Car Rental - Luggage

Aug 4th, 2008, 10:47 AM
  #1  
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Car Rental - Luggage

Hello,

Has anyone rented the Mercedes C220?

We are 4 adults traveling by car in Italy this fall.

We think either :
4 - 26" suitcases

or

2 - 26" and 2 -29"

Plus three small/medium carry on bags and 2 camera bags.

If anyone has rented this car before can you tell me your thoughts on the car size and our luggage?

On our last trip we all brought 29" but did not travel together.

Thank you,
Robyn
quinnr is offline  
Aug 4th, 2008, 11:05 AM
  #2  
 
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The C220 has a boot capacity of just under 500 litres - a 29 inch case is typically around 120 litres & a 26 inch case around 80 litres, so don't be surprised if 4 26 inch cases don't fit, let alone 2 29 inch cases due to boots not being the most regular shapes in the world

http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carrevi...es_cclass.html
alanRow is offline  
Aug 4th, 2008, 11:06 AM
  #3  
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I forgot to mention it is a station wagon. Does that change what you said?

Thank you,
Robyn
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Aug 4th, 2008, 11:09 AM
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Robyn, I have not rented a Mercedes C220, but no Mercedes car will have enough trunk space for all that luggage.

You will either have to go with something much larger like a van or use smaller luggage. I recommend the latter.

26" or 29" suitcases are not necessary IMO unless you are planning to stay for 6 months.

Most people on Fodor's who travel regulary have 22" or 24" suitcases.

In 2004, we traveled with another couple and rented a Ford Mondeo Station Wagon. It just barely contained our four (4) 22" suitcases and our small carryon bags.

Another BAD thing about large suitcases is the airlines are now charging fees for oversized luggage and anything that weighs over 50 lbs.

I suggest you look at some of the threads here on Packing Light and cut back to a smaller suitcase.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 11:11 AM
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4 large suitcases (whether 26, or heaven forbid - 29 inches) plus 3 carry-ons and 2 camera bags is much too much luggage for almost any car in Europe. (Or in the States for that matter).

Why so much??

You should be able to manage w/ four 22 or 24 inch bags and 4 small carry-ons. The camera gear should fit inside the carry-ons.
janisj is online now  
Aug 4th, 2008, 11:13 AM
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Was posting the same time as bettyk . . . .

BTW - being a station wagon makes it even worse, since they use a tarp-like cover to conceal the luggage. I doubt the cover would close w/ that much stuff back there so everyone (thieves included) will see what you have.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 11:26 AM
  #7  
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Thank you for your feedback.

We have traveled many times in the states and abroad and for us 26-29" works. It does not mean it is right or wrong. This site is so quick to make people who have a different opinion feel stupid or "wrong"

I did come hear for advise this is true and we are considering 2- 24" and 2 - 26". I understand we need to consolidate.

2 of the 4 of us are semi professional photographers so putting their cameras inside another bag is not an option. Though their camera bags are not large this is not something you shove in w/ the book you are reading.

We are aware about the station wagon issue and those "seeing" what we have in the car. It is something that is on our mind however we want to find the right car for our travel needs.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:09 PM
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Robyn, not trying to make you feel stupid or wrong.

I have also traveled abroad with a 26" and/or a 29" suitcase many years ago. It was a nightmare trying to finagle all that luggage up the stairs in those old charming European hotels that have no elevators or dragging them along the cobblestone streets. DH nearly killed himself with all that big heavy luggage.

My DH also carries ALOT of photo equipment with him. He carries all the expensive bits in his smallish roll around carryon bag and puts some of his lenses and filters, etc., in the checked luggage with a good TSA lock on it. We've never had any problems.

But our checked luggage is always a 22" expandable bag. I try not to use it expanded on the way over so I know I'll have room for a few things coming home. I also carry a smallish nylon duffle bag that lays flat in the suitcase that I know I can use in a pinch on the way home by filling it will our dirty underwear.

With all the airlines charging excessive baggage fees and the hassle of trying to manage all that luggage, it's just better if you can find a way to travel lighter.

I'm not saying it's the ONLY way, I just think it makes traveling much much easier. It's amazing what you can do without if you try.

It really will be difficult to get all those large bags in any European vehicle unless it's a van which I doubt you want to try to navigate on those narrow European streets.

Best of luck to you.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:20 PM
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thank you for your reply.

