Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page > car rent in Italy - cost, excess, deposit
Notices

car rent in Italy - cost, excess, deposit

Reply

Aug 24th, 2015, 05:14 AM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 4
car rent in Italy - cost, excess, deposit

Hey,

please tell me about your experiences. I have booked a car from Europcar (Firenze Airport, Fiat 500, 3 days) and I am little confused. The rent itself is 110 €. As I understood, the theft protection excess is 1700 €. They offer premium protection for 108 € and I chose that.

They sent me a booking conformation where was a line saying that I have to pay deposit - like 550 €. For some reason I tought that if I take this super hyper insurance that says that my excess is reduced to 0 €, I won't have to pay any deposit.

So... Have anybody rented a car from Europcar and took somekind of insurance that had 0 € deposit? Or have you been in similar situation?

If somebody have rented a car from liable car company and managed to rent without deposit, I would be glad to have any suggestions.

Thank you in advance
stelley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 05:23 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,647
We have rented from only Hertz and Avis in Italy and what they mean by "deposit" is a hold on your credit card which covers the deductible on your insurance coverage. It should be released a couple of days after you return the car with no issues.

If you buy insurance with no deductible there should be no hold on your card - unless it doesn't cover tires or windows (check on that part).

(How can the rental for the car be 110 euros and the insurance 1700 euros? Or is the 1700 euros the deductible?)
nytraveler is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 05:41 AM
  #3
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 4
Thank you for your answer!

As I understand from EC home page, if I wouldn't take any additional insurance, that would mean 1700 € theft excess so I presume I'd have to pay 1700 € deposit because that's the amount I would have to pay is somebody steals the rental car. There is an additional 900 € excess for any accidents, but since the theft ecxess is bigger, I presume they would charge me that bigger amount. Or am I misunderstanding that?

When I return the car and everything is OK, they would release that amount, I do realize that... But since Italy is notorious for accidents, I would prefer to not pay any deposit.

I checked my premium protection conditions - it should include theft, collosion & damage, personal accident, windshield and tire damage protection and when you are in the middle of booking process, it says "reduce my excess to 0 €".

Have asked the same question in my local country forum and one replied that he didn't have to pay any deposit with EA when he took the max insurance but in he's contract there wasn't anything said aboud deposit amount (mine has). That's why I started the same topic here - I have another week to cancel the booking and find something else if there would be a company that doesn't require deposit.

I booked a car in Croatia last year and we had 2 accidents what wasn't our fault. Returning the car was a nerve game because they booked 1000 € from my credit card. Wouldn't want experience that situation again!
stelley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 06:03 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,224
I may have an explanation but it may or may not be correct.

Sometimes these agencies employ a third party for the insurance. You pay Europcar and they collect the premium of 108E but they are not actually the insurer.

Also. They do not cover the car under ALL circumstances. For instance if you would be drunk and wreck the car the insurance would be void.

So let us say you would drive the car off road, which is almost always excluded in the insurance, and you would damage the car. The insurance would not pay and Europcar would have the hold to collect at least that much on the damage.

If Europcar has another company for the insurance, you would be charged for a valid damage claim and the insurer would pay back your card. This is another circumstance.

Now. I am not saying this is exactly the case with your rental but it may be an explanation if they are still putting a hold on your card for the excess.
Sher is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 06:21 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,224
By the way. I am renting a car in Italy reserved through Auto Europe and the rental is with Europcar.

In this case, Auto Europe included the insurance (who knows who the actual insurer is)with zero deductible and I looked at my reservation but I cannot see where any excess is charged but I would not be surprised.

Europcar needs to cover themselves under all circumstances.

I actually received an IHG Chase World MasterCard and they cover the car in Italy which is unusual. But still, if I am negligent, the insurance would be void.

Also, look at your fine print as mostly lost keys and tires and windshields are almost never covered.
Sher is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 06:27 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 6,046
It is a standard procedure. You do not pay the deposit - it is just the right of the rental car company to book it from your credit card if necessary.

There are indeed situations which are not covered by insurance. E.g. if you get a ticket for traffic violation and you do not pay the rental car company takes it from the deposit.

Europcar is a reliable rental car company here in Europe.
traveller1959 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 08:16 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 42
we rented a car in Italy through Auto Europe in the spring and had full coverage with zero excess.We paid 347.00 canadian for 17 days with no extras.
The company we had was Europcar. When we returned the car the agent went directly to the drivers door and tried to open door and it was broken so he said someone tried to break in but there was nothing missing and no other damage. We had used the fob for the duration of rental. When we arrived home we were charged 50 euros as an administration fee for repair which our credit card company covered. It almost seemed like a scam to me because he really didn't inspect car first just seemed to assume lock would be broken. Just make sure you check that key works in lock when you pick up rental car and not just use the fob.
jacqueline19 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 08:25 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 19,726
The posts seem to indicate why it is better to go through a broker than the rental agency itself. It appears that the contracts via Autoeurope are clearer and more comprehensive than through the rental agency itself. I urge the OP to consider looking at Autoeurope or Kemwel (sister agencies) before finalizing any contract--there is no cost to cancellation if done more than three days or so before the rental is due to start.
Michael is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 09:51 AM
  #9
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,634
The fact that you are buying insurance doesn't mean there won't be a deposit or hold on your card for a certain amount.

