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10 days in Italy - Oh the lessons we learned!

10 days in Italy - Oh the lessons we learned!

Sep 10th, 2011, 11:52 AM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 52,380
great report, pony up - warts and all!

but I'm still confused about your experiences cancelling hotels. I say experiences because the hotels.com website has a button for conciliation, like the veneer one - no need to call anyone, you just click on the link provided and in a few seconds, it's done. Like panecott I've had a cancel a few times and it's never been a problem.

that's not to suggest that you weren't doing the right things, but these sites trade on their "free cancellation" terms so they make it really easy to do.
annhig is offline  
Sep 10th, 2011, 12:53 PM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 4,388
Great report,Pony, in that you give the highs AND lows! Thank you for sharing your stories!
CaliNurse is offline  
Sep 10th, 2011, 01:33 PM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 60
I know this trip report is a couple of years old, but I had to comment about the problem with the rental car. We've rented from AutoEurope many times, and the actual car company has always been Europcar...which is the problem. We have inevitably returned home only to receive a bill from Europcar with lots of little extra expenses...one time they claimed we hadn't filled up the car (which we had), once they charged us up front for gas which we hadn't agreed to and paid way over the going rate for, and other little things I can't even remember now. All it really took was a call to AutoEurope, letting them know what the problems were, and we got it corrected every time. I would never rent directly from Europcar, as it seems to be their m.o. to overcharge to see if they can get away with it. Plus, there's always your credit card company to dispute the charge if there's a problem that doesn't get rectified. But I wouldn't hesitate to use AutoEurope again.
The other thing that was all too familiar was the crowds in Florence. As much as Florence is definitely worth seeing, we were constantly getting shoved off the sidewalks by large groups of people, and I found it took some of the pleasure out of being there after dealing with the crowds for a few days...and we were there a few years ago at the end of March...not high season.
Sherrala is offline  
Sep 10th, 2011, 01:55 PM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,603
I loved this Trip Report, PonyUp; a great description of a healthy travel attitude and enjoying the unexpected. And remembering the 'oh dear' for the next time. Good of you to let us benefit from your 'oh dear' experiences, as well as the interesting and well written places and events you discovered.

We have been to Italy and Sicily quite a few times, but not for a few years...you have whetted my appetite for a return visit SOON. Maybe you can rent out your handy DH as an adjunct travel companion ?

So, Grazie! ~MarnieWDC
MarnieWDC is offline  
Sep 10th, 2011, 04:14 PM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 5,830
One misconception for those first-time travelers: it does not have to cost more to fly into one city and out of another! When you book your flight on line, look in the search box for the term "multi-city" and click on it. This is also sometimes called "open-jaw" ticketing, but not in the reservation search process.
charnees is offline  
Sep 10th, 2011, 05:29 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,451
We had a similar problem renting from EuropeCar through Auto Europe. We got home and EuropeCar had added several fees to our bill and charged our credit card. It took a couple calls, but Auto Europe got the charges removed. It wasn't a pleasant experience though and we've gone out of our way to avoid EuropeCar ever since.
TexasAggie is offline  
Sep 10th, 2011, 07:22 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 8,586
We had a problem with EuropeCar in Italy, too. We returned our car to Milan and the clerk said there was a dent and wanted to charge us $250. My husband took a picture with his phone - at the very most it was a scuff mark - you could clearly see there was no indentation.

They charged our credit card, although my husband refused to sign for it. We had to get our credit card company involved and eventfully we got the entire charge reversed. It was a good thing he took that picutre!

We had booked another car from Auto Europe (through Avis) for a trip from Vienna to Prague. We were told the base rate, and knew about the (high) one way rental fee. After we paid, I received an email that there would also be a cross border fee. I contacted Avis directly and they told me they didn't charge cross border fees for this route. I informed AutoEurope of this, but they would not agree to remove the fee.
karens is offline  

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