I do understand what you mean and where you are coming from.
We do not want to rent a van that is true. Although we do not own luggage smaller than 26" to buy new would be less expensive than a bigger car! I am not really worried about clothing --it seems its the other "stuff" that takes up the majority of the room. Toiletries and things like that. We'll figure it out... It has been very helpful regarding the car size and knowing what to expect now vs. when we arrive when we can not re-pack.
Thank you again.
Robyn
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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:23 PM
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"This site is so quick to make people who have a different opinion feel stupid or "wrong""

Or to put it another way - "some posters are so quick to feel attacked, and take any suggestions to be calling them stupid"

No one said you were stupid. We all said that is too much luggage to fit in that car and/or into a station wagon.

Many of us have very high end camera gear - that is still too much luggage.

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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:26 PM
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Robyn, try using the smaller travel sized toiletries. Unless you are going to be gone for more than 2 weeks you can usually pack enough of the small containers to last you that long. If you need 2 travel sizes for 2 weeks, then you can just throw away the empty one after the first week.

I know it's a little difficult at first , but we've learned to do it and I know you can too. Besides, you can always find similar items in Europe -- even the brands we are familiar with here at home.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:37 PM
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thank you again!
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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:51 PM
  #13  
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bettyk
My mom and I are having a difference of opinion on this matter.
She is sticking to the 26"

What are your thoughts---not saying I can do this but am going to try---

for my DH and myself.

2- 24" checked plus 1 other small bag checked.
2 smaller carry on bags
1 camera bag.

We are going to be away 16 full days.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 12:52 PM
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I may be able to get it to
1 carry on - backpack
1 camera bag
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Aug 4th, 2008, 01:01 PM
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Much better. Assume you are physically able to carry the backpack up and down stairs?

Now will the other 3 travellers be able to do the same?
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Aug 4th, 2008, 01:44 PM
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Just take less. I have been there and gave it up years ago when I came home with the majority of the things in the big suitcase UNUSED. You really can wear things twice==or more.
And one other question. Does your mother take care of her suitcase ALL BY HERSELF--always.
I take a lot of camera equipment, and used to take even more. It's in "a" bag.
if the mercedes is the size of my DDIL's, that luggage isn't going to fit in a coon's age. And maybe only if you ALL take 22-24" bags.
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Aug 4th, 2008, 05:10 PM
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You don;t have a chance in hell. We did 4 people in a C class with 4 24" and 4 small carry-ons - and one of the 24" had to go in the center of the back seat.

I don;t know what it is with cars in europe - but they all seem to have shrunken trunks.

Also - I believe they use different engines than they do in the US - since the car had almost no pick-up - and it wasn;t the people and luggage. My SIL and I took it to tour a town one day - just us - no luggage - and it still had no pick up. It must have a minute engine in it (I'm used to 180 hp in a sub-compact that has good pick up - this felt like trying to drive a sofa).
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Aug 4th, 2008, 05:54 PM
  #18  
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NYTravler--

just curious was this a sedan or station wagon.

We are down to 24 or 26"

Thanks,
Robyn
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Aug 4th, 2008, 11:49 PM
  #19  
 
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I don't think you are overpacking, per se, but it will be tough to fit that much luggage in one European car. You might be able to fit it all in in a larger wagon (Peugot 407 or Volvo V70, maybe?) but you can't usually reserve a specific car (except the premium ones), and the carrying capacities can vary dramatically within the rental agency car classes.

It is just too hard to know exactly how much room you have, and I would err on the side of caution and trim your suitcases. And, FWIW, I'm certainly not judging, as I routinely pack a 26" suitcase when traveling for more than a few days, never/rarely have any issues, and prefer it to the minimalist approach. And, I will make 6 to 8 long-haul trips + at least as many short-haul trips this year, so it ain't from a lack of experience.

But, short of renting a van, the cars will likely just be too small.

I don;t know what it is with cars in europe - but they all seem to have shrunken trunks.

That is because they do. Most European cars sacrifice trunk space to increase interior volumes to tolerable levels. The bigger cars seen in the states don't require the same compromise. Indeed, BMW famously had to redesign the 5-series at the last minute because the original trunk could not fit 4 golf bags.

I believe they use different engines than they do in the US - since the car had almost no pick-up

One needs to remember that the rental fleets are largely comprised of models that are not meant for the consumer market. They tend to be underpowered and underfeatured.
travelgourmet is online now  
Aug 5th, 2008, 04:54 AM
  #20  
 
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We usually travel with carryons, but using a 26" or even 29" suitcase is not a horrible thing, as long as you can handle it. We've also travelled with 26" suitcases and not had any life shattering experiences because of it. Of course, you might have a 2-minute flurry of exertion going up narrow stairs in a B&B somewhere, but it is really not a big deal.

Maybe we should all travel with only what will fit in our pockets.
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