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St. John's Newfoundland - Car Rental and tips

St. John's Newfoundland - Car Rental and tips

Old Apr 4th, 2022, 04:25 PM
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St. John's Newfoundland - Car Rental and tips

Hello all,
I have booked a trip to Newfoundland for June 16-21 and am actively trying to book a car rental. Every site I have been on says no cars available....Can this be accurate or is there a trick to booking one....am I booking too early? Also would love any tips for accommodations, food, sites. We like to hike, enjoy adventures, want to see the icebergs, puffins etc. and would like to soak in the history.
Many thanks for any help.
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Old Apr 5th, 2022, 03:09 AM
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Did you see the “trip reports” on the left and the thread below I posted on our tour of 3 week trip to Newfoundland?

Car rental are crazy everywhere not only in Newfoundland. Some have even suggested renting the car in Nova Scotia ie Halifax and taking the ferry over it has been that bad. Are you a member of Costco they usually have car rentals.

Wow just checked Costco website site nothing listed for the dates you listed!!

OK I checked Halifax at the Costco website they have cars.


Last edited by tlc195; Apr 5th, 2022 at 03:17 AM.
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Old Apr 5th, 2022, 08:23 AM
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Too late to change flights to leave from Halifax unfortunately but thanks for the update. I will keep trying. I will check out the trip reports as well.
Many thanks!
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Old Apr 11th, 2022, 06:20 AM
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Where are you planning to visit in just 5 days? Newfoundland is a big place.
You can download the official Newfoundland travel guide at this site; https://www.newfoundlandlabrador.com/ or they will snail mail you a paper version.
Car rentals are best made far in advance, I know that doesn't help you now, as the tourism season is so short and rental cars are not needed for 8 months of the year, there are never a lot of extras.
There is a similar situation with accomodation, there are few to none hotels outside the 3 cities, St John's, Cornerbrook and Gander. Many B & Bs and few roadside motels.
At this point you need to book your accommodation ASAP.
The best way of seeing some of what is on your to do list, is probably book guided bus tours from St John's, that way you won't have to be worried about transport.
If you have other questions just ask, I have a lot of Newfoundland experience.
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Old May 25th, 2022, 09:11 AM
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Thinking of just st. johns now

I have booked accommodations and shortened my trip by a day. I realize we need to either make the trip longer to drive around or shorter to just visit St. John's and now take a boat trip. There are boat trips directly out of the St. John's harbour or 30 mins away out of Bay Bulls. My question is what is the best one to book. We would like to see puffins, whales and icebergs which I realize is a tall order and not guaranteed. I don't always trust the reviews.
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Old May 28th, 2022, 06:06 AM
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Stella51. I am glad to hear you are flying into St. John's as opposed to Deer Lake (western Newfoundland.) It will be easier to manage without a rental car in St. John's.

Now to your other questions. You are visiting around the same time of year as we did.

Icebergs - The 48th parallel (latitude) cuts across Newfoundland between Bonavista and St. John's. IN all of 2021, only one iceberg was seen crossing this parallel - Newfoundland had a slightly warmer than average winter last year. So last year (2021) you would not likely have seen an iceberg. Many tourists were disappointed.

By sheer dumb luck, we visited in mid June of 2019, when 1,500 icebergs crossed that latitude. Significantly though, even during our 2019 visit, we saw icebergs mainly off of St. Anthony and St Lunaire-Griquet. Get out a map, these communities are over 1,000 km from St. John's and more to the point, about 500 km further north than that 48th parallel.

At present (late May 2022) it looks to be a better year for icebergs but your chances of seeing them off St. John's diminish rapidly as spring goes on. This year there are people reporting on iceberg views in Trinity/Bonavista peninsula which is much closer to St. John's but still over 250 km away by car (which you cannot get.)

For some reason my links aren't showing up for the facebook Newfoundland Iceberg Report page so google that and see if you can find it. Ordinary people post to report where they've spotted bergs.

Whales and birds. Much easier to deliver even if, as you acknowledge, not guaranteed.

I know nothing about this company but it departs from Mobile which is just south of Bay Bulls (see below.) It mentions puffins.


Many tour companies depart from Bay Bulls, which is about a half hour drive south of St. John's. That is where most boat tours depart. I would start calling the boat tour companies (O'Brien's, Gatherall's) and ask their advice about taxis (google search claims about $65 each way but try to verify this for yourself) or possibly they have a tour or two for people who need transportation. No scheduled public transit that I know of goes all the way. The two below are pretty much comparable. You might see a quick glimpse of a whale, you WILL see birds including puffins BUT If you have binoculars bring them. (By the way for future reference and future trips, the closest vantage point to see puffins nesting, is at Elliston near Bonavista.)



Good luck.

Last edited by Sue_xx_yy; May 28th, 2022 at 06:15 AM.
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