Apps make business travel so much easier. Seriously, what did we do before smartphones? How did we function on the road without the ability to easily check our email, verify flight information, and change our car rentals on the go? There are countless ways a business traveler uses apps to make traveling easier, and the National Car Rental app is no exception.
One of my favorite things to do is swap stories and tricks with fellow business travelers. So I was super excited when National Car Rental asked me to speak to Emerald Club member Tim, who is based out of Raleigh, to hear how their app helps him on his business trips.
Tim is the real deal. He has spent the past four years as a project manager traveling around the US three weeks per month, Monday through Friday. He figures he’s been to just about every state, and spending this much time on the road means he needs things to be as easy and efficient as possible.
With ease in mind, he tries to find airlines, hotels, and rental car companies that allow him to bypass the counter, minimizing lines and time standing around waiting for people to fill out paperwork. This is just one of the reasons why he loves the National Car Rental app. He’s used it for over a year, and says that it’s “so convenient to be able to do something when you’re not in front of a computer, and as a frequent traveler, I spend a lot of time away from my computer.”
The most useful function for Tim is, of course, simply renting on the go. “If you’re on a bus or plane and you forgot to rent your car you can just pull your phone out and do it without a problem. I can do whatever I want, whenever I need.” He also uses the app frequently to check the details of his current and future rentals. “When you reserve a car, the times are pretty precise. Sometimes you return an hour later than planned and get charged for an extra day! With the National Car Rental app, I can easily pull up the details of my rental so I know what time I need to return.”
On his travel days Tim likes to get to the airport about two hours early, just in case. This gives him time to relax at the airport before his flight. Once he arrives at his destination, he hits the ground running. “I get off the plane, pick up my bag, then head to the car rentals. With National I don’t have to go to the counter. I just choose my car and show my ID as I leave. Saves so much time once I land!”
When I asked him what type of car he usually chooses, he laughed. “I’m tall, so I like big cars.” He prefers a Chevy Tahoe, Buick Enclave, or GMC Acadia, although he has been known to choose the occasional pick-up truck. “It’s great that I can choose whatever car I want as an Emerald Club member.” Aside from choosing any car on the Emerald Aisle, another favorite perk of Emerald Club membership is choosing his reward: either free rental days or his favorite frequent traveler program.
One of Tim’s favorite app features is the Virtual Aisle, which allows you to choose your vehicle on the app at locations where the Emerald Aisle isn’t available. Anything that makes it easier and more efficient for frequent travelers!
Other features of the app include:
- Easily make reservations
- Get information about your upcoming rentals
- Access past reservations
- Redeem rewards
- Update your profile
- See how close you are to your next reward (or the next level of status, if you’re anything like me!)
At the end of our conversation, I asked Tim what his best tip for new business travelers is. “Give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport!” he said. “Missing your flight just isn’t worth saving a few minutes.” I totally agree–when you are first starting to travel for work, make sure you leave plenty of time for travel, including at the airport and once you arrive at your destination. As you travel more, you get better at navigating potential travel pitfalls so you require less of a time buffer. Your tools, including apps like the National Car Rental app, can certainly help with that!
National compensated Road Warriorette for this post. All opinions expressed are her own.
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