XM radio - but no stations?

Discussion in 'National | Emerald Club' started by Traveller, Aug 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Traveller
    Original Member

    Traveller Gold Member

    Messages:
    7,754
    Likes Received:
    55,206
    Status Points:
    13,995
    I rented a car in ATL this past week and picked the car I did because it had an XM antenna. When I put it on XM, I only got 2 stations 0 and 1 - -> advertising XM. When I returned the car, the guy who checked me in said that the XM contract expired and I could renew for 12 months??? I couldn't really understand what he was talking about, all other National cars I've had before had all the XM stations available without me having to do anything.

    Is NCR doing away with their XM subscriptions? I hope not!
     
  2. Max M

    Max M Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,639
    Likes Received:
    2,160
    Status Points:
    1,245
    Had a Hertz car that had Sirius XM on it in June, and the day before the rental was due back, Sirius XM was cut off.

    So I'm guessing you case was like mine-- you had a rental that offered Sirius XM, but you didn't pay the extra fee for specifically renting a Sirius XM equipt car.

    Sure, I wasn't happy that the subscription had expired, but I wasn't paying extra for it; If I was paying for it, I would be quite angry.

    In any case, it's nice to have Sirius XM when you have a rental car.

    I can't vouch for National or Hertz, but I believe a poster on FlyerTalk that works for Avis said that Avis would be stopping to equip cars with Sirius XM.
     
    Traveller likes this.
  3. techgirl
    Original Member

    techgirl Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    512
    Status Points:
    595
    I've had this happen a lot with National... car has XM but it doesn't work or worse, car has working XM but it stops working during my trip.
     
    Traveller likes this.
  4. sobore
    Original Member

    sobore Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,421
    Likes Received:
    33,847
    Status Points:
    16,520
    Usually when an XM radio receives channel 0 and 1 only, there is no XM subscription in force on that radio.
    I have heard other reports of this same issue with respect to rentals.
    The rental agency can claim the car is equipped with XM radio, but the question to ask is "with an active subscription"?
     
    Traveller likes this.
  5. ctporter
    Original Member

    ctporter Silver Member

    Messages:
    498
    Likes Received:
    1,129
    Status Points:
    820
    From what I have been told, the rental car company gets "free" XM for a limited period (was told it is six months), once that period expires the XM radio no longer works except as mentioned on the two ad stations
     
    Traveller likes this.
  6. Scottrick
    Original Member

    Scottrick Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    4,078
    Status Points:
    2,570
    Most cars with XM that I saw when I was shopping a year or two back came with XM free for a year. In the end I bought a used one, and XM still sent me a letter and said it would have free XM for a year, which they later extended another six months. I almost never used it because it seemed to have just as many ads and actually had worse reception (the only time I really wanted to use it was when I was away from an urban center = lots of trees and mountains here in the PNW) so I didn't care.

    My guess is that since most rental cars aren't held for more than a couple years, there really isn't a point in the company purchasing a subscription.
     
    Traveller likes this.
  7. techgirl
    Original Member

    techgirl Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    512
    Status Points:
    595
    We actually brought it up with our rep when we were negotiating our last contract as a majority of our drivers tend to do distance rentals where we will put (on average) 200-400 miles on a car each day. Having something like XM is a big deal, to the point that some of my sales folks have just purchased an XM subscription through their iPhones and plug in usin an auxiliary cable.

    But it's definitely something that would make me question my choice of companies if I were a traveler who had the freedom to pick among the various options!
     
    Traveller likes this.
  8. billydee
    Original Member

    billydee Silver Member

    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    47
    Status Points:
    130
    I've also had this happen a bunch in the last couple years. Previous to that it seemed the XM would nearly always be working. And not just with National. I've had both the free and the "tease versions" of XM or Sirius in Alamo and Thrifty cars too.
     
    Traveller likes this.
  9. ssullivan
    Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    Messages:
    27,358
    Likes Received:
    60,275
    Status Points:
    20,020

    I don't think the free periods on a new car last as long as they used to. Back around 2005, new cars with XM had 6 months free; within a few years that was down to a 90 day trial period. I've had a few brand new rental cars in the last year that I was only the first or second renter, based on the mileage (a few that had less than 10 miles, and one that was about 200 miles, when I drove them off the lot) where the free XM or Sirius ran out during my rental period.

    I used to get cars with active satellite radio very often, but now it's pretty rare, despite renting a lot of cars that have the equipment installed.
     

Share This Page