Renting an automatic-shift car @ Italy

Old Feb 17th, 2003, 06:39 AM
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Renting an automatic-shift car @ Italy

My husband and I are travelling to Italy in April and are looking to rent a car to get around Tuscany, but we don't drive stick.

We understand it's nearly impossible to rent an automatic car there; is this true? If not, can you recommend a reputable rental company (and estimated costs)...we live in NYC and don't own a car, so a learning to drive stick is out of the question.

Many thanks in advance.

-- Patti
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Old Feb 17th, 2003, 06:48 AM
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You might try AutoEurope, or also evacations (web access both of them with a .com at the end). It is easiest to get an automatic at the bigger cities or airports. While there is sometime an extra charge for picking up/turning in a car at an airport, you will be out of downtown traffic and easily able to head for the Tuscany countryside. The A1 main highway between Rome and Florence is easy to drive on...just stay out of the left lane and let the "big boys" fly past you.
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Old Feb 17th, 2003, 06:49 AM
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Auto Europe rents cars that have automatic transmission. They're higher priced to rent, but they have them.

http://www.autoeurope.com
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Old Feb 17th, 2003, 06:51 AM
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No it's not impossible. All the rental companies offer cars with automatic transmission. Of course, they cost more and usually are on the mid size and larger cars. Although we normally rent a stick and use Hertz we did rent an automatic several years ago from them. I believe it cost around $300-400 for five days. We can rent an economy class stick shift for under $300 per week. Auto Europe has reasonable rates but the last car we rented from them was falling apart.
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Old Feb 17th, 2003, 07:35 AM
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I rented automatic cars twice in Italy. The pick up was in Florence both times. Used Hertz and Auto Europe (Europecar). No problem.
If you can, save the cost of pickup at an airport location. It adds about 20% to the already high automatic rental fee.
You just need to start making a list of car companies and check prices.

Both companies allowed drop off at airports for no extra charge. In fact, both companies allowed pick up in one city and drop off in another at no extra charge (within Italy).
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Old Feb 17th, 2003, 03:04 PM
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I don't know about an automatic in your location, but I have used Nove car rental out of Ireland for our last several trips (France & Spain). They consistently beat Auto Europe's prices by a lot.
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Old Feb 18th, 2003, 02:57 AM
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julies--do you mean Nova Rentacar? We used them on our trip to Germany last June as they were much less expensive than any other we checked--and we checked a lot of companies.
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Old Feb 18th, 2003, 04:52 AM
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Yes, that's who I mean. They gave us good service too when we had a problem on one of our rentals.
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