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Best rental car co. out of Boston Logan.

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Mar 30th, 2013, 07:43 AM
  #1
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Best rental car co. out of Boston Logan.

I am flying into BOS on a Sat. afternoon in July; I need to rent a car and drive to Northampton, where my daughter is attending a summer program. I'll be returning the car the next evening, spending the night in airport Hilton and flying out the Mon. a.m. Online reviews for the various car co.s are terrible. I would be grateful for any advice (most convenient pick-up and drop off; most decent cars; least rude service).
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Mar 30th, 2013, 08:03 AM
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I travel frequently to Boston and have had very good luck many times with Enterprise at the airport. We were just there last week and had a great customer service rep. We arrived very late (11:30 pm) and the guy couldn't have been nicer. I reserved a mid-sized car but with four of us and lots of luggage, we really needed a larger car. I asked for an SUV and got an upgrade for just a little more than the price we had reserved. I've been upgraded there several times before as well. There was no pressure to take their insurance coverage or other BS. They also had the best price (this was a last-minute reservation reserved an hour before landing when I realized I'd forgotten to get a car and luckily there was Wifi on our Southwest flight!)

The major rental car companies are all grouped in the same area of the airport very close to the termials (you take a frequent shuttle that goes to all the agencies). Logan is now building a central rental car facility similar to what they have in Las Vegas. Unfortunately, now you have to wind your way through a lot of construction to return the car and the signage isn't the best, but that's the same for all the rental agencies.

For a good price, you might see if your airline has any deals through their website - I got mine on Southwest.com linked to my air travel. I've also used Kayak.com's car rental quotes to compare as well.

Bring your GPS if you have it - you will absolutely need it. I grew up in Boston and still get lost every time! The streets are insane! Good luck with your trip!
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Mar 30th, 2013, 08:06 AM
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I wish I could hug you tekwriter. Thank you so much for all this information. I really appreciate it!
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Mar 30th, 2013, 12:34 PM
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madewell88:

We have used both Enterprise and Budget to rent cars in Boston. No problems with either. We always decline any additional insurance offered.

Car rental in Boston during the summer is high. We have sometimes booked a car rental that we can cancel without penalty and then continue to look for a lower rate. Try www.hotwire.com a discount broker or you can look on www.rentalcodes.com

Sandy
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Mar 30th, 2013, 03:28 PM
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When leaving the airport, you want to follow signs to Mass Turnpike (you can only go west from the airport unless you are driving to Northampton, England). If you are confused at any point and need more time to think, just follow signs that say "terminals" and you will go in another circle loop around the airport.

I can't give you specific directions to Pike from airport since I do not know exactly where the car rental places are - but I would ask the guy at the rental company and they can give you easy directions to Mass Pike from lot.

Coming back, you will be on Mass Pike and follow signs to airport. You never actually go into Boston, so you can ignore any cautionary tales about driving in the city.

The Northampton Inn is an older, historic hotel - if you get one of the rooms that opens onto the shared balcony you can sit outside in the summer and view the town. I prefer it to one of the generic chain hotels in the town.
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Mar 30th, 2013, 04:37 PM
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I've used Enterprise wherever I go around the country because of their pickup and dropoff services.

My habits are different from the others as I take their insurance - not all of it, just the basic coverage.

It's worked well for me. When someone else scratches up the car or dents it, the insurance covers it. Someone rear-ends you the damage is covered. Any damage to the car and it's covered. Driving on winter roads, you slip on ice and get the car into a ditch damaging the car, it's covered. Over the years, the small amount that I paid for insurance more than made up the needed repairs to the rental cars. The additional ~$15 per day also gives me peace of mind, knowing that if anything happens to the car, it's covered.

One time, as I was renting at Enterprise, there was a woman who started screaming that the huge dent on the top of the rental SUV was not her fault. It looked like the repair would cost thousands. She probably didn't buy insurance, otherwise, she could have just walked away.

Yes, my CC gives some coverage, but the hassle of having to go through the whole claims thing, plus if it were my fault, the insurance company will know and my rates will probably go up.

To me, the savings is not worth it. But, as with everything else, it's a personal choice.

BTW, if part of your stay involves a weekend, Enterprise has a great weekend rate. You can take the weekend rate and then add a few days at the regular rate.

tekwriter is bang on about the crooked and one-way streets in Boston. If you're just getting into and out of Logan to visit your sister, then you just need to get on I-90 and keep going. However, if you plan on doing any driving in Boston itself, be sure to have a WORKING GPS or Tom-Tom.

Good luck finding a rental car to your liking!
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Mar 30th, 2013, 04:44 PM
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If you don't have an easy pass that lets you charge your tolls, go to this site:

https://www.massdot.state.ma.us/high...MAProgram.aspx

They will link it to a credit card and mail it to you. It is much easier going on the pike with one.
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Mar 30th, 2013, 04:45 PM
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The easy pass works on all the tolls on the east coast north of FL
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Mar 30th, 2013, 06:47 PM
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actually north of SC
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Mar 30th, 2013, 11:30 PM
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Watch out for speed traps on the western end of the Mass Pike/90 - past Worcester.
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Mar 31st, 2013, 01:46 AM
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I believe the Mass Turnpike also takes cash.
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Mar 31st, 2013, 04:18 AM
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Radar likely westbound in Framingham, just past TJX headquarters, just over top of long grade after 495

Eastbound on the long grade just after the Auburn Worcester exit and on the long grade into Framingham before the Sheraton Tara.
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Apr 1st, 2013, 06:35 AM
  #13
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Thanks everyone. You are so kind.
SandyBrit, I have a res through enterprise and will check periodically to see if price comes down;
gail - your advice to keep going through terminal loop is really great, especially b/c I have a tendency to panic; Thanks about the Northampton Inn, unfortunately I've already booked a Holiday Inn Express in Hadley at a nonrefundable rate.
easytraveler, thank you for taking the time to give me all that helpful advice. I appreciate it.
emalloy - i will look into the easy pass. Thank you!
And Lookin_Glass and Ackislander thanks so much for the warning re. speed traps. I have printed out this whole thread and will study it before we set out in July.
Thank you, thank you!
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Apr 1st, 2013, 08:08 AM
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You're welcome! You're welcome!

The best thing you could do in return for us is to come back to this thread and tell us how things work out for you.

Most of the time, what we write sort of disappears into "the void" and we have no idea if what was written was useful or not.

Have a great trip! Hope the weather breaks for you!
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Apr 2nd, 2013, 09:55 AM
  #15
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I promise to follow up, easytraveler. (Not going until June but I WILL follow up!) Many thanks.
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Jul 2nd, 2013, 08:59 AM
  #16
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I wanted to check back in and thank each of you for your help.
I successfully rented a car through enterprise at Boston Logan this weekend and everything went smoothly and easily. Enterprise agents were very friendly. Shuttles from the airport to the car lot and back were waiting both times I needed them.
The drive in and out of tunnel and toll plazas was a bit harrowing for me but everything went very well.
Thank you, Fodors Forum contributors. You were a tremendous help.
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Jul 2nd, 2013, 10:12 AM
  #17
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Thanks for following up. Glad everything went well.
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Jul 2nd, 2013, 01:38 PM
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Car rental agencies are notorious for "bad reviews", you were worried for nothing.
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Jul 3rd, 2013, 12:21 PM
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Great of you to check back, madewell88! Thank you! Good to know everything went well for you!
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