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Car Rental advice (Munich/Salzburg/Innsbruck)

Car Rental advice (Munich/Salzburg/Innsbruck)

Old Nov 18th, 2023, 07:48 PM
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Car Rental advice (Munich/Salzburg/Innsbruck)

I am helping a group of 4 adults (65+) plan a May 2024 Road trip. They are sensitive to curvy alpine roads and want to avoid driving through curvy mountain passes. Here is their tentative itinerary:
They will arrive in Munich for 1 night
Then travel to Wolfgangsee (Austria) for 4-5 nights
then travel to San Candido (Italy) for 2 nights
then travel to Brixen (Italy) for 4-5 nights
Then travel back to Munich for their return flight to the US

I am evaluating the best option
1. Driving the entire itinerary (rent and return in Munich -- if so, is there a location that is most convenient to get in and out of the City?)
2, Hybrid of driving and taking the train (I think a car will be most helpful in the Salzkammergut region of Austria, but cars are expensive in Salzburg and the reviews of the car rental offices near the train station are terrible)
3. Take only trains, but some connections will be long and have several connections (public transportation in the Salzkammergut is limited)

It seems much cheaper to rent cars in Germany.

I appreciate any advice or recommendations -- especially from people who have rented cars in Germany and Austria.
KWTravelCurator is offline  
Old Nov 24th, 2023, 06:20 PM
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Your option #1 is the best by far IMO. In Munich you could rent at MUC or the HBH. Probably a pain going back out to MUC after the night in Munich but the expressway connections there are excellent. I've never rented at the HBH, they would have to get out of the city from there. I've never rented in Salzburg either but renting there and dropping back in Germany will be expensive. Neither the train nor the highway between Munich and Salzburg is noteworthy. (I was on this train one time and there was construction on the tracks. Everyone had to get off and get bussed to the next town.) If you rent in Germany, make sure the car has a vignette for the Austrian expressways.

Train service along the route you describe would not be good. Busses provide good coverage but have their own quirks. A car is the best in the Salzkammergut, by far.

Your route shouldn't be a problem for twisty, mountainous roads as long as they stick to the main highways. Take the A10 south from Salzburg after Wolfgangsee. Do NOT take the Grossglockner. Get off the A10 at highway 100 and head west, then they can make their way to San Candido. Highway 100 is good but south of that gets right into the Dolomites and those roads can be very twisty.

I don't know the SS49 west of Dobbiacio Toblach. On the map it looks a little curvy from there into Brixen.

After Brixen they'll take the A22 north to Innsbruck. This is a good expressway but it goes over the Brenner Pass, which is notorious for traffic tie ups. From Innsbruck the A12 is good but they'll probably exit on to highway 177 to head back to Munich. The first part of 177 is a little twisty getting up and over the Bavarian Alps there.

My wife and I were hiking around Cortina and Ortisei in September, just south of Brixen. It's beautiful there and your group will love it. PS: We always rent from Hertz in Europe. If you make the rental reservation from the US and well ahead of time their pricing is good, at least competitive. Always had good cars and never had any hassles with them.
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Old Nov 24th, 2023, 08:43 PM
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Wow, Wow, WOW!! This is so very helpful!!
Thank you so much for taking the time to reply
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Old Nov 25th, 2023, 04:42 AM
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I'd first ask when are you doing this, January will be a different trip to August

Then I would replan based on trains to go to similar places but with easy train access.

Then, have a great holiday
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Old Nov 25th, 2023, 06:43 AM
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Glad my comments are helpful. I hate to say it, but taking a trip like this when the travelers are "sensitive to curvy alpine roads" is a bit of a contradiction. They won't have any problems on the highways but if they use their rental car to explore around their destination towns they will probably run into roads they don't like. For us, that kind of countryside was the whole point of going to this area. They could use busses once they settle in but they'll travel the same roads.

Bilboburgler raises an excellent point. If your group takes this trip in May there's always the possibility of ice and snow at higher altitudes. They will have to be aware of this and prepared to change routes or schedules if a storm comes in.

What kind of things does the group plan to do while in these destination towns? We loved our trip in September, I think Austria is somewhat of a secret.
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Old Nov 25th, 2023, 10:18 AM
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As I told you in your previous post:
There is no major problem if you do most of your trip on (boring) motorways:
motorway E60 Munich - Thalgau,
local roads 117 and 158 Thalgau - St. Gilgen -Wolfgangsee - Strobl - Bad Isch,
local roads 145 and 166 Bas ischl - Gosauzwang (Hallstatt) - Lammertal-Huettau
motorway 10 Lammertal-Huettau - Knoten Spittal-Millstaettersee
local road E66 Knoen Spitttal-Millstaettersee - Lienz - Austro/talian border - Umfahrung Bruneck - Brixen,
motorway E45 Brixen - Brenner - Knoen Innsbruck Berg Isel - Kufstein - Autobahndreieck Inntal - Munich

if you do the same by public transport, you have to change from train to train or bus resp vice versa at
Salzburg, Strobl am Wolfgangsee, Salzburg 8for the second time), Spitttal-Millstaettersee, Lienz, Brixen.
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Old Nov 25th, 2023, 11:29 AM
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As I told you in your previous post:
There is no major problem if you do most of your trip on (boring) motorways:
motorway E60 Munich - Thalgau,
local roads 117 and 158 Thalgau - St. Gilgen -Wolfgangsee - Strobl - Bad Ischl,
local roads 145 and 166 Bad Ischl - Gosauzwang (Hallstatt) - Lammertal-Huettau
motorway 10 Lammertal-Huettau - Knoten Spittal-Millstaettersee
local road E66 Knoten Spitttal-Millstaettersee - Lienz - Austro/talian border - Umfahrung Bruneck - Brixen,
motorway E45 Brixen - Brenner - Knoten Innsbruck Berg Isel - Kufstein - Autobahndreieck Inntal - Munich

if you do the same by public transport, you have to change from train to train or bus resp vice versa at
Salzburg, Strobl am Wolfgangsee, Salzburg 8for the second time), Spitttal-Millstaettersee, Lienz, Brixen.
neckervd is offline  
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