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The Ultimate Guide to Avis Car Rental [Avis Preferred Loyalty Program]

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Katie Seemann
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Katie Seemann

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Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure, F...
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There are many websites to book car rentals, and they all offer different rates, specials, terms, and loyalty programs.

This post is an in-depth look at Avis, including a breakdown of the Avis Preferred rewards program. You’ll learn what Avis offers and how to maximize each rental.

The Avis Preferred Program

Avis Preferred is a loyalty program offered by Avis. This program is revenue-based, so you will earn points based on how much you spend. Then you can use those points for free rentals, upgrades, and accessories.

How To Join Avis Preferred

To join Avis Preferred, you only need to sign up online. You will then get an Avis Wizard Number, your Avis Preferred membership number. You can use this number to log in to your account once enrolled.

Avis Preferred Status Levels

There are 3 levels of status in the program — Avis Preferred, Avis Preferred Plus, and Avis President’s Club.

Avis Preferred Program
It’s free to join the Avis Preferred Program. Image Credit: Avis

Avis Preferred

As an Avis Preferred member, you will enjoy expedited service, can go straight to your car at most locations, and earn a minimum of 100 points on each rental. The program is free to join and does not require any minimum activity to remain active.

The only requirements are that you must be:

  • At least 25 years old
  • A resident of the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, or the U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Not previously terminated by any Avis program or denied rental opportunities for any reason

Avis Preferred Plus

Avis Preferred Plus is the program’s mid-level status. You’ll earn Avis Preferred Plus after 10 rentals or $4,000 spent. Benefits of this level include:

  • Free 1 car class upgrade when reserving a midsize or above (when available)
  • Dedicated reservations number
  • Access to exclusive offers and discounts

Avis President’s Club

Avis President’s Club is the highest status in the Avis program and is awarded after 20 rentals or $6,000 spent. Benefits of this level include:

  • Free 2-car class upgrade when reserving a midsize or above (when available)
  • Guaranteed availability of up to a full-size car with a confirmed reservation at least 24 hours in advance

Credit Cards That Include Avis Elite Status

You can fast-track your way to Avis Preferred status with the right credit card in your wallet. The following cards offer complimentary Avis status:

Avis Preferred Plus Status

Avis President’s Club

Hot Tip: For more information, check out our detailed guide to credit cards that include car rental elite status.

Other Programs That Include Avis Elite Status

Priority Pass members and United MileagePlus Premier Silver and Premier Gold elites are eligible for Avis Preferred Plus status.

United MileagePlus Premier Platinum and Premier 1K elites are eligible for Avis President’s Club status.

How To Earn Avis Points

You will earn Avis Preferred points every time you rent a car (a minimum of 100 points), and your earning potential is based on your elite status within the program.

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Avis Status LevelPoints Earned per $1 Spent on Qualifying Car Rental Points Earned per $1 Spent on Accessories 
Avis Preferred12
Avis Preferred Plus1.252.5
Avis President’s Club1.53

A qualifying car rental is completed and paid for at a participating Avis location.

Qualifying rentals do not include any opaque rental (when you don’t know the rental agency until after you pay) from sites like Hotwire or Priceline. Rentals using certain discount codes also do not count as qualified rentals.

Bottom Line: Joining Avis Preferred is free, and you will earn a 100-point bonus when you rent a car within the first 3 months.

Double Dip on Points

Whenever you rent a car, make sure you are double dipping on points — earning both car rental program points and credit card points! Lots of credit cards offer bonus points on car rental purchases.

Earn 3x points per $1 for car rentals on these cards (when booking directly through Avis):

Earn 2x points or miles per $1 for car rentals on these cards (when booking directly through Avis):

There are a few credit cards that earn elevated rewards on car rentals through their respective portals.

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve card: 10x points per $1 spent via Chase Travel
  • Capital One Venture X card: 10x miles per $1 spent via Capital One Travel
  • Capital One Venture card: 5x miles per $1 spent via Capital One Travel

However, if you book through one of these portals, your Avis elite status may not be honored.

How To Use Avis Points

Redeeming Avis points is easy and starts at as few as 250 points for accessories and 700 points for car rentals.

There are 4 levels of point redemptions based on the cost per day of your rental (not including any Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD), coupon codes, special rates, or any other offer). There are no blackout dates for rentals using award points.

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Reward Day LevelStandard Daily RatePoints per Day
Level 1Up to $50700
Level 2$50.01 to $851,400
Level 3$85.01 to $1252,100
Level 4$125.01 to $2253,500

How To Reserve a Car Through Avis

Searching for a car on Avis.com is easy. Enter your pick-up location, date, and pick-up time on the main screen and click Select My Car. Some optional fields will pop up that you can choose to fill out or not. If you have an Avis Wizard Number or discount code, enter it here.

Avis home screen
Input your search criteria on the Avis home page. Image Credit: Avis

To sort your list by price, mileage, or the number of seats, just use the sort button right above the search results.

You will notice there are 2 different prices: one if you pay at the counter and a lower one if you pay in advance.

Avis car rental search results
You’ll usually save money paying for your car rental in advance. Image Credit: Avis

Using the Pay Now price can save you up to 30% off the base rates, but there is a drawback — you will pay a fee if you have to cancel your reservation.

