The Ultimate Guide to Rental Car Program Elite Status Matches [2021]

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The benefits of having elite status in a loyalty program are undeniable. In the case of airline program elite status, you may receive seat upgrades, priority boarding, free checked bags, and even fee waivers. Hotel loyalty programs may offer elite members free upgraded rooms, late checkout, free breakfast, and bonus earnings.

Car rental companies also have loyalty programs that deliver benefits for the best customers. And, while the perks of elite status can be many, it can be difficult to earn status with more than a single brand.

But what if you need, or want, to change brands — do you have to start over to earn elite status? Well, fortunately, just like airline and hotel programs, most major car rental companies will match the existing status you have with a competitor company. This status match allows you to try on the perks of the new company without giving up your current elite status.

If you frequently rent a vehicle or have an extended road trip coming up, we’re sure you’ll find this a fun and informative topic.

So, hang out with us while we talk about car rental program status matches and how to leverage this process to enjoy VIP status on your next car rental.

How Does a Status Match Work?

An airline, hotel, or rental car company may create a status match program to incent frequent flyers, hotel loyalists, and the frequent renters of competitors to try out the new company.

The theory is that if you’ve earned elite status with a travel provider, you’ve already proven you can be loyal to a specific brand, and you might do the same with the new company.

By granting you elite status on day 1 based on your corresponding existing status, the hope is that your experience will be grand enough to stay on.

If you are approved for a status match, you will be granted elite status for a specific period of time during which you must complete the specified criteria for extending your status beyond that period.

You do not have to give up or transfer your existing elite status as the new company is simply granting you additional status in its program. Your existing status remains the same.

Let’s now look at some of the car rental companies that offer status matches, how each status match works, and the value of elite status with each of those loyalty programs.

Bottom Line: A status match can leverage your existing loyalty program’s elite status and allow you to try out a new brand while experiencing a similar level of elite status, all without giving up your current status. 

Avis

Avis Preferred
Receive free car upgrades with top Avis Preferred Plus elite status. Image Credit: Avis

Avis has over 5,000 locations in 165 countries. With this dominant footprint, the chances of you finding a convenient Avis location at your destination are high.

And, if you’re going to be renting from Avis, you’ll surely want to join its Avis Preferred loyalty program.

Just being a base Avis Preferred member offers you some rental benefits, but if you have a car rental program elite status elsewhere, you’ll want to pursue a status match for even more benefits.

The Status Match

Avis offers different status match programs depending on your country of residence. There is 1 program for residents of the U.S. and Canada and another status match program for countries outside of these borders.

Avis offers a match of your current car rental program status to its corresponding elite status, up to its top President’s Club level.

Requesting a status match is simple. Complete the status match request (U.S. and Canada), then select your current car rental program status from the drop-down box. Attach supporting documentation, including your current statement or membership card showing your name, current elite status, and expiration date.

Avis publishes this matrix guideline for its international status match, but it’s also an informative guide for those who live in the U.S. or Canada:

Avis Match LevelEuropcarHertz EnterpriseSIXTNational
President’s ClubPrivilege Elite, VIPPresident’s CircleGold and PlatinumPlatinumEmerald Club Executive Elite
Preferred PlusPrivilege ExecutiveFive StarSilverGoldEmerald Club Executive
Avis PreferredPrivilege ClubGold Plus RewardsPlusExpress CardEmerald Club

Bottom Line: Avis offers 2 status match programs. If you are located in the U.S. or Canada, you can request a status match via this form. If you are located in another country, you can complete your request via this status match form.

The Benefits of Avis Preferred Plus Elite Status

Once approved, your granted elite status is normally good for 12 months. During that time you will need to meet the qualifications to extend your elite status.

The Avis Preferred loyalty program has 1 base membership level, Avis Preferred, and 2 levels of Preferred Plus elite status. As a new Avis Preferred member, you’ll receive expedited service, earn 1 point for every dollar spent on rentals, 2 points per dollar on accessories, and receive special member offers each month.

Here’s a snapshot of the additional benefits afforded to members with elite status and the qualifications for achieving each level.

BenefitPreferred Plus Elite with 12 to 24 Rentals or $5,000 Spent in a Calendar YearPreferred Plus Elite With 25 rentals or $7,000 Spent in a Calendar Year
Complimentary Upgrades When AvailableYesYes
Special Preferred Plus Customer Service LineYesYes
Points Earned per Dollar Spent on Rentals and per Dollar on Accessories1.25/2.51.5/3.0

While Avis states that it does status match up to its President’s Club level, this status level is normally invitation-only. To review data points of those who have submitted requests, StatusMatcher is the go-to source.

