Car Rentals / Transfers
TRANSFERS between airports, cruise ports and hotels are very important, yet often overlooked in advance in the travel planning stages by travelers not working with a travel agent. Taxicabs are readily available on demand most everywhere, and many times might be your best option. A pre-arranged private vehicle with driver may be desired, which will cost more than a taxi but may be worth it.
Shared shuttles are available in many cases, especially tied in with a cruise, with most cruise lines offering transfers on the day of cruise embarkation, and the final day as well, as well as third-party transportation companies offering shuttle services. At times they are available upon arrival, but typically these are pre-arranged. These transfers are usually on large buses, and many times the per-person cost makes using a taxi more economical. For example, if the per person bus cost is $15, for 4 people travelling together that’s $60. It might cost only $40 for 4 people with luggage to use a taxi. Also, you will need to wait until the bus fills up before departing, with a taxi you go right away. Conversely, in the same example if there are one or two travelers, the shared shuttle would be less expensive overall compared to taking a taxi. Of course, many times it’s not just about price, but also comfort & convenience. A couple may desire to spend $10 ish extra on their own private cab instead of getting on to a large bus and waiting for it to be filled for example.
A good way to find out how much local taxi fare will be when you get there; while planning in advance go to www.taxifarefinder.com, then input your destination and choose the airport or cruise port or hotel that you are traveling between, and you will get the approximate taxi fare expected. This is a great quick and easy way to research in advance and plan accordingly! If you find a taxi is your best value, you are now informed of the price you can expect (always check pricing with a taxi driver in advance before you get in, to avoid an unpleasant surprise). If a taxi driver is not even close to the price you expect from your research, walk away and go to a different taxi. This website is very comprehensive with pricing from many (but not all) locations both here in the U.S. and internationally.
To arrange transfers in advance, either private or shared, a fantastic option is through the company VIATOR. This is the same company we feature on our sightseeing excursions page, very reputable and has proven to be dependable numerous times. Not only are they the premier provider of sightseeing programs, this U.S. based company offers ground transfers with the ability to reserve transfers for you all over the world. When you click on the link below, and then input your destination and “transfer” in the search field, you will find pricing and information on a wide variety of transfers ranging from private late-model sedans to shared transfers on large vehicles.
The downside of pre-arranged transportation is sometimes it is difficult to meet up, and if you are delayed you may be charged for additional wait time. Make sure to read all the terms & conditions BEFORE you submit your credit card! Of course air and hotel / cruise need to be secured first so you can provide the transfer company with your timing, location and other details (such as flight numbers which allows them to track your flight and be aware of delays, do you have excess baggage such as golf clubs or ski’s, etc.).
If you search VIATOR and find that a pre-arranged transfer is a good value, go ahead and reserve it online through any of the Viator links on our websites, including this banner link below:
PLEASE NOTE THE VERY IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON USING THESE BOOKING LINKS, INCLUDING TERMS & CONDITIONS, CONTAINED IN THE PARAGRAPH AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE JUST ABOVE THE FOOTER AREA!
RENTAL CAR’S are a big part of many land based vacations, and may also be a good option for transfers. If on a cruise you may want to pick one up at the airport and then drop it off near the cruise port, or close to a hotel near the port that has free shuttle service to / from the cruise port. Cars are typically rented for a minimum of 24 hours, so this is an especially good option if on a cruise and flying to the port city the day before. Get your car at the airport, drive to a hotel near the cruise port that has free shuttle service to the cruise port, and a car rental office from the same company very nearby. You typically save money in transfers, and have the car to explore the area that day & night before the cruise! Turn the car in just before you want to head to the port, and have the hotel shuttle take you to your cruise ship! You can easily search this online using Google Maps to find hotels and car rental agencies in the area desired, or work with your cruise vacation specialist who will assist in full. Do all of the math before you make reservations (don’t forget to see if the hotel charges for overnight parking!) and act accordingly.
When you are not on a cruise, a rental car is a great way to fully explore an area at your own pace at a reasonable price. Instead of the cost of a tour times 2 or 4 people, etc., do a little research in advance and drive around, going into attractions as you wish. Check with the hotel concierge whenever possible for ideas and suggestions.
We find that RentalCars.com offers great pricing and service, click on the banner image below to check pricing and to make reservations online directly.
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