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renatl cars info in Ireland..must read!


Apr 25th, 2011, 07:33 AM
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renatl cars info in Ireland..must read!

A LONG answer, to your COMMON and COMPLEX questions:

I have a World MasterCard -- A BankAmerica Elite Rewards that DOES cover Ireland. There are several others, but generally speaking, only CERTAIN US-issued WORLD MasterCards and CANADIAN-issued Visa Cards still offer insurance waiver for the Republic of Ireland -- IF the Rental Car Company agrees to accept their coverage.

The reasons ore MANY -- Vehicle (and Insurance) costs in Ireland; Frequency of accidents/damage; corporate Greed (on BOTH sides); governmental oversight (or LACK, thereof) and the old-fashioned rules of Supply-and-Demand.

MOST Irish car hire contracts contain similar 'weasel-wording' and terms and SOME are even MORE devious and obscure .. . Murray's is a reputable company -- no worse and no better than the rest -- in MY opinion.

If you DO waive the insurance, MasterRental has its own arcane and VERY specific rules on how to go about THAT process. For those who can't, won't or are unable to use a CC to waive the insurance, though --THIS is what it all means:

The Inclusive rental comes with CDW (Collision Damage Waiver), Theft and Liability. The CDW carries a DEDUCTIBLE (in YOUR case -- as it DOES vary) of 1350 Euro. That is the amount that you are still liable for, in the event of an accident or incidental damage. That amount can be reduced to NEAR zero (usually 100 Euro) by purchasing supplimental insurance -- variously called 'Super-CDW', 'Excess', 'Super CDI', etcetera.
These offerings are generally pricey -- 10-15 Euro PER DAY and are in addition to the quoted, 'Insurance Inclusive Rate'.

Even WITH the supplimental 'EXCESS' there are SEVERAL items that are NOT covered -- Tires and undercarraige, windshields, side mirrors, loss of keys, putting in the wrong fuel are the most commonly listed of those. MasterRental does NOT cover those items, either. In THOUSANDS of kilometers of driving
on my fourteen trips to Ireland over the past 12 years, I have only purchased CDW once, but I HAVE needed to buy three (3) tires and pay to have one wheel rim repaired. There are independantly offered options to cover MOST of those excluded items available. Recently, I have used Insurance4carhire, but have not yet filed a claim, so can't speak to their efficacy ...

Tourists DO have a tendancy to 'bump' curbs, knock side mirrors off and scrape the sides of the vehicles on rock-walled, narrow roads and vehicle-filled, side streets -- particularly tourists from North America that have the added distraction/difficulty of negotiating the whole, Right Hand Drive, mental adjustment, so there is SOME merit to these exclusions.

That should pretty well 'Sum Up' the INSURANCE issue, BUT that is just the TIP of the Car Hire 'Iceberg' --

Even if you BUY the 'CDW Inclusive' rental and Pre-PAY, once you arrive at the Pick Up desk, you MAY likely face (read as: REQIRED TO PAY):

Airport or Premium Location Surcharge: Between 25 and 35 Euro
Road Tax: 1 to 3 Euro PER DAY
Initial Fuel Cost: 50 to 100 Euro Be VERY aware about the Rental Company's RETURN Policy -- Do you get Credit Back, if returned with a FULL tank, or do they INSIST that you return the vehicle EMPTY??? Remeber that you will be driving an unfamiliar vehicle in an unfamiliar location and that fuel costs in Ireland (currently about 1 Euro 45 per Litre, or $8-9 per US gallon!)can mean an 'EXTRA' profit per rental of $30, unless you really DO 'Limp In' on fumes!

If you opt to 'WAIVE' the CDW or even, the 'EXCESS', MOST companies MAY charge a 'Handling Fee' of 25 to 30 Euro --
PLUS, they will often place a CHARGE (as opposed to a 'HOLD') against your Credit Card of 2-3,000 Euro, against the POSSIBILITY of damage. THAT can be near catastrophic, if you have a low credit limit available. You also need to be VERY aware of your CC's 'Foreign Transaction Fee' structure.

