i wanted to give folks a heads up to research if they are renting a car in Oahu. We arrived yesterday and waited an hour for a car with Hertz even though we had pre-booked, along with about 50 other families. Only while waiting frustrated did I read the reviews to see this was a common occurrence. Once we got a car it wasn't even cleaned before being given to us.
FWIW if you are a Hertz #1 club member that seems to have been the trick to actually having a car available when arriving.
In a resort area where there are a great number of passengers all arriving within say 30 minutes of one another such as HNL from the mainland that is exactly what you'll find. I've rented from Avis all over the world and as an Avis First or even Preferred customer similar to Hertz #1 and National Emerald I think it is called, we just go to our cars and say seeya! It doesn't cost anything to be an Avis Preferred customer and I doubt at the other competitors either, just sign up and after your first rental where they verify your credit card at the preferred booth outside near where you pick up the cars, you'll be in like you almost own the joint.
I can't tell you how many times we get to the SFO Car Rental Center and get off the tram to find the lines running all over the place for all rental car companies. We just fight our way though the lines and head down one floor to the Avis Preferred area find our name on the board, walk to the car and off we go, no standing in line and no hassles.
This wasn't a large queue waiting for the counter - that took 5 minutes. This was waiting an hour after that for a car to be available!
I do hear you on the preferred option though and will be looking in to that next time. I don't travel often enough where I rent a car to have given it much thought.