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Car Rental Advice

Minneapolis...
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85 posts
18 reviews
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Car Rental Advice

Hi there....as part of our upcoming honeymoon, my wife and I will be driving from the airport --> Nafplio --> Olympia --> Delphi --> Kalambaka, and back to the airport. Any advice/recommendations for car rental from the Athens airport? Is GPS through the company a must? What about the insurance they sell? We'll be returning the vehicle back to the airport so we won't be driving it in Athens. And we'll need it for 7 days. I've done some looking online at various companies, but there are a bunch of options, so I'm just hoping to get some guidance. Appreciate any insight/advice!

United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Lesbos, Zagorohoria
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13,056 posts
22 reviews
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1. Re: Car Rental Advice

I always recommend this company that we have used several times from Athens Airport. They are an independent Greek company so you deal with them direct rather than through an anonymous broker. They communicate in fluent English so no misunderstandings & they will answer any questions you have regarding insurance cover etc & supply of GPS.

They have good cars at good prices as they built their business on supplying local Greek hire requirements prior to those of visitors from overseas so do have a look at their website. They meet you off your flight with the car ready & waiting & minmal paperwork formalities so you can be quickly on your way.

Some companies will meet you & take you by minibus to a depot some distance from the airport & this works fine but takes longer & you have to drop the car back at the depot. So you need to check this with any other company you may get a quote from.

http://www.athens-carrental.com/

Minneapolis...
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85 posts
18 reviews
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2. Re: Car Rental Advice

Thanks, Tsipouro. So they're actually at/in the airport terminal?

Appreciate the other advice, too. Coming from the States I had been looking at the companies I am familiar with (Budget, Avis, Enterprise) and who had locations in the terminal, but I'll definitely check that company out.

Minneapolis...
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85 posts
18 reviews
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3. Re: Car Rental Advice

Another dumb question/clarification.....I see a lot of people in this forum referring to 'car hire' as opposed to 'rental.' Is there a difference? When I see 'hire,' I think of having someone else drive us, which is NOT what we're looking for. Thanks for clarifying!

United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Lesbos, Zagorohoria
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13,056 posts
22 reviews
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4. Re: Car Rental Advice

They are not based at the airport. This is one way costs are kept down I think. On site facilities must come at a premium. But they deliver cars to airport, port or hotels. You must book in advance via their website or by email & normally pay a small deposit up front. Their cancellation terms are very generous as you can cancel/change at fairly short notice & get a refund if for some reason you cannot make the trip. A lot of the online brokers ask for full payment with booking & there are often restrictions on refunds so do read small print, whoever you go with.

Hire & rental are the same thing. If you were having a driver it would be a chauffeured hire.

NB The only dumb question is the one you don't ask & then wonder what went wrong!

Edited: 30 July 2014, 18:34
Minneapolis...
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85 posts
18 reviews
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5. Re: Car Rental Advice

Tsipouro......great, thanks again. I just did some looking on their site and am definitely interested. For peace of mind, I had planned on getting the CDW and Accident Insurance, so it's nice to know that those are included in the price of the rental. They seem like the most affordable option and that makes sense about them being able to if they're technically not in the terminal. But, it also seems nice not having to deal with the person at the counter who tries to upsell you on all kinds of other stuff! I'll be sending them an e-mail.

Final question: where is the vehicle return? At the end of our road trip, we'll be driving from Kamena Vourla directly to the airport to catch a flight to Naxos. Where would we actually drop the car off? Thanks!

Minneapolis...
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85 posts
18 reviews
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6. Re: Car Rental Advice

Also, Tsipouro......I was just reading your other post dedicated to ACR (tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g189398-i192-k5468…) and I see that we arrive on the same day in September! First time for my wife and I, and we can't wait! I hope ACR has availability! E-mailing them now.......

United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Lesbos, Zagorohoria
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13,056 posts
22 reviews
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7. Re: Car Rental Advice

You would drop the car back at the airport right outside Departures entrance. They will arrange to meet you to take back the car, check it over & check the fuel & you will be on your way home in no time. BTW you will have to return the car with same fuel level as on collection - very handy for this is a fuel station about 20 minutes from the airport (I think between junctions 17 & 18 on the highway)

Both leaving & returning to airport you will encounter tolls on the highway to/from Peloponnese. Useful to have coins or small denomination notes handy if you can, although you will go to manned booths so they will give change. I can't post a link just now but if you Google "Attica Odos" you should find a website for the highway which has maps & indicates toll point & charges (not always bang up to date but a good guide). It's straight onto the highway from the airport & well signed all the way in Greek & English so you'll be over the Corinth Canal & on the Peloponnese with no problems over where to go!

EDIT

We arrive Athens at 4am that day. Tell Nicolas at ACR that I sent you via TA. Am sure availability will not be an issue by September but I heard they were booked out for August, so they must be doing something right.

Edited: 30 July 2014, 19:31
Minneapolis...
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85 posts
18 reviews
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8. Re: Car Rental Advice

Perfect! Thank you so much, Tsipouro! I just sent an e-mail to ACR and let them know of your referral :)

Thanks for the heads up on everything else......I had read about the tolls, so our plan is to definitely get plenty of coins to simplify the journey.

Vancouver
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98 posts
28 reviews
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9. Re: Car Rental Advice

Autoeurope.com . Consolidator with good prices on major rental companies. And do get an IDP as well.

United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Lesbos, Zagorohoria
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13,056 posts
22 reviews
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10. Re: Car Rental Advice

There are lots of brokers/consolidators & as in all things in life some are better than others. However you are not dealing direct withe the guys who actually supply the car so you get what you are given. The brokers negotiate prices & take their commission from the transaction. If you deal direct with an independent business you can talk direct to them & also have the satisfaction of knowing all your money goes into the Greek economy direct. Lowest cost is not always best value, but anyone hiring should look at the T&Cs & compare to get the best overall deal for their requirements.

Very good reminder about the IDP - not something those of us living in EU have to consider. It is perfectly possible to rent a car without one, if you are from outside EU, but it is not legal to drive. If stopped by police (accident, routine check) & you cannot show the right documents you will a) be in trouble & b) find your insurance is invalidated.