About Turo

You’ve always dreamed of cruising Route 66 — just not in a standard sedan. Enter Turo: This peer-to-peer carsharing service is kind of like AirBnb, except instead of allowing hosts to offer spare rooms, you can transform your idling assets into an earning machine.

For folks who are in need of wheels, Turo works to differentiate itself from the standard car rental service by promising you your pick of the lot. Whether it's an F-150 truck to help out on moving day, a Tesla for a luxurious weekend away, or a classic VW bus for a picture-perfect road trip, Turo claims to help travelers rent the car and own the adventure.

However, anyone who’s ever rented a car the knows the process comes with its fair share of hoops. Who hasn’t fretted over whether or not to buy full coverage or wondered if they missed a scratch during the initial walk around?

Let’s take a closer look to see if Turo really offers enough support to hand over keys or get you into the driver’s seat.

How To Rent a Car With Turo

With a presence in over 2,500 cities and 300 airports, the chances are that there’s an opportunity to rent with Turo wherever you’re traveling stateside.

Why would you choose Turo? They claim to offer:

  • Choice: Hundreds of unique cars for every occasion and every budget.
  • Value: The car you want, when and where you want it, at up to 30% less than traditional agencies.
  • Accessibility: The chance to book cars from home or on the go.

Feeling revved up? Here’s how Turo works.

First, you’ll need to sign up for Turo with Facebook, Google, or your email. They need to confirm your identity and eligibility so you can become an approved driver, so you might want to take this step before arriving.

Using either Turo’s app or their website, you enter your travel dates and location for locally owned cars. Once you find a set of wheels you like, you’ll have to request to rent it. The owner can either confirm or decline your request within eight hours. However, some vehicles are available immediately, thanks to a “Book Instantly” badge.

Turo claims that picking up your rental is easy, promising that many owners will deliver their vehicle to you. More so, Turo claims all you have to do is “walk around the car, show them your license, grab the keys, and drive off into the sunset.”

When you’re done? Replace the gas you’ve used, do-si-do one more walk around, and hand over the keys before planning your next adventure.

Your Responsibilities As a Turo Renter

Turo doesn’t require you to have your own insurance. Instead, they offer renters three choices to cover their physical damage obligations:

  • “Premium” Package: The renter’s out-of-pocket exposure is limited to payment of a deductible of $500. When damage is reported, the renter will be charged $500. If the total costs are less than $500, the renter will be refunded the difference.
  • Basic” Package: The renter’s out-of-pocket exposure is limited to a payment of a deductible of $3000 under the same structure described in the Premium package.
  • “Decline Coverage” Package: The renter’s financial responsibility is essentially unlimited, and is bounded only by the actual cash value of the car, plus all related costs. This means that if the car is lost, stolen, or damaged so extensively that the expected cost of repairs exceeds 75% of the actual cash value, the renter is responsible to pay the entire actual cash value of the car.

Those considering renting with Turo are encouraged to view their entire explanation of insurance and protection provisions here. Additionally, if you already have auto insurance, you’re generally covered for any physical damage or liability claims that you’re responsible for — even if you don’t own the vehicle. Of course, you should always check with your carrier before renting a car.

Note that because Turo isn’t considered a valid car rental service by many credit card companies, the coverage you might normally expect from your Visa or Mastercard may not apply.

Fine print aside, what responsibilities does a Turo renter really take on?

Much like AirBnb or Uber, Turo is based on the trust implicit in today’s growing sharing economy. Basically: You break it, you pay for it.

That means that if your Turo rental gets a flat tire, you’re responsible for fixing it — unless you can prove that the flat is the result of a defect or preexisting excessive wear.

It also means that renters are encouraged to get photo-happy with tons of “before” pics when getting the keys, since you can be held responsible for any pre-existing damage that wasn’t documented at the start of your trip.

Again, we’re assuming you’re not here to read through a thorough rundown of Turo’s fine print. So, if you’re considering car sharing through their service, we recommend studying their coverage FAQs before deciding if the service is right for you.

How To Share Your Car With Turo

Is your car collecting dust? Turo claims that a car with a market value of $18,000 could earn an owner $5,781 over 15 days of sharing per month. Sure, that estimate is averaged over a year, but Turo says they have the data to back it up.

