Wednesday 24 December 2014

Looking for Sleigh Hire Excess Insurance?

Need excess waiver insurance for your sleigh hire tonight Santa?

Sorry we cannot help you, anyway you probably own your sleigh and don't need to hire one.... However if you are hiring a car, van, motorhome or even a minibus at this time of year, well that a different matter.

There are plenty of specialist independent excess waiver insurance companies advertising their products on the jml Insurance,Insurance4carrental and Irishpropertyinsurance sites.

What is more those organisations will be open on line right over the festive period for automated sales.

So if you have left it to the last minute get a move onto either to Jml-Insurance   or Insurance4carrental or if in Ireland to Irishpropertyinsurance .

Have a great Christmas and New Year break and whatever you are driving drive carefully and observe the very strict drink drive limits everywhere.

Thursday 18 December 2014

Enjoy your skiing holiday and don't worry about car hire excess insurance

Last Sunday the Mail On Sunday was featuring a mixture of  skiing and don't get on thin ice with car hire excess insurance.

In a feature - "I buy excess insurance online and it covers me if I lock the car keys in the boot - Don't let the car hire fees scupper your skiing break"

The article covered the fact that it can be costly and even before skiers arrive at their resort they risk being knocked sideways by the extra costs when they collect their hire car – sometimes more than double the basic rental charge.

Insurance website iCarhireinsurance compared deals from five rental firms in seven popular European airports used for ski getaways: Geneva, Switzerland; Grenoble, France; Innsbruck, Austria; Barcelona, Spain; Turin, Italy; Sofia, Bulgaria and Inverness, Scotland.

The hire car excess insurer found that Sofia is the cheapest location for car rental at an average of £160 for the week. Here, Budget’s basic hire cost is just £113. But as with everywhere else in the firm’s survey, the extras more than double this to £259. The same pattern is repeated across the destinations.

Ernesto Suarez, chief executive at iCarhireinsurance, says: ‘To keep costs low, research the country you’re going to and know its winter driving rules. Bring a satnav and child’s seat.’

So remember buy your car hire excess insurance from an independent insurance company like iCarhireinsurance.com and relax and enjoy that skiing holiday.



Wednesday 10 December 2014

Yet another Car hire horror story in The Daily Telegraph yesterday

The Daily Telegraph ran a report yesterday about someone who hired a car in March in the Canary Islands and ended up with a bill for a €3,530 (£2,806) repair.

The reader had hired a car via Rentalcars and the vehicle supplied by a Europcar operator on the island. The reader, Mr White said " A few days into the rental, a rock about the size of a football dislodged from the adjacent cliff and crashed on to the main coast road immediately in front of the car.

I was unable to stop to avoid an impact. As the road was very narrow at this point, all I could do was straddle the rock and hope for the best. 
Unfortunately, the red warning light came on, suggesting a loss of oil pressure. I stopped the vehicle and called for assistance. Help came speedily and a replacement vehicle was supplied"

Upon his return home the repair bill arrived. He had taken out a policy with Rentalcars to reduce the excess to zero and, on collecting the car, additional top-up insurance to cover damages to tyres, windscreen, the underside of the car and so on.

It looks like this problem was finally sorted out and you should read The Daily Telegraph's report in full Here.  

It likes like you should always ensure that the excess waiver insurance covers, windscreen, tyres and under carriage and you can view the various advertisers on the insurance4carrental site Here

No doubt there will be other similar cases in the months to come. Normally there are and it is good news that there are consumer columnists like Gill Charlton at the Daily Telegraph to help resolve such a problem.

Monday 8 December 2014

Best Car Hire Website award goes to Economy Car Hire

Economy Car Hire are delighted to announce on the 5th December that have been awarded ‘Best Car Hire Website’ at the Travolution 2014 Awards.

In June, they sent off their awards entry. Having been shortlisted for both ‘Best Trade Supplier’ and ‘Best Car Hire Website’, they then waited patiently with  fingers crossed until the winners were announced at the awards dinner on Tuesday 2nd December at the The Ballroom, Southbank, London. 

