Dollar Locations Withdraw From Tour Op’s Program

Hi all,

Most USA car rental locations in the America are run as franchises, this gives the owner of the particular franchise the option to work with tour operators, like ourselves, or not.

This morning we have received word from Dollar Rent A Car stating a couple of locations that have opted out of the tour operator program and will no longer be bookable for any tour operators; basically they will only be accepting domestic bookings.

Dollar Locations

Dollar Location Address Date service will stop
SAN FRANCISCO SHERATON

SHERT ON  FISHERSMANS WHARF 15/12/2011
MIAMI HILTON DOWNTON

1601 BISCAYNE BLVD. 31/10/2011

The Miami car hire location has never really been that popular to collect from but the Fisherman’s Wharf location is a bit of a shame, although Dollar do offer an office out of O’Farrell street approximately 2.5 miles away.

Any rentals booked to collect from these rental dates after the date the service stop’s will be honoured.

regards,

James

 car hire USA

Celebration Exotic Car Festival 2011

Hi all,

If you happen to be in Florida between 7th and 10th of April 2011, you might like to take the opportunity to visit the 8th annual Celebration Exotic Car Festival children’s charity event.

This four-day event showcases North America’s largest collection of exotic cars, race cars and iconic Hollywood movie cars, coming together to help children with life threatening medical conditions. Experience the legendary Sebring Raceway, meet the country’s most renowned celebrity chefs at the Jetport Food and Wine Party; enjoy the world class exotic car concours set along the waterfront of Celebration, participate in the acclaimed road rally and more!

Here is the 2009 highlights video of this great spectacular.

Directions to the event can be found here – http://www.celebrationexoticcars.com/2011/directions.php

regards,

James

 Florida car hire

Which Car Makes And Models Are Our Customers Collecting In March?

Hi all,

One of my more popular series of posts mentioned vehicles that our customers were actually collecting – SUV’s , Convertibles and Minivans.

I thought I’d revisit these posts and offer an idea of the car rentals being collected in March 2011

Sports Utility Vehicles

The Sports Utility Vehicle has been a big seller in 2011, with the intermediate SUV being the pick of the bunch.

Mrs K Horsefield collected an Intermediate SUV from Orlando International Airport with Dollar Rent A Car on the 11/03/11 and got a Ford Escape.

Mr J Hyde collected a Standard SUV from Las Vegas International Airport again with Dollar Rent A Car on the 15/03/11 and got a Grand Jeep Cherokee.

Mr M Ding collected a 7str SUV from Washington Dulles Airport with Alamo Rent A Car on the 14/03/11 and got a Ford Expedition.

Convertibles

Our customers love convertibles, especially the Ford Mustang So you’ll be happy to know that the first 3 customers I checked all received Ford Mustangs.

Mr I Prideaux collected a Ford Mustang from Kissimmee with Dollar Rent A Car on the 05/03/11.

Mr N Foxall collected a Ford Mustang from Orlando International Airport with Dollar Rent A Car on the 15/03/11.

Mr C Beckett completed his rental of a Ford Mustang at Miami International Airport with Budget Rent A Car on the 15/03/11

Minivans

Large families and groups take advantage of these larger vehicles.

Mr R Tooby collected a 12 str minivan from Fort Lauderdale with Dollar Rent A Car on the 06/03/11 and got a Ford E350.

Mr S Carver collected a 7 Seater Minivan from Sanford Airport with Budget Rent A Car on the 15/03/11 and got a Dodge Caravan.

Mrs L Young collected an 8 Seater minivan from Tampa International Airport with Alamo Rent A Car and got a Toyota Sienna.

I hope you find this usual. If there is a category of vehicle you would like me to check or a specific pick up location please let me know by commenting below.

Regards,

James

 car hire USA

Florida Automated Tolls – All-Electronic Open Road Tolling

Hi all,

Just thought I’d make you aware of the new automated toll booths being operated in Florida.

Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise has moved forward with implementing all-electronic open road tolling, which allows customers on Florida’s Turnpike to pay tolls without slowing down or stopping. With all-electronic open road tolling, traditional tollbooths have been removed and ALL customers pay their tolls electronically, through either SunPass transponders or a new “TOLL-BY-PLATE” program. With the elimination of tollbooths, customers experience a safer, faster and more convenient ride to their destination. All-electronic open road tolling is better for the environment because cars are not stopping and idling at the toll plazas, which reduces emissions and improves customers’ gas mileage.

The Turnpike has completed the first conversion to all-electronic open road tolling on the southern 47 miles of the Turnpike, from U.S. 1 in Florida City to the Miami-Dade/Broward County line. The conversion was implemented on February 19, 2011.

SunPasses or equivalent will be available from the supplier locally. I have contacted our three main suppliers Alamo, Budget and Dollar to enquire about the lost, their response’s were as follows.

Alamo Rent A Car

In FL if the customer drives on an unmanned toll road they are charged the Tollpass Convenience Charge (TCC) of $2.00 per day (not to exceed $6.00 per rental) plus the cost of the tolls.  The TCC is only for those days where they actually incur a toll.  As an example if the customer has a 7 day rental but only drives on a toll road 1 day and incurs a $.50 toll they will be charged $2.50  ($2.00 for the TCC and $.50) for the toll. This fee is charged from the HTA.

Budget Rent A Car

We offer our customer the chance to purchase the Eazipass locally at a cost of $2.95 per day or $10 per week.

Dollar Rent A Car

We are locally offering our Pre Pay Toll product, Pass 24 to customer when they collect and return their hire car.  If the renter does not take the Pass 24 product we will charge them along with a $25 admin fee for each toll fine received during their rental. Therefore, every customer that rents a car is asked to sign a disclaimer about the $25 admin charge. The Pass 24 product is charged locally at $5.95 a day or $27.95 a week plus taxes and fees.

Have you had any experience of this?

What do you think of the new toll system?

regards,

James

 Florida car hire

USA Time Zones

Hi all,

This post is as much for me as it is for you guys. I generally have to call different parts of the U.S. at least 10 times a day and I can never remember the time difference between the UK and varies parts of America. So this blog will list major locations and the time difference.

Pacific Zone

State                              City

Washington                  Seattle

Oregon                           Portland

Nevada                           Las Vegas

California                      San Francisco

Time Difference – GMT minus 8 hrs

Mountain Time Zone

State                              City

Montana                         Billings

Idaho                               Boise

Wyoming                        Jackson Hole

Utah                                  Salt Lake City

Colorado                         Denver

Arizona                            Phoenix

New Mexico                   Santa Fe

Time Difference – GMT minus 7 hrs

Central Time Zone

State                              City

North Dakota               Grand Forks

South Dakota                Sioux Falls

Minneapolis                  Minnesota

Wisconsin                      Milwaukee

Nebraska                        Grand Island

Iowa                                 Cedar Rapids

Illinois                             Chicago

Oklahoma                        Tulsa

Missouri                          St. Louis

Arkansas                         Little Rock

Tennessee                       Memphis

Texas                                Dallas

Louisiana                        New Orleans

Mississippi                      Jackson

Alabama                          Huntsville

Time Difference – GMT minus 6 hrs

Eastern Time Zone

State                              City

Michigan                        Detroit

Maine                               Portland

New Hampshire           Manchester

Vermont                         Burlington

Massachusetts              Boston

Rhode Island                 Providence

New York                        New York

Indiana                            Indianapolis

Ohio                                   Cleveland

Pennsylvania                 Philidephia

New Jersey                     Newark

Connecticut                    Hartford

Kentucky                          Cincinnati

West Virginia                  Lewisburg

Washington DC               Washington

Maryland                           Baltimore

Delaware                           Wilmington

Virginia                              Richmond

North Carolina                Charlotte

South Carolina                Myrtle Beach

Georgia                               Atlanta

Florida                                Orlando

Time Difference – GMT minus 5 hrs

Alaska is 9  hrs behind the UK and Hawaii 10 hrs behind.

I hope you find this useful.

