Cargo Van Rental Comparison: Budget vs Penske Which One Is Better?

Budget and Penske logo

Budget and Penske are large companies that have a different business model. While Budget takes its guidance from the consumer rental model, Penske excels in offering exceptional customer service.

It means that it will be easier to get an online quote using the website of Budget because it is similar to its car rental website.

On the other hand, you may need to talk to customer service before getting a final quote. Following are important details comparing the two companies:



Just like its car rental business, Budget also offers van and truck rental to move your cargo. More than 1,500 locations in the United States ensure that the company is able to guarantee preferred pick-up locations.

There are a lot of great discounts available on the Internet, which supplements the competitive pricing. Budget works with independent contractors, which means that the service level will mostly be determined by individual representatives.

For tech-savvy customers, the company offers a variety of gadgets such as GPS rental that can be used to pinpoint locations.


Penske is a well-known brand in the United States and Canada where it has over 1000 locations. The company is specifically geared towards commercial users; therefore, you may not have heard its name.

Still, its consumer rental unit is very responsive to the needs of individuals. The personalized service is reflected in a detailed website, which offers safety guidelines for driving the large truck.

As for perks, 24/7 emergency roadside assistance is automatically included in the quote.

Due to the focus on personalized service, the final price may be a little higher than competitors, but if you can show them relative prices of other companies, they are always eager to help.



Most experts agree that rental quotes from Budget are one of the lowest in the industry.

Despite the low rates, your final quote will mostly depend on your negotiation skills because every outlet is independently operated.

When making reservations, the company website also states that you are likely to get a better price online instead of calling the outlet or walking there in person.

Three ladies working on a call center

Considering multiple factors integrated into the final quote, it sometimes gets difficult to tell if online prices are really better than walking to the outlet or it’s just a marketing gimmick.

In the end, you may need to do a little investigation yourself.


Penske prices are also extremely competitive. Unlike Budget, it pays off if you can pick up the phone and talk to the company representative about lowering the price.

Just make sure that you are able to abide by your schedule, which means pick up and drops will be charged for a full day if you are late.

In contrast, you can always cancel your reservation in advance if you ever happen to change your mind.

Luckily, there is no charge for canceling the vehicle with a 48 hours notice. Any cancellation during the 48 hour period will incur $100 extra charge.



Just like most companies, Budget also offers insurance separately from the price estimate. You can get a basic idea of the insurance on its website but only the local dealer can tell the exact quote.

According to the website, the rate of insurance will depend on the laws of each State. Usually, there are plenty of options to pick from.

For instance, the collision insurance will pay for the full amount of damage and may cost you around $30 a day.

You can also select liability insurance and insurance for personal and cargo, which are a little less costly than the full insurance coverage.


Penske has detailed insurance information on its website. The company offers limited damage waiver, personal accident insurance, supplemental liability insurance, cargo insurance, and towing insurance.

It is often better to talk to a customer service representative who will be able to guide you on what to insure.

The variety of insurance allows drivers to take only what is required, which means that limited damage waiver and supplemental liability insurance will cover most consumer concerns.

As such, the coverage from these two insurance policies ensures that you cover yourself, your cargo, and anyone who may be affected by your driving.

The Verdict


If you are good at using the Internet, renting trucks and cargo vans from Budget is a breeze. Its intuitive and user-friendly web interface offers streamlined base quotes.

Another advantage is the availability of extras that you can add to your price quote. It means that customers are never pressurized to get what they don’t need.

The web interface also offers hand trucks, furniture pads, and GPS as add-on accessories. The online chat is another great feature to solve your query.

Budget's website

On the downside, customers are not able to cancel their reservation online. If you need to change anything after reservation, their business model encourages customers to speak to the local service outlet to make changes.

In fact, the company could have provided better insurance details, safety instructions for drivers, and streamlined pricing without them bouncing around for answers.


If customer service was the only factor in selecting the best cargo moving company, then Penske would be the first choice.

Despite the fact that it doesn’t have a price quote engine like Budget, their customer service representatives are very knowledgeable and friendly.

Even online agents behind web chats go an extra mile to answer every question. In fact, they may even help you to lower the price without asking.

These nifty details are also found on the website, which offers extensive information to consumers who are concerned about driving the big truck for the first time.

It is the only website that offers a detailed overview of trucks and vans, which helps diminish concerns once consumers learn that these trucks are automatic, and they have the most accessories found in cars.

Perhaps, Penske can improve their services by offering detail pricing as Budget does.