  • If you cancel at least 24 hours ahead of time, you will be charged $50.
  • If you cancel within 24 hours, a fee of $150 will be charged.
  • You will forfeit the entire amount paid if you are a no-show for a prepaid reservation.

After you choose Pay Now or Pay At Counter, you can confirm your details and choose any extras you may want to add, like insurance or entertainment.

You will see some package options, including insurance and extras. This is where you can customize your insurance package and add extras, including child safety seats. Just check the box for any options you want to include, then click the red Continue button at the bottom of the page.

Avis car rental insurance and extras
You can add insurance and extras like a car seat during booking. Image Credit: Avis

Before you purchase insurance through Avis, check to see if your credit card comes with car rental insurance.

Many cards, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, Chase Sapphire Reserve card, and Capital One Venture X card, even come with primary car rental insurance, meaning you don’t have to access your other insurance first.

Reservations

There are a few things you can do when you click on the Reservations tab in the main menu.

Avis Reservations
You can make a new reservation or change an existing one on the Avis website. Image Credit: Avis

First, you can make a new reservation by clicking Make a Reservation and proceeding through the search process as described above.

To change an existing reservation, click on View/Modify/Cancel and enter your last name and reservation number

You can get a copy of your rental agreement and receipt by clicking on Get e-Receipt. You will need the country of rental, your last name, and your confirmation number.

Another thing you can do here is access TripIt. This is a separate service that keeps your travel details in 1 master online itinerary, including directions, maps, and even weather.

Hot Tip: Don’t forget to check Avis’ policy on tolls, so you know how much you’ll be charged ahead of time.

Avis Promo Codes, Discounts, and Special Offers

To see the current deals and promo codes being offered by Avis, click on Offers in the main menu. You can see U.S. Offers, International Offers, and Partner Offers.

Avis coupon codes discounts and offers
You can see current Avis coupon codes and discounts under the Offers tab. Image Credit: Avis

To use a discount code (including coupon codes and AWD codes), input the code at the beginning of your search in the Discount Codes box. Then it will be automatically applied as you go through your search.

Hot Tip: You can use a coupon code and an AWD (Avis Worldwide Discount) code on a single rental, but you can’t use 2 coupon codes or 2 AWD codes.

Partner Offers

Avis partner offers consist of discounts and deals offered by select companies that partner with Avis. These offers can be found on the home page of Avis.com or by clicking Offers>Partner Offers from the main search bar.

Offers are subject to change but may include the following:

  • AARP: AARP members save up to 30% plus get exclusive benefits
  • Extended Stay America Hotels: Save up to 30% off your next stay at over 600 locations
  • MGM Resorts: Up to a $75 nightly food and beverage credit at select MGM Resorts
  • Union Plus: Union members save up to 34% on Pay Now rates
  • Universal Studios Hollywood: Save up to $200 on a vacation package
  • Veterans Advantage: Members save up to 25% at Avis

Avis Locations

Avis has 5,500 locations in over 165 countries. To find an Avis location, click on Locations in the main menu.

To search by an address, ZIP code, city, or attraction, click on Find A Location. You can also search by state by clicking on All US Locations or by country by clicking on All Global Locations.

Miles, Points, and Partners

If you would rather earn airline miles or hotel points for your Avis car rental, you can do that through Miles, Points & Partners under the Cars & Services tab in the main menu.

Earn miles through Avis car rental
You can earn airline miles or hotel points through Avis. Image Credit: Avis

Airline and Hotel Points Partners

You can earn airline or hotel points on your rental instead of Avis points. Participating airlines and hotel chains include (but are not limited to):

Airlines:

  • American Airlines: Earn 2 to 5 base AAdvantage miles and Loyalty Points per dollar spent
  • British Airways: Earn 3 Executive Club Avios per dollar spent on Avis car rentals plus earn 1,000 bonus Avios on your first rental when you join Avis Preferred.
  • Cathay Pacific Airlines: Earn 500 Asia Miles per qualifying rental
  • Etihad Airlines: Earn 3 to 5 Etihad Guest miles per qualifying dollar spent plus 1,000 miles after joining Avis and a bonus of 2,000 to 5,000 miles on your first rental
  • Frontier: Earn 50 Frontier Miles per rental per day on all qualifying rentals, or 500 miles on qualifying rentals of 5 days or more
  • JetBlue: Earn 100 TrueBlue Points per day (up to 5 days) on qualifying rentals at participating airport locations
  • Southwest: Earn 600 Rapid Rewards points per rental
  • Spirit Airlines: 50 Free Spirit miles on rentals 4 days or less, or 500 Free Spirit miles on 5+ day rentals
  • United MileagePlus: Earn 500 to 1,250 base United MileagePlus miles per rental
  • Virgin Atlantic: Earn 500 to 1000 Virgin Points per rental

Hotels:

Frequent Flyer Tax

This program is not without drawbacks. When you choose to earn points from certain hotels and airlines, you will be charged a fee.

