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Post Info TOPIC: Warning: Car Rental Rip-offs!! Some Require €2,000 - €15,000 Deposit to Decline CDW


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RE: Warning: Car Rental Rip-offs!! Some Require €2,000 - €15,000 Deposit to Decline CDW


From my experience if it is a "hold" then you at least can have it released.  However once they charge the credit card ( Foreign) the exchange rate is applied.  When you return the car - any exchange rate difference is not.  So in effect you are dealing with " exchange rate costs" that are not reimbursed by the auto company.   

I spent several months trying to straighten this out and getting reimbursement which eventually came from my credit card company ( not 100%) .    Although I agree that the "Hold" of 2,000 Euro is out of line with the rest of the world it would have avoided the issue of the exchange costs. 

My days of renting an auto in Ireland are over with the particular auto company that we dealt with or any auto company with the same policy in Ireland.  Hopefully tourist become more aware through this site or any other travel site forums.  This may help change the policies when rentals decline.  

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Michele, I thought it might interest you and others the most recent correspondence from Kemwel re a car rental for 24 days that includes their CDW and Theft:

Below are copies of emails between myself and Kemwel:

My email to Kemwel:

"I thank you for your response.
 
Yes, I understand that other rental companies either put a hold or a
charge on your credit card for declining the car company's CDW, but I
have found 2 other companies wherein they only require a deposit of
2,000Euro, whereas Murray's is 6,300Euro (quite a significant increase).



Ivy, you did not answer any of my questions in my previous email, which
you will see below. If you cannot answer my questions, could you please
forward this email onto Murrrays, so that they can answer my questions?

I hope you understand my concerns with respect to the above as I have
chatted with many tourists who have visit Ireland over the past year who
had come across many hidden fees and surcharges when they went to pick
up their car. As the majority of the world is in hard economic times,
I just would like to know in advance of my trip what I will require with
respect to finances.



I look forward to your response, or a response from Murray's would be
appreciated."


Kemwel's reply:

"To avoid the large hold on your credit card it is advisable that you purchase the CDW and Theft Protection Insurance (TPI). I can add this to your reservation, it would change the total rate to $631.69USD. Rates are subject to change.
 
> Is there a charge for canceling a reservation?

There is no fee for cancellation up to 48 hrs prior to pickup.

> Is there a charge for changing a reservation?

There is no fee for modifications.

> Is there an "airport surcharge"? If so, how much?

Airport Surcharge: Approximately EUR 28.40 per rental, paid locally,
VAT included.

> Is there a "road tax" fee per day? If so, how much?

It is included in the rate for the rental.

> Is the car to be returned with a full tank of petrol or empty?

Refueling Policy: Vehicles are rented with a full tank of fuel, for
which the client will be charged, car should be returned as empty as
possible. No refund for unused fuel.

> Is there a charge for crossing into No. Ireland?

Travel to N.Ireland requres purchase of NI CBC Insurance for approx
34.05 EUR/rental, VAT Included."



The rate they provided previously WITHOUT THE CDW/THEFT for the same
amount of days (being 24) was $418.41(USD).

I think I now feel confident about going with Kemwel for the price of
$631.69(USD), which includes their CDW/Theft coverage.

By the way, you might also be interested in the quote I received from
Dooley Car rental and here is their reply which was for only 18 days
rental (as opposed to 24 days from Kemwel) and did not include CDW
:

"The rate you requested is US $765.00 for 18 days for a Group C manual
shift
car.  The rate for the group F2./L automatic is US $1,475.00.
 
This rate is for ages 24-70 years old.
 
The rate includes tax, unlimited mileage, 3rd party liability insurance and airport/city location fee.
 
The rate does not include the fuel or the 2,000 Euro excess liability/deductible insurance, also the rate does not include collision, fire and theft to auto which you have indicated that your VISA card will provide.
 
As this is a pre-paid rate, payment is due when reservation is made.  then a confirmation and receipt will be mailed to you."


As Michele suggested, I will be printing off all correspondence between
Kemwel and myself and any other relevant documentation and placing it all in an envelope for safe-keeping.

Michele, what do you think?



To be honest, I am so sick and tired of dealing with this issue, that
I want it done and other with as we are leaving for Ireland on Aug 16 and I still have much to do.

Thanks to Michele and everyone who posted with respect to this issue.



