When are “subject to availability” upgrades actually available?

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  • Anonymous


    I recently became an AVIS preferred FIRST customer having rented quite a few times recently via AvisBA.(usually to get the 2nd driver free)

    Being a Preferred FIRST customer entitles me to a 1 group upgrade. (but SUBJECT TO AVAILABILITY)

    The last 3 times I rented the people there had prepared my documents and did not give me an upgrade.

    I enquired “why not” and was then upgraded on each of the 3 occasions. (cars were available in the next higher group)

    It seems that Avis will do everything to not give you one. Anyone with simliar experience?


    Yes. You have to be “firm but friendly” with Avis in order to get the upgrade.

    Of course if you’re preferred, your car is often pre-allocated in the garage and so you don’t need to go to the desk to pick up any documents, but I always try and do this, as haggling for an upgrade can be worth it on longer trips.

    I used to find http://www.avisba.com less than stellar value, but they seem to have upped their game, particularly for rentals of five days for specific car classes (though the booking engine is still terrible, as it’s not easy to see these deals).

    Use code N744400 for the best deals, and http://www.quidco.com/avis also works (sometimes).


    Only ever had one issue here in the US – normally upgrades go through automatically and in the US there is the exchange row for an intermediate or above.

    The one time I had an issue they tried to sell me an upgrade to an SUV then handed me the keys to a Fiat 500. When I questioned it I was given the “subject to availabliity” BS and he couldn’t understand why I didn’t accept that (despite it being 10 seconds since he’d tried to sell me that car)!


    Thanks VK and Geordie!

    I’ve found that Avis BA are now almost the best rates although I often check Hertz and europcar.

    Having the immetiate rental station in T5 is great (advantage of BAEC Gold) and their 1 Way Fees are now well priced, hence they get my business.

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