Monday, July 13, 2009

 

Car rental, weather and economy

I was looking at current car rental options out of Santiago airport over the weekend and discovered that it was only possible to hire a car form europcar for the rest of this month and next.

Every other company said “no cars available” and even europcar had a 3 week rental charge of over £1,300 and that was without excess, extra driver etc.

It seems that everything in Galicia is conspiring to detour tourists from abroad. No doubt this lack of rental car opportunities relates to the cancelling of Ryanair’s Liverpool flights. I would hate to be a hotel owner in Galicia right now.

I have also got feedback that the house market is still exceptionally quiet in the region and that there is no sign of this situation abating. This is of no great surprise as the same is true of the rest of Spain – only there the prices have dropped significantly.

Current doom and gloom forecasts suggest that it will be well into next year before the Spanish recession shows visible signs of disappearing.

Finally, as it is just a few days until we return to Galicia for a few weeks this may be my last post for a while. I dislike using cybercafés for anything that requires a password and, although I will be logging on from time to time, I suspect that this blog will be rested whilst I am away.

The weather forecast in the region still remains less than appealing, but as in most locations it is not always reliable. I certainly hope not!

Friday, July 10, 2009

 

Noia weather and car rental in Galicia

Today’s weather in Noia is good with warm temperatures and plenty of sun. The seven day outlook is not however so good with temperatures dropping, cloud moving in and ultimately rain falling. Indeed, next Thursday has storms forecast which is not exactly what we had hoped for, particularly given that we arrive the following day.

I did experience a storm in Noia last April which was pretty scary in an apartment block where you tend to doubt the enforcement of Spanish building regulations. I fully expected the building to collapse (only because the noise from the shutters was so high) and I hardly slept a wink all night.

The following morning numerous boats had been destroyed or washed up on beaches, however our friends who previously lived in Florida and were accustomed to storms described it as a breeze. I guess that everything in life is relative.

Having checked our flight and car rental details I now see that we have been allocated (by Holidayautos) a rental firm that I have not previously encountered and that we are to meet this “mob” in the airport car park for pick-up. This will certainly be the last time that we use Holidayautos or fall for such an arrangement again. I am already resigned to the fact that they will attempt to dupe us and, if that is the case, we will leave without the vehicle and resolve things once back home.

My advice to anyone renting a car in Galicia is to use Hertz, Alamo, Record or another well known national or international name. The local companies are nearly all cowboys and will not supply you with the contracted car without some kind of catch. I may however be proven wrong in which case I will apologise in due course and give the name of the company in question.

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