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  1. Default Driving rental car one-way


    I'm planning a road trip this Summer. Since I'm interested in picking up a car in Texas or Arizona and dropping it off in Washington State, I was wondering this:
    Are there any places where people are needed to transport a car or RV from one state to another in a fixed number of days/weeks? I'm interested in finding a solution where I avoid the high drop fee that rental companies have when you return the car in a different state.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Highly, Highly Unlikely

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    "[H]igh drop fee[s]" are there for a reason. Basically you are paying for the rental company to return the vehicle to where you got it. Typically the car is not owned by Hertz, Avis, or whatever company's name is on the rental agreement, but by the local franchise. The car you pick up will be registered and licensed in Texas or Arizona and must eventually get back to that state and to its rightful owner. While there won't usually be time limits on your use of the vehicle, such as there are on rental trucks, you will be responsible for returning it eventually, either yourself of by paying the rental company to do it for you. And even that is probably cheaper than you 'hiring' someone to do it for you. Not only would you have to compensate this person, but you'd have to pay an "Additional Driver' fee for every day that you have the car, even when you're doing all the driving on the way to Washington.

    Very rarely, you can find deals where the drop off fee is waived, but those are almost always in cases where you're taking a car from a resort destination, say Disney World, back to its origination point. I doubt very much that you'll find such a deal from Texas/Arizona to Washington.

    On the other hand, on second reading, you might want to look into U-Drive or Drive-Away services where you contract to drive an individual's personal car from point A to point B. Again such services exist (Do a web search on the terms Drive Away Services.), but you would be totally dependent on them for where points A and B are and when you must pick up and drop off the vehicle. Typically those time constraints are quite narrow as in most cases such people are moving and want their car at their new home when they arrive. Again, while it's a possibility, the chances of you finding someone who wants their car moved on a route and at a time that fits your plans are rather minimal.


  3. Default


    Thank you very much! And thank you for your answer. I'll look into the U-Drive and Drive-Away options.

    - arde

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Since you mentioned an RV and possibly starting in Arizona, you might look at Cruise America. They do at times have specials to take RVs from their headquarters near Phoenix to other locations throughout the country.

    However, these specials tend to be limited to the spring/fall and not the peak summer season, and even on a special, a rental RV often is still a fair bit more expensive than traveling by car/motels, so it probably won't be quite the money saver you are hoping for.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default More information you may like to pursue.

    The Drive-Away system seems to have all but dried up. Each time I look at the car list, there are only a few there..... not like more than a decade ago when I used that system, and there were many cars at each of the 60+ locations of the company. Now there are only a couple of dozen offices (if that) and they have very few cars, hence very few options.

    You may like to look into this.... they are the new boys on the block. They started downunder, but seem now to be on several continents. I have several times made enquiries with them but each time the trip fell through, so have not worked with them yet, but found them very accommodating with the many questions I asked.

    There is another way you may like to try. I read this on this forum quite a few years ago. It was from someone who would call the car rental companies at his destination (Washington State), and ask them if they had any cars at/near the place where he planned to start hjs trip (Texas/Arizona). Then asked if they would like him to drive it back. I figure somehow, though, you would need to be more specific with the locations.

    I have never tried it. Never had a need to. But keep it in the back of my mind, just in case!

    Last edited by Lifemagician; 02-15-2018 at 08:09 AM. Reason: typo

  6. Default

    I've done it!
    Cruise America.
    Mesa Arizona to Seattle Washington.

    This one way special comes up several times each year. My rental was over the Labor Day weekend.

    They give you 7 nights, really 6 full days, but you can pay for extra days at full price. I highly recommend that you pay for two extra days. It's $24 per day, with added days much more. They give you 2000 miles. You pay for the gas.

    Be aware that some deals are rental unit relocation deals, while others such as these are resale relocation deals. You are driving a reconditioned unit for resale somewhere. These units are like new inside and outside, including a full repaint. Look the unit over carefully because you will be responsible for any damage. I had absolutely no problem with them.

    I HIGHLY recommend reviewing every instructional video listed on their site well ahead of time. It will make the walk through much more meaningful and it will save you a lot of time.

    I just looked at their site and there is a special posted. It ends in March but you can take a look to see what it's all about. It is listed under the

    Rolling Out Of Arizona Special.
    Last edited by travelingman; 02-15-2018 at 08:20 AM.

  7. Default

    Thanks a bunch! I'll look into that.

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