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Questions about car hire-including whether or not it's a good idea!

Questions about car hire-including whether or not it's a good idea!

Sep 26th, 2010, 06:54 PM
  #1  
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Questions about car hire-including whether or not it's a good idea!

We are planning a still somewhat hypothetical (predicated on my husband being able to get time off during bargain season) trip to Ireland next March. We're definitely basing in Dublin, and we definitely don't want a car for the length of the trip. However, we are hotly debating the merits of renting a car for a day or two vs. taking a day tour or two. I see clear advantages and disadvantages to both strategies. Having a car gives us a lot more flexibility, and will let us see more things than than the day tours likely will. However, it must be driven upon the wrong side, gassed at rates that make my head spin, and parked at night (car park at hotel is 10 euros a day).

However I have some concrete questions that will make my decision easier. What is the difference between "basic" and "inclusive" and do we need "inclusive"? Will DH's normal insurance cover us reasonably? Also I do not drive, do not have a driver's license, and will NOT be driving the car, so do I need to worry about being charged for a second driver? If we play it by ear and decide to make that decision when we get there, will it be more expensive (DH is fine with a standard transmission, so we're not worried about them running out of automatics) or wildly more complicated? How completely insane is it to try to make Blarney a day trip from Dublin? I'm assuming Cobh is even nuttier, but one of DS's obsessions is shipwrecks. And it looks like the car is not allowed to cross international borders, so I'm assuming that means that it is not allowed to go to Belfast to visit Titanic things (which I think is unlikely, and could be done by train if necessary). I would consider that an international border, but I was a little fuzzy on whether an Irish car hire firm counted it that way, or if it just meant we should not take it on ferries to Wales or France.

I'm sure I'm being a little obsessive, but I've never rented a car in my life, and while DH has, he regards arrangements for foreign travel as my purview. And we're on a very limited budget, so we're being compulsive about not spending unnecessary money. Help, please!
persimmondeb is offline  
Sep 26th, 2010, 08:03 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
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I would definitely hire a car that way, your trip to the Blarney Stone needn't be done in a day as you could make an overnight of it. It is a 267klm trip one way so I wouldn't be wanting to do it as a day trip. You could do it but it would be a big day for sure.

I would love to do Ireland and in my plans I had thought that the whole place would just lend itself to driving yourself. Driving on the other side of the road to which you're used to is not a biggie at all and your DH will have no trouble adjusting.
stormbird is offline  
Sep 26th, 2010, 08:04 PM
  #3  
 
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Myself, I'd rent a car. But with your hesitancy I'm not sure it's necessarily the right thing for you. I'm beginning to think that if a person has that many worries about it maybe they're better off on a bus....

In any event... here are some answers:

>>> What is the difference between "basic" and >>> "inclusive" and do we need "inclusive"?

Basic will be a deductible in the 1,000 to 1,800 euro range. That means if the car is damaged YOU pay the first 1,800 euros out of your own pocket.
If the damage is less than that you'll be paying for all the damage.

Inclusive generally means paying a higher insurance premium that takes the deductible lower... often to zero.

Often things like the undercarriage, mirrors, glass or theft are not covered and require still
more coverage be purchased.


Many people find it's economical to use the insurance that often comes as a benefit with a credit card. However, many cards will not cover in Ireland. Other people here may have recommendations.

Other costs can often include a premium for picking up the car in some locations, a daily
license fee and an automatic charge when you pass through a toll plaza on the M50 motorway.

>>>Will DH's normal insurance cover us >>>reasonably?

Absolutely not. It won't cover you at all nor
will one's own car insurance company even be able to arrange other coverage. They just don't.


>>>Also I do not drive, do not have a driver's >>>license, and will NOT be driving the car, so >>>do I need to worry about being charged for a >>>second driver?

No. Why on earth would they allow you as a second driver when you have no license? And as you have no license they are not going to charge you.


>>>If we play it by ear and decide to make that >>>decision when we get there, will it be more >>>expensive (DH is fine with a standard >>>transmission, so we're not worried about them >>>running out of automatics) or wildly more >>>complicated?

