When he has a meltdown, we are leaving IMMEDIATELY. I’m not waiting for a bus. Plus my family is in the area, so we drive to see them. Believe me, if I didn’t have a child who I need to remove from situations when he’s overstimulated, nor family in Orlando and the Coco Beach area (I’m from Florida), I would certainly take advantage of the Magical Express. It’s a wonderful budget saver, and I fully endorse the useage of it, but it isn’t always the only option for families. I simply have to be self reliant. No choice.
and use the Magical express for free. That way we don’t need a rental car, they pick up our bags and deliver them directly to our room and then when we leave they check our bags in for us at the airport. It’s a free service and I love it! The Orlando airport hit us with a pretty big airport fee the one time we rented the car from there as well. Tom who is currently trying to figure out the best way to pay off debt and still have a WDW vacation this year
when we were doing the Disney thing. I know I looked them up online because I wasn’t familar with them. People wrote horrible things about the company, but whe couldn’t have been more pleased. The staff was lovely, the car they gave us was a terrific upgrade (a minivan from a standard vehicle), and no hidden fees. Plus, Autoslash offers you online coupons on their site to apply immediately, and they lowered our rate a number of times, always offering us the chance to switch companies or to stay with the one we’d originally booked with, and it turned out well.
btw, looking at our Payless deal with Autoslash, we’d booked an upgraded to the moderate vehicle (can’t recall what was their terminalogy, but it was above standard, but less than deluxe). We had it while we were in Florida for a week over Thanksgiving and our initial charge was $146 and then they slapped us with the additional $26 fee (I just went back and double checked). We know we still got a decent deal. We could have fought the $26 additional charge, but just didn’t feel like it, but knew we got screwed (husband had brochitis, 7 year old had a 104 temperature, and I still had a younger child and was whipped, so I figured this was a $26 lesson to NEVER use Payless and to ALWAYS book at the airport so I can walk away if I don’t like the deal, especially since I always travel with my children and don’t need any additional hassles).
They have online coupons to knock prices off. If a competitor drops their rates for the same vehicles, they will match their pricing or ask you if you want to switch your reservation. One caveat, when asked to select the rental company, pick the one that is directly onsite at the airport if at all possible. Last year when we flew to Orlando, we did that. The price continued to drop and drop (we never opted to switch to the competitors companies since the original booking car rental place would match the newly, lowered price). When we went to pick up our vehicle, the one we’d originally selected wasn’t available, so they upgraded our vehicle after we asked them what they wold do for us. It was then that we gave them our payment info and paid for the vehicle. Last month we flew back to Orlando. Again we used Autoslash only this time, selected a car rental company that was off site. They promptly tried to pressure us into getting all the extra insurance coverage (that we did not need). I wanted to walk, but my husband knew they wouldn’t put us back on their shuttle, and it was late at night, and he just wanted to get over to our hotel and check in. About a week after we returned the vehicle, they charged us an extra $25 or so for “damages”. I knew we should have walked after their heavy handedness, and had we been at the airport we would have. Bottom line, Autoslash was still cheaper, and a larger named companies are represented by them too (by the way, it was Payless who jerked us around. We’ll never use them again).
but be aware that different rental companies use different criteria if/when they find out you don’t have a credit card. I wrote up our experiences with Enterprise Rentals, and it was pretty ugly. I ended up cancelling that particular reservation. But some weeks later, we needed to rent a big van from U-haul to move some furniture, and I was concerned I’d run into the same problem. When we reached the point of how payment would be made, the guy actually proactively said “we take both debit and credit cards, so whatever you have is fine.” Our rental proceeded without any hiccups at all. So whatever vehicle you end up with, be aware that some but not all companies will frown on putting it on a debit card. If you find one is really giving you a hassle (and you can go back in the archives to see what sort of hassle I got from Enterprise), move on and see if another company is easier to work with.If you end up working with Enterprise, try not telling them that you’re using a debit card. If your card actually has “debit” printed on it, like mine does, you may not be able to get away with that because they’re supposed to look at it. But see what you can do in that regard. Also, try the U-haul and Budget folks for a big van with seats. U-haul was very easy to work with and it sounds like Budget might be as well. They also tend to have more locations than rental car places – we only have one rental car place in town and that’s Enterprise. But we have half-dozen U-haul places and three Budget places. They aren’t advertised under rental cars but rather moving companies. Good luck!
I was trying to write something, but it didn’t sound right. I have a sister who “dated” 3 different dealers to get her fix. I tried to point out her addiction and was told that I was lying–this after the first 2 were arrested and the 3rd was fired from his job for dealing at work. I finally had to cut ties for the safety of my family.