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    • owenjt
    • By owenjt 31st Jul 18, 3:15 PM
    • 20Posts
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    owenjt
    0 WOW
    Ford Mustang car hire in California
    • #1
    • 31st Jul 18, 3:15 PM
    0 WOW
    Ford Mustang car hire in California 31st Jul 18 at 3:15 PM
    Hi. Looking for some car hire advice for California. Will be starting in LA and finishing in San Fran and would really like to hire a Ford Mustang convertible. I know you can't guarantee this car but hopefully I'll be able to get one.

    I've managed to find a couple of reasonable quotes:
    • Alamo for 880.76 USD
    • Budget for 987.17 USD

    Does anyone have any experience of Alamo and are they any good? Have done quite a bit of research and they're the cheapest.
Page 2
    • photome
    • By photome 8th Aug 18, 6:35 PM
    • 13,404 Posts
    • 8,943 Thanks
    photome
    Can anyone advise re insurance? Confused as to what I need to do.
    Originally posted by owenjt
    You have had good advise, re renting thorough a U.K. broker where insurance will be included.
    • owenjt
    • By owenjt 8th Aug 18, 10:10 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    owenjt
    Owen, if you book through a UK agent usually the rate will include all necessary insurance. Things to look out for are the excess, if you get a zero excess that is a great but you can purchase an excess plan in the UK that will also usually include items such as lost keys, damage to windows, under carriage etc. A single trip or annual policy pre purchased in the UK will work out cheaper than purchasing at the desk in the US.

    I can understand your desire to rent a mustang, I have got the tshirt and bought the car but those rates are crazy, especially when you can get a standard or large size car for £300+.
    Originally posted by stevie11
    holidayautos.com are offering Collision Damage Waiver, Theft Protection and Third Party Liability, with a damage excess of USD 0.0 and a theft excess of USD 0.0. £705 is a good price so might go with this.

    I know what everyone says about hiring a mustang - it's expensive, it's not practical, the luggage will struggle to fit in the boot. But, this is a once in a lifetime trip and I've always wanted to drive a convertible mustang in the USA, so I don't care!
    • cubegame
    • By cubegame 8th Aug 18, 10:35 PM
    • 1,478 Posts
    • 749 Thanks
    cubegame
    holidayautos.com are offering Collision Damage Waiver, Theft Protection and Third Party Liability, with a damage excess of USD 0.0 and a theft excess of USD 0.0. £705 is a good price so might go with this.

    I know what everyone says about hiring a mustang - it's expensive, it's not practical, the luggage will struggle to fit in the boot. But, this is a once in a lifetime trip and I've always wanted to drive a convertible mustang in the USA, so I don't care!
    Originally posted by owenjt
    When you can drive one for free at your local Ford dealer?

    I understand the appeal when they weren't a UK model., but now?
    • stevie11
    • By stevie11 8th Aug 18, 10:35 PM
    • 459 Posts
    • 237 Thanks
    stevie11
    holidayautos.com are offering Collision Damage Waiver, Theft Protection and Third Party Liability, with a damage excess of USD 0.0 and a theft excess of USD 0.0. £705 is a good price so might go with this.

    I know what everyone says about hiring a mustang - it's expensive, it's not practical, the luggage will struggle to fit in the boot. But, this is a once in a lifetime trip and I've always wanted to drive a convertible mustang in the USA, so I don't care!
    Originally posted by owenjt
    You seem to have it covered there. Go for it. You will have a blast especially on the PCH.
    • owenjt
    • By owenjt 8th Aug 18, 10:43 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    owenjt
    When you can drive one for free at your local Ford dealer?

    I understand the appeal when they weren't a UK model., but now?
    Originally posted by cubegame
    Not quite the same though is it - a few hours driving around London or 2 weeks driving around California including driving down Highway 1 with the top down...
    • stevie11
    • By stevie11 8th Aug 18, 10:50 PM
    • 459 Posts
    • 237 Thanks
    stevie11
    When you can drive one for free at your local Ford dealer?

    I understand the appeal when they weren't a UK model., but now?
    Originally posted by cubegame
    Slightly different, the salesman will be sitting next to you, only allowed to drive a few miles with a couple of liters in the tank. If you can take it home for the weekend well that would do the job you are suggesting. Then the dealer will have your name on file and will be calling you regularly with the sales pitch

    Now I agree the cost of renting is expensive on this occasion but the OP is prepared to pay it, I am sure they will have a great experience on the road trip.
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 8th Aug 18, 11:35 PM
    • 14,575 Posts
    • 19,636 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    When you can drive one for free at your local Ford dealer?

    I understand the appeal when they weren't a UK model., but now?
    Originally posted by cubegame
    To be fair, you can't drive them at any Ford dealer. Only a select few sell Mustangs.

    My wife wanted one but they don't seem to have any that they can sell so she bought something else instead.
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” - Mark Twain
    • jackieblack
    • By jackieblack 9th Aug 18, 6:54 AM
    • 7,885 Posts
    • 11,555 Thanks
    jackieblack
    driving down Highway 1
    Originally posted by owenjt
    Although, to be pedantic, you're driving up Highway 1 (the wrong way ).
    Hope the traffic driving down (obscuring the views and making getting into and out of the Vista Points difficult) isn't too heavy.

