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Car Rental for the day

ct
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Car Rental for the day

We are going to rent a car for the day to take a trip out to Stonhenge and Bath. The car rental company suggested that we rent the car from Heathrow to avoid the congestion zone. There are five in my family which means we will probably need different tube passes because we'll have Zone 1 & 2 travelcards? And how long will it take to get out to Heathrow by tube on the weekend? Does this sond feasible or does anyone have a better suggestion? Or should we just try to rent in the city?

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Vancouver, Canada
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1. Re: Car Rental for the day

If I were going to hire a car I'd get it at LHR, to save the aggro of driving in town.

If you have seven day Travelcards, they will be sold to you on Oyster, so all you need do is add a bit of PAYG money to the card for the trip to LHR. The Oyster excess fare from zone 2 to zone 6 is just £1 at off peak times, which includes weekends. If you have paper Travelcards you can purchase the excess fare at the station where you start your journey - you'll be given a second paper ticket to indicate you've paid the fare.

Earl's Court to LHR takes about 30 minutes by Tube. Do check that the Piccadilly and / or District lines are operating on the day you wish to travel, as weekends are often the time when scheduled track maintenance is done. Add another 20 minutes or so to get to the car hire area, as most of them are off-airport.

UK
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2. Re: Car Rental for the day

With the current security shenigans I wouldnt advise Heathrow.

Maybe Chiswick?

ct
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3. Re: Car Rental for the day

Chiswick where is that? And does the tube let you right out at Chiswick? Is it on the way to bath or would I be going in a different direction? Does the tube let you off right at Heathrow because I might have to go into the airport for the rental counter?

Upminster, United...
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4. Re: Car Rental for the day

Where are you staying ? Your previous posts seem to indicate the Earls Court/Kensington Area. If you are still around there, then you are well away from the Congestion Zone and very near the A4 which makes a very straight run to Bath.

ct
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5. Re: Car Rental for the day

We are staying at the Hilton Islington the problem also with rentals on the weekend is that they city locations aren't open on Sunday for returns. So any other help will be appreciated

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: Car Rental for the day

Chiswick is much better for the A4 than Islington, that's for sure. The District line goes right there; the Piccadilly line heads off to LHR 1,2,3 and LHR T4 as well.

The Congestion Charge now extends to the Earl's Court Road (despite the efforts of the RBofK&C residents to stop if) - but it is only in effect on weekdays. If pk1013 and family are going to Stonehenge on a weeked, they'd not be on the hook for the charge.

But driving to the West from Islington would be a bit of a chore - I still think I'd choose LHR and the time taken to get there rather than deal with crossing London.

London
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7. Re: Car Rental for the day

If you're staying in Islington, then I'd definitely rent in town! A relatively close car hire location to where you're staying is Pentonville Road (near to King's Cross).

We've rented cars from Holiday Autos (www.holidayautos.co.uk) and if you select the King's Cross Pentonville Rd location then you'll get the Europcar rental location.

Holiday Autos has very competitive prices, but if you want cheaper, then you may want to try easycar, etc. I think they have an outlet at Euston Station.

Anyway, if you pick up at Kings Cross, you can drive from east to west (Euston Rd/Marylebone Rd/Westway) which does not fall within the congestion charge zone and then make your way out of London. Also, congestion charges do not apply on weekends, and are operational between 7am-6pm weekdays.

In terms of driving across, then I'd do it after 9.30/10am (on a weekday; weekends not really a problem) to miss most of the traffic.

Also, I'd definitely hire the car for more than a day as it would take a bit of time to get to your destinations and drop the car off same day. Bath is a great city and you could easily spend a day or two there.

Finally, if you're into the stone circles, then I'd also recommend visting Avebury - not as touristy, no entrance fee, the circle is much larger and more natural/different feel. There are also loads of archeological sites in this area to exploe and visit.

Windsor, California
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8. Re: Car Rental for the day

Just my thought, contact Europcar. They will usually pick up and retrive the car from your hotel. I drive all over the UK, but not IN London. Usually, I am driving first, so I pick up the car at LHR, then go into London, (I usually stay at the Metropole on Edgeware Rd), drive it up to the valet and let them know that europcar is going to collect it. A small tip for the valet, a small tip for the consierge, and they will call and have europcar come get it. I really think with 5 people, that is going to be the easiest way. See if you can arrange a hotel drop off and pick up with Europcar.

Windsor, California
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9. Re: Car Rental for the day

I also agree with N19London on Avesbury. If any of the 5 are kids, that is going to be much better for them. They can run around, play, sit and touch, where Stonehenge is now fairly hands off. Also, much to do in Bath, but once you get there you are going to want to park and do it all on foot. I would start out to stonehenge early in the morning, as there is much to do in Bath. If I remember correctly, Avesbury is the oposite direction from Stonehenge if you are going to Bath, but none of it is too far away.

Londinium born and...
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10. Re: Car Rental for the day

There is no congestion charge at weekends so it doesn't matter if you rent in central London at that time. Pick up a rental thats near to your hotel and save the money you'd pay out in tube fares.

Congestion charges only kick in on week days.

:)