Europe Car Rental Help

Discussion in 'Avis | First/Preferred' started by schnitzel, May 17, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    I'm trying to book a one-way car rental, city of Rome to city of Milan.

    I've been on Avis, Avisworld, and also now avisautonoleggio.it.

    I'm thoroughly confused, and basically ready to move on to Europcar. All three sites show, of course, radically different prices, but also very different car options. You'd never know these three are the same company. But they do show the same pickup and drop-off locations.

    Does anyone have a coherent strategy for navigating through this maze?

    Should I just take my business elsewhere?

    I do like the simplicity of Europcar, but not the price. I like the price of Easycar, but they don't do one-way rentals in Italy.

    Help!
     
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  2. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Use a real travel agent?
     
  3. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    Well, yeah, I suppose I could do that, but I could also just fork over another $100US and be done, probably.
     
  4. MSPeconomist
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    If you have the AmEx Plat card, call their travel folks. Thee's no fee to you.
     
  5. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    Nope - not anymore. Had one, but I couldn't justify the cost as I wasn't using the lounges that much.

    I'm getting pretty ready to cave and use Europcar.
     
  6. webdes03

    webdes03 Gold Member

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    I attempted to do a rental in the UK with Avis. They left us stranded at a rural train station with no car to drive, despite the fact that I called the branch directly and confirmed everything was good to go before we flew to LHR, and got the automated email saying our car was ready for pickup.

    I've since left Avis completely. They've jerked me around for the last time.
     
  7. wiegelsa

    wiegelsa Active Member

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    Had something similar happen to me at LHR - rental desk was empty and no one picked up the courtesy phone. Called AVIS CS and had them document this in my reservation. Had to take a taxi to get to the hotel I was staying at and AVIS corporate re-imbursed me for it. Got some money off on my rental when I emailed AVIS UK to complain. The pick up location said there were three people in the office (it was 11:30 pm). Very frustrating.
     
  8. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    In Italy where there are so many add ons I'm prone to recommend Sixt. They're generally better than the US chains there, IME, anyway.
     
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  9. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    Agreed !
    for decades the US chain rental rates have sucked for rentals in Europe (in my opinion), so my go to would always be www.autoeurope.com or www.europcar.com

    I have noticed recently that US chains are getting better pricing on their European rentals but still not regular enough to make me consider them normally.
     
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  10. jbcarioca
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    There is so much variation among licensees that I usually check several major chains, and some locals if I know them before deciding in South America, Europe and Asia. Probably 80-% of the time, and always in Italy it ends out being Sixt. Elite status in Sixt helps and there are so good discount codes. Those are really essential. BTW, a few months ago SIXT upgraded me to a Mercedes SEL500 from my chosen MB C200 (not a particularly premium choice on the mainland in Greece). In Berlin not long ago they gave me a BMW 5 series rather than the nondescript mid-sized I chose. Their insurance covers are also often better than the US based brands. YMMV, as always, and MMDV (My mileage does vary) also.
     
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  11. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    Nice !

    I think insurance would be key for me as being the cheap-arse I am, I usually find on the street parking & squeeze into 'less desirable' places w/my rental, so I'm not sure I'd want such a nice upgrade.:)

    Speaking of insurance w/SIXT who I've never used (at least I can't recall), what is an avg per day rate?

    I like AMEX premium car rental insurance (bumper to bumper) for a flat rate of ~$25US per rental (not per day).
     
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  12. jbcarioca
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    The Sixt rates vary widely by country, as all the others do that I know about. The contract rates that I use for Sixt include third party and CDW with a deductible, typically € 500, but for certain YMMV. The Sixt status, often matching otehr car rental firms or given with airline status give some of those benefits, but the corporate rates are better. AFAIK almost all entities with substantial European travel seem to have Sixt discount codes.
     
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