The Travolution brand is part of The Travel Weekly Group. It is the UK’s leading travel trade media group, which focusses primarily on the online travel industry and digital innovation.The Travolution Awards themselves are unique in recognising companies, brands and individuals who excel in the fields of online travel distribution, digital marketing and technology.

They are judged by a panel of proven business leaders, experts and entrepreneurs, the awards are the UK travel industry’s highest accolade for innovation and excellence online. Companies and brands compete in a select number of categories, whilst entrepreneurs and rising stars are honoured in the individual awards.

Economy Car Hire is now  the largest independent car hire broker in the UK. As a family run business, our company values remain firmly at the heart of everything they do.

They pride themselves on their fantastic customer service levels and their unique product which includes a free additional driver and built-in excess insurance at all locations worldwide.

The say "This is what differentiates us from our competitors. Our success is reflected in the high rate of consumer satisfaction that we maintain year after year."

There were a number of contributing factors for which the Travolution Judges thought that Econo9my Car Hire deserved to be awarded ‘Best Car Hire Website’ this year.

As you may already know, Economy Car Hire has been voted ‘Best Car Hire Broker’ by consumer champion Which? in both 2013 and 2014. Their recent partnership with Feefo, a global ratings and reviews provider also acts as a clear indicator of consumer satisfaction. 98% of their customers have rated their service as either good or excellent, which is displayed on the economy Car Hire website.

I have just arranged a couple of days car hire with them next year and was immediately sent a feedback questionnaire so they want to know what their customers think.

Finally, this year they have also made some modifications behind the scenes, which help to maintain the smooth running of a customer's car hire experience.

The competition standard this year was incredibly high and Economy Car Hire staff and management are very proud that they came out on top this year.

Find out more about booking your car hire with Economy Car Hire Here

Monday 24 November 2014

Yet another car hire excess waiver Insurance rip-off by car hire company

The Daily Telegraph today has featured yet another report of a holidaymaker being charged a very high fee of £335 for 14 days car hire excess waiver insurance.

According to the report Roger Wilkes hired a car for his holiday in Nice, France and was unknowingly sold extra cover he didn't want. He had booked the hire car as part of an easyJet package which included return flights from Liverpool to Nice for the whole family in July.

When taking out the package online, Mr Wilkes prepaid more than €600 (£475) for the 14-day car hire, including basic cover. He collected the car from Europcar at the airport and signed documents presented to him together with his credit card. Most of this of course is normal practice.

He and his family had waited 15 minutes in a queue and naturally wanted to get going as quickly as possible. The reader was under the impression that the amount was a deposit, however upon arriving home and reading his Barclaycard Visa statement he discovered a£ 335 charge from Europcar.

When he received an invoice from the car hire firm a few days later, he could see that the charge was for "GoZen Plus Coverage". This was excess waiver insurance which had cost him €24.16 (£19.18) a day, or €405.88 (£322.18) in total for the 14 days,. including VAT. According to the Daily Telegraph's report the €405.88 has been refunded by Europcar. Read the full report Here

Once again this is another report of a consumer being charged a very high amount for excess waiver insurance that they have purchased through a car hire company and what is more if they had purchased from an independent would have paid around £2.49 per day or annual policy from just £39.99

Find out more Here

Monday 17 November 2014

Seasonal Warning as Hiring a Car could be over £100 more expensive this Winter

The Car Hire Insurance specialist company - iCarhireinsurance.com posted an altert on their website last Thursday say in that  "Hiring a car could be over £100 more expensive this Winter"
Winter tyres and snow chains on hire cars, known as ‘winterisation charges’, are compulsory in some areas and can be up to £114.

iCarhireinsurance.com, the leading provider of stand-alone car hire excess insurance, researched the costs of five rental companies in seven European ski gateways (i.e., Geneva, Grenoble, Innsbruck, Barcelona, Turin, Sophia and Inverness) for a week's hire from 27 December 2014 to 3 January 2015.
It found the average 'winterisation' cost across the seven destinations was over £40, but could be up to £114 in Geneva with Avis, significantly increasing a customer's overall rental cost.

