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FLORENCE: How to return car to Hertz agency inside the ZTL?

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Sep 5th, 2011, 09:35 AM
  #1
DAX
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FLORENCE: How to return car to Hertz agency inside the ZTL?

Anyone had return a car to Via Maso Finniguerra without getting a ticket? It's only two blocks north of the monitored ZTL gate at the end of Ponte Amerigo Vespucci.
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Sep 5th, 2011, 09:40 AM
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Have you contacted the specific Hertz agency you are returning it to? They will have the best directions and certainly will be aware of the ZTL issues.
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Sep 5th, 2011, 10:35 AM
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J62
 
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To totally avoid the ZTL issue I've heard the recommendation to return at the airport and get a taxi into town.
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Sep 5th, 2011, 10:55 AM
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I returned one to this very location last August (also rented it from there). Had no problems with driving in no traffic zones...there's plenty of space between the agency location and that zone. The actual return point is a garage around the corner from the Hertz office itself.

I had Neverlost which gave perfect directions, too.
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Sep 5th, 2011, 11:12 AM
  #5
DAX
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Macanimal: can't email that Hertz facility to ask, thus I'm asking knowledgable Fodorites who may have dropped off a car inside the ZTL.

J62: I may just do that if I can't resolve this dilemma just because the taxi ride is way cheaper than the ZTL ticket, however, it seems like a waste of time. I am hoping that the hertz agency in Rome where I'm picking up the car will be able/willing to inform the agency in Florence to get the permit with the precise plate number though I realize they will need a specific two hour window.

I did check the ZTL website which clearly spells out the need to call my hotel to give my vehicle plate number to obtain a two hour temporary pass for unloading our luggage and parking my car in one of the public parking garages which is where the Hertz agency is. My concern is the high probability of inaccuracy in passing my plate number to the innkeeper and then his passing it to the police which may lead to an expensive ticket.
http://www.comune.fi.it/opencms/expo...rcheggiare.htm
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Sep 5th, 2011, 11:16 AM
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DAX
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Thanks Dukey, I didn't see your post till now. Yes I'm familiar with the Exelcior Garage return on Via Palazzolo just around the corner. On second thought though, people report that they don't get the hefty ticket charge from Hertz on their credit card till 6 months later, Italian style delay.
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Sep 5th, 2011, 11:20 AM
  #7
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Just reread your post Dukey, are you saying that the garage is outside the ZTL passage gate? All the websites indicate that the garage is inside the ZTL. Could you clarify?
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Sep 5th, 2011, 02:52 PM
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It could be an adventure for you to drop your car off within the ZTL zone without incurring a fine! On the other hand, you can save yourself the stress & worry by dropping the car off at the airport & hiring a cab to your hotel. That's what we did in May! I think it cost us about €25 which was considerably less than the fine we had to pay our first time to Florence! Live & learn!
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Sep 7th, 2011, 09:02 PM
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2010: thanks, the extra airport trip may seem like a good logic financially, but not timewise. I''d really like to find a better solution for the system instead of avoiding it totally.
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Sep 7th, 2011, 09:06 PM
  #10
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2010: could you tell me whether you did notify/call your hotel or Hertz before you enter the ZTL on your first trip to Florence?
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Sep 8th, 2011, 04:05 PM
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Hi! DAX:

On our first trip to Italy, we were aware of driving restrictions within Florence but naively assumed that we could drop off our rental car at the Avis garage on Borgo Ognissanti. When we picked up our car in Venice, we were not advised that we would be dropping our car off within the ZTL zone. I suppose we didn't know to ask that question! We also did not anticipate the 'panic' that set in as we drove into Florence - the sheer volume of vehicles, the speed, the one-way streets - despite having the calm voice of our GPS 'recalculating' as we made turn after turn, finally arriving at the Avis garage! At the end, it was a very expensive lesson! And by the way, we took a cab to our B&B near the Duomo.