    Glad to see that all of the PCH is open again now, finally!
    Last edited by jackieblack; 09-08-2018 at 7:04 AM.
    2.22kWp Solar PV system installed Oct 2010, Fronius IG20 Inverter,
    south facing (-5 deg), 30 degree pitch, no shading

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    • owenjt
    • By owenjt 9th Aug 18, 9:53 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    owenjt
    Although, to be pedantic, you're driving up Highway 1 (the wrong way ).
    Hope the traffic driving down (obscuring the views and making getting into and out of the Vista Points difficult) isn't too heavy.

    Glad to see that all of the PCH is open again now, finally!
    Originally posted by jackieblack
    Haha yes, up Highway 1 (not the wrong way)!
    • jackieblack
    • By jackieblack 10th Aug 18, 6:46 AM
    • 7,885 Posts
    • 11,555 Thanks
    jackieblack
    Haha yes, up Highway 1 (not the wrong way)!
    Originally posted by owenjt
    Well, having driven it both ways, one has definite advantages and the other definite disadvantages over the other, IMO
    But each to their own...
    2.22kWp Solar PV system installed Oct 2010, Fronius IG20 Inverter,
    south facing (-5 deg), 30 degree pitch, no shading

    Quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur
    (Revera linguam latinam vix cognovi )
    • jamesbrownontheroad
    • By jamesbrownontheroad 15th Aug 18, 8:09 PM
    • 577 Posts
    • 360 Thanks
    jamesbrownontheroad
    Hi. Looking for some car hire advice for California. Will be starting in LA and finishing in San Fran and would really like to hire a Ford Mustang convertible. I know you can't guarantee this car but hopefully I'll be able to get one.
    Originally posted by owenjt
    Back to your original post, Owen...

    It's true, car hire companies will not guarantee a make and model unless you choose a company that offers a premium range of model-specific classes, but these are £££.

    I've used National and their sister company Alamo many times in the USA. Alamo is the tourist-oriented budget arm, National is the corporate business-oriented arm. National get the newest cars, and then they filter down to Alamo as their age and mileage increases. If you look at the cars themselves there is no distinction; they use the same fleet management bar codes, etc. (They also own Enterprise, by the way, who are present at some airports but are generally focused on neighbourhood locations and the business of providing insurance loaners).

    What you may not know is that many of the largest outfits in the USA offer a somewhat unusual (for the UK) means of getting your car. This is definitely true of Alamo and National, and may be true of others...

    At SFO and LAX (and most larger US airports), you will arrive at the car hire facility and check-in, either at a self-service terminal or counter. The machine or agent will produce your paperwork, and then you go to the parking lot.

    At this point, the fun begins, because an agent will greet you and direct you to an aisle (or aisles) of the car park with a selection of cars ready to go. You pick the one you want. The trunk is usually open, ready for your bags, and the keys will be in the ignition or on top of the dashboard. When you leave the car park, you will pass a kiosk where another agent associates your choice of car with your rental (and - in case you wondered - yes, they will charge you the difference if you've driven off in a car of a more expensive category).

    So, at LAX and SFO you will usually find Camaro and Mustang convertibles in the 'convertible' aisle. They are almost always the weaker-engined base models. At busy times, you may have to wait a while, but if you are prepared to wait (even after a long-haul flight and lengthy customs queue) and are prepared to speak nicely to the agents bringing cars up from the cleaning facility, you may get lucky.

    At LAX, Alamo and National share the same facility - National are upstairs and Alamo are downstairs, and like I said there are older higher mileage cars with Alamo (but the prices are cheaper). Both cater to a lot of out-of-state visitors who want a nice car. I've rented from both, and both operate the same way. Even downstairs at Alamo, you get to choose whatever you want from your class of car. On our honeymoon for instance, we only booked a cheap compact from Alamo, but still chose a funky Kia Soul from amongst the more dull VW Jettas and Toyota Corollas. On a business trip a few years later, I picked out a newer Chevrolet Malibu for a long trip because I wanted an easy highway cruiser. On a Christmas trip to family in northern Minnesota, I was able to select precisely the SUV we wanted because it was definitely 4x4, and not 4x2 as some alongside it.

    Finally, one thing you may be interested in. In addition to the 'pick your own' principle across all classes, National offer a park for frequent renters called the Emerald Club. It is targeted at North American customers but UK renters can enrol for free. Basically, membership allows you to reserve a special member-only class of car at the price of 'Midsize' car (i.e. one above a Ford Focus, usually a Chevrolet Malibu or equivalent) but then pick any car in the Executive Aisle.

    To keep members loyal, National employees proactively populate the Executive Aisle with a range of car types, always 'midsize' or better / larger. You will likely find a range of mid-size and large cars, SUVs and convertibles here.

    Frequent renters (with 12 paid rentals or 40 paid rental days in a calendar year) get access to the more exclusive Executive Selection’, where a better selection of premium and executive cars are available, again at the midsize rate... often BMW, Cadillac, Acura, Lexus, etc, or big behemoth SUVs.

    For inside info on making the most of the Emerald Club, check out the National forum at Flyertalk here. In addition to some handy FAQ threads, regular renters post latest sightings from the Emerald Aisle (EA) and Executive Selection (ES) indexed by airport.
    • owenjt
    • By owenjt 19th Aug 18, 12:27 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    owenjt
    Thanks jamesbrownontheroad. I hope it's the case that I can choose from a selection of Mustang's. Will see on Wednesday!
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