Once you have all THAT sorted out, the NEXT big potential Pitfall is to avoid DCC -- Dynamic Currency Conversion -- but THAT is a totally DIFFERENT and lengthy subject, in it's OWN right!

My purpose here was NOT to frighten you AWAY from Ireland -- merely to EDUCATE you so that you might make an INFORMED decision about a complex issue. In the past, I have likened Car Hire in Ireland as "Kissing The Frog".

As in: If you Kiss a Frog, first thing in the morning, nothing WORSE can happen after that!

emv0816 is offline  
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Apr 26th, 2011, 02:35 PM
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emv0816 Thanks for posting this info. You saved me a lot of grief. I had booked a car through Avis without the added insurance thinking my credit card covered it. I checked with Chase and Visa and they both said that Ireland, Northern Ireland, Israel and Jamaica are excluded from the insurance benefit. It appears that the same is true of Master Card and American Express.

Now I am spending an additional $382 for a 13 day rental for the insurance.
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Apr 27th, 2011, 08:34 AM
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you are most welcome.
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Apr 28th, 2011, 08:25 AM
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I was on another forum and read that World Mastercards do provide insurance for car rentals in Ireland. I contacted Capital One and Chase (who both issue World Mastercards) but they could not get the card to me in time. Bank of America is overnighting a card to me so I can change my car reservation to the World Mastercard.
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Apr 28th, 2011, 03:23 PM
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MasterRental is an insurance program provided by MasterCard. An individual BANK (like Chase, CITI, BankofAmerica, etcetera)issues the actual credit card, but MasterCard provides, oversees and processes the Benefits Package.

In other words: The Bank does NOT have a clue about MasterRental Coverage. They MIGHT guess. They MIGHT suspect. They MIGHT even THINK that they know ---

BUT -- If you want to know the FACTS --
Call 1 800 MC ASSIST

Even THEN, MC's 'Weasel Wording' will say something like, "Coverage in the Republic of Ireland MAY NOT be available"

THAT wording refers to the fact that Irish Car Hire Companies are NOT required to ACCEPT MasterRental and may opt NOT to. THOSE companies should be readily apparent, though -- as they will not offer the OPTION of Waiving the Insurance in the FIRST place.

You MUST decline ALL offered insurance, in order to avail of the MasterRental Coverage. That means: Theft, CDW AND 'Excess' or 'Super-CDW'. You can't 'Mix-and-Match'.

Other limits apply, too. MC will detail the full list.

All you have to do is call and ask.

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Apr 29th, 2011, 06:48 AM
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LET ME GET THIS STRAIGHT . When a car is rented in Ireland there is a full tank of gas which the renter is charged for. At $8.50 per gallon x 15 gallons capacity =$127.50. When the car is returned they tell you to bring it back empty. in order to make it back you need petrol in the car. Say you bring it back with 1/3 of a tank = $42.50 worth of your petrol that you are giving to the rental company. Multiply that by 1,000's of cars being returned = BIG $$$$$$$$. sounds like something on The Sopranos... I can see Tony and Paulie Walnuts and Johnny Sack having a good laugh over it. In the States you bring it back full and that's the end of it. Also in The States , one rents cars with automatic transmissions. I can't imagine someone opting for a stick shift. so let's add this all up. petrol at $8.50 a gallon, driving on the opposite side of the road from which I'm used to,same with driving on the opposite side of the car,shifting gears , shifting gears with my left hand,expensive insurance that doesn't cover the most likely things like tires ,windows,interior,mirrors, undercarriage,roof,. a huge deductible if the insurance does decide to pay >> credit cards that don't cover insurance in the Republic of Ireland (gee, I wonder why?). So Bob>> my question to you?/ WHY? I would think that there would be more people who simply would not want to go through all those loops. how does an industry like that make it? are there that many idiots who support it and rent cars anyway?
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Apr 29th, 2011, 07:16 AM
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Standard cars are the norm over there, and last longer. If a majority of locals drive standard, it would make sense that the pool of cars available for rental would reflect that, since in all likelyhood when the cars are 'done' being rented they would be sold locally.