It was only after we received our ticket in the mail six months later that I started to find out more about the ZTL zones in Florence. First, I talked to Avis Canada who said that it was my responsibility to learn about the local laws & regulations. Next, I went on a website to see if there was actually a 'safe' route to drive to the Avis garage but I couldn't figure it out. Finally, I found a notice on one corner of the Florence city map which came with the car in teeny tiny printing advising motorists about the ZTL zones & information about notifying your hotel of arrival by car. (For us, had we known, it would have meant a long-distance phone call from Pienza, I guess!) So, there really was no recourse for us except to pay the fine!

So, when we were planning our next trip, we decided to drop the car off at the airport. It proved to be the simplest & it was only about a 20-30 minute cab ride mid-day to our B&B. We would do it no other way!

Good luck to you!
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Sep 8th, 2011, 11:48 PM
  #12
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Thank you 2010 for taking the time to explain. I share your frustration in driving into Florence, I drove into Florence before ZTL days through those messy frenetic roads, totally third world country. I see that you weren't aware of ZTL therefore no attempt to notify the hotel or Avis.

As much as I want to figure out how to work the system, your posting put some sense into my head, so now I decide to drop off the car in the southern bank area outside the ZTL (Via Del Sansovino 53). Significantly closer to downtown than the airport and easily accessible from the freeway.
For the benefit of others who want to see the ZTL zones on the map:

http://www.comune.fi.it/opencms/expo.../schedaZTL.pdf
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Sep 9th, 2011, 06:58 AM
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You've made a sensible choice, DAX!

Enjoy your stay in Florence!
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Nov 8th, 2011, 09:17 PM
  #14
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Update:
We had a great experience returning our car to the Hertz agency on Via Del Sansovino 53, it was a direct easy access from the freeway exit requiring no turns whatsoever, there are two gas stations between the freeway and the Hertz agency on the right/correct side of the road. No danger of passing any ZTL area.

The Hertz agency was easily spotted on the right side of the street (east side) and all we had to do was drive into their small parking lot and hand the keys and they give us the receipt and called us a taxi which showed up within two minutes. Our taxi ride to the hotel (by the duomo) was 10 euro (before tip) but the greatest saving was TIME when compared to returning the car at the airport.
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Nov 9th, 2011, 12:32 AM
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I'm glad this post got revived. I did, in fact, get a belated ticket for supposedly driving in a prohibited zone BUT it was for driving in Siena, NOT Florence, and yes, I did drive in Siena qnd yes I did return my car in Florence. Mistake on the Italians' part in terms of location perhaps????
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Nov 9th, 2011, 07:13 PM
  #16
 
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DAX, I think you were very smart not to attempt that return in Florence. My experience with making complex arrangements in Italy is that something WILL go wrong, so simpler is better. Good for you.

We have a pending ticket from Bologna, although it is almost a year since we were there, so we may escape due to bureaucratic inefficiency. We think it happened when we got lost on the outskirts, found a police substation and asked for directions (as usual, the Italian cops spent ten minutes arguing about how to direct us.).
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Nov 9th, 2011, 08:51 PM
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>>>We have a pending ticket from Bologna, although it is almost a year since we were there, so we may escape due to bureaucratic inefficiency<<<

What would that be? They have a year to get to the ticket to you.
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Dec 7th, 2011, 07:06 PM
  #18
 
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I drove in this ZTL to return our rental car to Hertz. That was in May 11 or 12 of 2011. So that was more than six months ago and I have not yet recieved a ticket. I am crossing my fingers. I am really pissed at Hertz not only for their poor service, high rental prices, and for the fact that they did not lift a finger to warn us about this zone. Why in the flying #### they located their office in this zone is beyond me. It was a hectic day upon arrival at the Hertz office and hopefully the camera missed us. The Italians do absolutely NOTHING to help tourists, who often are completely lost and unaware, avoid these fines. However they are all to willing to accept the $42 billion in annual tourist dollars. I am so angry I could spit ten feet.
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Dec 7th, 2011, 08:15 PM
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I have a suggestion for Hertz and Avis Italy. As long as you are charging us through the nose (double or triple) for "full size" rental cars that would be considered sub-compacts in the USA, why don't you inlcude free ZTL passes glued to the windshields and license plates of every car you rent so we don't get raked over the coals more than once per day.
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