Sincerely


Nancy


-- Edited by Michele Erdvig on Monday 9th of August 2010 12:50:50 AM

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Nancy,

I always advise everyone to shop around, compare apples to apples, add up all the "extras" for a final price and then take the lowest price.

As you can see the car rental companies always prefer you to purchase their CDW insurance. They make lots of money on it. Every extra is a money maker. It is like the airlines charging for an extra bag, food onboard, etc. They will "nickle and dime you to death" with all the extras. Your credit card insurance can save you money if you are covered.

I have used Kemwel and Dooley and was pleased with both.

I think you are as prepared as you can be. So just make a choice (or toss a coin) and go with that. Then you will be past the worst part of trip planning for Ireland.

Michele

P.S. I edited a couple of your posts because when you pasted the replies in it made the post two pages wide.





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Thought I would let you and other know what my decision was with respect to a car rental.  It was a decision between Kemwel and Dooley.

I was not comfortable with the fact that Kemwel (who arranged my car rental from Murray's) wanted a 6,300euro "hold" pn my credit card for declining their CDW.

I decided to go with Dooley Car Rental.  I waived their CDW as my ScotiaGold Visa covers same.  The price for 24 days' rental came to $606.62(USD).  One thing I wanted to let everyone know is that like you Michele, I got 3 different prices with Dooley when I received their online quotes (not sure why this is the case).  The first quote I got was for $765(USD) but that was for only 18 days, which is a significant increase in the price of my final reservation, as stated above.

I also purchased Excess CDW from insurance4carhire.com for 39GBP (this is a discount on their usual rate of 49GBP).  This insurance is as follows:

"This policy covers the Excess (excess on theft, excess on damage, and damage to windows, tyres, the undercarriage and the roof) on your car rental. It supplements the insurance for LDW (Loss Damage Waiver)/CDW (Collision Damage Waiver) that you must take out at the time of rental, and which is generally included in the price of the car rental."

I hope this info helps some of you as I know how much stress it has caused me.

I am leaving tomorrow to spend the weekend in Toronto to watch the Rogers Cup ATP and then catching my flight on Monday to Ireland for a glorious 26 days.

I will report back upon my return and report if there were any hidden surprises regarding the car rental from Dooleys.  I should mention that I dealt with Mary Long at Dooleys (she is at the head office), after dealing with other representatives and she was so helpful and gave me not only the best price, but assurances that allowed me to make a decision that I felt comfortable with.

In conclusion, I want to thank Michele and all those who post to this site.

Cheers



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Nancy,

Thanks for letting us know what you chose. I hope the rental goes smoothly for you. You are as prepared as can be. Now you can go and enjoy.

Have a fun and safe trip. Bon voyage!

Michele

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Just back last night from our 7 night stay in Ireland and will gladly post a trip report when my brain regains function.  Alas we sideswiped a wall in our Dan Dooley rental car and damaged - you guessed it - the left side of the car.  Mercifully no person, animal, or other car was damaged and the wall looked fine too! Luckily I took the super CDW which reduced my deductible to 100euro.  I paid that at the counter when we returned the car.  I've never had an accident in a rental, so looking for some experience from others.  Somewhere I read that some renters have faced additional charges for damages after having paid the deductible and left the country.  Do I have any future financial battles to fear with Dooley now that I'm home?  Many thanks for any feedback you can share.

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Lisa, 

Welcome back from your trip. I'm glad to hear no one was injured and you are home safely. Looking forward to your trip report when the jet-lag wears off.

Since you took the insurance and Super CDW plus paid the 100 euro deductible upon returning the car, you should have no further charges. If you want to confirm call Dooley at 1-800-331-9301. You will probably need your contract # or confirmation #. 

Michele

-- Edited by Michele Erdvig on Thursday 2nd of September 2010 12:59:12 AM

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Wow, Just came across this....crazy what the car hire companies are putting on hold on your credit card.

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Ronny,

Welcome to my forum. The charge is only for those using their credit card to cover the insurance. If you are taking all insurance coverage through the car company there is not hold or charge.

Michele

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I'm planning a 3-day rental in October 2010, picking up in Cork, visting the Ring of Kerry, and working our way back to Dublin to drop off the car there before catching flights to other points in Europe.