Paying the winterisation charge of almost £60 in Barcelona with Budget, for instance, represents an additional 30% on the original hire cost.
In Austria and Germany winter tyres are mandatory, yet despite this Avis levy a 'winterisation' charge of £25 in Innsbruck. Snow chains must also used, where instructed in mountainous areas, in France, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Austria and Andorra.
The 'winterisation' cost is included in the rental price in some instances but this varies greatly, for example Budget did not charge extra in Geneva or Innsbruck but charged £57 in Barcelona, £40 in Turin and £24 in Grenoble. In Barcelona all five rental companies charged a 'winterisation' fee averaging £53.

"Car hire companies are well known for surprise snowballing costs at the rental desk," said Ernesto Suarez, CEO and founder of iCarhireinsurance.com. "Why each individual customer should be held to account for winter tyres that have been changed once for the winter season is ludicrous and is another example of hidden costs that can make the original rental price not such a good deal."

This has been picked up by The Mail on Sunday yesterday who said in the headline "Warning for winter holidaymakers as European car hire companies add extra charges for snow chains and all-season tyres (but you'll be OK in Inverness)"

iCahireinsurance has also produced some excellent driving tips for winter driving. These are extremely useful whether you are hiring a car or taking your own car to other European countries.

For example if you are going to Italy you should carry snow chains and use as directed by local signs. Winter tyres are recommended, but are not compulsory. Mind you at the moment seeing all the videos and photos of flooding in the north your car really needs swimming pool arm bands!

To find out more about iCarhireinsurance car and van hire excess insurance, follow this link.

Tuesday 11 November 2014

Cold November here why not take a break somewhere warm and hire a car?

We are approaching mid-November. It is more like winter than like spring as it was a couple of weeks ago. The nights have become long and dark.
Are you planning on getting away somewhere to brighten up your life before Christmas or even after Christmas - New Year?
If you are then you will probably be hiring a car. Fairly straightforward, you fly or take a train to your chosen holiday spot. Go and collect the car and suddenly discover that the car you had arrange to rent for XX was going to cost you XXX. Why? Well basically when you hire a car, although it will come with some type of insurance if you have an accident or damage the wheels for example then you will have to pay the car hire company's excess on their insurance.
So you will need excess waiver insurance. Great idea, however you arrive at the car hire company's reception and are told the cost of the "additional insurance" could cost more than what you have paid to rent the vehicle.

These companies often make up money they have lost on a bargain deal by the commission they have earned on this rather expensive excess insurance they have just sold you.
What can you do? Probably not a lot at this stage as you want to get to that destination and you have to pay out for this insurance.
What should you have done?

You should have bought excess waiver insurance from a stand alone independent specialist insurance company before you left home. There are several of these companies advertising on the insurance4carrental.com site.

The costs are very reasonable and you can normally buy a daily policy or in many cases a better value annual policy. Questor Insurance and Insurance4carhire have a discounted product available via insurance4carrrental.com  - jml-insurance sites and carhireexcess.com, Worldwideinsure, iCarhireinsurance and Protect Your Bubble offer some great deals as well. To find out more follow this link

Going self catering? There is also Motorhome Hire Excess Waiver Insurance there too together with Van Hire and even Minibus Hire Excess Waiver Insurance.  

Friday 7 November 2014

Mini Bus Hire Excess Insurance - you might need it this weekend

Did you know that if you are hiring a minibus to take friends or colleagues on an outing to see a football match, wedding or other event that just like when you hire a car, van or motorhome you can take out Mini Bus Hire Excess Insurance from an independent insurance company.

Questor Insurance Services offer this product along with Travel Insurance, Car Hire Excess Insurance, Van Hire Excess Insurance and Motorhome Hire Excess Insurance.

