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South Africa car rental

South Africa car rental

Old Dec 2nd 2006, 5:18 am
  #1  
Dave Patterson
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Default South Africa car rental

I have suggested Avis.co.za in the past for their
"International Visitors Special" but one of my clients
rented from Alamo yesterday - getting a fantastic
deal from their phone representative, not from their
web site. Might keep it in mind, also, if your
trip includes a rental car. How good a deal?
$363 for 10 days at Phalaborwa airport - small car,
but with A/C & automatic transmission. No insurance.
She got a letter faxed to her from Visa acknowledging
that their policy of insurance would be in effect when
she used her Visa to rent the car. (This condition is
spelled out precisely on the Alamo web site as an
accepted option, rather than purchasing the insurance
with the rental.)
 
Old Dec 3rd 2006, 2:13 am
  #2  
Riverman
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Default Re: South Africa car rental

Dave Patterson wrote:
    > I have suggested Avis.co.za in the past for their
    > "International Visitors Special" but one of my clients
    > rented from Alamo yesterday - getting a fantastic
    > deal from their phone representative, not from their
    > web site. Might keep it in mind, also, if your
    > trip includes a rental car. How good a deal?
    > $363 for 10 days at Phalaborwa airport - small car,
    > but with A/C & automatic transmission. No insurance.
    > She got a letter faxed to her from Visa acknowledging
    > that their policy of insurance would be in effect when
    > she used her Visa to rent the car. (This condition is
    > spelled out precisely on the Alamo web site as an
    > accepted option, rather than purchasing the insurance
    > with the rental.)

Internet and telephone deals are almost universally better than on-site
rentals. However, $363 (US, I assume?) for a 10-day rental isn't really
that wow; travelocity shows a 10 day rental with Hertz for $297, and
Thrifty for $255. (However, these are for Economy cars, which are NOT a
good idea, for reasons to follow.)

For Compact cars, Avis has a 10-day rental for $294, Thrifty has one
for $248 and Hertz has one for $336. I think your buddy could have
gotten a better deal online.

As for Economy cars: they are thief magnets. The small cars that they
give out in Cape Town or Joberg are usually CitiGolfs or something
similar, which can be broken into by just grabbing the door frame and
bending them outwards. You can count on the stereo as well as ANY
personal belongings left in the car to be stolen. I once had a CitiGolf
broken into in CT, where the thief took a broken $2 watch and the car
stereo. Avis replaced it with another CitiGolf, which got broken into
the second night, where the thief took the stereo again. Avis replaced
that car, and two nights later, THAT car got broken into, and nothing
got stolen (it didn't have a stereo). I convinced Avis that I had
pretty much paid for an upgrade with my deductables, so they gave me a
midsized car, which did not get broken into for the rest of my 2 week
trip.

Additionally, you do NOT need a letter from you credit card or
insurance company if you choose to waiver the offered coverage. With
many cards (I won't generalize and say 'most' because I don't know for
certain), you get international coverage for collision and theft with
your credit card. However, this coverage is ONLY for rentals of less
than14 consecutive days, even if you return the car and get a new one.
As long as its from the same agency, you get 13 consecutive days, so
watch for that.

--riverman
 
Old Dec 3rd 2006, 4:54 am
  #3  
Dave Patterson
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Default Re: South Africa car rental

Riverman - thanks for the thoughts about car size, when renting.
The prices you mentioned in your note:
riverman wrote:

    > travelocity shows a 10 day rental with Hertz for $297, and
    > Thrifty for $255. (However, these are for Economy cars, which are NOT a
    > good idea, for reasons to follow.)
    > For Compact cars, Avis has a 10-day rental for $294, Thrifty has one
    > for $248 and Hertz has one for $336. I think your buddy could have
    > gotten a better deal online.

don't work for the example I gave for my client.
Hertz and Thrifty don't serve Phalaborwa - which is where the car
must be rented. And - this car will be an automatic with A/C,
factors which increase the price, of course.

Alamo & National are the same company, and do show up on
Travelocity for slightly more than she will be paying, reserving
with Alamo on the phone.

As for the letter from VISA, that requirement is specified on the
Alamo web site, and even you would agree that it's better to have
the letter and be sure of getting the car, than telling the agent
at Phalaborwa that "a man on the internet newsgroup says I
really don't need it."
 
Old Dec 3rd 2006, 6:46 am
  #4  
Dave Patterson
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Default Re: South Africa car rental

Forgot Avis.
$423 on the US web site.
ZAR 3003 on the co.za web site
which is virtually the same amount.
She really did get a good deal.
 
Old Dec 3rd 2006, 12:33 pm
  #5  
Riverman
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: South Africa car rental

Dave Patterson wrote:
    > Forgot Avis.
    > $423 on the US web site.
    > ZAR 3003 on the co.za web site
    > which is virtually the same amount.
    > She really did get a good deal.


Whoops, I had put in Johannesburg before.

Strange. I'm in HK, but using www.travelocity.com, and I still get
cheaper rates.

I put in PHW as the airport (Phalaborwa, SA) and the dates from Dec 21
to Dec 31, to get a 10 day rental. I get the following rates:

No Economy cars.
Compact Cars (auto, AC); 10-day rental total price
ALAMO: $399
NATIONAL: $398
AVIS: $294.33

Unless I'm missing something obvious, we might be on to something here.
Find someone on the Newsgroup who is in a region that gets cheaper
rates than you on rental cars, then have them make your reservation for
you (using the agencies that don't require credit card details up
front).

Hmmm.

--riverman
 

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