Even if you only rent a car once in a blue moon, join the rental car rewards programs. They give you benefits such as upgrades, free rentals, and other perks. Sixt Rent a Car Rewards Cards is a fairly straightforward program. It’s an easy way to advance in status.
The German rental firm Sixt is unlike most other major rental companies. Drive past one of their locations, and you might see the usual vehicles such as Chevrolets, Fords, and Nissans. But you’ll also likely to see luxury cars from Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, and Mercedes-Benz. The goal of the company is to provide a differentiated experience for consumers.
Hertz’s idea of a premium car might be a Chevy Impala or Nissan Maxima. Sixt would consider a premium car to be a Mercedes-Benz CLA.. Sixt status can mean you can upgrade to a vehicle that you’d never find at other rental car companies. Best of all, you could do it without paying a fee.
Sixt Rent a Car Rewards Cards
With Sixt Rent a Car Rewards Cards, the basic level of the program is Express Sixt. You can store profile information, speed the rental process and collect frequent flyer miles or hotels points.
It would be a lot better if Sixt stored your frequent flyer account information in your Express Sixt profile. Membership lets you skip counter time. But Sixt doesn’t store a frequent flyer number, so you essentially have to stop at the counter if you want to collect the points. Given the hassle, it’s better to chase the cars rather than the miles.
The company supposedly lets Express Sixt members escape “rental formalities,” but that has not been our experience with United States rentals, even at the higher status levels.
Gold Sixt is where the program starts to shine. To hit Gold Sixt status, you need three or more rentals within the United States each year (or five or more rentals for non-U.S. residents). Along with the minimal benefits of Sixt Express, perks include a free additional driver on United States rentals
Americans get a shortcut to reaching Platinum status more easily than drivers in other parts of the world. Residents of the U.S. (and five other countries) can attain Platinum Sixt status after just 10 rentals per year. That’s compared to the standard of 20 rentals required in the rest of the world.
With Platinum Sixt, you get all the lower status benefits plus one more. In the United States, Platinum Sixt entitles you to a double-upgrade on what Sixt deems a “normal” car if there’s availability at the time of pickup. In the rest of the world, Platinum Sixt members are only entitled to a single upgrade if there’s availability. Given the types of vehicles available at Sixt, a double-upgrade could create a fantastic rental experience, You could go from, say, a VW Eos convertible to a Chevrolet Camaro RS convertible.
Tip: There’s a shortcut to getting to Platinum status. At the very bottom of the Platinum Sixt page, there’s a link to “Sign Up”.While the program requires 10 or more rentals, Sixt also offers an instantaneous status match to people who enroll in the Sixt loyalty program and already hold status in another program. So, for example, your National Executive Elite status can be instantly matched by attaching a screen capture to your enrollment form. (Note that you can hit that National status through rentals or through a credit card member benefit if you have an American Express Platinum or MasterCard World Elite card.
The Biggest Drawback
Many renters would quibble with Sixt’s interpretation of “Unlimited Miles.” Published in the reservation rules and in the contracts provided by Sixt, the company limits the geographic region where you are allowed to take its vehicles. There is a “4-hour mobility guarantee” which ensures that a customer will never take a vehicle more than four hours from one of the limited Sixt locations.
Depending on where you are heading, this rule may or may not impact your trip. If you rent a car from Sixt in Florida, you can take that vehicle anywhere in Florida, Alabama or Georgia—that’s it. If Sixt finds out (through GPS, a traffic citation, mechanical breakdown, or accident) that you took the vehicle outside this tri-state area, you’re on the hook for a fee of 50 cents for every mile driven. The only exception is if a reservation is explicitly made as a one-way rental. It goes without saying that you should not choose Sixt for a long, multi-state road trip or cross-country vacation.
The upshot: If you’re planning a vacation within a state or two, Sixt and its loyalty program are worth considering. Once you hit Gold Sixt level, the free additional driver is a nice perk, and at Platinum Sixt level, the multiple upgrade is a fun, cost-saving benefit.