Hello everyone! For my most recent hire car usage I’ve been using Europcar when travelling in Portugal, and was pleased with what was an easy service. Europcar also have a loyalty scheme, called Europcar Privilege so I thought I would write up a review and our classic usual question of if we think the service is worth your time.
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What is Europcar Privilege Club?
Europcar Privilege club is a classic “benefits” as you use it loyalty scheme. Each time you hire a car you’ll be registered as having accumulated both a rental period and rental days. As you use it multiple times, you’ll earn rewards, either for free car usage or other benefits like car upgrades or a free additional driver.
Your rewards are earned through two streams – some (usually the money off vouchers) are earned when simply hitting a number of rentals.
Others are more permanent benefits when reaching a new “tier” of membership within the Europcar Privilege Club program.
How does the Europcar Privilege Club Tier System Work?
As you take more rentals, or rental days you activity will be logged against your account to automatically record your status.
We cover below in further detail what each Tier gets you in terms of benefits – this is just what to need to get there!
- For the basic Privilege Club benefits (which are worth having) you simply need to sign up.
- For Privilege Executive, you need to accumulate 10 rentals or 40 rental days.
- For Privilege Elite, you need to accumulate 25 rentals or 85 rental days.
- For Privilege Elite VIP, you need to accumulate 40 rentals or 130 rental days.
In terms of timings needed – starting your first rental will trigger a 2-year “rental period” to meet the requirements.
What benefits do I get from Europcar Privilege Club?
The specific benefits earned by Europcar Privilege Club members vary depending on what tier level you are – but unlike many loyalty schemes the rewards at the basic level (which you qualify for on signup, you don’t have to have done a rental) are pretty good.
All rewards below are those earned at the basic Privilege Club level
10% off Europcar Bookings made direct
Worth signing up for even if you only plan to use the service one, a booking made with Europcar directly with save 10% on the main website price.
Faster Vehicle Pickup
This sounds a bit of a meaningless reward, but based on my usage in Portugal I would say it’s actually one of the most valuable! There were about 30 people waiting in a queue system at the airport for the car, but when I checked in I found myself at the head of the queue and had my car in 5 minutes. (I did get some looks!)
A £10 or equivalent voucher after your second rental
Whilst not a huge amount, this is a nice benefit that can be obtained pretty quickly and is accessible to leisure travellers not undertaking significant amounts of hire cure usage.
You also earn this coupon once per calendar year, rather than as a one off.
A free weekend on third rental
You’ll get a voucher for a free weekend (a maximum three day rental) after you complete your third rental. This one is quite a generous benefit when you’d make use of a car anyhow.
This is also a benefit you can earn once per calendar year.
What additional benefits do I get from higher tiers of Europcar Privilege Club?
Let’s now look at the benefits of the additional tiers of Europcar Privilege Club. I’d also note that you get an additional “free weekend” voucher at the point you achieve each status upgrade.
A complimentary car upgrade
This is a single level upgrade of your class to car at the Executive Tier and a double upgrade at the Elite and Elite VIP levels. Obviously, this benefit is subject to car availablity.
This is a nice perk in terms of upgrade (although there will be times/places you want a smaller car) – which is worth a fair amount in terms of cash. I’d just note that you cannot use the car upgrade benefit when cashing in a “free weekend” voucher.
Additional Money Off Vouchers
In our notes on the basic tier above we covered the £10 voucher after the 2nd rental. At the higher tiers, those vouchers are slightly more beneficial:
- At the Executive Tier it’s £20 off after your 5th rental.
- At the Elite Tier it’s £30 off after your 5th rental
- At the Elite VIP Tier it’s £30 off after your 4th rental.
A complimentary additional driver (at Elite/Elite VIP)
Exactly what it says on the tin – at Elite/Elite VIP status a complimentary additional driver can be added at no extra charge.
A year priority pass membership (at Elite VIP)
At Elite VIP level you’ll get membership to the priority pass programme, which gets you access to lounges at airports – although these a more general lounges than the airline-specific ones that have the really good perks.
I haven’t been particularly wowed by those I’ve been in but they vary quite a bit – so it may be worth researching and seeing if there’s a particularly good on nearby.
So is Europcar Privilege Club worth it?
Whilst most leisure travellers are unlikely to do enough car hire make it to the higher tiers, we like Europcar Privilege Club because most of the key benefits can actually be found at the basic level, meaning we think it’s a programme well worth signing up for.
The real winners are the discount on booking direct (in my experience to date this was competitive even when trying to hunt for a better deal) and the priority car pickup. If travelling in the busy summer months or to a popular destination, that last one really is a huge time saver. The free weekend offer is also a nice perk.
If you’re a business traveller or hit the elite tiers the various benefits do provide some good extra perks, with the car upgrades and the money off vouchers the highlights.
Other FAQ’s on Europcar Privilege Club
How do I sign up to Europcar Privilege Club?
Is Europcar Privilege Club free to join?
Yes, it’s completely free to sign up for, and you can sign up before doing you’ve done a car rental rather than needing to complete one first.
Can I use the Europcar Privilege Club outside the UK?
Yes, whilst we’ve focused on benefits from a UK side given our location, you can sign up to Europcar Privilege Club anywhere – the money off vouchers and benefits will be in Euros instead in most countries.
Can I use Europcar Privilege Club with Goldcar?
Europcar do have a budget arm run as a separate company called Goldcar.
You cannot earn Europcar Privilege Club credit for any reservations with Goldcar.
We’ve also heard of a number of examples of poor customer service involving GoldCar who have quite a few issues in this space, and so it’s not a company we recommend using despite often being the cheapest option on comparison sites.
Just let us know if you have any questions about using Europcar Privilege Club and we’ll be happy to try and help!