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glsebs Jul 12th, 2005 02:03 PM

Help! What category car to rent?
We are two couples getting off a cruise in Monte Carlo. We need to rent a car for 3 days to use in the Riviera after our cruise. I am sure we will have at least 4 large suitcases and we will have to rent the car in Monte Carlo before driving to our hotel in Beaulieu. After 3 days we will drive to Nice airport to drop the car when we depart. What category of car will we have to to rent to accomodate us and our luggage?

BTW,I would not want to rent a van as we will be driving the small towns in the Riviera and a van would be difficult to drive and park.

Thanks for any help you can give us.

kopp Jul 12th, 2005 03:34 PM

I usually rent a Category E car, and it tightly fits 4 of the 21-inch suitcases, no more. So if your large suitcases are larger than 21-inches, a bigger car would be wise -- unless, of course, you don't mind using your laps!

Happy travels!

rex Jul 12th, 2005 03:55 PM

And if your suitcases ARE larger than a 21 incher, it's time the four of you talked about how to make some different packing decisions. It is much easier to pack four 21-inch roll-aboards, together with four small-medium sized duffels (key: squishable to fit into irregularly shaped spaces) - - than to try dealing with four suitcases - - of which two seem to fill the available trunk space!

That said, rent the largest four-door sedan you can afford.

Have you also addressed which (how many?) drivers are up to snuff with their manual transmission skills? Better not to have just one person feel responsible for all the driving.

Best wishes,


Nimrod Jul 12th, 2005 04:07 PM

A Volvo V70 wagon would fit the bill.

Look around If you click on the picture of a car available for your specific dates it will show the basic pax/luggage capacity.

Underhill Jul 12th, 2005 05:49 PM

A Renault Scenic would be perfect; it's like a smallish SUV and has great visibility. Also, the rear seats are configured so that people can actually see through the front window.

Three of us with 3 large suitcases, 3 roll-aboards, and a bunch of other stuff all fit in quite nicely. The rear seats are large enough to accommodate a suitcase in between two passengers.

glsebs Jul 12th, 2005 08:06 PM

Thanks for all of the suggestions. We have two drivers that can drive stick shift. As for the luggage, we will be gone 2 weeks and it is very hard to pack light for a week cruise and another week of travel.
Underhill, which company has a Renault Scenic?

rex Jul 12th, 2005 08:25 PM

Packing light is one thing; packing all in one big suitcase is another. The key is to keep the "less flexible" suitcase(s) as small as possible - - and even if you need two duffels per person (or three per couple, or one spouse gets a larger duffel) - - the point is to have "squishable" bags that can be fit into spaces where large suitcases cannot.

Are you thinking you want/need to take tuxedos or evening gowns? I can understand that this could make the packing job harder, and I have to confess I have never been on a cruise; is laundry possible?

Cruise or not, I have never traveled with what would be 13 days of dirty laundry by the end of the trip - - for any trip longer than about a week, I have found access to laundry somehow, some way - - and left home with about 9-10 days worth of clean clothes maximum.

I know of no car rental company that will guarantess you a specific model of a car. I have had a Scenic, as Underhill describes, and yes, it would be appealing - - but I believe we got it when we had a four door sedan reserved, and it was luck of the draw.

Intrepid1 Jul 13th, 2005 12:37 AM

I suggest you try using either or (the sister company) to llok for a a start, anyway. They will show you pictures and luggage capacity of the various models avilable but as with all the others will not necessarily guarantee that particular model but rather the usual rental car boilerplate: "or similar."

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