If that potential extra income caught your attention, here’s the three ways Turo lets you earn:

  • Local pickup: You can enjoy the convenience of renting your car right out of your own driveway.
  • Deliver your car: Or earn even more by meeting guests at nearby airports and other local locations.
  • Park and earn: Drivers willing to leave their car at San Francisco (SFO) and Los Angeles (LAX) airports for two weeks at a time can earn at least a guaranteed extra $425 a month.

How it works is fairly straightforward: You create a listing for your spare car, respond to requests, meet at your chosen location, then “kick back and earn.”

Of course, Turo’s claims of easy pocket cash sounds hunky dory. But, what happens if someone takes a wrong turn into Risky Business territory with your immaculately maintained pride and joy?

Turo offers car owners coverage with a $1 million insurance policy. This includes protection against physical damage up to your car’s actual cash value for collision and most “comprehensive” causes, including theft.

This is good, because most personal lines auto insurance companies specifically exclude livery and rentals from coverage. And, if they find out you’re regularly renting your car, it can be grounds for terminating your policy—a decision that could come back to haunt you when you’re shopping around for replacement coverage (most applications ask, “Has your coverage ever been canceled or declined for underwriting reasons?”).

Heck, Turo even offers you up to $30 a day should your car get into an accident while being rented out — plus the promise that they’ll be there to guide you every step of the way.

But, what about the legality of renting out your car? Some might find Turo’s answer less reassuring. Essentially, there’s no law against doing so, but this probably wouldn’t be a risk that most standard personal lines auto carriers would knowingly insure. Turo leaves the final liability resting on your shoulders.

What Are People Saying About Turo?

Turo has a little under 700 Yelp reviews from users in their two main hubs, San Francisco and Los Angeles. In both locations, Turo averages four out of five stars.

However, that isn’t to say that those who’ve used Turo don’t have their fair share of negative feedback. In fact, if you look at Turo’s Los Angeles reviews, it’s a wonder that they scraped above a single star, given that the first page is almost exclusively complaints.

Bad reviews almost exclusively revolve around poor experiences with Turo’s customer service. Here are some highlights:

  • Johnny R. (12/22/15): Owner states that his car was returned with damage and that Turo refused to cover repairs.
  • Paul K. (1/26/16) Renter states that he was charged for cleaning when it wasn’t needed and he was left with an overall impression that Turo squeezes pennies out at every opportunity.
  • Michael C. (11/18/2015) Renter states that he used Turo without a problem, but found his account put on hold afterward and couldn’t reach customer service for an answer — up to seven days later.

Those reviews aren’t cherry picked, either — they’re one after another on page one of Turo’s Los Angeles Yelp page.

Should You Use Turo For Car Sharing?

On one hand, Wired points out that the horror stories we used to associate with peer-to-peer sharing are becoming much less prevalent. “We now worry about Airbnb’s effect on real-estate markets, or whether Uber has undue influence over local governments.”

However, sharing a car comes with far more liabilities than renting out a spare apartment!

While Turo’s concept sounds great, reviews give a solid impression that they have a few more kinks to iron out before providing a desirable service.

For owners considering sharing, realize that it’s not just the market value of your vehicle that you’re putting on the line. Despite their catchy messaging and fun-for-all attitude, it appears that they skirt over some of the more serious legal ramifications of sharing your car.

What if the driver seriously injures or, heaven forbid, kills someone in an accident? What if they drive drunk? A 1 million policy doesn’t begin to cover some of those worst-case scenarios, and Turo’s it’s-up-to-you attitude regarding legalities isn’t very reassuring.

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176 Consumer Reviews for Turo

Average Consumer Rating: 2.8
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 77 4 star: 0 3 star: 2 2 star: 3 1 star:  94
Bottom Line: 45% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 176
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  • Better than renting a car from a rental company

    • Chicago, IL,
    • Jun 19, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    The people who are lending their cars are friendly, trustworthy, and professional, and communicate readily with you. You don't feel like a number! The cars are closer by to where you actually live, and it's very convenient time-wise. You set your schedule.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Highly recommend

    • Chicago, IL,
    • Jun 9, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I love my experience! Easy to navigate, I had no problems at all. I highly recommend Turo for anyone looking to rent a car. No more Enterprise or those other rental companies. The ease of browsing through to find the car was exceptional. It guides me step by step when meeting the owner gave me options of taking pics of the car put the mileage in communicating to the owner through the app. I love it and will be renting again.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Keeps me rolling!

