Glasgow car rental - downtown or airport

Dec 28th, 2007, 04:41 PM
  #1  
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Glasgow car rental - downtown or airport

We are planning to take the overnight train from London to Glasgow next May (arriving in Glasgow early on a Saturday morning). We want to rent a car in Glasgow and drive to the Isle of Skye where we will spend a week.

Should we rent the car from an agency at the airport or from a location in the city closer to the train station? I have read a few posts recommending renting at the airport since there will be less traffic to contend with as we go north out of the city. (It will be our first day driving in UK, adjusting to left side of road and the right side of the car.) If we do rent at the airport, we will have to get our family of 5 with luggage to the airport from the train station. Can anyone suggest the best way?

Alternately we could rent from a location closer to the train station -- I have found several on Lancefield St and Lancefield Quay. It looks like we would have to take a taxi from the train station to the rental place and then drive through the city to go north.

Any suggestions for the best way to handle this?

Thank you!

rosslang is offline  
Dec 29th, 2007, 05:16 AM
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ttt
rosslang is offline  
Dec 30th, 2007, 01:51 PM
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If you are flying from Glasgow at the end of your trip, then I would pick up the car from the airport. If you are returning to the train station, then it makes more sense to pick up a car from near there.
Which airport is the next question. If you mean Prestwick, then it is easy to get a train from Glasgow Central to the airport. Glasgow airport is not so straightforward, you have to take a short train ride and then a bus. You could consider taking a taxi to the airport but ofcourse this would add expense.
Carolina is offline  
Dec 30th, 2007, 02:48 PM
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I paid the equivalent of 1 day's rental for picking up the car at the airport. So if cost is an issue, a pick up in the city makes more sense. I couldn't because it was a bank holiday.
Michael is offline  
Dec 30th, 2007, 07:26 PM
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We are coming into Glasgow Central on the overnight train from London. We will be turning in the car at Heathrow 2 weeks later so we won't actually be going back to the train station or the airport.

Considering what both of you have said, I think we will pick up from the downtown location (taking a taxi from the train station which is really pretty close to the car rental address). That sounds much better than trying to negotiate trains and buses to the airport!

My only concern is trying to drive north out of Glasgow from that area of the city (Lancefield Quay). I guess we will just have to trust the directions given by the car rental people!

Thank you!
rosslang is offline  
Dec 31st, 2007, 01:36 AM
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My feeling is that the city centre offices won't be open early enough if you are arriving on the sleeper. I'd expect the airport offices to open earelier.

There is a frequent bus service to the airport.
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Dec 31st, 2007, 06:52 AM
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Caroline make a good point about the city centre opening hours. If you do end up picking your car up from there, however, then at least Lancefield Quay is pretty convenient for the road North.

While I'm on Caroline - all the best for 2008! (and sorry for hijacking your post rosslang...)

Jim

JJBhoy is offline  
Dec 31st, 2007, 06:58 AM
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The Lancefield Quay location is very close to the freeway/motorway north. Just a couple of easy left turns and you're on it. So if the office is open, I'd go from there.
Mimar is offline  
Dec 31st, 2007, 07:26 AM
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Some city centre rental locations are not open on weekends at all. Double check the hours of whichever one you choose. (not an issue w/ airport locations)
janisj is offline  
Jan 1st, 2008, 10:53 AM
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I'm glad to hear it won't be difficult to get to the A82 to go north from the Lancefield Quay location. I checked opening hours for the agency and they do open at 8 am that day, so we will be OK getting off the early train which arrives at 6:30, eating breakfast at the station, and getting a taxi to the car rental place.

Thanks for all the help!
rosslang is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 01:36 AM
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Hi Jim - thanks, happy New Year to you and yours !

Breakfast in the station - hm, not sure anything will be open at 6.30, and if it is, I doubt it will be nice. Jim, what are your thoughts ? I'm not so familar with Central, but I know that at Queen Street the only sit-down places are the burger bar and the pub, and I don't know how early they open.

Rosslang, you could try one of the nearby hotels - I'm thinking the Millennium which is right outside - but I don't think they'll serve breakfast that early at the weekend.
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 03:06 AM
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Central's stuffed with eateries. But, back in the days when I used those sleepers, a proper breakfast at what was then the Central Hotel and is now the Quality Hotel Central (and is and was part of the station) was the high point of the journey. Always open when I arrived.

No need to shlep over to George Sq.
flanneruk is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 03:18 AM
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Oh yes, sorry, when I said the Millennium I was thinking of Queen St. But how long is it since you were in the 'Quality' Hotel, flanner ? It's disgusting. (A society we're members of used to meet there, but finally took notice of our complaints last year.)

Since they are looking at getting a taxi to the city car hire office anyway, I still think I'd get the bus to the airport where a decent breakfast is guaranteed.
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 04:56 AM
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Yonks ago. But I've got a huge level of tolerance for station hotels: I sort of grew up on the Liverpool Adelphi, and still can't see what everyone else gets so wittery about there. When they asked me if the flannerpooch would like a biscuit, they went and got a tin of Rover Assortment for him. You don't get service (or dietary insanity) like that at the Savoy, do you?

So even if the Central has gone down as spectacularly as the Adelphi's supposed to have, I probably wouldn't notice.
flanneruk is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 05:06 AM
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A minor thought, rosslang- any merit in getting the sleeper all the way to Fort William, and hiring there?

waking up whilst crossing Rannoch Moor must be one of the travel highlights of the western world.
sheila is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 10:55 AM
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There are a couple of bars/lounges in Central Station (plus the apparently mandatory Costa's Coffee House) but I've no idea whether they would be open for breakfast at 6.30 a.m.

I was going to suggest the Central Hotel as a possibility but although I must have walked past it a million times I've never actually set foot in the place.

Actually, I think that Sheila's idea of taking the sleeper up to Fort William is a real brainwave & the best option from just about every perspective.

rosslang - if the Fort William sleeper idea won't work for you I could make some enquiries about the Central Station 6.30 breakfast options for you when I go back to work next Monday (January 7th)?

Jim
JJBhoy is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2008, 02:49 PM
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twk
 
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With regard to taking the sleeper to Fort William, things might have changed since I planned my trip for last summer, but at the time, the only car hire options in Fort William were for local rentals. The OP wants a one-way for return at Heathrow. Now, as I recall, you could take the sleeper to Inverness and pick up a one-way rental there, so that might be something to consider. If you're heading down to London from Skye, it would save you backtracking through the same area on your way south.

I don't know Glasgow, but I had the same dilemma with regard to where to pick up a car coming from London to Edinburgh. We opted to pick up at the airport, which worked very well because the airport was on the west side of town, with easy motorway access heading west. If the cental location in Glasgow that was mentioned is really that close to the motorway, you should be OK, but I wouldn't have wanted to drive in central Edinburgh.
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Jan 4th, 2008, 12:47 AM
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Flanner, "Rover Assortment" - fantastic !
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 04:51 AM
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I did check into taking the train all the way to Fort William and renting the car there, but I ran into the problem mentioned above -- none if the places allowed returning the car at Heathrow.

How is the drive along Loch Lomond? I am hoping it is not just motorway where you can't really see anything but the traffic on the road. We will be driving it early on a Saturday morning. Bad day to be driving? Any comments?

rosslang is offline  
Jan 10th, 2008, 04:56 PM
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NONE of your trip except for some of the getting out of Glasgow bit will be on motorways. No, the A82 along Loch Lomond is not a motorway.
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