You will find that it is common all over Europe (from my experience) that most rental cars will be standard, and an additional fee apply to get (if possible) an automatic.

The only, IMHO, way to see Ireland is to rent a car. So a majority of self-planning tourists will rent a car.

Sometimes, you just have to accept that this is the way it is. Comparing how things are done back home is just one way to add frustration to a trip. Sometimes things are better over there ,sometimes not.
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Apr 29th, 2011, 07:18 AM
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I have just looked at the U.K. Autoeurope site. It contains the following table:

"Car hire rates* start at:
Alicante £11/day
Dublin £16/day
Geneva £29/day
Lisbon £17/day
London £15/day
Malaga £11/day
Mallorca £14/day
Miami £15/day
Nice £22/day
Pisa £19/day
Rome £19/day

*Rates shown are per day, based upon a 7-day car hire. Taxes and additional surcharges may apply."

You will see that Dublin is by no means the most expensive European country in which to hire a car.

I live in the U.K., and have never understood the business of U.S. credit cards providing free car hire insurance. From reading other people's postings, it seems to me that it is not always the bargain that users think, and that rates from U.S. car hire companies are higher than rates from European ones, even when the European rates include full insurance with low CDW.

But perhaps the real reason for all that Irish emigration to the promised land was not the famine, or the vicious British occupation, but frustration at driving on narrow roads (on the wrong side of the road as well!) and paying over the odds for car hire.

You could always stay at home.
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Apr 29th, 2011, 07:29 AM
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"In the States you bring it back full . . . Also in The States , one rents cars with automatic transmissions. I can't imagine someone opting for a stick shift. . . . yadda yadda"

Well maybe your easy solution is -- don't rent a car -- or stay home in the States where 'everything is better'.
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Apr 29th, 2011, 10:06 AM
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We began this 'conversation' with your request for FACTS, vis a vis, Car Hire. You've now raised the ante, by asking for my OPINION: "So Bob>> my question to you?/ WHY? I would think that there would be more people who simply would not want to go through all those loops. how does an industry like that make it? are there that many idiots who support it and rent cars anyway?"

My credentials can be seen by 'Clicking' on my screen name, but in brief: I first visited Ireland in April of 1999 and have returned EVERY year since. I was most recently there from 29 March-5 April (my 13th visit) and am booked to return for two weeks this June.

On every one of those trips, I have rented a car and self-driven. On my up-coming trip, I have tentatively reserved a Ford Focus from Dan Dooley for pickup, in Shannon, on 12 June and return, in Dublin, on 26 June. Qouted price is:
Car :Group C-Ford Focus or sim
Transmission: manual

Collection Location: Shannon Airport
Collection Date: June 12th 2011 10.00 Hrs

Drop Off Location: Dublin Airport (Terminal 1 & 2)
Drop Off Date: June 26th 2011 10.00 Hrs
CDI Insurance: Not Required

Total Rental Cost: $410.63 (268.00 Euro)

Clients will be charged in the currency they have selected.

Dooley Car Rentals guarantee there will be NO HIDDEN EXTRA charges when you book the car
- Included in our Rental rates are:

Third Party Cover
Collision Damage Waiver (Where applicable)
Vehicle Theft Insurance
Location Surcharge
Road Fund Tax
One Way Rental Fees (Where applicable)
Unlimited Mileage
24 Hour All Ireland Breakdown Service
Local Taxes.
(CDW subject to an excess, this can be reduced to €100 if you choose the excess waiver option)