    • District Of Columbia, United States,
    • Jun 1, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Most would say when it's to good to be true it's a scam, but Turo is the real deal. I have nothing but the best and most convenient experience, and the options are plenty. I used to want to bargain with my neighbors when I didn't have a car to haul when I first started my business, so I'm grateful that someone has the knowledge to create such app to provide me the means to keep it rolling!

    Thank you kindly!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Woeful customer service

    • Chicago, IL,
    • May 31, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I rented an A7 - the owner was a pleasure, communicative, proactive, everything could have hoped for.

    The car was fine, until we had to put on AC on a day when the temperatures hit 97 degrees F - the AC didn't work! It was like driving around in a black greenhouse! Completely ruined our day as we were soaked in sweat to arrive for what was meant to be a romantic weekend. My girlfriend's hair looked like a rats nest since we had to have the windows open to get any sort of cooling.

    Turo support didn't respond over the weekend and then said to figure it out with the owner. They offered a $25 voucher as an apology.

    While we were lucky it was only a problem with the AC and didn't put our health at risk, I couldn't imagine what would have happened if it was something serious.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • Great service

    • Texas,
    • May 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Turo provides an amazing budget rental program which caters to all clientele. The host options seem very good and protective of their vehicles and the renters get great options for vehicle rentals.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Scammed owner

    • Michigan,
    • May 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I am a Turo vehicle owner based in Michigan. In March 2018, a guest booked a trip with my vehicle. However, he didn't return on the supposed return date. My vehicle was reported stolen initially but later announced totaled.

    Upon investigation from Turo, it was found that the person who booked has used a fake ID and committed identity theft and fake credit cards. Turo's verification methods failed to put me and my family under risks as I had my home address listed where a criminal had access to it. They have been dragging me over two months by not compensating me correctly in multiple ways from providing me a rental vehicle after three weeks since the accident to lowballing the actual vehicle value to 70% of the market value. I had to make multiple visits to the police station, car tow yard, body shops spending my own money. I have to take off from work missing my pay.

    While insurance companies have the obligation to settle a claim in 30 days, Turo has dragged this process over a strenuous two months by responding to one email every three days. This has changed me and my family's lives upside down and has caused me physical, mental and emotional stress. I wanted to pursue legal action against them. It's the worst company I have ever dealt with in my entire life and all Turo car owners need to be careful with them.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • Most convenient

    • Massachusetts,
    • May 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Everything was as easy as pie (for some that might not be that easy), this was easy as anything could be. From pick up to drop off, not a problem at all. I got a flat tire but that was my fault, and I changed it in 10 minutes and had it replaced the next day. I would recommend this over car rental places any day of the week. Try it, you'll like it.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Positivity

    • Landsdowne, PA,
    • May 25, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    My experience with Turo has been great. Great communication and cooperation. I would recommend this to a friend. It is hard, however, to find low prices. The cars mostly that I found were rather expensive. Maybe it’s my budget. I think it’s a great way to rent a car without the hassles of a regular rental car agency. I would love to see more cars in my area with free delivery. Taking Uber to the car adds on to the price. I plan to continue to use Turo again and again.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Excellent

    • Miami, FL,
    • May 23, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    The appointment was on time and convenient. The owner of the vehicle was very efficient and polite. Overall service and pricing were much better than I expected. It exceeded my expectations and made my Miami trip an easy process.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Wonderful experience

    • San Diego, CA,
    • May 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    At first, I was highly unsure if this company would be legit. I read only great or horrible reviews, but I decided to take a chance. I booked a 2008 Prius for over a week at an impressive rate. I also paid an additional $8 per day because I'm under 25. Overall the trip for 8 days was just over $300. I was again worried that it was a scam because of the low price. The pickup was easy, and the owner I rented from was so understanding when I got caught in traffic. The process to get the car (like the process to drop off the car) was quick and easy. We both took pictures of the car (front, sides, back, interior, etc.) and I was on my way. I had absolutely no issues and would definitely rent from Turo again.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Best car yet!

    We've used Turo a handful of times, and love the flexibility in cars to choose from, great prices, and customer service. This trip was definitely our favorite yet! We rented a 2017 Fiat Spider for the curvy mountain roads around Lake Tahoe and had an absolute BLAST. The car was sporty but comfortable, and Nick the owner was SO great to work with! A true professional! We can't wait to drive our next Turo car and will definitely rent from Nick the next time we're in Lake Tahoe!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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