President’s Club elite members receive an automatic 2-car upgrade when renting an intermediate-size vehicle or greater, and a dedicated 24-hr service line.

To learn more about how the Avis Preferred loyalty program works and the benefits of elite status, check out our expanded article on the topic.

Hot Tip: According to StatusMatcher, Avis has been known to match hotel elite status. If you currently have such status, try emailing Avis with supporting documentation at [email protected] versus using the status match request form.

Enterprise

Enterprise Status Match
Image Credit: Enterprise

As a member of the Enterprise Plus loyalty program, you can expect to receive special offers, a dedicated phone line, a members-only check-in area, the ability to earn free rentals, and car class upgrades.

You can take those benefits to a higher level, however, by securing elite status via a status match.

The Status Match

Complete the application form to request a status match to Enterprise Plus and include a copy of your current statement from one of the programs listed below or a copy of your membership card that includes your name, membership status, and expiration date.

If You Have This Status:Enterprise Will Match You To This Status:
Avis Preferred
Hertz Gold Plus Rewards
Enterprise Plus Silver
Avis Preferred Plus
Hertz Gold Five Star
Enterprise Plus Gold
Avis President’s Club
Avis Chairman’s Club
Avis Preferred Plus (with 25 rentals or 85+ days)
Hertz President’s Circle
Enterprise Plus Platinum

The Benefits of Enterprise Plus Elite Status

Members of Enterprise Plus earn points toward elite status with every rental. Elite members receive even greater rewards.

  • Enterprise Plus Silver (6 to 11 rentals) — 10% bonus points and 1 free car upgrade each program year
  • Enterprise Plus Gold (14 rentals or 40 rental days) — 15% bonus points and 2 free car upgrades each program year
  • Enterprise Plus Platinum (24 rentals or 85 rental days) — 20% bonus points and 4 free car upgrades each program year

Points do not expire as long as your account is active, which is defined as at least 1 rental every 3 years.

In addition, all elite members receive the following:

  • Choose your own rewards and receive free car rental days, airline miles, or hotel points
  • Guaranteed upgrade in U.S. and Canada when renting mid-size or larger
  • Upgrades based on availability for European rentals
  • Earn points when renting through its partner, National Car Rental

Hot Tip: According to data points on StatusMatcher, Enterprise has been known to match elite status with the Hilton Honors loyalty program. Your experience could vary. 

Hertz

Hertz Gold Plus
Hertz offers a status match to most of the top competitor’s elite members. Image Credit: Hertz

Hertz has always strived to retain its #1 status, so it’s no wonder its rewards program is also known for being one of the best.

In an effort to add to its 11 million members in the Gold Plus Rewards program, the company also strives to attract the elite members of its competitors by offering a status match.

Let’s review how its status match works and the benefits you can expect from elite status.

The Status Match

Hertz will match your existing competitor status to either its Hertz Five Star or Hertz President’s Circle level. Complete the status match request form with your email and Hertz Gold Plus Rewards number.

Upload documentation such as a copy of your current monthly statement, a copy of your membership card, or a screenshot of your member profile that shows your name and current elite status level. If you have Avis Preferred status, the documentation must show the number of rentals.

If You Have This Status:Hertz Will Match You to This Status:
Avis Preferred Plus with under 25 rentals
Enterprise Plus Gold
Enterprise Plus Silver
National Executive
Hertz Five Star
Avis President’s Club
Enterprise Plus Platinum
National Executive Elite
Avis Preferred Plus over 25 rentals
Hertz President’s Circle

The Benefits of Hertz Gold Rewards Elite Status

When you sign up for the Gold Plus Rewards program, you’ll become a Gold member immediately. All members earn points that can be redeemed for free rentals, experiences, and other rewards. You’ll also be able to add your spouse or domestic partner as an additional driver for no extra charge.

