Sunday 13 January 2013

Car hire comes up again in"Luring tourists to Ireland" letter

On the 29th December, The Irish Times ran an article "Attracting missing British tourists will be in 2013 focus". - After a 100,000 fall in British visitors Irish Tourism chiefs are fighting back... Picking up the content of this article, I immediately wrote a letter to the Irish Times saying that in my opinion there were two issues for organisations to address. First of all the very high cost of taking a car to and from Ireland for a British visitor compared to taking it to France.

The other issue was that with great deals on air travel, to get around tourists usually will need to hire a car. "If they fly, they will require a car to hire, and unfortunately a lot of car hire companies in Ireland have had a bad name for a number of years. Customers are often “forced” to buy the company’s expensive excess insurance and other unwanted “add-ons”. One company appeared to add a “crossing the M50 toll” fee automatically even if the vehicles in question never went anywhere near it." See here for published letter  It was published under the heading "Luring British tourists to Ireland"-

Reading yesterday's Irish Times (12th January 2013), I see the theme continues, but under "Luring tourists to Ireland"  - This is the year when Ireland is trying to bring in more visitors, with "The Gathering" campaign.

There were a couple of letters, firstly about the price of a burger and six chips  and then one on the old car hire problem in Ireland. Peter Thornton from Dublin 13 wrote "My son, who lives in England, hired a car at Knock airport when he was visiting Mayo after Christmas this year. 

When he booked the car he was quoted €430 for six days, which is excessive in the extreme, and when he arrived the car hire company had increased the quote to €610!

There will not be much of a Gathering this year unless the Minister for Sport and Transport and Fáilte Ireland can control such excessive greed.

In contrast, around the same time, one could hire a car in Portugal for about €105 for seven days".  See here for both these published letters

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