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Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Montreal
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Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Hi: We're there for 3 full days (staying at El Silencio for 4 nights), but arriving and departing via arranged transportation. I was thinking of taking taxis everywhere, but it will be expensive. I got the idea of renting a car from another post on this forum. We'll be there starting Tuesday,

We would not need insurance because I have it from my house insurance (I just called my insurance company to verify this). I looked at the Alamo website and it was ridiculously cheap for the smallest car (standard transmission, which I drive).

Places we may want to go to are the Green Lagoon Hotel (to access Cerro Chato hike), Mistico Hanging Bridges, Arenal Volcano National Park, Mirador El Silencio.

If we go to AOL, we'll take the hotel shuttle there, so we won't need to drive there.

So, 3 questions:

1. Are the places we want to visit easy to drive with a small, 2 wheel drive car?

2. Which car rental company is recommended?

3. Is it easy enough to get around without a GPS? Can we manage with Google maps? Dh has a GPS on his phone, but I'm not sure how well it will work inCR.

Thanks,

Kay

20 replies to this topic
Montreal
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1. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Forgot to mention, we'll surely visit the La Fortuna waterfall as well. K

Nowhere
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2. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

I think your options are basically limited to Alamo and Adobe.

Montreal
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3. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Thanks, that should simplify things. K

Canada
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4. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Please do more research on the forum. This is probably the most discussed topic and for good reason.

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5. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

You definitely need to research renting a car in Costa Rica. Your homeowners insurance will not cover the mandatory insurance in Costa Rica. Also make sure you get a quote from a company based in Costa Rica not just the car rental Internet website for the US or Canada. If you don't look at this thoroughly before you arrive you will have a major surprise when you go to pick up your car.

Nowhere
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6. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Indeed - you do NOT have insurance that is applicable in CR. It doesn't matter what your "house insurance" company says. They are not authorized to conduct business in CR and thus, they cannot offer coverage here. There is only one company that can provide this insurance, and this company is state-owned. Consequently, you can only purchase coverage through the rental car company - and nobody else. Not expedia, not your credit card, not any insurance back home.

The ridiculously "cheap" rate you received will quickly turn into ridiculously expensive - and you won't be happy about it. Best to know beforehand what you'll end up paying than feeling like somebody is trying to rip you off.

Montreal
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7. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

It's not usual homeowners insurance, it's an additional insurance that covers damage to the car, other non-human damages and $1 million 3rd person liability, purchased to cover car rentals all over the world.

I booked on line through Alamo. Do I need to phone them in Costa Rica or something like that, to verify? I speak a bit of Spanish.

The worse thing that can happen is that they don't have a car, and then we'll go back to Plan A, which was going to be taxis. Although I hope the rental car option will work, as it will be cheaper and more flexible.

Montreal
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8. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

I didn't read your post correctly. In other words, no insurance, even if we bring proof or ours, is going to help with rental cars in Costa Rica??

Montreal
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9. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Sorry to keep posting: is it only the 3rd party liability which must be covered by the state insurance in CR, or all the insurances? With 3rd party liability, the price is still reasonable, but if it's all the insurances, then it's no longer reasonable.

Nowhere
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10. Re: Which car rental company for 2-3 days???

Unfortunately, over the course of the past 15 years, many of us have heard the same claim over and over - with the same insistence that you put forth. Only once has an individual from the UK claimed that he was actually able to apply such coverage successfully once he was in CR - but his report remains unverified.

Car insurance is a de facto state monopoly in CR.

The Alamo CR site does not allow you to de-select CDW or SLI - you can opt out of CDW once you are in the office and can provide your own coverage. I am not sure how the Alamo US site handles this.

Just don't say you were not informed - and be prepared to pay a whole lot more for your car than you anticipated. It puts a big damper on anyone's vacation when it starts out like that!

In the end, please report back to us with your findings...

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