Mini bus hire excess insurance has been designed to offer a complete vehicle insurance package, that doesn’t require drivers to take out separate and often costly excess waiver cover.

Whether you are hiring a mini bus for a few days or as long as a fortnight, mini bus hire excess insurance will provide you with the comprehensive cover that you need.

Looking at the Questor Insurance web site they say "Question: I am hiring a 10-seat minibus will I be covered?

Answer: Mini bus hire excess insurance gives you the flexibility to hire a mini bus that will cater to the needs of your party, whether it’s large or small.
Mini bus hire excess insurance provides cover for minibuses with up to 15 seats, so if you have any last minute additions to your travel group, you can be assured of full cover.

Question: If my vehicle breaks down, will I face an extra charge to move it?

Answer: If you face a breakdown on the road, mini bus hire excess insurance will ensure that you are able to continue on to your desired destination, covering towing charges up to a pre-specified limit.
Mini bus hire excess insurance also provides cover for loss or damage to keys, to ensure that you can get on the move again.

Question: What is covered under my mini bus hire excess insurance policy?

Answer: Mini bus hire excess insurance provides cover for all the features you would come to expect from a mini bus hire excess policy, but also provides cover for the excess on your hire agreement to a pre-specified limit. 
This means you will avoid having to pay expensive excess charges, the amount you pay towards a claim, with can run into the thousands. 
In addition, unlike standard mini bus hire insurance policies, mini bus hire excess insurance will also cover the excess on any damage that it incurred to the tyres, windscreen and under body of the hired vehicle.

It costs from £7.99 a day. Find out more at http://www.questor-insurance.co.uk/affiliate/?ag=105097

Sunday 12 October 2014

Hiring a car this Autumn? Save money and protect yourself with excess insurance from insurance4carhire.com

Save money and protect yourself with excess insurance from insurance4carhire.com  if you are hiring a car this Autumn.

That is the message I got in an e-flyer a couple of days ago from the people at insurance4carhire.

They went on to say - "Did you know, hiring a car could cost you on average £350? Even if you have an excess waiver from the car hire company.
We think there's a better way!
Protect yourself with excess insurance from insurance4carhire.com, and we'll even cover damage to the windscreen, tyres, roof and undercarriage. (Available for drivers aged 21-85 only. Prices correct at date of publication. The average settled claim in 2013 was £350. Excludes damage caused by general wear and tear.)
You can pick up a daily policy from as little as £3.99 per day, or an annual policy from £39.99 for UK & European cover.
Get quick cover today!"  Well here is an even better deal if you follow this link you can buy an annual UK and European policy for £38.00 

Sunday 7 September 2014

Car hire horror story in the Telegraph

The article in last Thursday's Telegraph Travel attracted my attention - "Bullying, a run-in with Portuguese police, and a tug-of-war over a booster seat - car hire sagas don't get more farcical than this - Is this the world's worst car hire horror story?"

This was a report about a reader, Kate Rogers who had rented a car in Madeira via Goldcar car rental and instead of the process being straightforward, she was pressurised into buying the insurance that Goldcar was offering even though she had purchased exclusion waiver insurance via Holiday Autos and declined Goldcar's insurance.

She was told by the representative "that my insurance was not acceptable as it would not pay out if I had an accident"

This was only the beginning of a nightmare story on hiring a car. It is well worth reading either if you are planning hiring a car in Madeira or just hiring a car.

Go to the Telegraph's website here

As many people will have had bad experiences of being told by the clerks at the car hire company that "your insurance" will not cover the vehicle if you have an accident so you must by ours. My wife had a similar experience in Dublin a few years ago. Although she declined the car hire company's excess insurance, when it came to signing the contract of hire as is often the case you are asked to sign  or initial here, here and here and sure enough the crafty clerk had also included their insurance.

When we discovered this on the credit card company they would not budge and said "she signed for it". That was certainly one Irish car rental company that we never used again. 

