Auto Europe is offering recommendations for car rental clients for their next trip to Europe. The travel tips cover aspects before, after and during clients trips, starting with suggestions on being prepared before clients rent a car.
Auto Europe's six before you go tips:
Insurance: Make sure that you check with your homeowners, personal auto insurance and credit card coverage policy for possible collision damage waiver (CDW) coverage. You may already have coverage in the event of an incident while driving a rental car. Be sure to read the fine print of the coverage policy. You may be limited to the dollar amount of coverage and certain vehicle makes and models may not be covered. Also, in certain countries, proof of third party coverage is not accepted with the car rental suppliers such as in Ireland, Italy and Turkey.
Travel Dates: Most international flights arrive the next date. Double check your car rental and hotel vouchers to make sure that your reservation is for the correct pick up date.
Vehicle size: Are you flying to your destination and checking into one hotel for your entire stay? If not, make sure you have a large enough vehicle for your luggage and passengers. Four people may fit in a compact but it may be a tight fit with luggage. A station wagon may be a more convenient and comfortable ride if you plan on changing hotels or driving various routes with your luggage or shopping purchases.
Driver's license: It may not be mandatory to have an international drivers license in the country that you are traveling to; however, for a cost of $15.00, it may be worth the piece of mind if you are pulled over for a violation. An IDL is a translation of your valid driver's license into eleven different languages including French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, German, Swedish and Italian and can save time if the officer is not fluent in English.
Automatic vs. manual transmission: If you drive a manual transmission, you may want to opt for a manual transmission rental in Europe to save on rental charges. Very few Europeans drive automatic transmission cars so you must be sure to book with a reliable local supplier. Be forewarned, if you do not drive a manual transmission in the States and opt to try to learn on your next European vacation, the cost to replace a new clutch can cost you three times the price of the rental of an automatic transmission. Play it safe.
Airport Surcharge: Think about picking up your car rental downtown. After a long transatlantic flight, it might be more convenient to take a taxi to your hotel and take the time to rest and visit the town before driving off. Car rentals in downtown locations are often cheaper than at an airport.