Kind regards,

James

 car hire USA

Florida Tolls

Hi all,

Whilst driving in Florida you may come across toll roads, you are of course expected to pay these tolls locally. Below is a guide to toll roads in Florida.

Road Name

S/W Terminus

N/E Terminus

Cash tolls (automobile)

Airport Expressway Miami International Airport, Miami I-95, Miami $1.25 with cash, $1.00 with SunPass
Martin Andersen Beachline Expressway I-4, near Lake Buena Vista I-95, near Cocoa $3.25 with cash, $3.00 with SunPass
Apopka Bypass / John Land Apopka Expressway U.S. 441, near Lockhart U.S. 17, U.S. 92, Maitland $1.00
Central Florida GreeneWay/Seminole Expressway/Southern Connector I-4, near Celebration I-4, Sanford $6.75 with cash, $6.00 with SunPass
Daniel Webster Western Beltway I-4, near Disney World U.S. 441, Apopka $3.50
Don Shula Expressway Homestead Extension, Richmond Heights SR 826, Glenvar Heights $1.00 with SunPass, $1.45 via “Toll-By-Plate”
Dolphin Expressway NW 137th Avenue,Tamiami I-95, Miami $2.25 cash, $2.00 with SunPass (includes SunPass only section)
Everglades Parkway (Alligator Alley) CR 951, East Naples I-75, I-595,Sawgrass Expressway, Sunrise $2.50 with cash, $2.00 with SunPass
Florida’s Turnpike Golden Glades Interchange,Miami Gardens I-75, nearWildwood $18.20 with cash, $14.40 with SunPass
Florida’s Turnpike Homestead Extension U.S. 1, Florida City Florida’s Turnpike, Miramar $4.00 with cash, $3.00 with SunPass
Goldenrod Road Extension Orlando International Airport, Orlando SR 551, Orlando $0.50
Gratigny Parkway I-75, SR 826,Hialeah SR 953, Opa-Locka $1.00 with SunPass, $1.30 via “Toll-By-Plate”
Holland East-West Expressway Florida’s Turnpike, near Ocoee SR 50, near Bithlo $3.50
Lee Roy Selmon Crosstown Expressway U.S. 92, Tampa I-75, Brandon $2.50 with SunPass, $3.00 with “We Bill You”
Osceola Parkway I-4, nearCelebration Florida’s Turnpike, Kissimmee $1.75
Polk Parkway I-4, near Plant City I-4, near Polk City $3.00
Sawgrass Expressway I-75, I-595,Sunrise Florida’s Turnpike, Deerfield Beach $2.00 with cash, $1.50 with SunPass
Snapper Creek Expressway Don Shula Expressway, Kendall U.S. 1, South Miami $0.50 with SunPass, $0.80 via “Toll-By-Plate”
Suncoast Parkway Veterans Expressway Spur,Cheval U.S. 98, nearChassahowitzka $3.00
Veterans Expressway I-275, SR 60,Tampa SR 597, Cheval $1.75 with cash, $1.25 with SunPass

If I’ve missed any toll roads please feel free to comment below.

Regards,

James

 Florida car hire

Car Hire Models Collected By Our Customers In October 2010

Hi all,

Following the popularity of my last blog regarding car hire makes and models being collected I thought I’d update you with a selection that were collected in  October this year.

Mr J Manson booked an Intermediate SUV for collection from Union Square, San Francisco on the 05/10/10 with Alamo Rent A Car and got this (looks like a free upgrade).

Jeep Grand Cherokee

Jeep Grand Cherokee

Mr Gary Emerson collected a convertible from Sanford International Airport on the 04/10/10 with Budget Rent A Car and got this.

Ford Mustang Convertible

Ford Mustang Convertible

Miss S Walton collected an Intermediate 4 door from Miami International Airport on the 03/10/10 with Dollar Rent A Car and got this.

Ford Fusion

Ford Fusion

Mr J Davidson collected a 7 seater minivan from Boston International Airport on the 06/10/10 with Alamo Rent A Car and got this.

Dodge Grand Caravan

Dodge Grand Caravan

Mr A Taylor-Gregg collected a luxury vehicle from Union Square, San Francisco on the 04/10/10 with Alamo Rent A Car and got this.