Depending on the length of your rental, this fee can negate much of the value of the bonus points, so it’s probably best to avoid the following programs if you can (especially for long rentals):

  • Alaska Airlines: $0.75 per day
  • American Airlines: $1 per day
  • Best Western Hotels & Resorts: $0.75 per day
  • Choice Hotels: $0.75 per day
  • Copa Airlines: $1 per day
  • Frontier Airlines: $0.75 per day
  • Hawaiian Airlines: $0.75 per day
  • Hyatt Hotels: $0.75 per day
  • JetBlue Airways: $1 per day
  • Radisson Hotels: $0.75 per day
  • Southwest Airlines: $1 per day
  • Spirit Airlines: $0.75 per day
  • Wyndham Hotels & Resorts: $0.75 per day

Other Partners

In addition to hotel and airline partners, Avis partners with other companies to offer discounts and special offers:

  • 3rd Home
  • Eurostar
  • Exclusive Resorts
  • Fairfield Resorts
  • Holiday Network
  • Inspirato
  • Lincoln Black Label
  • Pebble Beach Company
  • Regus
  • Scootaround – Mobility Scooters
  • Upromise
  • Veterans Advantage

Avis Mobile App

The Avis mobile app has been redesigned to give you a seamless experience. You can use the app to rent a car, choose your vehicle at pick-up, cancel or extend a rental, find gas stations, and more.

You can also easily share your receipt with anyone — making it a great tool when traveling for business.

Download the app through the App Store or Google Play.

Avis Flex

If you are looking for a long-term car rental of a month or longer, Avis offers Avis Flex. Find it under the Cars & Services drop-down on the main search bar.

Avis Flex long term car rental
Use Avis Flex to rent a car for up to 11 months. Image Credit: Avis

With Avis Flex, you can rent a car for up to 11 months. You can choose the exact make and model of your vehicle and also swap it out at the location you rented it from.

One-way rentals are also available for up to a month, so you can take a long road trip without worrying about returning the car to where you picked it up.

Avis For Business

The Avis For Business program is designed for small and mid-sized businesses. Details can be found under Business Rentals>Small and Mid-Sized Business.

Avis for Business
Avis offers benefits to small and mid-sized businesses. Image Credit: Avis

As a member, you will receive the following benefits:

  • 1 free reward day after you complete your first rental
  • Double rewards during your first 90 days as a member
  • Up to 30% off base rates
  • 1 reward day for every 15 completed rentals
  • An Avis Worldwide Discount number to share with your employees

Avis Customer Service

If you need help with the website or renting a car, you will find all of the Avis customer service information under the Help tab in the main menu.

Under Customer Service, you will find comment and feedback forms, TTY/TDD information, request forms for past receipts or miles/points, phone numbers, insurance claim forms, FAQs, and lost and found.

Click on Worldwide Telephone Numbers for a list of phone numbers for every country Avis services. Here are a few common ones you might need:

  • U.S. Customer Service: 800-352-7900
  • U.S. Reservations: 800-633-3469

Avis vs. Budget

Avis and Budget are 2 well-known car rental companies. So, what’s the difference between them? Not much.

They are, in fact, the same company. Budget owns Avis (as well as Payless Car Rental), so their offerings and loyalty programs are very similar. However, their prices can be different.

Hot Tip: If you don’t want to check multiple car rental websites each time you rent, consider searching through a site like Kayak — it will show you the prices for many different sites all in one place. Then you can go to the site with the lowest price to complete your booking. For more tips, check out our guide to saving money on car rentals.

Final Thoughts

Avis is just one of many car rental agencies to choose from. It offers an easy-to-use website plus discount codes and partner offers.

The Avis Preferred program lets you earn points based on rental activity that you can redeem for free rentals or accessories. You even have the option to earn hotel points or airline miles every time you rent a car!

For Capital One products listed on this page, some of the above benefits are provided by Visa® or Mastercard® and may vary by product. See the respective Guide to Benefits for details, as terms and exclusions apply.

The information regarding the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a debit card to rent a car from Avis?

Visa and Mastercard debit cards are accepted at most U.S. locations for payment. However, if you are currently using a debit card, getting a credit card that includes car rental insurance or bonus points on car rentals might make sense. Credit cards are accepted at all locations.

Can I take an Avis rental car into Canada or Mexico?

Yes, with advanced arrangements, a U.S. resident may rent a car in the U.S. and take it into Canada, but you’ll need to get a non-resident insurance card at the time of pickup. U.S. residents using a corporate AWD (discount code) may take a car rented in the U.S. into Mexico.

Is Avis Preferred free?

Yes, Avis Preferred (the loyalty program offered by Avis) is free to join. There are 3 levels of membership — Avis Preferred, Avis Preferred Plus, and Avis President’s Club.

Does Avis offer unlimited mileage?

Yes, most Avis rentals come with unlimited mileage. You will be able to confirm this on the payment summary page before you make your reservation.

Can my spouse drive an Avis rental car that's in my name?

Yes, a renter’s spouse, partner, employer, or employee can drive the rental car free of charge as long as they are at least 25 years old and have a valid driver’s license. Other drivers can be added for a fee.

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About Katie Seemann

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure, Forbes Advisor, and Fortune Recommends.

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