Why is this a problem? if you have so little credit that this is a big problem, you could be in trouble.
Christina is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 10:30 AM
  #10
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,647
Not sure you have a choice between theft insurance and accident insurance. Aren't those 2 different things. Or does theft also include accident?

If not there may be a hold of 2600 euros on your card.
nytraveler is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 10:37 AM
  #11
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 7
I have always had great experiences renting with Hertz or Avis. My experience is that there is always a slightly higher deposit with eurocar etc. They are all going to put a hold on your card regardless of insurance. Since it's a generally a significant deposit ($1500.00 or more) I use a separate card. If that's an option that's what I recommend. You can always call your credit card company and explain the situation, they should have a solution.

Don't forget your international drivers license.
TVIVA is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 24th, 2015, 11:46 PM
  #12
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 4
I wrote directly to EA and they responded very shortly: "The deposit is obligatory even if you have selected the premium package, it will be blocked at the moment of the pick up and unblocked when you will return the car.” Very helpful, thank you EA!

I understand there would be some deposit I should pay (like if I don't return the car with full tank and so on), but in this case, 550 € seems a bit much and the company didn't explain in any way how they came up with that number!

I think I'll try to call my local Avis office and try to find out it they have any idea how much will Avis want as deposit. At least they have some kind of explenation about deposit.

Thankfully, I have EU drivers license, so I guess I don't have to worry about international drivers license.
stelley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 25th, 2015, 01:55 AM
  #13
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 14,852
Not every car agency is the car agency you think, there are plenty of franchises all over the world and some of these are best described as terrible.

So, if you really are with an agency owned company, no problems, having rented all over the world on business I got bored with all the nonsense of using franchises so now I take out annual car rental damage insurance (in the UK this is roughly £25, or say $40, for the year) and then book the car via a broker so that I have someone on my side when is all goes wrong.

When I pick up the car I photo it all over including the fuel and mileage counters with the engine running. I do the same on return, it takes 2 to 3 minutes and ensures no follow up, nothing upsets the scammers than date and time photos of an undamaged car when they start making a noise.

The profit in car rentals is so small and renters are often one-offs so there is no benefit in customer loyalty so you have to play hardball.
bilboburgler is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 25th, 2015, 05:56 AM
  #14
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 262
>>I wrote directly to EA and they responded very shortly: "The deposit is obligatory even if you have selected the premium package, it will be blocked at the moment of the pick up and unblocked when you will return the car.” Very helpful, thank you EA!<<

I don't know who EA is. Credit card "holds" for car rentals is a standard operating procedure. The figure varies for all sorts of reasons. The company that owns the car is handing you a car with keys. They rely on some financial incentive to make sure you bring the car back when you promise to return it.

>>I understand there would be some deposit I should pay (like if I don't return the car with full tank and so on), but in this case, 550 € seems a bit much and the company didn't explain in any way how they came up with that number!<<

It's not really a deposit, it's a hold. Your credit card doesn't actually get charged unless you fail to fulfill your contract requirements. 550 Euro is a low "hold." The hold for my car in France several months ago was 1500 Euro, but I did have a two week rental.

Not sure why someone would require an explanation for how a rental company comes up with the hold number. If you don't have enough credit available to rent a car, perhaps another mode of transportation is best for you.
wesleymarsh is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 28th, 2016, 05:23 AM
  #15
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 4
When I was traveling to Italy and planning to rent a car, I had a problem with choosing a rent a car agency because of my main problem that was my not having a credit card which is usually taken/given as a deposit and their insurance that they would be able to charge you for any possible damage that may occur on the car during your trip. Because I didn't have a credit card I barely managed to find a rent-a-car agency that allowed me to rent a car without a credit card, with giving only a money deposit. You should also know hat the person on which name the car is rented, is the only person allowed to drive the car. It has been my experience a year ago...
Benston is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 28th, 2016, 12:26 PM
  #16
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 114
We have rented cars from Europcar, mostly in Milano. We have never had to pay any sort of deposit. We always book on their website and when we pick up the car and they add the cost of full insurance we end up paying maybe 50-60% more than when we booked. Sometimes we pre-pay, but not often. Still, it's the same procedure, except that we only pay for the full insurance when we pick up the car.

Sometimes we see that rental companies (we also use Hertz and Avis) make a reservation (hold?) for some amount, but never more than what we'd have to pay if we kept the car 3-4 extra days, and we have never had to pay any sort of deposit. Those reservations always disappear a few days after we return the car.
ticino is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 28th, 2016, 01:35 PM
  #17
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,358
Read this about driving in Italy:

http://driventoit.blogspot.com.au/

We use Autoeurope, a toll free number, never the web site.
RonZ is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 10:37 PM.