GOBanking Rates Score
Quick setting: Turo is a peer-to-peer car-sharing company that allows individuals to rent their vehicle to other drivers online or through its app. Available in over 7,500 cities, Turo has grown in popularity as the car rental industry continues to face pandemic-related challenges.
- Rental process
- Income potential for hosts
- Costs for guests
How did we calculate this?
- Usually cheaper than renting a car
- Cost effective for hosts/car owners
- A range of insurance options
- High vehicle requirements for hosts
- Only available in certain metropolitan areas
- Interior wear of the vehicle not covered
If you’ve tried renting a car lately, you’ve probably run into some bad luck – or at least sky-high prices. That’s because we live in the age of the great “carpocalypse,” the result of a few factors, including a global chip shortage. Car-sharing company Turo was around long before the pandemic hit, but due to these related challenges, it gained popularity and even filed for an IPO last January.
Currently the largest car-sharing marketplace in the world, Turo allows car owners to rent their cars to drivers and let drivers reserve cars. The service is available in metropolitan areas of the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, and offers an ever-expanding range of vehicle choices (currently over 1,300 makes and models): from rugged trucks to state-of-the-art Teslas. Car rides start at $25 per day.
Turo received a score of 4.7 from GOBankingRates based on the following characteristics.
Turo could not facilitate the rental process for customers. All you have to do is download the app (or go to the Turo online site), log in and select the type of car you’re looking for (it could be a Ferrari or of a Honda — the options are many). Then you enter your location, the date you need the car, and sift through the thousands of cars for rent from local hosts.
Then you book your trip, select a protection plan and voila, you’re good to go. You can either have the car driven to you or pick it up directly from the host. You have 24 hours to cancel your trip free of charge.
Income potential for hosts
The amount a host receives per trip depends entirely on the Turo protection/insurance plan they choose. We have detailed the protection plans below.
You can get a pretty good estimate of what you can earn renting your car using the Turo ‘Carculator’. You plug in your region and your car’s current price range and find out what you can earn on an annual basis with Turo. For example, in the greater Los Angeles area, a Tesla Model 3 with an estimated vehicle value of $37,113 has an annualized return on investment of 108.1%. Annual car loan payments are $7,473, and by using Turo you can earn $15,547 per year, which is about double the value of your annual loan.
Keep in mind that your vehicle must not be more than 12 years old (with the exception of “specialist” vehicles) and must have less than 130,000 miles.
Penalty fees for hosts who violate Turo policies are huge, so give them a good read.
Costs for guests
The cost of a trip depends on a few things, including the car, protection plan, and whether you add any extra features. Additional charges may apply if you reserve a vehicle through a commercial host.
Turo does a good job of itemizing all charges for the customer and is widely considered cheaper than renting a car.
Penalty fees for guests who violate Turo policies are as complex as those for hosts; read them carefully.
What makes Turo perhaps most trustworthy (besides its extreme transparency regarding services and fees) are its mandatory insurance plans. There are several insurance options that hosts can choose from to protect their vehicles. Each plan comes with its own respective fees which the host absorbs. Here is an overview of each option:
- Diet 60: This plan offers the highest level of protection, including $750,000 in liability insurance, 100% reimbursement by Turo of eligible damage costs, reimbursement for exterior wear and tear and loss of accommodation income during vehicle repair (or a $50 per day replacement car reimbursement) for up to 10 days. With this plan, hosts take home 60% of the price of each trip.
- Diet 75: This plan offers $750,000 liability insurance, a $250 deductible, and a replacement car of $30 per day for up to 10 days. Hosts earn 75% of the trip price with this plan.
- The 80 diet: This plan provides liability insurance of $750,000 and a deductible of $750. Hosts take home 80% of the tour price.
- Diet 85: This plan provides liability insurance of $750,000 and a deductible of $1,625. Turo pays 100% of eligible damage costs above the deductible and hosts pocket 85% of the trip price.
- The 90 diet: The highest risk plan offered by Turo has a deductible of $2,500 and liability insurance of $750,000. Hosts take home 90% of the tour price.
Hosts should use one of Turo’s insurance options and not rely on their own coverage unless they have commercial rental insurance. As a guest, however, you can use your own insurance.
What makes Turo unique
Turo brings a personal touch to its business — something you don’t get from a car rental company or other car-sharing companies — similar to how Airbnb brings an element of homey warmth to its listings. It stands out from other car sharing services by allowing customers to be very specific in what they want from a vehicle. You can rent everything from Volvos to Teslas and if you’re in a big city, you can probably find the car you want (or close to it) within a few miles, much like you would locate an Uber. You certainly can’t get that kind of on-the-go convenience with a traditional car rental company.
Zipcar is another player in the anti-car rental space, if you will, and allows drivers to reserve a car on demand. With Zipcar, consumers always rent from a commercial company, which makes it very different from Turo. Consumers looking for a more laid-back, human experience would likely prefer Turo over Zipcar.
Another leading player in this space, Getaround, was founded in 2009. The digital car-sharing market allows drivers to book from a wide range of vehicles. It’s all being hailed as contactless, so customers do everything in the app and then pick up the car without meeting its owner or anyone else. It lacks the warm, familiar vibe you can get with Turo – but for some, that cool, high-tech approach may be preferable.
How to start
To start using Turo, potential customers need to create an account and then follow all the steps listed (have your driver’s license handy). In at least 24 hours you will be verified/approved. You will see your approval status on your account home page.
Once approved, you can begin your search for the perfect ride near you.
Who Turo is best for
Turo is best suited for people looking to make money from their car, as it earns some hosts about $1,000 per month, on average, depending on factors like their region and vehicle type. which they have. It’s also ideal for drivers who’d rather not go the traditional (and often absurdly expensive) route of renting a car from a commercial car rental company, especially if they’re open to renting a car. an older, unsophisticated model.
Remember that Turo has very strict requirements, but strangely not when it comes to interior wear and tear, which is not covered by its protection plans. That doesn’t make it ideal for hosts who want to protect their vehicle’s interior – or guests who care about that sort of thing.
The idea of renting your car to (or from) strangers can be scary, but Turo makes it easy (with its user-friendly app) and safe (in the form of solid protection plans and extreme transparency). For car owners looking to earn extra money on their vehicles and for drivers who want to spend less on car rentals, Turo can be a smart choice.
The long list of fine printouts on CVS receipts regarding penalty charges is tedious to sift through, making Turo perhaps too complicated for hosts and potential guests to learn more about; That said, the maze of rules makes the company extremely transparent and could help weed out irresponsible users and ultimately make Turo even more trustworthy.
- Where do you pick up your rental car?
- You can choose where to pick up your car, or the car can be driven to meet you.
- Where do you return your rental?
- You must return your car to the same place where you picked it up.
- How to list your car for rent on Turo?
- You need a lot of information to list your car on Turo, and you can read the full details on their website. To get started, you must be 21 or older, have valid auto insurance, and provide various exterior and interior photos of the vehicle.
Information is accurate as of August 13, 2022.
Editorial note: This content is not provided by any entity covered by this article. Any opinions, analyses, criticisms, evaluations, or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, endorsed, or otherwise endorsed by any entity named in this article.