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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431 Consumer Reviews for Turo

Average Consumer Rating: 3.7
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 273 4 star: 20 3 star: 4 2 star: 10 1 star:  124
Bottom Line: 69% would recommend it to a friend
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  • Editor’s Note: It is our understanding that this company has been asking its customers to leave feedback on HighYa. We assure you that each of these reviews has still been subjected to the same verification & vetting process that all submitted reviews go through. Learn More Here
  • Super easy experience

    • Miami Beach, FL,
    • Jan 16, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    What a ride! Fun little Mini and owner extremely flexible and kind. Will rent that little red car very soon again.

    Awesome communicator. The owner responded quickly. Car very clean and the trunk has everything you could need in an emergency. Jumper cables, tire inflator, and motor oil, as well as AAA.

    Great first-time experience.

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

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  • Ski trip to Breckenridge, Colorado

    • California,
    • Jan 16, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    The 2018 Dodge Journey we rented from Peyton was perfect for our trip to Breckenridge from Denver International Airport. The all-wheel drive was flawless over the icy mountain passes. We did not have to wait long for the shuttle from the airport to the off-site parking a few miles away. The Fine Airport Parking was a very nice facility. Free water bottles, coffee, snacks, and even roses were available while we waited for our car. There were no issues or surprise charges. Communication with Peyton was available whenever we had a question. We were running late on our return trip to the airport due to heavy snow over the passes, so we did not have time to top off the gas tank. The facility filled up our tank with premium fuel after we had left for the airport in the shuttle. We were charged a very reasonable amount for the fill-up which saved us enough time to make it to the gate right as our group was boarding. We would definitely rent from Turo again.

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

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  • Good experience. We would use Turo again!

    • Seattle, WA,
    • Jan 15, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    It's about two thirds the price of an average Hertz/Enterprise rental and pretty smooth - it is the Airbnb experience for car rentals.

    Our experience could have been better if we understood beforehand what the check-in process would be like when we picked up the cars. In my opinion, that is the biggest improvement that could be made by Turo.

    In a rushed environment, like an airport pickup spot, it is almost impossible to do a thorough check and take pictures of a car while others are waiting for you (and honking at you).

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

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  • Minor inconvenience

    • Honolulu, HI,
    • Jan 15, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I used the "Book Instantly" feature to arrange for transportation on the day of my arrival in Honolulu. When we landed the host notified me that his car had apparently had all or several of the tires popped by the previous renter and that it wouldn’t be available during the requested period. He suggested that I cancel and look for another booking.

    I had to call Turo because the app was going to make me forfeit $180 due to no fault of mine.

    They graciously handled the cancellation and offered a $25 credit as well. The credit was issued to the app and not refunded directly to me. I couldn’t find a rental available for the afternoon of my arrival and was forced to Uber to my destination (more than the value of the credit).

    I was able to find a suitable rental the following day. It was in worse cosmetic condition than pictured and had no A/C, but I didn’t have too much time left and didn’t want to keep playing the Turo waiting game.

    Overall I would rate this experience a 6/10 whereas my past experiences have all been 9 or 10 out of 10. Based on this experience alone, I would not recommend Turo. Based on my previous experiences then obviously the answer would be yes. I like crowd sharing opportunities.

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

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  • Horrible customer support and services!

    • Newport Beach, CA,
    • Jan 15, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Asking to provide driving records from DMV (my record is spotless except handicap driver) and so many different "verification" process. I chatted and spoke with eight customer support and fail to rent a car and wasted the whole day. Why, they asked, if I’m the only driver so many times? Because of handicap status? Horrible customer support. Worst of all, Frank from the Verification Department keeps talking over me and has the rudest manner to the customer! Turo Customer Support was the worst and the most stressful experiences I ever had. I just rented a car from Enterprise. They picked us up and never asked for driving records! It had potential, but I will never use Turo again.

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

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  • Turo rookie

    • Annapolis, MD,
    • Jan 13, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I used Turo for a recent trip to Denver. We were able to get a better rental car, with a better experience, for far less than what the regular car rental agencies were charging. Our car even came with a ski rack - which was perfect for our needs.