Do take great care and if you have problems that are not resolved take it up with newspapers like the Telegraph, Mail, Independent, Irish Independent or Irish Times and ask their consumer advice people to look into it.  

Friday 5 September 2014

School holidays are over great time to hire a car and take a break

The school holidays are over and holiday destinations will now be much quieter. It is a great time to go away for a few days and rent a car (or motorhome) and do some sightseeing as the weather is still very pleasant for September.

One very important factor is to make sure you buy your car hire / motorhome hire excess waiver insurance separately from an independent specialist insurance company. Throughout the summer the internet (and this blog) has been full of articles about the savings you can make by not buying the insurance from the car hire companies.

Why not find out more about these companies by following this link   

Remember there are other ways to save money, take your own Sat Nav (but make sure before going it is up to date and also covers your destination location. If you are travelling with youngsters who have not reached school age yet and need a car seat, then take your own one. The cost of taking it by plabe could be a lot less than hiring one from a car hire company.

Finally don't go without travel insurance. People often do and once you have left your home country you probably won't be able to buy it.

Wednesday 20 August 2014

You can save £60 or more on Car Hire costs according to Daily Telegraph report

Yesterday's Daily Telegraph ran an article by Richard Dyson - "Why I'll never buy car hire insurance again" It then went on to say " Read this and save £60 (or much more) on car hire costs" which made me read on.

Apparently  in June he had rented a car in Jersey for six days from  from Europcar. Before he travelled he had  bought a £25, standalone policy from icarhireinsurance.

At Jersey airport Europcar offered him its cover for £90. He refused, saying he had my own policy. Then he had a minor accident. It took a few weeks to process and he got the problem sorted so in the end said that he was sold on stand-alone hire-car cover.

He then goes on to talk about "The great car hire cover rip-off"

He gave examples of hiring a car and then being asked for additional money for car hire excess insurance -   €24 (£18) per day in Tenerife for example and on a rental of  five days that is a lot of money.

According to this article "Traditional, big-name car-hire firms tend to be costliest when it comes to buying cover against damage to the vehicle"

So it means you need to go to a standalone car hire company. The article went on to say "Worldwideinsure would cover an economy hire car for £10.50; Carhireexcess for £9.95 and icarhireinsurance for £14.95. There is a choice of about eight providers all charging less than £20 for the period in question. 

He also points out that "But while the cover provided by the rental firms means there will be a no-quibble, no-payment-required process if you return a damaged vehicle, the standalone insurance policy will mean you have to pay for the damage out of your own pocket then claim back later"  See the full article Here 

Wednesday 13 August 2014

Shortage of children’s car seats and booster seats in hire cars

According to a Carrentals press release from a couple of days ago, although the summer holiday season is in full swing there is  a significant shortage of children’s car seats and booster seats from car hire suppliers abroad. The equipment is compulsory by law in all EU countries, so those hiring a car this summer with young children need to have the seats secured, or know what they can do if they don’t.

The company says "As with many car hire extras, the only way to guarantee availability is to pre-book the equipment you need when you book the vehicle. The extras have to be paid for locally but can guarantee availability for you on arrival, unless your supplier has contacted you and informed you otherwise"

"Travellers who can’t secure child or toddler seats through their supplier, or don’t want to pay for rentals must take their own. Families can transport car seats depending on their airline’s policy. Some airlines allow car seats in addition to luggage allowance free of charge, others will take them at a charge, but some, particularly in busy periods when they are at full capacity, can refuse to take them. Contact your airline to find out their exact policy and charges.  For older children that only require a booster seat, travel booster seats are available that can fit into suitcases and hand luggage."

Finally Carrentals "urges holidaymakers to book everything early as it will save a lot of stress. Try to book car hire ahead of your trip and include your extras when booking  - by doing this you can guarantee availability, even during the busiest travel periods."

If you want to find out more about carrentals and book your car hire now visit them here.