You will note that I am Waiving the CDW/CDI (using my World MasterCard. I DO so for a variety of reasons:
1) It's cheaper. CDW would add $86.52. 'Excess' would add ANOTHER $302.83. THAT coverage would exclude tires, mirrors and glass AND have a 100 Euro deductible. Using my MC saves me approx $300.
2) MasterRental Coverage is equal to (or BETTER)than the offered insurances.
3) I also carry a 'Blanket Policy' from Insurance4Carhire that I purchased last July, for $75. It covers excluded items, like tires, for any and all car rentals in Europe, for one (1) calendar year.
4) I ALWAYS rent a manual transmission car. Automatics ARE rarities. They are NOT as fuel efficient, more expensive to operate, maintain and repair and are HEAVILY taxed, as 'Luxury' items. This makes SENSE and I don't quibble about it -- After all, Ireland is an island with NO fuel resources of its own -- ALL motor fuels must be IMPORTED and therefor contribute to trade imbalances. The US would do well to EMULATE them, in my opinion.

All the above was said in order to let you know 'Where I'm Coming From' -- as it were. Like anyone, I prefer NOT to pay any more than I HAVE to and I'm NOT opposed to, 'Saving a Buck', whenever I can. Like MOST travelers, MY vacation funding is finite. If I can save $300 on my car hire, that 'Frees Up' $300 for a longer stay, better meals or possibly, fancier lodgings ...

I have MANY complaints about Car Hire in Ireland -- but, MOST have to do with a lack of transparency and accountability, rather than the Rates charged. That is why I ALWAYS advocate renting a car and why I will CONTINUE to do so -- even if they charge $1000 per week. They just need to convince me that I really am paying the 'Gowing Rate', rather than just trying to squeeze me for a few dollars more!

CAN you SEE Ireland from the seat of a train (or bus)? Yes -- and thousands of people DO -- ensconced within a 'Bubble' of a couple of dozen others from their home land, in a Big-Bus version of 'If this is Tuesday, this MUST be Killarney'.

But I am of the opinion that you can NOT EXPERIENCE Ireland, in such a fashion. To REALLY experience the country and its people, you need to walk the streets, drive the highways AND byways and you CAN'T do that from a train or bus --

You have to nestle in, behind the wheel and discover the WORLD beyond the Heritage Sites and the Hotel Car Parks.

Hope this clarifies ...

Itallian_Chauffer is offline  
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Apr 29th, 2011, 12:41 PM
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What Bob said.....
jaja is offline  
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Apr 29th, 2011, 12:48 PM
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No time to read this now...hope it's useful info.
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Apr 30th, 2011, 11:07 AM
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Please disregard my April 28 post. I just received a World MasterCard (5466)that I was told would have the insurance. After I got the card I talked to MasterCard and found out the my Bank of America World MasterCard does NOT have insurance in Ireland. So I am now back to buying the insurance.

I second what Italian Chauffer about the bank not knowing what is going on. Most people a MasterCard did not know either. I finally got someone who connected me to a website that listed all the benefits of my new card.
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May 1st, 2011, 07:36 AM
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So I began to 'Second Guess' my info, since it WAS almost one year out of date and I needed to make my traditional 'Verification of Coverage' call in anticipation of my upcoming trip ...

Spent an informative 15 minutes or so on the phone with a MasterCard Service Representative named Rick after calling 1 800 MC ASSIST (1 800 622 7747) and he confirmed all that I previously said. Armed with some of the comments printed here, I asked some rather POINTED questions -- a GRILLING which he handled in good form, I must say.

I asked if it was only the ELITE World MC that covered Ireland, rather than the more mundane, World Card -- And he said, "NO". MC Benefits are IDENTICLE for both World and Elite World Cards.

There are NO Country restrictions on World Cards -- BUT, there are SIX countries where 'Coverage may NOT be available' -- Ireland, Italy, Israel, New Zealand and Australia. Car Hire companies THERE may opt NOT to accept MC coverage -- but if they DO, MasterRental WILL provide coverage -- provided that you follow ALL the Rules of Use.

