Looks like Hertz is introducing a new benefit for Amex Platinum cardholders. Since the default level has always been Hertz Gold, and that has slowly gone from $50/year to free, this isn’t really a benefit of any sort anymore; so it seems that they have opened up the ability to upgrade to Gold Five Star – a level that typically requires 10 rentals in a calendar year.
It has been possible for non-US residents to eke their way into this by getting a National Exec membership through a US Platinum link that seemed to work fine for Canadians as well, and then status-matching to Gold Five Star, but that’s a pretty convoluted way – so it becoming a benefit is a great thing.
Some of the benefits are: 10% more Hertz points, free additional driver, upgrades as available. This is obviously on top of the usual 15% discount on the Amex CDP (or the Amex Centurion (“black card”) 20% off), one-class upgrade and a four-hour grace return, which is an absolutely awesome benefit: if you time your rental just right, it can save you a full day, which is a huge deal.
I prefer Hertz over other rental firms since they have much more fun cars to drive. Besides the Prestige collection, which I usually avoid since they refuse to let me have discounts on them (come on, that $1K/day Bentley in SFO probably been sitting on the lot for months, except when the location owner drives it!), the Adrenaline collection, with Camaro SSs, convertible Corvettes and so on can be had on the cheap if you upgrade at the airport (see my earlier post about it). $80 for a convertible Corvette on a nice sunny day? Yes, please.
Thanks to Head for points for the write-up. The link for a sign-up to Hertz Gold is here. It is unclear whether you sign up directly for Five Star level or not, so you might have to subsequently phone Hertz for the account upgrade.