I have two credit cards that, in theory, will cover my car rental insurance needs in Ireland (my Discover card or my Bank of America/AMEX card).  But each requires me to decline the CDW offered by the car-rental company in order to utilize the coverage offered through the credit card.  Thus far, however, it doesn't appear that the car-rental companies I've researched and gotten quotes from even *let* you decline the CDW (this from my inquires on www.visitdublin.com).  Rather, the ones I've approached seem to automatically include the CDW in the basic price that I am quoted (with no option to "decline").  They go on to clarify that there is an (astronomical) "excess"/deductible of 1200E, and they offer additional insurance coverages (10E-15E per day, i.e., the Super CDW) that would eliminate or reduce the "excess" or deductible.  But I've checked with my 2 credit card companies, and they say they won't provide coverage unless I'm able to decline the CDW in the first instance, and absent that, they won't kick in to cover any "excess" or deductible or the super CDW.

So I guess I'm just wondering:  is the CDW in fact "declinable" in Ireland?

Many thanks,

JSB

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JSB,

Welcome to my forum. Unless rules have changed very recently (like the last two weeks) Discover and AMEX do not cover CDW in Ireland. A handful of World MasterCards and Diners Club covers Americans. For Canadians certain Visa cards cover CDW.

Take a look at my Car Rental page for more info.

You can indeed decline CDW if you have a card that is accepted by the car companies in Ireland. You just need to search around for different companies. You can try Kemwel from my car page or Dooley. Both allow you to decline CDW. But be sure you really know if you have credit card coverage before booking.

Michele

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From:  http://ireland.activeboard.com/forum.spark?aBID=65127&p=3&topicID=35215597

The truth is that there are large enough 'LoopHoles' in the POSTED 'Terms and Conditions' to drive your rental car through. Doubtless, there is a detailed, in-depth, tiny-print, multi-parragraph collection of lealese on the actual contract that DOUBTLESS "Supercedes any and all other terms, implied or otherwise" ....

At some point, you just have to bite the Bullet and take a LEAP of Faith.

So, here is what ACTUALLY happened in July, vis a vis my car hire:

I purchased one year of European Coverage from www.insurance4carhire.com for "Peace of Mind" at 49 GBP (approx $75.00)-- primarily for the "tyre coverage", due to the dire reports I had read about all the road damage from the winter flooding.  This covered my UK rental and my Irish Rental and the coverage will be in effect until 11 July, 2011, so it should also cover my 'still in the early planning stages'NEXT trip, in  March of 2011.

Cardiff, Wales, 11 July, 2010:

My Reservation: 

       Car Hire Desk (Europecar, via Kemwell) opens at 1300
       Nissan Note, Manual with A/C for three days - $119.39, Pre-Paid,waiving CDW with AMEX (It's the UK!), Plus Extras, Locally)

 Actually received an Opel/Vauxhall 3 door hatch that was over-sized and a higher class grade than the Nissan that I had reserved.  Was advised that it was THE only vehicle available, unless I was willing to wait a 'Couple Of Hours' for a different one to be prepped. Car was new and in excellent shape and the CDW waiver (using my AMEX Card) was NOT challenged -- Indeed, the young man seemed rather apologetic about the 200 GBP 'Hold' that he needed to apply.  biggrin 


 When we returned the car with tank full, after three days and 414 miles, my total 'Extras' charge was:  Licenses and Fees, 3 X 1.36 GBP, Premium Station Surcharge, 17 GBP and VAT Charges on those, of 3.69 GBP, for a total of 24.77 GBP.
No DCC and no additional 'Suprises'.  AMEX billed me $37.88, plus a Foreign Transaction Fee of $1.02

 Cork Airport, 15 July, 2010:

My Reservation:
                Cork Airport pick up of VW Golf,
                5 Dr Manual with A/C from Budget, for 17 days.
                No Insurance -- BofA Elite Rewards World MasterCard
                454.10 Euro, plus 28 E Airport Fee, 26 E CDW Waiver Fee, plus Initial Fuel

The Budget office at the Cork Airport issued me a 2007 Ford Focus with 127,455 kilometers that LOOKED every bit the part of a three year old rental -- nary a body panel undamaged and water stains on the seats.   aww disbelief no aww
 From the looks of the other Budget cars on the Cork lot, it was pretty representative of their fleet.  A few days into the rental, someone advised that the passenger headlamp did not work.  While at Shannon on the 27 July, I 'dropped in' to Budget and their Lot Man replaced the bulb -- AND BOTH front Daytime Running Lamp Bulbs.  The car ran well, though and was a better fit than the Golf would have been, for the three of us.  Interestingly, the Shannon lot had numerous NEW vehicles in the VERY small (Micra class) and Large (BMW class), but the mid-sized vehicles were all '08 or older.  confuse  confuse  confuse

My contract lists the following charges (in EURO) :

17 days @ 22.50   382.54
ARPT SURCH           24.67
Road Fund              17.00    One (1) Euro  per day
NOCVG                    25.00    Fee for NOT buying CDW
subTotal                449.17
VAT                          60.64    13.5%
3RD PTY INS            19.89    1.17 per day
Total Estimated     529.74

Deposit Paid     2529.74

My Credit Card was ACTUALLY charged $3,345.58 (in US Dollars  furious furious furious , and Bank of America ADDED 100.36 as a 'Foreign Transaction Fee'.  When the Focus was returned, 17 days and 2,762 kilometers later, my Credit Card was Credited with $2710.20 -- benefitting, somewhat from the RISE of the Euro over that time period.

When my MasterCard bill arrived, it was for $3,445.94.  I paid them $735.74, after factoring in the Budget Credit of $2,710.20, and was PLEASANTLY suprised, when BofA issued me an $81.30 CREDIT on the original Foreign Transaction Fee!! I must admit that I did NOT see THAT coming.  biggrin  confuse  biggrin

Over all, I was satisfied with the rental from Budget, but I DO have SOME issues / grumbles, rather than out-right COMPLAINTS.   cry

Total cost was $654.44, which is almost $150 less than I expected / budgeted for.  The vehicle, though HARDLY pristine, was servicable and reliable and performed well, BUT:

The burned out bulbs are problematical, in that they imply a lack of proper safety screening.

The age/mileage and appearance did little to assure confidence -- though, again, the vehicle performed well...

I had reserved the Golf class, as it was the least expensive model that INCLUDED air conditioning.  The Focus that I was provided did NOT have AC.  There actually were a few hours when AC might have been used, but of course it was not NECESSARY. Still, it IS what I had contracted for.

They 'Hooked' me with DCC -- though that actually hurt THEM, as the Euro went UP against the Dollar over the course of the rental, so ...

Hope this helps ...

Bob

 

 



-- Edited by Itallian Chauffeur on Monday 20th of September 2010 08:51:42 AM

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Hey Michele:

Back from my trip of 24 days in the Emerald Isle.  We had a great time and the weather was fantastic.  In fact, I came home with a tan.

I just thought you would like an update with respect to my car rental at Dan Dooley.

Just to remind you, I rented for 24 days and waived their CDW.  I received my credit card statement and there were no, yes I said "no" surprises.  The total amount I was charged was 626.86(Canadian) plus 60E(which was converted to $82.55CAN).

I had absolutley no problems with Dooleys.  I should note however that when we picked up the vehicle, the rep seemed to be very rushed.  On your previous advice, we made him come out to look at our rental as there were many small scratches and we wanted him to note them on the contract and we both inititalled same.

As I am Canadian, I used my Visa CC which covered CDW.  On your advice, I had received a letter from the CC company in advance of our trip stating what their coverage was and that they covered the Republic of Ireland.  I also took along the Certificate of Insurance supplied by my CC company.  Interestingly, they didn't even want a photocopy of the letter however did photocopy the Certificate of Insurance.

For extra protection, I did purchase extra insurance from insurance4carhire for 39pounds (which was converted to 68.56CAN) which luckily we did not have to use.

Oh, by the way we ended up seeing the Aran Islands.  We took the ferry from Doolin Point but this is something I would not do again.  Trust me when I say that you should have a strong stomach before taking the ferry as there were 3 people who vomited right on the boat which made it extremely difficult for others (I felt so sorry for them but the waters were very rough).  Others might want to check out the cost of the 7 minute plane ride which apparently is quite reasonable.  If I had known that previously, I would not have hesitated (ie. as I am physically challenged I would have opted for the plane).  When we got to Inishmore, we took the horse and buggy instead of the mini-bus as I was so pleased we did as all the minibuses that went by us were just crammed full of tourists so I wondered how in the world they were able to enjoy the sights.

All-in-all, we had a enjoyable time and what was most special was visiting my son and two grandchildren.

This was my third time back to Ireland and no doubt we will be back again next year.

If you would like any other information that you think may be useful to other members, please do not hesitate to ask.

Cheers!





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Nancy,

Welcome back! I'm glad to hear you had a good visit with your family and have a suntan to boot. That doesn't often happen in Ireland.

Thanks for your feedback on Dooley. I've rented from them twice and no problems either.

You are right that the sea can make for a very rough crossing to the Aran Islands. For those prone to seasickness Aer Arann is the way to go. If you feel like posting a detalied trip report we would love to hear it.

Michele

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With the several people on this site noting difficult experiences with renting cars, I'm surprised more do not go with Dooley.  I've used them four times now and never once had anything that wasn't up front and simple.

They seem to be about the only sane option left regarding car rentals there, as everything else seems to have constant questions and parts of the contract that are a challenge to understand. confuse

Nancy, I am glad things worked out for you.  When I go next year, I will once again rent from Dooley unless something comes along that appears to be a better option for that part of the trip.

Cheers!


Monty

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Monty -- I agree.  I've used Dooley a few times.  biggrin biggrin

UNFORTUNATELY, for my dates, last July, Dooley wanted between $1000 and $1200!!!  confuse confuse confuse confuse confuse

Now, I do APPRECIATE their 'No Suprises and Minimal Headaches' approach as much as the next guy ...  biggrin biggrin biggrin

BUT -- NOT at a $500-600 Premium.... furious furious

Bob

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Their web site is bizarre at times.  I've seen a week rental for $800 early in the week and then plug in the same dates later in the week and it goes for $350 or something!

When that occurs, I call the 800 number.  They almost always come in pretty good range.  It appears the web site has some issues occasionally.

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WOW!!!!  As a "newbie" to the site I am totally exhausted catching up on the car rental nightmares!!no  Am in the beginning stages of planning a 9-day trip to Ireland in March 2011 with 3-generations of family.  I am the elected "in-charge" person and am now terrified of even starting!!  I will be needing two cars to accommodate the eight of us........ heaven help me!!!!  (And maybe all of you will help, as well!!)

-- Edited by eileenalana on Monday 27th of September 2010 08:07:05 PM

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eileenalana,

Welcome to my forum.

Don't worry. We are here to help. Let us know if you have any specific questions. It is better to know about the car rentals now and become informed than have it fall on your head on arrival in Ireland. If you do your homework you can rent a car successfully (or two!).

Michele

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eileenalana,

Budget car hire offer a 9 seat mini bus but it might be a better option to source a private tour bus and driver than hire 2 cars.

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Thanks for the suggestion.  The 9-passenger is really too snug for 8 adults to ride all day long comfortably and there really isn't any room for luggage.  Would it really be less expensive to hire a tour bus and driver for 8 days of touring?  It would take the pressure off the driving for my husband and daughter but......

Also, info from anyone..... is it better to get quotes from the car rental council website or directly from each company?  And do all the nightmares end if you just agree to all the insurance up front or are there still going to be hidden fees on return?

Is there an advantage to paying in advance and are you able to renegotiate if the exchange rates change?

By the way, Michele, received your book in July and have pages earmarked in every section!!  It is fabulous and a great source of information.  Adds more pressure to make this a smooth and fabulous trip my 3-generational family will never forget. 

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eileenalana,

Thanks for your kind words about my book. I hope it helps make your trip one to remember. For 8 adults hiring a chauffeur-driven vehicle that will comfortable fit you all and luggage might be an option to check into.

Yes, if you take all the insurance the only extra fee should be a tank of petrol (gas). Many car rental companies refund the price if you return the ca with a full tank. Others require you to pay for the gas and then return the car empty.

I would get a quote from each car company. Each one has their own rules. There may be penalties for changing or canceling your car. So you will have to ask them if you can renegotiate.

Michele

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Thanks, Michele.  Where does one go to inquire about hiring a chauffer driven vehicle for the week?  Can we still do our own itinerary?  Are we responsible for their lodging and meals?  Does that put a damper on just stopping anywhere we want for the fun of it?  My designated drivers (husband and daughter) are very interested.  I'm just not too sure about the the whole plan. 
I'm working my way through your book and am seriously considering having you map it all out for us.  Just trying to figure it all out before I waste any of your precious time.  The group consists of my parents (80/82) who have been there several times, my husband and myself (52/53) my daughter and husband (24/28) and my son and his girlfriend (22).  We are all so very excited and want to see the most for our time there (March 5-13).  It is the first trip for the six of us.  We are landing in Shannon and thinking of heading north to Galway, then on to Donegal, over to Dublin, down to Waterford, over to Killarney and back to Shannon.  Still trying to figure out how many days/nights in each spot.  Is this too much to consider fitting in?

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Eileenalana,

The chauffeured limo/bus companies will go where you want and are open to changes along the way. The drivers are also guides and will know interesting things and history. The only thing you need to be aware of is that they will drive for approximately 8 hours per day. You are not responsible for lodgings and meals for the chauffeur. That is taken care of by the company. Depending on the vehicle rented it can run between 200 - 300 euro per day and up.

For the amount of time you have it would be best to concentrate on either the north or south, not both.

Michele



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Michelle,

We are planning a trip to ireland from the US in June 2011.  We're finding car rental to be the most difficult to figure out, due to the collision damage waiver issue.  Your research  dates to over a year ago.  After that effort and any since, do you have a recommendation for a rental company that has a fair and reasonable policy on this?

Thanks for any help,
John

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John,

Welcome to my forum. Lately I've been using Dan Dooley myself. Do you plan to purchase CDW and Super CDW? Or does you credit card cover that and will you use that?

Michele

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Michelle,

Thanks for your reply.  My sister has traveled to Ireland a lot and advises us to decline CDW due to the increased cost of the rental.  The couple we're traveling with has a World Card that will provide coverage for collision damage so that's what we're thinking of doing.  I'm not familiar with Dan Dooley but we should look into it.  My sister recommended Autoeurope.  One thing we're nervous about is added fees, taxes, etc which may not be revealed in the price quote.  I see from your posts that you have a hard time getting straight answers on that.  We'd like to find a rental company thats honest and we can trust, with a fair price.

John

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Date:

John,

Your friends need to be absolutely sure their World MasterCard will cover Ireland. Very few do. They need to double check on it and get a letter sent to them from MasterCard saying they are covered in Ireland. If that all checks out and they are covered, the person whose name is on the card must rent the car. The same card must be used in Ireland at the car rental desk. Additional drivers must be listed on the contract to be covered. There are some things that MasterCard does not cover such as tires, glass, undercarriage. Check on those things before deciding. You must read all the fine print very carefully.

The reason I've gone with Dooley lately is because they tell you the complete price up front. With the others there are "extras" that you need to add on to the original estimate to come up with a final price. It is possible to do that when shopping around but takes time as each company is completely different.

Nothing is standardized in the Irish car rental biz.

Michele





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"Ireland Expert"  Michele Erdvig

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Date:

John,

We are trying a company (new to us) called "Journey Through Ireland" for the first time this coming March. They are located in the Seattle/Pudget Sound area, and have been in the Ireland tourism business for 40 years, and have held a long time franchise agreement with Hertz. This company advertises "no hidden costs". You can book to pay upon arrival, or you can prepay (in today's dollars instead of Euros in Ireland) and get a 10% discount. The only thing you can't prepay is SuperCDW, and they are quoting that as 12 Euros/day for a mid-size manual sedan.  For coverage on the wind shield, tyres, and undercarriage, I will purchase a supplemental 31 day policy from insuremycar.com (it was about $50 for our trip in 2009) . Journey's websight is: irelandtouring.com and their e-mail is info@irelandtouring.com I have personally visited with Conn, the owner, and he seems to have a lot of knowledge about the car rental business, and is very helpful. Hope this helps....and no, I do not work for the company! Dan

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Date:

Michele - I have reserved my car rental for April 2011 through Budget Rental.  I was just looking over the paperwork again, having read the posts here.  My reservation (printed copy) states that price includes "all compulsory insurances, government tax, Unlimited Mileage and 24hr breakdown cover.  It does go on to state that an airport surcharge of Euro 28 will be added to cost when picking up at Cork Airport.  I'm certainly hoping this wording means the CDW insurance is included.  Any thoughts on this?  Could I be in for a big surprise as well?  Thanks Sambailey

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