If you call, Monday thru Friday, between 8 AM and 8 PM, once you work your way through the 'Automated Response Menu' and connect with a LIVE agent, you can REQUEST to have a 'LETTER OF COVERAGE' emailed to you -- THAT Department doesn't work the weekends, though ???? The Letter is only VALID for 60 days, though, so you will need to make the call (on a Week DAY!) within 60 days of your RETURN date.

FYI -- I've NEVER bothered to get 'The Letter' for ANY of my previous visits, but it probably would NOT be a bad idea -- Just as a 'Piece of Mind' kinda thing, if nothing else.

SUSNOBIE: I would STRONGLY urge you to RECONSIDER you Insurance decision !!! On another post, you said: "I received the benefits paperwork for the world points and could not find any rental coverage so we did not opt out of insurance. But it was only an extra $50 so I wasn't too unhappy about it."

Looking at the numbers, $50 is PROBABLY the correct difference between purchasing the CDW -- but it likely DOES NOT cover the EXCESS. THAT wil be "OFFERED" to you when you pick up the car -- at a time when you are MOST vulnerable -- usually, jet-lagged, running on adrenaline and easily confused and distracted (I know THAT is true, for ME )

To re-iterate:

CDW covers Collision and Theft -- but carries an initial DEDUCTIBLE of 1000 - 2500 EURO. That is the amount that YOU are responsible for, BEFORE the CDW 'Kicks In'. To reduce that Deductible to 100 Euro, you will have to purchase 'EXCESS', Super-CDW, CDI or some such product, at 10-15 Euro per day EXTRA -- OR, you can pre-buy a Blanket, Secondary coverage, from a firm like Insurance4Carhire.

SO --- There's a LOT more at stake than just "only an extra $50"

I've used Dooley a number of times. The seem to be the most honorable car hire company (in terms of Transparency) within an Industry of Dis-honorable companies. That does NOT mean that you don't need to be informed as to all your options, though.

Just because one dog BITES less frequently than all the other dogs, does NOT mean that that particular dog is SAFER to be around ...

Call MasterCard AGAIN, please. Ask them to email 'The Letter' and read it carefully BEFORE you commit.

Hope this helps

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May 1st, 2011, 10:22 AM
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Italian Chauffer
You quoted me as saying "I received the benefits paperwork for the world points and could not find any rental coverage so we did not opt out of insurance. But it was only an extra $50 so I wasn't too unhappy about it."

That is not my comment. My insurance will be over $300.

Your posts have been very informative. Thanks.
susnobie is offline  
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May 1st, 2011, 10:57 AM
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Italian Chauffer
I just read your post on another thread. I see the note above was not for me. Sorry I didn't read the other one first.
susnobie is offline  
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May 1st, 2011, 11:22 AM
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Actually, that was MY bad. Should have added a correction HERE, too.

Was 'jumping' back-and-forth between Posts and somehow got the screen names wrong.

Still, all and all, seems like the info MIGHT be useable.

Was not offended by your post. Should I have been???

I CAN be a bit dense about such things ...

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May 1st, 2011, 06:42 PM
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Italian Chauffer
No you should not been offended by my post. I just want to let you know that I have read the other one and figured out what happened.
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May 1st, 2011, 08:49 PM
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janisj, from our experience everything IS better in the USA; we were going to Europe next year but the point of a holiday is to relax and I can't imagine that happening, at least in the UK or Ireland. So back to the USA, but thanks for confirming that we have made the right decision.
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May 2nd, 2011, 12:26 PM
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Got the link from my thread. I understand that the $50 is the basic coverage.

Insurance is a gamble, or a shared risk investment, or however you want to describe it. I understand the difference between the CDW and the Excess or super or 3rd party insurance bundles. It's a question of statistics and ability to handle risk. If I were to go through 50 car rentals over my lifetime and each time paid an average of $200 per rental for premium insurance, that would be $10k down. Maybe it's worth it compared to the bumps and accidents I might acquire in 50 rentals. Maybe it's worth the peace of mind. Maybe I don't have the money for the larger deductible on the plain CDW, maybe I do.

To each their own.
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