51 reviews from the community
Review of "holidayautos.com"
After successfully booking my package holiday and my travel insurance online, it made sense to complete the trio by renting a car through an online agent. There are any number of sites competing to offer all types of car rental with a wide disparity in prices, but all I needed was something basic and cheap for a week in Lanzarote.HolidayAutos.com claims to be the world's largest leisure car rental site. You can link via bargainholidays.com, or to the sites own home page. Recommended by Which? Webtraders, and winner of a whole host of accolades, the site is extremely simple and well-laid out. At the time I booked, the home page indicated a £5 discount for booking online, which encouraged me to at least investigate their rates.
After choosing my basic destination from an extensive drop-down menu, I was then able to give specific details as to my requirements. You are not required to register or give any personal details at this point, aprat from the age of the driver. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I could either arrange car pick-up at the airport in Arrecife upon my arrival, or collect at my resort. As we already had transport from the airport as part of our holiday package, I selected to collect the car in Playa Blanca the day after our arrival. As far I could see, this made no difference to the price in this instance. The times for collection seemed flexible, with the minimum rental period being 3 days.
I was presented with several rental options, the cheapest listed at £56 per week, plus the £5 discount for booking online- a weekly rental rate for £51 for a 3 door Ford Ka or Corsa, or "similar". Bargain, I thought!
My partner cautioned me that it would probably turn out to be "not available", but when I processed the booking, it was available. Unfortunately as is too often the case, the card details would not go through online and I had to phone the agent. However, there was no problem with making a booking this way, and I still received the £5 online discount, which pleased me.
For an extra £5, HolidayAutos offers optional cancellation insurance, which may be worth taking if you are booking a more expensive rental. Personally, I chose not to bother with it.
After HolidayAutos receives payment details, they send a voucher with details of the rental agreement, and the address of the car rental agency at your chosen destination. You will need your voucher when you pick up the car, so don't forget to bring it. If booking last minute, make sure you stress this to the agent- we received our voucher in plenty of time. It is also worth bearing in mind that during your holiday you will be dealing with the local rental company, and not an actual branch of "HolidayAutos". The site does have a complaints facility and promises to address any problems within 21 days, which may not help too much if you have a real hassle at your destination.
We had no problems whatsoever, and despite my fears, there were no extras upon pick-up apart from a fuel deposit for the car which had a full tank of petrol. There was no refund given if petrol was left over, which meant that we drove around as much as possible to use it up! I gather from the website that this is not necessarily the policy in every rental destination, and refunds are usually given. In our case, the deposit worked out to be about £20 -slightly more than we would have paid had we gone to pumps ourselves, but still cheaper than it would have been in Britain. It is worth bearing in mind that depending on your destination you may end up paying over the odds for this first tank of petrol. We found it handy to not have to worry about finding a petrol station, as the tank saw us through the duration of our stay.
The car itself was a basic 3dr Corsa, and was a bit banged up. It was fine for our purposes, easy enough to drive, and we put 600 kilometres on it. . There was no additional charge for having it collected by the agent at the hotel at the end of the week.
Spain- £94 per week for a basic 3dr car, £270 per week for a Jeep.
USA- Florida- £154 per week for a Chevy Metro
Mexico- Cancun- £234 per week for a Volkwagon Beetle
New Zealand- £184 per week for a Ford Fiesta.
Special offers, discounts and late deals are available. The prices will obviously depend somewhat on your destination and the time of year, as well as what type of car you book. A Best Price guarantee is offered based on pre-paid rental prices on a "like for like" basis.
The site allows you to look at some of the car types. Bear in mind that the rental will not necessarily resemble the picture, just in case you have your heart set on cruising across America in a red pick-up truck.
Not only that, but HolidayAutos offer a range of "prestige rentals". For a mere £4899 per week, you could be whizzing around the countryside in a Ferrari 310 Modena. Or how about making the right impression on that hot date by arriving in a Porsche Boxter, available for £239 per day.
There is a plethora of other good information available on the site, including travel health news, i.e what shots you need, routeplanners and maps, weather reports, a good daily currency converter, general destination information, details on how to apply for or renew your passport, and other driving advice.I can't say I did much comparision between this site and others, but I doubted very much I was going to beat £51 a week. Some checking after the fact confirms this. I'd recommend the site for the competitive prices alone, but also for its superlative and informative online rental search facility.
Product Information : holidayautos.com
Manufacturer's product description
Listed on Ciao since: 12/07/2001