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renatl cars info in Ireland..must read!

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A LONG answer, to your COMMON and COMPLEX questions:

I have a World MasterCard -- A BankAmerica Elite Rewards that DOES cover Ireland. There are several others, but generally speaking, only CERTAIN US-issued WORLD MasterCards and CANADIAN-issued Visa Cards still offer insurance waiver for the Republic of Ireland -- IF the Rental Car Company agrees to accept their coverage.

The reasons ore MANY -- Vehicle (and Insurance) costs in Ireland; Frequency of accidents/damage; corporate Greed (on BOTH sides); governmental oversight (or LACK, thereof) and the old-fashioned rules of Supply-and-Demand.

MOST Irish car hire contracts contain similar 'weasel-wording' and terms and SOME are even MORE devious and obscure .. . Murray's is a reputable company -- no worse and no better than the rest -- in MY opinion.

If you DO waive the insurance, MasterRental has its own arcane and VERY specific rules on how to go about THAT process. For those who can't, won't or are unable to use a CC to waive the insurance, though --THIS is what it all means:

The Inclusive rental comes with CDW (Collision Damage Waiver), Theft and Liability. The CDW carries a DEDUCTIBLE (in YOUR case -- as it DOES vary) of 1350 Euro. That is the amount that you are still liable for, in the event of an accident or incidental damage. That amount can be reduced to NEAR zero (usually 100 Euro) by purchasing supplimental insurance -- variously called 'Super-CDW', 'Excess', 'Super CDI', etcetera.
These offerings are generally pricey -- 10-15 Euro PER DAY and are in addition to the quoted, 'Insurance Inclusive Rate'.

Even WITH the supplimental 'EXCESS' there are SEVERAL items that are NOT covered -- Tires and undercarraige, windshields, side mirrors, loss of keys, putting in the wrong fuel are the most commonly listed of those. MasterRental does NOT cover those items, either. In THOUSANDS of kilometers of driving
on my fourteen trips to Ireland over the past 12 years, I have only purchased CDW once, but I HAVE needed to buy three (3) tires and pay to have one wheel rim repaired. There are independantly offered options to cover MOST of those excluded items available. Recently, I have used Insurance4carhire, but have not yet filed a claim, so can't speak to their efficacy ...

Tourists DO have a tendancy to 'bump' curbs, knock side mirrors off and scrape the sides of the vehicles on rock-walled, narrow roads and vehicle-filled, side streets -- particularly tourists from North America that have the added distraction/difficulty of negotiating the whole, Right Hand Drive, mental adjustment, so there is SOME merit to these exclusions.

That should pretty well 'Sum Up' the INSURANCE issue, BUT that is just the TIP of the Car Hire 'Iceberg' --

Even if you BUY the 'CDW Inclusive' rental and Pre-PAY, once you arrive at the Pick Up desk, you MAY likely face (read as: REQIRED TO PAY):

Airport or Premium Location Surcharge: Between 25 and 35 Euro
Road Tax: 1 to 3 Euro PER DAY
Initial Fuel Cost: 50 to 100 Euro Be VERY aware about the Rental Company's RETURN Policy -- Do you get Credit Back, if returned with a FULL tank, or do they INSIST that you return the vehicle EMPTY??? Remeber that you will be driving an unfamiliar vehicle in an unfamiliar location and that fuel costs in Ireland (currently about 1 Euro 45 per Litre, or $8-9 per US gallon!)can mean an 'EXTRA' profit per rental of $30, unless you really DO 'Limp In' on fumes!

If you opt to 'WAIVE' the CDW or even, the 'EXCESS', MOST companies MAY charge a 'Handling Fee' of 25 to 30 Euro --
PLUS, they will often place a CHARGE (as opposed to a 'HOLD') against your Credit Card of 2-3,000 Euro, against the POSSIBILITY of damage. THAT can be near catastrophic, if you have a low credit limit available. You also need to be VERY aware of your CC's 'Foreign Transaction Fee' structure.

Once you have all THAT sorted out, the NEXT big potential Pitfall is to avoid DCC -- Dynamic Currency Conversion -- but THAT is a totally DIFFERENT and lengthy subject, in it's OWN right!

My purpose here was NOT to frighten you AWAY from Ireland -- merely to EDUCATE you so that you might make an INFORMED decision about a complex issue. In the past, I have likened Car Hire in Ireland as "Kissing The Frog".

As in: If you Kiss a Frog, first thing in the morning, nothing WORSE can happen after that!

Bob

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