Wednesday 26 December 2012

Car hire excess insurance for your post Christmas holiday

Christmas day is over and many people might be off to watch horse racing or football today and getting into a queue for bargains at the local shoppoing centre.

Others might be off on a post Christmas holiday and are hiring a car. Have you remembered to buy your car hire excess insurance in advance?

After spending a lot of money on Christmas this is a great way of saving money. Buying your "excess insurance" from an independent insurance company will be a lot less expensive than buying it from the car hire company. 

You can arrive late and tired at your holiday destination and go and collect that hire car only to find that you are persuaded to buy their rather expensive product. 

Save money and buy in advance. The well known insurance companies advertise their products on the insurance4carrental.com site and you make all the arrangements direct with the company concerned. 

If you are likely to take more than one holiday in 2013 and are renting a car, an annual policy should work out a lot more cost effective than a daily policy.

To find out more about car hire excess insurance (and van hire excess insurance and motorhome hire excess insurance) follow this link here to insurance4carrebtal site     

Friday 21 December 2012

Car hire company Offers Travellers a Cheaper Alternative to Trains for Going Home This Christmas

Car rental brokers, Holiday Autos who are celebrating 25 years in business this year, are reminding the British public to book car hire now in time for the seasonal holidays as a cheap alternative to train travel.

The company released a news item yesterday saying that Since 1987, Holiday Autos have been brokering car hire deals for travellers in over 70 countries across the globe and this year, they anticipate an increase in demand for rental cars as drivers across the British Isles make their way home to friends and family for the Christmas and New Year holidays.

With most industries closing for a few days, the festive season is the busiest throughout the year for travel, and with rail operators across the UK announcing that ticket prices will be increasing, the cost of train travel could mean that for many families, journeys across country to be with relatives will be too expensive to undertake.

A spokesperson for Holiday Autos said, "We understand how expensive travel can be. Whether for work or leisure, transport is becoming one of the most expensive outgoings in many households so the government's recent u-turn on an increase in fuel prices is a welcome one. However, the Christmas and New Year holidays are the one time of year when friends and family should be able to get together and we are committed to finding drivers the best deals to make sure that doing that doesn't break the bank."

Commuters across the country are feeling the pinch of rising travel costs as train operators increase fares, in some cases by as much as 17%, an inflation-busting increase which has angered travellers and unions alike.


The TUC's Action for Rail Campaign is set to launch a series of initiatives this week to encourage commuters to speak out against unfair pricing. Passengers at 50 stations across the UK will be handed festive cards with a difference; traditional seasonal greetings have been replaced with information detailing an anticipated rail service in 2013 that will not only be more expensive, but one which will be making staff and service cuts and effectively offering travellers a worse service for a higher price.

Commuters who receive the cards are being encouraged to take action and to contact their local MPs to campaign for legislative changes which enforce fair pricing strategies with rail operators who are all earning substantial profits.

To find about more about Holiday Autos, visit http://www.holidayautos.co.uk/cgi-bin/liveweb.sh/QSearch.w?ctryref=GBR&lang=EN&aff=xjeffreymilnerltd

Monday 17 December 2012

Hiring a van at the weekend can be more expensive than you think

If you need to move some furniture or other items, go shopping at IKEA or similar store over the weekend hiring a van in the UK could cost more than you think.

The reason is straightforward. Most van hire companies do not appear to be open on a Sunday and close around lunchtime on a Saturday. This means the consumer has only a very small window to collect the vehicle, move, shop or whatever and return the vehicle before the company shuts.
One company I looked at would only rent out the vehicle for the complete weekend. Other ones said no problem hiring for all the day, but as the depot closed sharp at 12.00 or 1.00 you cannot leave it outside as it would be your responsibility until it was checked back in.

So in nutshell you can quite often be looking at two days rental plus three days insurance as you will have to pay for Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

Last weekend I hired a van locally, after shopping around found a dealer with a spare Ford Transit. Although they shut at 1.00 there would be no problem leaving it outside and putting the keys through the letter box, but of course the vehicle would not be checked back in your presence.

We arrived soon after 8 in the morning, moved the first item from A to B, then drove to C to move the second item back to A and returned the vehicle (after filling up with diesel to the quarter full level, which is lot harder than collecting it full and refilling it to full again!) and got it checked back in.

Although paying for a full day's hire, in fact only really needed the vehicle for around four hours, so it worked out well.

Like previous van hire requirements, I purchased my own van hire excess insurance which was actually cheaper than the van hire company's one. As we promote different insurance companies on the insurance4carrental.com site, I like to try our advertiser's products. This time I used Questor Insurance Van Hire Excess Insurance, they have recently entered this market after being in the car hire excess insurance and the motorhome hire excess insurance business for a number of years. This cost me £5.99 and I was not charged a credit car fee. Find out more about Questor Van Hire Excess Insurance Here.  It is for UK hire only. 

Earlier this year I used iCarhireinsurance Van Hire Excess Insurance which again was good value, the current price is £7.99 a day with zero excess and they will cover you in Europe. Find out more about them Here  

On a couple of other occasions I have used Insuremyvanhire.com which is part of Towergate's Insurance4carhire They currently charge £7.99 a day. Find out more about them Here

So if you are going to the post Christmas sales, move home or furniture, do remember that if hire a van at the weekend and only want it for one day, it might be cheaper to hire it on a weekday.

Friday 14 December 2012

Beware of cheap deals for Christmas car hire on the Internet or in the press

This is is the warning that was issued yesterday (13-12-12) in a press release from the The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA), the trade body for the UK car rental industry.

They are warning customers to take extra care when confronted with cheap deals for Christmas car hire on the Internet or in the press.

