BLUE Car Rental Review
We've just come back from our trip to Iceland. We went with Blue Car Rental as I found they have the best deal on 4x4 vehicle. You just pay for 1 price for unlimited mileage, CDW , TP , GP , SCDW insurance and taxes.
Our flight was delayed for an hour. When we arrived at KEF airport it was almost 1am. A man waited for us in the arrivals holding a card with my name on it. He drove us to their office in a van which was only a few minutes away. I was then presented with a well looked after Hyundai Tucson 2.0 V6 Mk1. I did the checks with the man and he mentioned stone chips and such they are not really bothered. He apologised to me as I booked a manual and got an auto. Not a big deal with me so I said its fine. After signing the contract, he lent me a Garmin sat nav free of charge since it's already dark he wanted us to get to our accomodation quickly. I was warned not to go over the speed limit as there are several speed cameras around. They had some customers who were fined and they had to charge them through their credit card.
I found the sat nav was very handy specially driving round Reykjavik. I'm quite good with directions and I even printed routes but the sat nav just made life easier for me. It also helps with speed detection and warns you when approaching a speed camera.
We rented the vehicle for 5 days with 4 adults and a child inside it performs really well. It's fitted with 4 new snow tyres and the grip on the road is unbelievable whether its pouring with rain, wet snow, dry snow, sleet or high winds. I'm not used to driving on snow (snow doesn't come to Bournemouth that often) but the Tucson handles well and I didn't lose confidence with my driving skill. We drove around the Golden Circle, south coast and even went as far as the Jökulsárlón lagoon. We only had 1 problem on our 2nd day when we were at Gulfoss waterfall. We were there for barely an hour and when I drove off I felt someone's put a clamp on one of the wheels. I noticed the rear wheel on the driver side is stuck and isn't rolling. I phoned BLUE car rental and told them the driver side rear brake is locked and could be frozen as we are high up and it was very cold and windy. He advised if its frozen to drive it backwards and forwards until it's released. He said he will send a mechanic staightaway and will change our vehicle when we get back to our hotel. Since I didn't want to wait, I followed his advise driving it forwards and backwards and gradually the rear wheel loosened and rolled perfectly. I felt there isn't any issue since brake freeze could happen in any vehicle that has disc brakes so phoned BLUE again and told them to cancel the mechanic. He asked if I still wanted the vehicle changed I declined as Im still happy with it. Just a tip if everything around you is frozen not to put the handbrake on if parked on flat ground just put it on P (park) for Auto or on 1st gear for manual gearbox. Just realised half of gulfoss waterfall was frozen solid at that time.
Returning the vehicle, I was worried they would charge us extra as it was filthy. We did more than 1000 miles on it on all sorts of weather. I phoned them if I need to take it to a car wash they said no need as they would wash it anyway. The man just asked me if it's really dirty I said only from normal use. When we got to their office, he inspected the vehicle and said all is fine and there wont be any extra charge. We both signed the paper work. The whole process took about 10 minutes only. We load our luggage in the van and he took us back to the airport.
Apart from the frozen brake issue, which isn't BLUE car rental's fault, everything was great. They looked after us well and it felt they are not after my money. Hence, I'm compelled to write a review about them. Their customer service is second to none. And I would highly recommend them to anyone doing a self drive tour to Iceland.
I would also recommend the use of sat nav if driving in winter or driving round the city. The extra cost of renting a sat nav is still worth it as it can save you time and petrol from getting lost and it could also save you from a hefty fine for speeding. I found some of the road signs were completely obstructed by snow and with poor visibility the sat nav helps as it shows the road ahead whether your approaching a tight bend or a crossing, etc..
With regards to the vehicle, I was dubious at first renting a Hyundai. My preference was either a Nissan Quashqai or a Subaru Forester. But having driven the Tucson, I must say I am well pleased with it. It's spacious for 5 people and it's also equipped with ESP ( Electronic Stability Programme) which helps stabilise the vehicle when driving along wet or icy roads. I would definitely rent it again when we come back to Iceland.
Lastly, before returning the vehicle make sure the tank is full as you could be charged even if it's just a line below the F level. There are several petrol stations near their office. However, I only found out some petrol stations in Iceland you have to have a fob key that you have scan or a pre-paid card that you need to enter the pin before it lets you use the pump. Petrol stations such as "N1" you dont need such things just put your credit card in, enter your pin and enter the desired amount. You only get charged on how much you've filled not the amount you've entered. There is an N1 just over a mile away from BLUE.
So that concludes it. Many thanks to Blue Car Rental for a stress free experience. More power to your company.
Blue car rental website is: