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European Car Rental - Top Ten Tips for Europe Travel - Tip #6: Location Location Location
For most of us, the basis of a car rental in Europe is the journey, not the destination. We spend hundreds, if not thousands of dollars so that we can see everything that we want in the minimum amount of time available. This is what a rental car is perfect for, what it is made for, and what you should use it for. Although I am not against taking a train from one place to another (especially after a long drive) I am constantly finding myself looking out the window wondering "Hey what's over there?"
Of course, the destination is a factor when choosing our itinerary. Equally important is the starting point. Not only can the beginning and end of your car rental save you money, but chosen poorly, it can be the beginning and end of your vacation as well.
First and foremost, if at all possible, try and pick up your rental car in town. In some countries, this can be the difference between fifty to five hundred dollars or more. In some places, it's just not worth it as the airport can be 20 kilometers or more from downtown with little to no public transportation. In other places, such as Rome's Fiumicino (or Leonardo da Vinci) airport, there is a train between the airport and main station in town. And in some places the airport is practically in town. The common places where you will find a flat fee for airport pick ups are France, Spain, Portugal, Denmark and the United Kingdom. In Germany, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland and Austria it is usually a percentage, anywhere from 10% to 17%. In Holland, Scandinavia and Eastern Europe it can go either way. Please be advised that this is for the major car rental suppliers and does not cover every one. Always make sure to ask if the airport surcharge is included and if it is a percentage or a flat fee, and if it is waived if you pick up in town. Also, it is good to note that if you pick up in town to avoid a fee, you can usually still drop off at an airport without having to pay the surcharge.
Picking up downtown won't always save you from a fee, though it usually reduces it if anything. Railstations sometimes have a surcharge (Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium) and if you pick up at a "Premium Location" such as Russel Square in London or Haddington Way in Dublin, you will have to pay a fee as well. Also, some port offices require payment too, either as stand-alone or for a "meet and greet" situation, where the office is outside walking distance so the agents wait for you at the pier. Once again, make sure you ask if there is a fee if you are picking up at a station of any kind.
Aside from saving money, convenience is always a sticking point when deciding where to pick up your rental car. If you are hesitant to drive in a big city, but you want to save money, then you have a couple of options. For one, you can always pick up outside of a busy area but still "downtown" but this alternative comes with the price of having to get there, which is okay if you already have your hotel nearby. You can also find a rental location that is near a highway on-ramp, which is particularly good if you need the rental car not for the city you'll be in, but for the one you need to get to. A mapping program using the internet is of course invaluable in this search. Get the addresses for your hotel and available pick up locations, and choose the one that is most convenient for you.
Finally, it is important to know what locations are available along the way to your destination. If you need to add an additional driver in the middle of your trip, or you need to swap out your car for any reason, then knowing where you can choose from will help optimize your time and money. There's no point in going back if you can do the same moving forward right? It's a good idea to have the phone numbers to the locations you'll be dealing with, as well as a headquarters number for additional inquiries. Try to use a service that has 24 hour support. The locations may not always be open, but at least you can get through to someone who can let you know your options. Oh, and try not to involve yourself with a rental location that is part of a gas-station, restaurant, barber shop or any other strip mall business that is not car rental. Although many of the major suppliers have locations like this with their name on them, they are licensee, independently owned subsidiaries and you will find the shadiest clerks and the worst service here. This is really just common sense though.
In conclusion, we all know that getting there is half the fun. But the other 50% depends on the start and finish. If you know where that is before you try to move on, you'll get there just fine.
Murdoch Morris has spent 3+ years digging through address books to find every client's best location options. If you have any questions regarding your specific area of travel, please feel free to contact him.
A Closer Look at Pigeon Forge Real Estate
Those looking to invest in real estate should not overlook Pigeon Forge, TN. Though the 2000 census estimates the number of permanent Pigeon Forge residents at just over 5,000, the population during the popular summer months can soar to tens of thousands. Pigeon Forge has doubled in the last 25 years, and the real estate business is booming.
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Lake Tahoe cabin complexes rangein size from small, six-unit, luxury rentals in the woods, to larger cabins with common pools and private beaches. There is something here for everyone.
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Top Family Vacation Destinations
Planning a family beach vacation? Looking for destinations with family resorts that have fun sports and activities for the whole family, all inclusive resorts where meals are included and kid clubs? Here are some of the most popular beach destinations for families to unwind and relax:
Pigeon Forge Hotels
Hotels are a large component of Pigeon Forge lodging. As with any major tourist destination, there is a wide array of hotels to choose from. There are local independent hotels as well as well known national chains. The prices for a night range from under a hundred dollars to several hundred. Budget conscious travelers will be able to meet their needs with more a economical Pigeon Forge lodging and visitors with more money to spend can stay in a lavish hotel like the new Belle Island Village, which features attractions like Debbie Reynolds' Hollywood Motion Picture Museum.
Staying In A Vacation Cabin Rental
Did you know that staying in a vacation cabin rental is a much better deal than staying in a hotel room?
Italy with Kids ? Seven Ways to Get the Most from Your Family Travel in Italy
Italy is a popular vacation destination for families because it offers something of interest for everyone. The land of gelato welcomes children in general and, more specifically, has sights and foods that most kids love. Whether your family is visiting monuments or relaxing in the Italian sun, here are some ideas on how to organize your vacation for fun and savings, too.
A Guide to Cozumel Vacations
What kind of traveler are you? Do you want everything handled for you so all you have to do is arrive at the airport on time and everything else is already arranged? Or do you like to be a hands-on manager of your vacation planning? Do you want to arrive at your luxury hotel with your time scheduled out in advance ? massage at 3, dinner at 6, dancing at 8 ? or do you prefer to arrive at your efficiency suite, grab the local yellow pages and let the adventure begin? Whatever it is you want, however you like to travel, as long as you enjoy beautiful island paradises, great food, a choice of adventures to experience and friendly people, you'll find it on Cozumel. Start with a travel agent in the town or city where you live. Cozumel is such a well-traveled area that many vacation packages, from the simple to the lush, from the relaxed to the vigorous, are readily available through companies that specialize in arranging them.
Caribbean Pearl Secret, Margarita Island is Not So Much a Secret Anymore
Margarita Island is one of the lesser known Caribbean islands. It is unspoiled by commercialization but not that far behind. When I first read information about Margarita I was very surprised to know that it was part of Venezuela. Sure everyone has heard about Caracas, Venezuela but not much is known about la isla.
Finding The Best Timeshare For You ? Make The Search An Adventure!
Taking the plunge from average vacationer to vacation property owner is a big jump. The fear associated with a full, outright purchase of property hundreds or even thousands of miles away from home can be blissfully alleviated through the purchase of a timeshare.
Florida Beachfront Rentals - Finding Florida Beachfront Vacation Homes
Florida beachfront rentals are a great way to enjoy a Florida vacation. Florida beachfront rentals and Florida beachfront vacation homes can be found in all the most popular beach areas year-round. Besides the fabulous Florida beaches you have to choose from, there's so much to do while on vacation.
Scottish Roadtrips -- Encountering Porridge with Salt and Other Dangers
Edinburgh and beyond
Why an Algarve Vacation?
If a vacation, as defined by a dictionary is: 'leisure time away from work devoted to rest or pleasure', then one taken in Algarve must be the epitome of that term.
A Look at Bahamas Vacation Resorts
Bahamas vacation resorts are great places to look into if you are interested in finding many activities all in one spot. In addition to providing its guests with a place to sleep, resorts often feature such amenities as golf courses, tennis courts, restaurants, clubs, water activities, boat and other rentals, shopping, and more. In a resort, a traveler can find all of the resources for great activities day and night that they might go looking for in a city.
Looking for a Vacation in Paradise? Try a Bahamas Vacation
Plan your next vacation where most people call paradise...the Bahamas Islands. Choose from the many islands such as Grand Bahama Island, Nassau, Paradise Island, Abaco and Eleuthera. The Bahamas is an archipelago of over 700 islands. Find a perfect Bahamas vacation rental and enjoy all that a Bahamas vacation has to offer. Experience the unique cuisine, culture and nightlife of these historic islands.
Six Good Reasons to Take a Family Vacation
When I was young, family vacations with my parents consisted of driving for a week from place to place in a hot stifling car. My parents had the knack of picking the hottest week of the summer to do so. In spite of that, we still had fun, managed to find interesting sites to explore and those are the memories that I still have.
Pigeon Forge Cabin Rentals
Cabin rental in Pigeon Forge are one of the city's main attractions. There are literally over a thousand different types of cabins to choose from. A cabin in Pigeon Forge can be an intimate one bedroom building secluded in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains or an eight bedroom structure perfect for a large family or any other group.
You Have To Love The Location, Say These Owners Of Orlando Florida Villas
It has been said that in real estate there are three things that count the most: location, location and location. I recently discovered how powerful this concept can be.
Welcome to Floridas Emerald Coast!
Stay a week or stay a lifetime, the Emerald Coast of the Florida Panhandle is hard to resist. You'll never forget how you relaxed on the sugar, white powder sands, listening to the blue green gulf water. One of the most beautiful coastlines in the world, this 100 mile stretch offers vacations that you will never forget. From elegant houses to highrise condos, the emerald coast has it all.
Is An All Inclusive Resort Right For You?
Destinations such as Aruba, Cancun, St. Thomas, and Bahamas have an infrastructure that is well suited to all-inclusive and not all inclusive resorts because there is a wide election of restaurants and amenities for tourism. Jamaica and the Dominican Republic on the other hand don't have the tourism infrastructure in place and are best suited for all inclusive vacations.
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