"Festive season travellers have been caught out by bogus car hire companies for the last two years year, hoodwinked by their offers of very low prices and nationwide availability right up to Christmas. Many customers handed over deposits of hundreds of pounds for cars that never materialised. The BVRLA is warning that similar scams could already be up and running this year, targeting unsuspecting travellers.

“These companies offer unbeatable prices and free delivery – but they really are too good to be true,” says BVRLA chief executive, John Lewis.

“Unfortunately it is very easy for fraudsters to build a simple website and set up a call centre to pass themselves off as legitimate businesses.”

The BVRLA is offering five simple tips for customers looking for safe and hassle-free car or van rental.

1. Only use a BVRLA member. Seeing our logo on the front desk or website is a sign that you are dealing with a reputable company that has been vetted and operates to a professional code of conduct. You will also be able to use our conciliation service in the event of any dispute. Find a BVRLA member via the ‘member locator’ on our website at: www.bvrla.co.uk
2. Never hand over cash. Most reputable rental companies will only want to accept credit/debit card payment

3. Make sure the company is operating from a bona fide commercial premises, not a PO Box or virtual office, no matter how prestigious the location sounds
4. Make sure the company actually owns and operates the cars it is offering - all BVRLA members operate their own rental fleet.

5. Remember, if the price or service being offered seems too good to be true, it probably is and you may well end up out of pocket and disappointed!"

Naturally if you are hiring a car outside the UK do take notice of the BVRLA's advice. Remember also to buy you car hire, van hire or motorhome hire excess insurance in advance. If you buy it from an independent insurance company like Questor Insurance, Worldwireinsure, Insurance4carhire.com, Carhireexcess.com Essential Travel, iCarhireinsurance, ProtectYourBubble or Odyssey Insurance you can save a lot of money comparerd to buying it from the car hire - van hire -motorhomehire company direct. For more information follow this link... http://www.insurance4carrental.com/#Click 

So take great with your vehicle hire over the festive period. 

Monday 10 December 2012

No Number 13 in Irish Vehicle Registration Next Year

Since 1987 registration plates in Ireland have been very similar to those in a number of other European countries. A blue Euro badge with  black lettering on a white background on the front and rear of the vehicle. 

Before that the number plates had letters for the counties in the Republic of Ireland with Black lettering on a white background at the front and on a red background at the rear.

Then in 1987 the new system came in with year (12) the County or City (e.g W for Waterford City) and random numbers.

So it is all change in 2013 because of the "13" factor and the possible effect on the Irish car market. Vehicles registered between January and the end of June will have a '131' registration. Those from July 1 to the end of the year will have '132' on the plate.

In the AA Ireland December blog  they said "Motorists were not at all keen on this idea when it first came out. We asked people about it as part of our AA Motorists’ Panel poll and the results were strongly in favour of sticking with the existing system."

Anyway it looks like it is all change now, so when you are hiring a car in Ireland in 2013 you will soon be able to spot how old it actually is. Not only will you be able to tell it is a 2013 registration, but if it is has 131 in the registration it will have been registered between January and the end of June and 132 from July till December.

You can find a great selection of companies to choose from at insurance4carrental site by following this link


February 2013  See New Number Plate system in Ireland 

Sunday 9 December 2012

Car Hire Abroad - Ask Joan of The Irish Times this weekend

carhireexcess.ie suggested in Travel advice yesterday. The Irish Times Magazine runs a feature on Travel Advice by Joan Scales called "Ask Joan". This week on the 8th December 2012 edition there were three features St Petersburg to the Baltics, America by Air and one "Car hire abroad"

Question to Joan: "Our family is visiting South Africa over Christmas. We have hired a car with Hertz. I remember you advising travellers who hired cars in certain destinations, to watch out for extras such as additional insurance being imposed by the car hire company.

You gave the name of an insurance company that covers such eventualities for a nominal premium. Our rate from Hertz includes taxes and, I hope insurance. - PM Clare"

Answer from Joan: " Car hire always throws up questions as the rules vary from place to place and company to company. Generally, rates are quoted with CDW (collision damage waiver) which will be the basic insurance you need to drive in the country you are in. The additional insurance to cover the excess, fire, theft of personal belongings and extra drivers varies widely.

The excess, and you should ask how much it is, will be the amount you have to pay if you have an accident, lose keys, have a blowout, damage the windscreen etc. It can be from €100 to €2,500 depending on the country and the type of car.

Personal items left in the car are not covered under the basic insurance.

You can take out an additional insurance policy to cover all these eventualities and things like an additional driver for around €3.99 per day from carhireexcess.ie."

Irish Residents go to  http://www.carhireexcess.com?AffiliateNo=JM43153

UK Residents go to   http://www.carhireexcess.com?AffiliateNo=MI22932

Source of above information The Irish Times Magazine | December 8, 2012

Incidentally the insurance company that runs carhireexcess - Blue Insurances also has a comprenhesive selection of travel insurance products both for the Irish and UK markets. Brands like  Annualtravelinsurance, Backpackertravelinsurance, Greatcover and Multitrip Find out more Here

Monday 3 December 2012

The breathalyser / éthylotest in France

Since July of this year, we have been covering the on going saga on this site of the French Government's new law on the breathalyser know as √©thylotest

In theory since November car hire companies in France apparently were going to provide one of these testers in each rental so I was interested to find out if this would be the case at the end of November.

I hired a car at Nice Airport through Holiday Autos / National Citier and although Holiday Autos partner National Citier had said on their website these testers would be provided there was not one in my car.

Returning the vehicle yesterday I asked the check in person about this and was told that they were putting them in the "standard" car rentals and would be adding them to all cars for the start of January. It will be interesting to find out if this is the case.