Need a car for more than 30 days?

This item appears on page 51 of the November 2009 issue.

I am responding to the request for information on renting a car for more than 30 days (July ’09, pg. 31).

When we needed to have a car for more than 30 days in Italy in 2004, I found that the cheapest and best way was to lease. The lease included all costs, including 100% insurance coverage. There were no surprises. Of course, we paid for the gas and we needed to say if more that one person would be driving.

The car was new. It was “pick it up and drop it off,” no questions asked, and we decided where and when we wanted to pick it up and drop it off.

We had all the arrangements made for us by Rob Liddiard of Bon Voyage by Car (North Hollywood, CA; 800/272-3299 or e-mail I have found I cannot beat his service or price for either short rentals or longer-term leases. I am leasing from him again for a France trip in April 2010 — a Ford Focus for 30 days at $1,135, complete with insurance and emergency road service (a diesel would cost $1,335).

We will be able to drive in almost all EU countries, and we’ll have Rob to help if anything comes up.

Also, unlike with several auto rental companies, on almost all leases there is no upper age limit on the driver.

For the Italy trip, we arranged payment (AmEx or Visa) with Rob and got a confirmation, which we presented when we picked up the car.

When using either American Express or Visa, it is a good idea to print all the terms from their websites and take them with you so that you understand all that is required during the rental period. If you are in an accident, they have some rather strict requirements about documentation. Also, they have restrictions about the size of vehicle and the number of passengers they’ll cover.

We wanted to lease a car in the British Isles in 2008, but, due to not being able to take a car between some of the countries, we ended up with two rentals of approximately two weeks each.


Scottsdale, AZ