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Discussion in 'Canada' started by sly_karma, Dec 21, 2011.
Carry a large bottle of water to wash your headlights as well
For anyone renting with AVIS, join the Best Western rewards scheme (free). You'll earn points which you can transfer to the airline miles program.
I would say accepted with qualifications.........refer these links for details.
"Textile Tire Cover
A textile sheath is placed over the tire, improving traction through increased friction. They are not a substitute for a winter tire. They work best on snow and ice. When used on asphalt they will quickly degrade."
Drivers may wish to enhance the traction of their winter tires by carrying chains or using other traction devices. Summer tires are NOT recommended for winter driving October 1 to March 31.
Chains ( and "Textile Tire Cover" ) on summer tires are not an acceptable substitute for winter tires on signed highways."
Any chance anyone would know whether I'll be asked for proof of residential address when renewing a current BC driver's licence? Will happen to be passing back through BC this February, and it's nice to keep a local DL.
Existing drivers licence plus another piece of ID that has your name and signature on it. Credit card seems to do it. Or passport.
Not sure what their policy is on non residents holding onto a BC licence. Caution required.
any advice on RV Rental tyres / or 4wd,
for an April spring ski trip,
this outfit doesnt specify tyres that are fitted,
Those RVs look like a RWD duallie setup, that's no fun if there is ice or snow around. You should be OK most of the time in April, but anything can happen in the mountains. Steep grades and duallie rear drive is a bad combination. I suggest you call them direct, discuss your plans and get their opinion; they should know their vehicle capabilities. If you could get their smaller camper mounted on a 4WD pickup it would be a lot better.
Just don't use Hertz under any circumstances. We booked an SUV with ski racks. We called the specific location 10 days prior to departure to confirm that they had it sorted. We were assured it was all set. We arrived to find no ski racks, no SUV, no vehicle... Use anyone but Hertz.
This still holds true twenty years after the episode was taped. Rental car industry has a completely different concept of what a reservation means.
I'd forgotten that Buyer beware...
I'm planning to reserve a rental car in Mexico in March so we can do a road trip for a few days. Will do it at the airport on arrival rather than online. Still not looking forward to going through a Seinfeldesque exchange in my limited Spanish when I return a week later to actually get the vehicle.
Is it really going to set me back $600 to rent a car to drive from Banff to Whistler? Or have I done something wrong on the economy site
if you are planning to drop it off at a different location to where you picked it up then the cost is huge
Also a short term rental is very expensive. The longer you hire the cheaper per day it gets. Banff to Whistler, maybe look at the Greyhound bus instead
I'll be doing the Kelowna > revelstoke > Nelson > Kelowna drive in Late Jan next season. Does anyone know what this drive is like? 4wd necessary? I'll be skiing revelstoke, whitewater, and red so if anyone knows what the approach roads are like to the spots, what are they like?
We've driven to all those places and done the same trip, have done it in a 4WD and a AWD before. Always had M+S tyres...never been lucky enough to get winter tyres and we have never had any issues. Take it easy, drive slow and give your self heaps of time. You'll have a few passes to get through and they sometimes can be closed in a big year for clearing, accidents or avalanches. Check BC road conditions before you leave each day
Crystal has good advice for you. Winter in the mountains means anything can happen. Most of the time the roads are well maintained but sometimes a weather system blasts in that exceeds the abilities of the maintenance crews. The Trans Canada between Sicamous and Revelstoke (Eagle Pass) has lots of passing lanes and is well engineered, but it is subject to closures for avalanche work as needed during winter. The road south from Revy into the Kootenays has less traffic and amenities, but it stays pretty low and the scenery is amazing. Finally highway 3/33 from Nelson back to Kelowna: again, a better engineered road but the section from Castlegar to Christina Lake (Blueberry-Paulson pass) climbs high and has some steep sections that can challenge in heavy snow conditions. Check www.drivebc.ca for the most up to date conditions.
We have travelled similar route with AWD M+S tires and 2WD with snow tires. All good but you need to be flexible with time. Worth the effort in my opinion.
