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Renting a car in Ireland - pick up/off at Dublin airport or city center?

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Feb 19th, 2013, 10:36 AM
  #1
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Renting a car in Ireland - pick up/off at Dublin airport or city center?

Hi all,
I've been doing some car rental research for my upcoming 10-day trip to Ireland and it can give you a headache quite easily! I'm travelling with 2 friends; we fly into Dublin, and planned to stay there a couple of days before renting a car to explore some of the rest of the country (itinerary still being discussed). We were thinking we'd return to Dublin the day before we depart back to the US. Is it worth looking into renting a car from Dublin city center, or would it be easier to go back to the airport? Any thoughts on which would be less expensive, better experience, etc.?
RobinBinNYC is offline  
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Feb 19th, 2013, 12:52 PM
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Check with Dan Dooley rentals to get an idea on prices.

This company has been recommended by many Fodorites, and I intend to use them this summer.
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Feb 19th, 2013, 02:15 PM
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Yes, I've heard of Dan Dooley - they are quite a bit more expensive. I was just asking in terms of distance/ease of access. We were assuming (and then I thought, maybe we shouldn't assume!) that since we'll already be in Dublin, it might not make sense to go back to the airport to rent a car. For example, Avis Dublin City Center came up as one of the best prices in a search we did. I'm not sure how easy/difficult it would be to get to their location in Dublin city center, (http://www.avis.ie/CarHire/Europe/Ir...in-City-Centre )or if the airport would be easier. There are 3 of us; so maybe if public transport won't be feasible we'd take a cab.
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Feb 19th, 2013, 03:19 PM
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Make sure you are comparing Apples with Apples quotes should be ALL Inclusive Dooley include Insurance many others do not. Compare also prices for city and airport collection with the same companies, City collection may be loaded.
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Feb 19th, 2013, 07:16 PM
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Two thoughts regarding your car rental in Ireland. First, depending on your itinerary, would it work for you to fly into Dublin, rent the car, and return it to Shannon? We rented from Avis, and this worked out well. Second, it worked for us to pick up our car at the Dublin airport, and stay overnight in the resort area of Malahide, a short drive from the airport. The DART train goes from Malahide into Dublin. Malahide is a nice area, and with a car you can get around in the evening and explore Howth Bay.

For our last evening, we booked a B & B in Bunratty, close to the Shannon Airport. Since our flight didn't leave until the afternoon, the Bunratty area provided enough to explore the evening before as well as the morning of our flight. It was easy to return the car, and the Shannon Airpot, being much smaller than Dublin, was very comfortable.

We hope all works out well and that you have an enjoyable trip to the Emerald Isle.
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Feb 21st, 2013, 02:05 PM
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RobinBinNYC, we're interested in what you decided with regard to your car rental. Are you flying in and out of the Dublin Airport? And are you planning to stay in downtown Dublin? The stores are open on Thursday evenings only, unless that was recently changed. One tip for car rental: get as small of a car as will accommodate the three of you and your luggage. The roads in Ireland (except for some of the highways) are narrow, stone walls line many of them, and parking with a smaller car is a lot easier. We booked our car from home with Avis, and has no issues with them; however, we picked up at the airport. Not sure about the downtown Dublin location. Good luck in your planning!
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Feb 21st, 2013, 06:26 PM
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I would reiterate what others have said. In comparing quotes make sure you are comparing the same coverage. I decided to go with Dooley as their super collision deductible is about €100 whereas Avis, I believe was €1000 or thereabouts. Overall, I did not find Dooley to be more expensive even without that difference.
giro is offline  
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Feb 21st, 2013, 08:22 PM
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Having once made the mistake of driving in Dublin, I would not advise picking up your car in the city centre.
In June we are taking Airlink into the city and then DART to Dun Laoghaire to pick up the car a couple of days later.
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Aug 1st, 2013, 02:00 PM
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I am so sorry, with busy-ness and all I got involved in different things and never got back to this conversation! We are now 2 of us, so we rented the smallest automatic car we could get. We are using Hertz, which I arranged through AAA. In my research it seemed the best deal. We are picking the car up at the airport - after siteseeing in Dublin for 2 days we'll just go back to the airport and pick it up - a friend recommended we do that to avoid driving in Dublin traffic. What we're doing on the return - as our last stop before coming back home is Kilkenny, we'll go directly to the airport from there as it is not too far away. This saves us the hassle of getting another hotel for Dublin for one night, finding parking, etc. Wish me luck (particularly with the actual driving on the "other" side)!!
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Aug 1st, 2013, 02:25 PM
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Just make double sure what is included in the price and what you pay at the collection desk..There has been mention on TA forum about short selling from AAA with unexpected payments and "Holds" at the Desk.. worth checking before you get that far.
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Aug 1st, 2013, 02:46 PM
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Good decision Robin, we were just in Ireland at the end of June and we had three days in Dublin, then took a taxi to the airport to collect our rental car. It was easy to get onto the motorway from there, no fuss, no muss!