In almost all cases this is a sure fire way to pay much much more. Similar to airline tickets... walkups always pay more.

>>>How completely insane is it to try to make >>>Blarney a day trip from Dublin? I'm assuming >>>Cobh is even nuttier, but one of DS's >>>obsessions is shipwrecks.

Considering Blarney is 250 km from Dublin and close to 4 hours driving... pretty much! But Cobh and Blarney are close - only 30 km apart - so why not spend a night or 2 in County Cork?

>>>And it looks like the car is not allowed to >>>cross international borders, so I'm assuming >>>that means that it is not allowed to go to >>>Belfast to visit Titanic things (which I >>>think is unlikely, and could be done by train >>>if necessary). I would consider that an >>>international border, but I was a little >>>fuzzy on whether an Irish car hire firm >>>counted it that way,

You need to inform the company in advance and there may be an extra fee of 30-50 euros to travel in the North.

>>>or if it just meant we should not take it on >>>ferries to Wales or France

You wouldn't want to do this anyway...

Hope this helps!

Rob
ParisAmsterdam is offline  
Sep 26th, 2010, 09:49 PM
  #4  
 
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"We're definitely basing in Dublin"

If you want to see Blarney and Cobh -- then basing in Dublin the whole time makes very little to no sense. They are on the other side of the country.

You don't need/want a car for anything around Dublin. But to get to the SW coast -- you need a few days and preferably a rental car.

You insurance and/or credit card won't cover you in Ireland (except for one very specific World MasterCard). So you definitely need to book "inclusive". And no, if only one of you is driving, you won't be charged for 2 drivers.
janisj is online now  
Sep 27th, 2010, 03:08 AM
  #5  
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I was aware that they weren't exactly near to Dublin, just wasn't sure if it was borderline nuts or absolutely, completely nuts. I think the answer is closer to pretty darn nuts. We only have six days, and I really don't feel like moving our base of operations, so I think we'll likely skip it for this trip. And while you would think it obvious that a non-driver won't be driving, DH has had a hard time getting car rental firms/car dealerships, etc. to internalize the idea that I will NOT be driving the vehicle.

The bus may be simpler and more relaxed, even if we are sacrificing the ability to wake up in the morning and say, "hey, let's go to X!" I'm a somewhat nervous passenger, and while DH is not a nervous driver, he often prefers not to drive on vacation, and likes riding public transport.
persimmondeb is offline  
Sep 27th, 2010, 03:14 AM
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If you base yourself in Cork for one night, you wouldn't need to rent a car. The last time I was there, a train ran out to Cobh from Cork and there was a bus to Blarney.

In Dublin, if you decide to take a trip out beyond bus or DART, you might rent a car for one day at the airport for just a day and not have to worry about parking charges at your hotel or driving in Dublin to get to your hotel. A day rental would not be that much worse than preplanning and you could pick the nicest day to do the day trip.

Recently friends of mine took the train to Bray which is south of Dublin (half an hour on the train), rented a car from Enterprise there, toured Powerscourt waterfall and explored Glendalough and the Wicklow mountains, returned the car and back to Dublin by train. Renting in Bray saved them navigating in the snarl of traffic around Dublin.
irishface is offline  
Sep 27th, 2010, 03:15 AM
  #7  
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Oh, one more question! Will our GPS work there if we bring it, or do we need to rent one from the car company? DH felt that the plugging in arrangement shouldn't vary internationally (since it goes into the car, not house current), but we weren't sure if there was some other issue.
persimmondeb is offline  
Sep 27th, 2010, 03:37 AM
  #8  
 
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Car cigarette lighter sockets are all the same so no worries about fitting. Your GPS will work but visit the maker's website as you'll most likely need to download European maps.
ParisAmsterdam is offline  
Sep 27th, 2010, 03:57 AM
  #9  
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Thanks! And I like the idea of renting in Bray, since taking the DART there was one of the things that was on the table.
persimmondeb is offline  

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