Cadillac DTS

Cadillac DTS

 

What vehicle types have you collected?

regards,

James

 car hire USA

Orlando Driving Times

Hi all,

Today’s blog is about driving times from Orlando to other Florida Cities and Towns. Apparently Florida isn’t just about theme parks!!! ;-) driving in florida

All the numbers are in miles

Orlando to

Boca Raton 192

Bradenton 114

Clearwater 106

Cocoa Beach 47

Daytona Beach 54

Fort Lauderdale 209

Fort Myers 153

Fort Pierce 114

Gainesville 109

Jacksonville  134

Key West 371

Kissimmee 18

Lakeland 54

Melbourne 67

Miami 228

Naples 187

Ocala 72

Panama City 336

Pensacola 438

St Augustine 98

St Petersburg 104

Sarasota 130

Sebring 86

Tallahassee 243

Tampa 84

West Palm Beach 171

Remember all our rentals include unlimited mileage, so you are free to explore as many of these locations are you wish, if someone could drive to Sebring for me and tell me what  happens there I’d appreciate it ;-)

Happy driving.

James

 Florida car hire

Special Offer – Free Florida Car Hire Upgrade (offer expired)

Hi all,

We have a great limited time only special offer. For bookings made by 20th of jeeplibertySeptember for collection in Florida between the 13/09/10 – 14/12/10, 01/01/11 – 14/12/11 and amazingly 01/01/12 until the 31/03/12 we can offer you this free upgrade.*

Book any Intermediate car (2 or 4 door) with Dollar Rent A Car in Florida and get a free upgrade to the Intermediate Sports Utility vehicle !

The vehicle will still have our high level of insurance and customer can still secure the rental by leaving a £50.00 deposit.

The vehicles are still subject to availability as per our terms and conditions and only applies to new bookings, so don’t delay take advantage of this year’s hottest upgrade deal.

Kind regards,

James

 Florida car hire

Which Minivans Are Our Customers Collecting?

Hi all,

Continuing the series showing which vehicles our customers are collecting, I decided to take a look at the people carriers (minivans). From my research, it appears that this category doesn’t have the same depth of product as the convertibles and the sports utility vehicles do.

Mr S Taylor picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Orlando International Airport on the 31/07/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

Mr J Hampton picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Orlando International Airport on the 31/07/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

Mr J Sterling picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Sanford International Airport on the 31/07/10 from Alamo Rent A Car.

Mr S Brown picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Orlando International Airport on the 30/06/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

Dr N Reid picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Boston International Airport on the 28/07/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

They all got this.

Dodge Grand Caravan

Dodge Grand Caravan

 

Mr M Keeble picked up a 12 Seater minivan from Orlando International Airport on the 24/07/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

Mr S Mitra picked up a 12 Seater minivan from San Francisco International Airport on the 26/07/10 from Dollar Rent A Car.

Mr S Hearn picked up a 12 Seater minivan from Orlando International Airport on the 01/08/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

They all got this.

Ford E-350

Ford E-350

 

Mr M Carroll picked up a 8 Seater minivan from Miami International Airport on the 25/07/10 from Alamo Rent A Car.

Mr S McGoven picked up a 8 Seater minivan from Orlando International Airport on the 03/08/10 from Alamo Rent A Car.

Mr N Glendinning picked up a 8 Seater minivan from Sanford International Airport on the 15/07/10 from Budget Rent A Car.

They all got this.

Toyota Sienna

Toyota Sienna

 

Mrs E Hewitt picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Cape Canaveral on the 18/07/10 from Budget Rent A Car and got this.

Kia Sedona

Kia Sedona

 

Mr G Williams picked up a 7 Seater minivan from Tampa International Airport on the 31/07/10 from Alamo Rent A Car and got this.

Dodge Ram Van

Dodge Ram Van

 

Have we missed any makes and models that you have hired?

Is there a category you’d like me to look in to?

regards,

James,

usrentacar.co.uk

 car hire USA


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