As for the driving, well, my friend is from Australia so used to that side of the road, but I was paying close attention to see if I could do it myself next time and I don't think you'll have any trouble. Good luck!

Enjoy Ireland, I fell in love with it. The nicest people, and the best brown bread I have ever eaten.

I highly recommend west Cork if you can get down there.
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Aug 1st, 2013, 04:05 PM
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We did rent from Dooley and took the DART to Dun Laoghaire where we were met by a nice lad who handled all the paperwork in the carpark. The only additional charge was for a tank of petrol and they did put a hold because I had taken Super CDW from another firm. Never saw any trace of the hold.

We stayed at Trinity College so could take a leisurely stroll to the DART station.

It all depends on which direction you want to go when leaving Dublin...we were on the way to Powerscourt and Glendalough so Dun Laoghaire worked best for us. And the DART was fast and very reasonably priced. Not sure if they go to the airport.
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Aug 9th, 2013, 01:43 PM
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The City Centre location is a nightmare!! Streets in Dublin are not well marked, and some of them change names every block or so. We didn't have any trouble getting out of Dublin, but getting back to the drop off location was another story.
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Aug 12th, 2013, 12:30 AM
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Remember this when you pass the tolled section of the M50 motorway from/ to the airport.
http://www.hertz.ie/rentacar/product...E_M50_Toll.jsp

Aside from the motorways, all single to lower dbl digits N roads have standard width of lanes. Upper dbl digits N roads and R roads may have narrower lanes but should always have at least one marked lane per direction. L or not numbered roads may be those narrow winding roads a bit harder to handle. GPS often does not discriminate and can send you for kilometers on those narrow roads while a short detour might have been all to avoid it. It does not hurt to buy a map and check the proposed GPS routing against obvious alternatives.
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Aug 13th, 2013, 04:41 PM
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Thank you again everyone, especially Cowboy1968!! And Tony2Phones, I hear you. I'm almost gearing myself up in anticipation if there are any problems! Maybe I will take another look at Dooley, but as I'm leaving next week I may be too late to get a car. Oh well! I'm more focused on having a great time.
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Aug 13th, 2013, 04:49 PM
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Robin, I've been looking into this stuff for my own trip next month. Where are you staying? I'm just wondering if you're staying at a B&B, if you might be able to find someone to take you to the airport. Maybe, when you first get there, there might be someone else with room to spare going back to the airport and they can give you a lift.
I've decided I'll just try and take a bus but I'm kind of nervous because I've used PT very little right here at home in California.
Well whatever you do, hope you have a great time!

Oh and I'm also stressing about this M50 toll and having to pay it on time lol
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Aug 13th, 2013, 11:55 PM
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We flew into Ireland July 30, took the Air Coach into the city and walked a few blocks to our apartment. Aside from having to wait 45 minutes for a bus with seats available, it went smoothly.

On Aug 3, we took a cab (about 7 Euro & 10 minutes) to the South Circular Rd Hertz location, got there shortly before they were scheduled to open (but they were open) and picked up our car. We chose to do it that was because we were headed south. Driving through town to Sandycove was easy.

On Sept 1, we'll return the car to the Hertz location at Dublin airport and spend the night nearby, as we fly out the next morning. Hertz had no additional charge for pick up/drop off in 2 different locations.
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Oct 20th, 2013, 09:49 AM
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Renting a car in Ireland was a great idea to visit the region around dublin. but we had an awful experience with the rental company europcar in the city center close to trinity college.
awful experience, very unfriendly people. they blocked 1200 euros because they found a scratch on the door. this was insane...
so just be careful by picking the right rental company and check reviews.
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Nov 18th, 2013, 10:58 PM
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@abram, I tried to send you a PM but couldn't find a way. I will be doing exactly opposite of what you did, picking up at airport and dropping off at Hertz on S. Circular Rd. We will be staying at the Radisson Blu Dublin and it was the closest location to the hotel (April 2014).

Did you find the drive south from the S. Circular office daunting or difficult? By the time I drop off the vehicle, I will have been driving for 6 days outside of Dublin and should be fairly comfortable on the opposite side of the car and road by then. People warn about driving in Dublin and curious if this location was far enough south and not too maddening.
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Nov 19th, 2013, 06:10 AM
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DH did the driving. He's comfortable driving on the left as he's done it many times.

It took him a day or two to get used to the narrow roads. The challenge was finding the (sometimes small) sweet spot in the middle of the lane so he was neither trimming the hedges on the left or exchanging side mirrors with oncoming cars. Actually, he never did either one of those things, but there were moments when he thought he might.

Glad you couldn't figure out how to PM me; I delete emails from anyone I don't know.
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