Car Rental Advice

Oct 22nd, 2007, 10:29 AM
  #1  
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Car Rental Advice

We are leaving in a month for Lisbon and the Algarve and the great advice from fellow Fodorites has been invaluable. We have now decided to rent a car and drive from Lisbon (after our four day stay) to the Algarve rather than taking the train and renting a car in Faro. I've seen carjet and economy rentals mentioned on this site - any other rental that you can provide will be greatly appeciated and I promise a trip report upon our return home. We are six adults with luggage so I assume we'll need a small van? We want to pick up the car in Lisbon and return it to the Lisbon airport a week later. Are there places in Lisbon to pick up a car rather than going to the airport or - can it be deliverd to a hotel? Thanks in advance.
emilymarie is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 10:47 AM
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Have you tried Autoeurope?
Michael is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 10:49 AM
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I second AutoEurope. We have only great things to say about them. After booking with them twice we found lower rates elsewhere and they matched. We travel a lot and they are excellent to deal with as well.
travel2live2 is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 10:52 AM
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Michael..
Haven't tried autoeurope. I recall an earlier post that they were more expensive than others but I'll contact them - thanks.
emilymarie is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 10:56 AM
  #5  
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travel2live2-
thanks also - I'm going to their website for rate info.
emilymarie is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 02:14 PM
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They are more expensive, but they were the only ones that allowed a one-way rental and using the credit card for collision coverage (you have to take the non-inclusive rate from Autoeurope and waive the CDW when filling out the form with the actual rental agency).
Michael is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 02:20 PM
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I did cars4holidays.com twice in Spain and Portugal.
Compact cars are usually cheap (around €80-90/week), yet their minivan prices do not look good (€260/wk).
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 02:21 PM
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We were unfortunately involved in a head-on collision while on vacation in England this summer and AutoEurope was extremely helpful and efficient. We got our new rental car easily.
travel2live2 is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 02:39 PM
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I know that Economy will deliver a car to a hotel location. It may be that Carjet does also but we only rented from the airport.

You must just check different auto brokers for their prices.

Renting in town and dropping at the airport is not considered a one way rental.

Good luck and have a great trip.

Twice when we have rented for Portugal, AutoEurope was very much more expensive than others we looked into. I am talking about almost double the cost. But we always rent an automatic.
Sher is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 02:42 PM
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Sher, did you ask AutoEurope to match the price of other companies? They definitely do that, thankfully.
travel2live2 is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 07:37 PM
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Yes, I did ask them and they would not match it.
They actually do not always match the price.
First of all, my price included all insurance with no deductible. They could not offer those conditions.

Also, they did not offer the same size car as I was getting and so they could not match that condition.

They told me that they were offering me a larger car. But did I think it was worth a difference of about E400 for ten days. I don't think so.
Sher is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 09:36 PM
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www.cardelmar.com is another consolidator.
While their prices seem to be in the range of autoeurope.com, they have an "all inclusive" option which will lower the deductible down to zero.

Autoeurope's rates with a deductible of some 1600 EUR for a compact is not a good deal unless your credit card offers a better insurance option.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 07:00 AM
  #13  
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Thanks for your help. So far, Carjet and Economy rental are about the same price with autoeurope significantly highter - I'm now going throught the "fine print" to see the difference in insurance, excess buy-out etc. We're staying at the Hotel Avenida Palace in Lisbon - they have a rental desk and are providing me with rates -it would be convenient to pick up the car at the hotel. The others do have city locations so it's not a big issue. Do we need am international drivers license - in all our travels we've never gotten one, but this is our first time drving in Portugal?
emilymarie is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 07:05 AM
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Sher, we had totally different experiences. While researching our last trip to England in July (after having booked with AE) we found a substantially lower price and asked them to match it and they did. Maybe it is because we use them so regularly, I don't know, but even in our contract it clearly says they match.
travel2live2 is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 07:28 AM
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Autoeurope has consistently refused to match a competitor's price for me. That was both for a rental in Hungary and in Portugal. In Hungary I used another company because it was a round trip, while in Portugal I used Autoeurope because, as mentioned before, no one else could give me a clear definition of options that included having the credit card carry the CDW and a one-way rental. I did damage the car in Portugal and was fully covered by my credit card.
Michael is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 01:28 PM
  #16  
 
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Hi Emily. We do have IDL, but it is not a requirement for driving in Portugal.

From my experience, and things constantly change, Carjet needed us to buy extra insurance to bring the excess to zero. Economy provided full coverage with no excess.

Michael. I do not know why people insist that AutoEurope always provides a matched price. There have been occasions when they have matched the price, but some not.
On our last three or four trips, we have not used them as the price was just too high. But of course I qualify as we do rent automatics.
Sher is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 05:46 AM
  #17  
 
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We rented from Avis in 2005 -- my DH is a lawyer and he was most comfortable with the coverage they provided. Nothing went wrong, but we did somehow end up with a station wagon which shook like crazy when he hit ~70 mph, which was all the time on the highways.

We had a great time, though - up from Lisbon through Sintra, Obidos, Porto and then all the way straight down to Lagos. Roads were very easy despite some dire warnings. Just get the heck out of the way if you are in the left lane and someone comes up with their left blinker on --- it means "I am going to pass you, NOW!" We thought that was hysterical, but really, the drivers were no crazier than anywhere else. Tolls were shockingly expensive, especially on the major N-S highway between Porto and the Algarve.

We returned to the airport with no problems, but the pick up was a hassle. There was an Avis location just a block up from our hotel, which we thought was great, until they threw us in a van and drove us across town to actually get the car, and our carefully plotted route out of the city (oh yeah - Lisbon non-stoplight intersections don't really seem to have stop signs per se) disappeared. We did get pretty badly lost leaving Lisbon proper as a result, so if you can arrange for a hotel delivery and have the concierge help you with a route out of town, I'd recommend it.
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