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Algarve- towns to see and car rental


Aug 21st, 2012, 02:12 PM
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Algarve- towns to see and car rental

My boyfriend and I are planning on driving from Lisbon to the Algarve in early October for about 5 days. I wanted to know what towns are a-must-see and if anyone had any reccomendations for car rentals. Are there any companies that have pick ups that aren't at the airport? Or should we just head over to the airport for a car? We are New York drivers. Are there any tips we might need for driving in Portugal? This will be our first time in the country.

KBAdler is offline  
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Aug 21st, 2012, 02:33 PM
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Five days isn't very long, but the drive is short and it should give you enough time to do a little exploring of such places as Aljezur, Vila do Bispo, Lagos, Portimão, Lagoa, Albufeira and Silves.

As far as renting a car, I recommend you check with Auto Europe before you head out. They should have the best deals. You do need to be of the tolls roads (electronic tolls) you will encounter on the drive (www.viaverde.pt).
Robert2533 is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2012, 01:20 AM
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Albufeira is nice as is Villamora - was in Lisbon last year and absolutely loved it and could spend up to 5 days there alone!

I've found the cheapest fully inclusive rates to be with holidayautos into Portugal, and there's no real difference in price whether at the airport or a downtown office (as it inlcudes any potential location surcharges already)
plastic_paddy is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2012, 01:23 AM
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We like Guerin. We also often use economycarrentals.com due to cheap rates and 'free' no excess insurance which I consider mandatory in PT. You can pick up a car in the city. Rent a diesel as gas prices in PT are high, and try to buy gas in town, not on the highway.

For 5 days in the Algarve, I would recommend Lagos, Sagres, Silves and Tavira. Take a bag with a swimsuit and towel and stop along the beaches on the way. Take the N125 and you will see plenty of signs. Silves is inland, about 5 miles or so.

Driving is easy, just drive defensively. Lots of drivers may 'push' you, esp. on the N125 but don't let them bait you.

The toll road down to the Algarve is not an electronic one. It is traditional with tickets. The A22 in the Algarve is one of the newer ones where you need a transponder...or pay at a post office. If you stay on the N125, it isn't an issue and at time of year, traffic won't be bad.
Have fun!
SloJan2 is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2012, 11:37 AM
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Since KBAdler is from NY, she will be better off dealing with Auto Europe, where her credit card covers the basic insurance requirements. Also, the support is there should she need it.
Robert2533 is offline  
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Aug 23rd, 2012, 02:22 PM
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We always book through AutoEurope (or Sunny Cars) because these brokers have the best deals and only work with the big car rental companies (Hertz, Avis, Europcar, ...).

@KBAdler: Tavira in the Eastern Algarve is a very pretty town. It's authentic and not 'loud' as is Albufeira. Although in October most of the party-goers will have left. Most of the tourists in Tavira are Portuguese or Spanish because of the proximity of the Spanish border.
MyriamC is offline  
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Aug 23rd, 2012, 10:24 PM
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Robert, I appreciate that you think AutoEurope is the way to go. I would suggest that KB look at her options and make her decision accordingly. I always book with my USA card which does cover the basic insurance,as well.
SloJan2 is offline  
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Aug 23rd, 2012, 10:55 PM
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Is OP driving a loop Lisbon-Algarve-Lisbon or will it be a one-way rental Lisbon-Algarve?
If the latter, economycarrentals.com had been my choice when I researched same for next months as they seem to be the only broker which includes one-way fees. All the others incl. AutoEurope just gave a vague idea in the t&c of the respective quotes that o/w fee will be "80-180 euros" or such.
Eventually, the economycarrental quote (incl. full CDW / no deductible and extended 1mn liabilty) was a bit lower than the cheapest AutoEurope option (with the ominous o/w fee still to be added).
I did not pay attention if you can deny CDW if you have the respective CC, though. But it's definetely worth the 2 minutes it needs to find out.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
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