need a ride? Based on last Thanksgiving, here’s what you should know about renting a car for Turkey Day.

 1. If you waited, that’s not a bad thing.

While the optimal time to rent a car for thanksgiving is 6 weeks prior, don’t fret. Based on data from last year, we found that if you book just 2-3 days before Turkey Day, you’ll find about the same savings (though, maybe a little less selection).

2. Car rates are dropping.

Good news for car renters: we saw rental car prices drop 10.3% in 2016 when compared to the year prior. However, competition for those cars is increasing. Bookings went up 21.5% in 2016.

3. What’s the going rate?

When we crunched the numbers, we found that the median price for renting a car the day before Thanksgiving is $72 (compared to $38 median price for your average Wednesday).

4. So, what’s the best day to rent Thanksgiving week?

The week of Thanksgiving, rental car rates steadily increase. You can expect to pay at least these median rates:

  • Sunday, November 20: $67
  • Monday, November 21: $68
  • Tuesday, November 22: $70
  • Wednesday, November 23: $72.50
  • Thursday, November 24 (Thanksgiving Day): $72

If you need a set of temporary wheels, KAYAK is your site. Search hundreds of sites at once to find the right ride at the best price.

Methodology: Unless otherwise indicated, we considered car rental searches of all classes conducted on the US locale for US origins. For comparative data, we looked at travel dates 11/19/2015-11/26/2015 and search dates 8/3/2015-11/26/2015 vs. travel dates 11/17/2016-11/24/17 and search dates 8/1/2016-11/24/2016. Median prices are reflective of one-day car rentals and may vary.


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