Did it this year again and it's not a problem in a 2wd. We did it in my mates Chevvy awd van but you certainly don't need 4wd or awd. Better if you have it but not essential. As Crystal & Sly say it all about timing. You could have a 6wd V12 beast and you still won't get through a closed pass, so don't sweat it.
The snow clearing operators do a great job, so time your travel if you can and you'll have a wonderful scenic experience.
In trying to work out if AAMI's $2K rental car excess is enough, I've completely failed to find full T&C documents on the websites of the 3 car rental outlets in Kamloops.
Can anyone with recent experience suggest what the level of collision damage excess would typically be in Canada for something equivalent to a RAV4?
What is really doing my head in is that Airport Rentals can do a RAV4 or equivalent through Budget at Kamloops airport for a week for about $440 and say that it's fully insured with no excess as long as I'm not a resident of Canada or the US. Going through the Budget website the price is about $400, plus CDW at around $210 for the week.
Has anyone used Airport Rentals? It just sounds too good to be true TBH.
I thought comprehensive insurance cover, with no excess, was part of the rental deal in Canada and included in the regular charge. I could be wrong.
I'm discovered some changes when I rented my last car earlier this year.
It seems that the larger SUVs no longer have an "excess"
Previously, when I have rented a car, there is cover in place under the rental agreement, but with an excess or deductible of $6000. however, that first $6000 is covered under typical travel insurance policy
however, I tried 3 different rental companies in Canada and they have subtly changed their wording and called their product "Damage Waiver". What this means is that I am not liable for any damage to the car if I purchase this damage waiver, at an extra $30/day..
They no longer have an excess or deductible defined in the rental agreement, meaning that the travel insurance policy's $6000 cover is now redundant
Its quite a rort, especially if you are looking to hire for an extended period.
Note that a lot of the smaller cars still offer the excess, meaning that travel insurance cover would be ok.
If you see this, then think about purchasing additional insurance from here:
I purchased one of these, and saved myself around $500 compared to the Rental Company's damage waiver
^^ as above,
We rented a large 4WD for a month last Jan. We then purchased the tugo insurance for ~$400, much cheaper than the rental place insurance they try to sell you. Gareth and I did heaps of research on this last year. with me basically confirming what I had learnt with Gareth.......I find the T&C's difficult to navigate.
According to the woman I spoke to at Airport Rentals, even the Tugo insurance is redundant.
That's what I'm trying to confirm.
Maybe I should ask Airport Rentals to email me a copy of their T&C and rental contract.
Ok back to Canada early next year, last trip there was nearly a decade ago.
The drives -
Spokane to Fernie.
Then Fernie to Red Mountain resort
Finally Red Mountain back to Spokane
Anyone driven these roads, any mountain passes that regularly get closed or could cause problems ? @sly_karma
Drove from Spokane to the border in a blizzard last year. Roads good but was a slow drive.
Spokane to Rossland is a pretty easy drive normally. Even in bad conditions it is okay.
Be good to know once you find out.
To and from Spokane is straightforward. There's a bit of an up-and-over between Bonner's Ferry and the border, and a little bit again between Yahk and Cranbrook, but nothing of concern. There is, however, a big climb on the Fernie-Red leg, between Creston and Salmo. The road gets to almost 1800 m and is the highest paved road in BC. The approach from the Creston side is quite straight and has a few passing lane sections. It gets quite steep both sides of the summit but again mostly straight. The biggest issue with the Salmo-Creston road is avalanche control. The summit area is quite exposed to several slide paths because of its proximity to treeline. Pay close attention to www.drivebc.ca for up to date info on avy closures, as they are frequent and lengthy. There is an alternate route along the east side of Kootenay Lake and on the ferry to Balfour and on through Nelson, very scenic but the ferry can't handle the traffic volume so long delays will occur. The Kootenay Pass route saves several hours.
Kootenay Pass in February this year.
Fun drive on winding roads with spectacular views. But as Sly says, check www.drivebc.ca otherwise you do a lot of waiting.
Thanks for the help people.
Next question, 4WD or 2WD SUV for the above trip ?
16 days (2 adults+ 2 young kids)
Nissan Pathfinder 4WD/AWD - $1100
Ford Edge 2WD - $850
4WD / AWD every day of the week.
