The World's Best Car-Rental Companies in 2016

National Car Rental
Photo: Spaces Images/Getty Images

The experience of renting a car is one of those make-or-break moments on your road trip. After all, your car is a crucial part of getting out and seeing new destinations (how else are you going to take that trip around Iceland?).

The quality of the vehicles and the customer service can be the difference between having your car rental be a highlight — or the scourge — of your trip.

Every year for our World's Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise lines, spas, airlines, and more. Car-rental companies were rated on their service, value, vehicle selection and availability, and rental locations.

"Renting from Enterprise has always been an awesome experience for me," wrote one reader. "The customer service is exceptional and their ability to offer the best option for each individual is superb." Is it any wonder Enterprise makes the list year after year?

Another T+L reader, who prefers Alamo, deemed it "worry-free, fast, and friendly on the budget."

Meanwhile, frequent travelers raved about Hertz Gold Rewards, an elite tier of membership that guarantees your car will be waiting for you upon arrival, plus automatic vehicle upgrades when available. "After using several different car rental agencies, we now only use Hertz if they are available because of the excellent service we've received," said another World's Best voter. She noted that while they're not always the least expensive, she never discovers any of those pesky hidden costs on her final bill. Regular vehicle upgrades don't hurt, either.

But what does it take to be the absolute best in the category? Scroll down to see who scored the No. 1 spot.

01 of 05

No. 5: Alamo

Alamo Car Rental
Pgiam/Getty Images

Score: 75.86

02 of 05

No. 4: Avis Car Rental

Avis Car Rental
John Greim/Getty Images

Score: 76.02

03 of 05

No. 3: Hertz

Hertz Car Rental
Jen Pollack Bianco/Getty Images

Score: 76.05

04 of 05

No. 2: Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Enterprise Rent-A-Car
Jeremy Woodhouse/Getty Images

Score: 78.89

05 of 05

No. 1: National Car Rental

National Car Rental
Spaces Images/Getty Images

Score 80.97

A Missouri-based company founded in 1947, National Car Rental has lately been dominating the World's Best car-rental company list, celebrating its third No. 1 win in a row. Readers gushed about polite staff members (one respondent said, "I should have stopped and written letters to National to let the company know how wonderful some of their people have been"), as well as the ability to choose the specific car you'll drive off the lot with, "rather than being stuck with a possible loser." In fact, many voters insisted that National Car Rental is the only company consider.

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