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Picking up a car in France-returning in Italy

Picking up a car in France-returning in Italy

Old Jan 16th, 2005, 11:29 AM
  #1  
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Picking up a car in France-returning in Italy

I know there was another thread about trying to avoid the drop-off charge, but I'm really having a hard time. We wanted to drive through Provence starting in Avignon, go on through the French and the Italian Rivieras ending up in Florence, with several stops along the way. Someone suggested doing two rentals - one in each country and when I priced that on autoeurope it actually looks like I can save over $200. (Autoeurope has a $300 drop fee - Travelocity a $650 fee! and Kemwel replied that my one way request was 'not allowed'). Has anyone ever done this and is it worth the hassle and time to get on a train or bus to get across the border?
Angela_m is offline  
Old Jan 16th, 2005, 09:41 PM
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I haven't done this, but you might see if you can exchange cars at a town near the border in Italy. I wouldn't try to do this through a broker, I would talk directly to the car rental company ahead of time.

curmudgeon is offline  
Old Jan 16th, 2005, 10:35 PM
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Angela,
It may be the EU, but dropping a car off in a country other then the one you rented it in will cost, as you already know. We have the same problem between France and Spain. You'll have to decide what you want to do. Pick a place to drop off the car in France and take a bus, or taxi, into Italy and pick up another rental, unless you have a lost of spare cash to waste on the rental. Frankly, it's not worth it under any circumstance.
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 04:30 AM
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rex
 
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I have done it. REturn your French car at Nice SNCF and take the one hour train ride to San Remo. If by chance you are doing this late in the day (i.e., if you don't to arrive earlier and immediately move on), you might find the Nyala Suites hotel a good choice for spending the night there.

Best wishes,

Rex
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 05:31 AM
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Hi Angela!
Check this out:
http://www.europcar4easyjet.com
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 06:40 AM
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I rented through Hertz...picking up in Perpignan and dropping in Venice a couple years ago.(We took the train from Barcelona to Perpignan and it was very easy to pick up the car...about a block from the train station) The drop off fee was not that much then...less than $100. It was much more renting in Spain and dropping in Italy. I booked directly through the hertz site. I would also try the thrifty car rental site which seemed to have good prices when I looked for my next May rental booking in France.
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 07:37 AM
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We did the same thing Rex did, pretty much. We rented a car in Italy, and drove it to Monte Carlo. We then drove 2 cars back to San Remo & dropped off the Italian car.

However, before you do something like that, check out the rental cost of cars in France vs. cars in Italy. Renting in Italy will be much more expensive, since you need CDW and also the basic rates are higher. Getting a new car in Italy, and possible renting 2 cars for 1 day may be more than the drop off.

Stu Dudley
San Mateo (San Francisco), Ca.
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 10:45 AM
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Thanks everyone for your helpful replies. StuDudley- that's an interesting way of doing it, but I'm wondering if there would be a city to pick up a rental in Italy that would be closer to the border than San Remo. So you actually backtracked with the two cars? How long did that take you?
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 11:59 AM
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>>>I'm wondering if there would be a city to pick up a rental in Italy that would be closer to the border than San Remo. So you actually backtracked with the two cars? How long did that take you?<<<

This "event" was about 1/3 the way through a 7 week trip, so it saved us a lot of bucks to not pay the higher Italy rental and not pay the drop-off too. San Remo was the closest place that had an office. This was about 12 years ago, and there may be other other places closer to the border now. We did, in fact, backtrack with two cars. I don't remember that it took us a lot of extra time - perhaps only 2 hrs more than not having to do this excahange at all. We did it on a Sunday, so the traffic was lighter.

Stu Dudley

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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 12:12 PM
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Angela,

I'm doing France/Italy too and have been researching car rental rates. I've checked with several rental agencies and the closest location I've found on the Italian side is San Remo. I've looked for Ventimiglia but haven't found any with a location there yet.

However, on the French side, Europcar and Avis list locations in Menton which is closer to the Italian border than Nice.

FYI here are the drop rates I've been quoted thus far:

Kemwel: 273 US (rental with Europcar)
Avis: 114 Euro ~ 150 US
Hertz: 500 US

I see you've gotten a drop off quote of $300 from AutoEurope which is higher than Kemwel's. Their quoted rental rates have been higher than Kemwel's also for every permutation I've tried thus far. Good luck
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 02:29 PM
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>>>I see you've gotten a drop off quote of $300 from AutoEurope which is higher than Kemwel's. Their quoted rental rates have been higher than Kemwel's also for every permutation I've tried thus far. Good luck<<

As many people have said before, AutoEurope will match any rate quoted by anyone else. They do not own cars, and have contracts with Avis, Hertz, EuropeCar etc. Unless you have talked to them on the phone, do not place a lot of value on what they post as drop off charges, if you only browse them on-line. Call to confirm exact charges. See if they have any discounts or upgrade programs. I've used them for over 20 years, and have always been pleased. If you have a problem with the final "bill" it is much easier to deal with them in the US then it is to talk with an Avis office in France - I've found this out the hard way (and my wife speaks French).

Stu Dudley

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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 03:39 PM
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You don't say how long you want the car for. We did the reverse in mid-2003, picked car up in Rome and returned to Strasbourg in France. This was a leased Peugeot and the min days were 17 I think. I do not recall any prohibitive charges.
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Old Jan 17th, 2005, 06:35 PM
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eliza, the Peugeot lease program currently has a US $ 305 pick-up or drop off charge for Rome.
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Old Jun 26th, 2005, 10:02 AM
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Thought I'd resurrect this post to relate our experience with the drop-off fee and Autoeurope. After weighing all the creative options posted here, we decided in the interest of time and the least amount of hassle, that we would go ahead and just pay the drop-off fee. When I called autoeurope to make our reservation, the agent told me to inquire when picking up the car if they have any rental cars in France that needed to be returned to Italy. When we got to Avignon (where we were picking up the car) we decided we didn't need the car until a day later so I called autoeurope to change the pick-up date and mentioned to them about getting a car needing to be returned to Italy. As luck would have it, the next day at the rental office (Europcar), they pulled up our car, top of the line Volvo station wagon with Italian plates! It was a beautiful car and a pleasure to drive on the autostrada, however a little big for manuevering in small towns. We tried to explain to the agent in Avignon about refunding our drop-off fee, but she suddenly could not understand English. We thought, oh well, we'll just call autoeurope when we get home which I did and they assured me they would check out the car and refund our money. Today we got a credit on our credit card for $324. What a pleasure it is to do business with a company like that! We will continue to use autoeurope for all our European car rentals and highly recommend them to everyone who has any concerns.
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Old Jun 26th, 2005, 10:11 AM
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ira
 
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Good for you, angela.

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Old Jun 26th, 2005, 10:29 AM
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Try eurovacations.com. Does not seem to be a big charge for dropping off in Italy.
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Old Jun 26th, 2005, 11:02 AM
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In my opinion it would be very easy to drop your car at the train station in Nice, take a train to San Remo, and pick up another car at the train station there. This can be arranged with Auto Europe depending on which companies have pick up and drop offs near the train station -- Avis for one I believe.
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