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

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  • Simple process

    • Long Beach, CA,
    • Jan 11, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    From setting up an account on the app to securing a ride, the Turo app, the entire process is made clear, quick, and easy. I’m definitely using the service again! The cars are just as modern as those you’ll find on the rental fleet, yet you get the ability to choose what you drive not just be at the mercy of what’s available at the time.

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

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  • Overcharged

    • Newport Beach, CA,
    • Jan 10, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had an agreement with the provider to turn the car in early. He did not approve the changes before it expired. Has not returned my messages about a one day refund.

    Turo’s policy of not assisting with refunds if the request expires put the renter at a disadvantage - Turo should have a policy to review cases where renter agrees but fails to honor the change by simply neglecting to approve via the Turo app.

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

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  • Worst car rental experience ever, would give zero star if I could

    • Chicago, IL,
    • Jan 10, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    We recently had our first experience with Turo, and it turned out to be the worst car rental experience ever. I personally will not return to Turo anymore, and definitely will not recommend people using it either, because compared to using regular car rental business, renting a car from Turo requires you to be extra cautious, so as not to fall into all kinds of hidden traps.

    1. Before our reservation started, we've paid an $80 car delivery fee to the owner. We assumed this $80 would cover him to bring us the car. However, after we got into the car, we found that the owner had left this car at a paying parking lot. We had no choice but to pay for his parking ticket ($17) so that we could start our trip. Otherwise, we would be stuck in the parking lot forever. We complained immediately, and the owner replied to us that it was just how it is. Apparently that $80 we paid him before-hand for the car delivery went into the drain.

    2. After the trip finished, we received a notice from the owner, saying that he needed to charge us $50 for car cleaning. He uploaded a bunch of photos which he took of all kinds of ridiculous place inside and outside of his car. These places included a) the roof of the car, where there is a tiny drop of bird crap, b) the buckle slots of safety belts, where there is dust stuck inside due to years of collection, c) seams of front and back seats where there are dusty sediment clearly due to many years of driving, and d) all carpets with normal amount of dust on. Based on all these ridiculous and laughable photos, Turo took this $50 from us. However, based on what they have on their website, we would only be responsible for a cleaning fee if we a) stained or split his car, b) left animal hair, or c) smoked in his car.

    We disputed to Turo, pointed out that these photos from the owner are misleading and malicious, and that we only used his car normally. Turo asked us to prove that we only used his car normally by uploading before and after photos, which is impossible for us. Since this was our first time using Turo, it never occurred to us that we would need to take before and after photos. I wonder how many people would take before and after photos when staying in an Airbnb, or rent a car from a standard car rental.

    3. The owner described the car as "like new," however, the car makes a loud noise when driving. Since it was still drivable, we didn't say anything, only because we didn't want to go through the trouble and ruin our trip. When the cleaning fee came to us after the trip, I called Turo customer service to dispute, and during the call I mentioned this deceiving description of the car listed by the owner, the Turo customer service manager (named Eric) accused me of lying, because according to his logic, if this was a real problem, I should have filed a complaint during the trip, not after.

    After this hell experience with Turo, I realized how carefree I could be when I used to rent cars from those standard car rental companies. Renting on Turo is not carefree at all. I went through tons of upsetting hassles during and after my trip, and they were painful and time-wasting. If you want to give it a try, make sure to actively collect evidence to protect yourself during your trip, because you'll need them to fight back in the subsequent unreasonable charges. So either be extra careful or just stay away from Turo.

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

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  • Great experience

    • California,
    • Jan 8, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    This was my first time using Turo. It was a great experience and alternative to your traditional car rental. Scott helped me getting into the car and out on the road quickly, after taking of a series of pictures of the condition of the car. The car also only had 5,000 miles on it and was essentially brand new. Dropping off was just as easy, I was even able to drop it off a couple of hours early. I will recommend and use again!

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

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  • Easy renting

    • Minneapolis, MN,
    • Jan 7, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    We were first-time renters, and this worked great for us! The car ran well and fit five of us just fine (tight with luggage even though we’re light packers). John was very responsive and answered all of our questions. He’s super helpful. The location is a bit tucked away; we used Waze to guide us because it just didn’t work well on Google Maps to find it. The car has a USB port tucked into the console and you have to hunt for it. The driver’s cup holder is across the dash. Never did figure out the cruise control. Otherwise, we were completely satisfied. Thanks, John!

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

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