BenefitFive Star
10 Rentals or $2,000 in Revenue
President’s Circle
15 Rentals or $3,000 in Revenue
Earn Points To Redeem for Free Rentals, Experiences, or RewardsXX
Free Additional Driver (Spouse or Domestic Partner)XX
1 Class Car Upgrade When AvailableXX
25% Bonus Gold Rewards PointsXX
Choose Any Car From Five Star SectionXX
Confirmed UpgradesX
50% Bonus Gold Rewards PointsX
Dedicated Customer Service LineX
Choose Any Card From President’s Club SectionX

To learn more about Hertz and its Gold Plus Rewards program, you’ll want to review this comprehensive article with everything you need to know to maximize the program.

Hot Tip: According to data points on StatusMatcher, Hertz does not match SIXT car rental elite status. If you have elite status with SIXT, you may be able to match with Avis, Enterprise, or National first, then request a Hertz status match and have potential success. 

National Car Rental

National Status Match
National Car Rental status matches more than just your current car rental elite status. Image Credit: National

National’s Emerald Club was created to make the car rental process easier. Frequent renters also receive perks and privileges when qualifying for elite-level status.

Fortunately, National offers a simple path to status with its offer to match not just other car rental elite statuses, but airline and hotel elite status! If you have elite status with a loyalty program, chances are you qualify for a status match with National.

The Status Match

Complete the required information via the status match request form and attach proof of your current elite status, including the expiration date of that status.

Once your request is granted, you will have elite status through February 28 of the second year following your approval.

National does not indicate which outside elite statuses are matched to its corresponding elite status. However, after researching data points via StatusMatcher, every status match that was approved in the past year was for Executive Elite level status, including those submitted with airline and hotel elite statuses.

Once a status is granted, you can extend it beyond the expiration date by meeting the following criteria in the full calendar year following your approval:

  • Executive status — 12 to 24 rentals or 40 to 84 rental days
  • Executive Elite status — 25 or more rentals or 85 or more rental days

The Benefits of National Emerald Club Elite Status

All members of National’s Emerald Club receive priority service, expedited checkout, upgrade availability, and pickup without visiting the service counter.

Here’s an abbreviated summary of the key benefits you can expect from elevated National Emerald Club’s elite status:

BenefitEmerald Club Status Emerald Club Executive StatusEmerald Club Executive Elite Status
Earn Credits for Free Car RentalsEarn 1 rental credit for each rental, redeem 7 credits for 1 free rental dayEarn 1 rental credit for each rental, redeem 6 credits for 1 free rental dayEarn 1 rental credit for each rental, redeem 5 credits for 1 free rental day
No Second Driver FeesXXX
Drop and Go PrivilegesXXX
Enterprise Rentals Count Toward Status and Earning Free Rental DaysXXX
1 Car Class Upgrade in U.K., Ireland, France, Spain, GermanyXXX
Pay for Mid-Size or Larger and Receive 1 Car Class Upgrade, U.S./CanadaXX
Guaranteed Availability When Renting Mid-Size or LargerX
Car Delivery to Select Private AirportsX

Learn more about National Car Rental, its Emerald Club, and the associated benefits, in our article that reviews the entire loyalty program.

Bottom Line: National Car Rental will match competitor’s elite status but also matches hotel and airline loyalty program status. History shows, according to StatusMatcher, that requests result in receiving a status match to Emerald Club Executive Elite status. 

SIXT

Sixt Car Rental Map
You’ll find over 2,000 SIXT car rental locations throughout the world. Image Credit: SIXT

Established more than 100 years ago in Munich, Germany, SIXT has the largest fleet of rental cars in the world. Whether you’re traveling domestically or to an international destination, when you need a rental car, chances are there’s a SIXT location.

Fortunately, SIXT offers a status match to its loyalty program and makes it easy to secure.

The Status Match

While SIXT matches the most popular rental car company elite statuses, it also states that it will match the status of your “credit card, airline, hotel” elite status. If we look at the history of executed requests for status matches, StatusMatcher tells us that SIXT has matched all of these types of elite status to either SIXT Gold or Platinum level elite status based on corresponding existing status.

SIXT posts a definitive matrix for matching current car rental program elite status as follows:

If You Have This Status:SIXT Will Match to This Status:
Hertz Gold
Europcar Privilege Club
Avis Preferred
Enterprise Plus
SIXT Gold Card
Hertz Five Star
Hertz President’s Club
Europcar Privilege Executive
Europcar Privilege Elite
Europcar Privilege Elite VIP
Avis President’s Club
SIXT Platinum Card

To request a status match with SIXT, complete the request form and attach the supporting documentation validating your current elite status.