Not essential but considerably better if the sh!t does hit the fan. Could mean the difference between getting to an epic pow day and missing it or at least not getting first tracks.
and if you can choose, get one thats slightly bigger interior.
Helps if you have lots of luggage/skis, and keeping a decent distance between travel-bored kids
Ok @sly_karma , thread hijack. This is gradually filtering out but I'm heading to Van in mid October and will be there for at least 18 months. Lifestyle opportunity and good for miss LTB (17) Need a reliable vehicle for 4-6 passengers that can handle getting to wherever we decide will be our local ski hill though a couple of winters. Any suggestions?
I can highly recommend these. Either the Chevy or GMC 4x4 van. They're cheap and go a lot further than you might think. This is what my mate keeps in Canada for our trips.
Wow, exciting news!!!
Sorry LTB, been off the air for a bit with the very busy summer. So the pic DPS posted is a GMC Safari/Chevy Astro minivan equipped with AWD. Most of them had a 4.3L V6; they were built on a midsize truck platform so they're a little bigger than the FWD minivans of the time like Dodge Caravan. I had one myself back in the early 90s, was a good winter machine once equipped with M+S rubber. The problem is they haven't been made since 2005 so finding one with under 200,000 km won't be easy. You'll want the extended body (EXT) version, otherwise there is virtually no cargo room behind the third row bench seat.
There are other minivans around with AWD, Dodge built one for years but not sure if they still do. I had a couple of those back then as well, both FWD. They were decent for highway driving in winter once equipped with proper snow tires. But Chrysler had numerous years where its 4 speed auto transmissions were mobile hand grenades. Do your research!!! Remember Chrysler is the smallest and weakest of the American auto makers and its products have suffered accordingly - less R&D, fewer resources with which to correct design problems, outsourcing of key drivetrain components with a commensurate loss of quality control.
The vehicle segment with the most choices available is the pickup truck. Crew cab full size trucks have seating for 5 or 6 and still ample cargo space in the box behind, especially if fitted with a canopy or tonneau cover. The main contenders in this category are GMC Sierra/Chevy Silverado, Ford F-150, Dodge Ram and Toyota Tundra. Honda Ridgeline and Nissan Titan are both good trucks but sales have been smaller so there will be less selection. I would also consider the large SUVs in this segment too because they are really just a station wagon body style dropped onto a truck chassis. The key players is GMC Yukon/Chevy Suburban, but there are also Ford Excursion and Toyota Sequoia. Loads of Suburbans around so you'd get some reasonable pricing and selection.
Cheers, have rented passenger vans previously but am leaning towards the large SUV at this stage. One of jnr LTB's coaches is currently at Whistler Blackcomb Freestyle and has a background in car sales so has said he will give me some guidance which is great. Prob just use PT initially or hire a car and then do the rounds to see what's available.
Had a Ford Expedition last year when we were in California and that was great.
So will Miss LTB be joining a freestyle program somewhere? Hint hint, the best club (based on facilities, overall results and placement of athletes on provincial and national teams) is Apex.
would probably prefer to head to Apex for the freestyle program they offer ( but more for my 13 year old son) but 400km is a long way to drive from Van every weekend so leaning more towards Whistler. The schooling my daughter has to do is pretty intense so 9 hours of driving each weekend might be a bit much for us but we're not sure if we will lock in to anywhere yet so that we have flexibility to explore ( in our big SUV )
I take it you're basing yourself around Vancouver for work? We do have quite a few families from the Fraser Valley suburbs of the city who own property at Apex and drive up each weekend, they are about an hour closer than the city proper plus they can take the gravel back road up from Hedley to save half an hour (because they have a big SUV). That's 3 hours from Chilliwack area, a lot of driving especially if you have to commute into the city on weekdays (an hour each way). Still, a much better drive than Sydney to Jindy every weekend!
Kistilano to Apex in winter would have to be about 4.5 hours wouldn't it?
Basing ourselves in Kits / West Point Grey / UBC as the Eaton Arrowsmith school is in UBC and the younger one will be at Kits High so yeah, a bit of a hike on a Friday arvo. Am sure we will get there though and will give a you a call. Might even go have a slide at Sunny Peaks with the retirees
i had a similar experience