The Benefits of SIXT Elite Status

When you join SIXT’s loyalty program, you’ll receive an Express card membership. Express members receive discounted rates and earn airline miles, hotel points, and other partner bonus points.

Elevate your benefits by achieving Gold, Platinum, or the exclusive invitation-only Diamond status. All elite levels receive special offers and a birthday surprise each year. Additionally, elite members are not charged for 1 additional driver on U.S. rentals.

Here is a summary of the benefits you can expect to receive with SIXT’s elite status and the qualification for each level.

  • Gold Card (3 rentals in a calendar year) — 10% discount
  • Platinum Card (10 rentals) — Exclusive counter and parking, upgrades when available, and a 15% discount
  • Diamond (by invitation only) — Diamond lounge and VIP service, exclusive counter and parking, guaranteed upgrades, and a 20% discount

Bottom Line: Car rental powerhouse SIXT offers rentals in over 100 countries. The company matches current elite status from hotel, airline, credit card, and competitor car rental loyalty programs. 

Best Credit Cards for Complimentary Car Rental Elite Status

If you currently have elite status and can easily status match to your preferred rental car company, it makes sense to go this route. However, if you want car rental program elite status without a status match, you may find that your credit card offers complimentary status.

Here is a sampling of popular credit cards that come with car rental program elite status that may, in turn, be status matched by a competitor.

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card — Hertz Gold Five Star, National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive
  • United Club℠ Card — Hertz President’s Circle
  • U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card — National Emerald Club Executive, Avis Preferred Plus

Additionally, select World Elite Mastercards come with complimentary Avis Preferred Plus elite status. To find out if your World Elite Mastercard comes with this elite status, register your card here and you’ll find Avis Preferred Plus as one of the benefits offered.

In addition to complimentary elite status, credit cards often offer elite-level benefits in car rental loyalty programs.

Hot Tip: Most car rental loyalty programs will status match the car rental program elite status you have acquired complimentary via your credit card. 

Everything Else You Need To Know

Prior to submitting a request for a car rental program status match, you’ll need to be a member of the program for which you’re requesting a match. You’ll want to include this membership number in your request.

Membership in car rental loyalty programs is free. You can sign up for base membership in the car rental loyalty programs we’ve mentioned in this article here:

Be sure to check for membership requirements prior to joining. Some car rental loyalty programs have age and residency restrictions.

Although some car rental programs do not state how long your granted status will last, the terms and conditions will be spelled out in the confirmation email you receive once your status match is approved.

Final Thoughts

Car rental program status matches are generally not as strict as airline status matches/challenges or hotel program status matches/challenges that tend to limit matches to once in a lifetime.

In addition to matching elite status with other car rental companies, some car rental loyalty programs will match your airline and hotel program status. You could even be approved for a status match with the complimentary elite status you received with your credit card.

If you’ll be renting a vehicle often with 1 car rental company or if you have a lengthy car rental period in your future, it makes sense to request a status match and reap the associated benefits.

Finally, even if a rental car company doesn’t formally offer a status match program, it doesn’t hurt to request one anyway if you have a rental coming up with that company. You could get denied, but you could also receive a “yes!”


The information regarding the United Club℠ Card and U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer. 


Frequently asked questions

Do car rental companies match elite status?

Yes, most major car rental companies will match your current elite status with a competitor car rental company. Some car rental loyalty programs will even match airline or hotel elite status.

How does a car rental program status match work?

If you have elite status with a car rental loyalty program, you may be able to request a matching status to another car rental program.

Normally the granted status match will be for a limited time in which you would need to meet qualifications to have your granted elite status extended beyond that period.

Is car rental elite status worth it?

Yes, it can be worth it if you frequently rent vehicles. Elite status can allow you to bypass the counter both when picking up your rental car and returning it.

You may also qualify for complimentary upgrades, special rental rates, priority customer service, and enhanced reward earnings.

Do I lose my elite status with my current program if I am approved for a status match?

No, your current elite status will stay in place with no change. You will simply receive additional elite status in the new program.

This process works the same whether for an airline, hotel, or car rental program status match.

Christine Krzyszton

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine, who lives in Northern Michigan, travels about 300,000 miles a year despite her remote location. Her expertise is traveling the world on a weekend with no pre-determined destination in mind, letting the cost of the airfare determine where she will go. She has over four million flown miles and elite status on all three major domestic carriers.

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