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To rent or not to rent...

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by Wanger1969, May 10, 2012.

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  1. Wanger1969

    Wanger1969 High-Roller

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    I've got a dilemma, and frankly just need some advice.

    I'm traveling with myself and 13 other members of my family. (for a total of 14) 9 of us are flying in and 5 CRAZY FREAKS are making the drive from Iowa to Las Vegas.

    I've been thinking that renting a couple of cars for the 9 of us that are flying isn't such a bad idea, and here's why.

    1. Its going to be a minimum of $15/person to/from the airport via shuttle.
    2. Everyone wants to go see the Dam, which means a bus tour if we don't rent
    3. It would be nice to have transportation OTHER than the car the one family will be driving from Iowa
    4. Who knows where we might go IF we have transportation

    I've never rented before in Vegas, cause its usually just me and one or two of my friends.

    What is everyone else's opinion on this? Should we rent for the whole 3 days we are there? We can get a standard car for under $80 for the time frame, so that's around $160 for two. We would then have airport transportation AND a way to the Dam.

    Should we just rent two cars the one day we want to go to the Dam? (Its around $30/day, so $60 for two cars)

    Or should we just shuttle and do a bus tour, just to make it simple?

    Any and all opinions are highly appreciated!
     
  2. Nevyn

    Nevyn VIP Whale

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    Why would 9 people all take the shuttle? Separate flights? Splitting cabs would otherwise be cheaper.

    But if you're going to the dam $160 split 9 ways ain't much.
     
  3. fxtango

    fxtango Tourist

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    Based just on your cost of airport shuttle service rent the cars, unless it seems to be to much hassle and time.
     
  4. xmarksx

    xmarksx VIP Whale

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    I am a rental fan and have driven to the Dam twice. It provides you with an opportunity to stop along the way and take pictures.
     
  5. MisterJJ

    MisterJJ Low-Roller

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    On many trips to various locations I have considered not renting a car. Well... I should say that my wife thinks it's a good idea not to rent one and I have to argue why we need one. This is one of the few types of arguments that men can win, meaning an argument where if the man is right, minimal acknowledment is required by the woman and if the man is wrong, the woman can loudly proclaim how she was right. But there's always things coming up that we could or would not have done without having a rental car so we have been glad we rented a car every single time.
     
  6. Sklem211

    Sklem211 High-Roller

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    For me, there's rarely a time when myself or all the other members in my group do not have a drink in their hand so renting isn't an option for us...such lushes. Hope you have a DD! :beer:
     
  7. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    Your situation is different than mine, but the cost-analysis would be the same. Add up what those 9 people would spend getting from airport-hotel-airport. Add in any other trip (eg Hoover Dam) where you would have to spend money on a bus tour or cab. EXCLUDE occasions where you'd take a cab anyway (eg if we've been drinking, we'll walk or take a cab, so that doesn't count in my "rent a car or not" analysis). See what the rental costs would be. You'll need a big van if you want one vehicle for 9 people (2 smaller cars might be cheaper). See what your results are.

    EVEN with the drinking (and therefore, non-rental-car driving) we do in Vegas, one or two trips off-Strip (eg the outlet mall or my husband's favorite coin store) can make it cost-effective to rent a car. Prices on the rentals make a difference, so try to get a good code. I typically use an Alamo code from Costco....
     
  8. captainron62

    captainron62 VIP Whale

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    That is what it comes down to in my opinion. If you are not a drinker, then renting is the way to go. I partake liberally, so I only rent about a day a week for a day trip. On our last trip I was fired and also reminded as to why I dont rent more often after turning the wrong way into 6 lanes of traffic.
     
  9. bardolator

    bardolator Lifelong Low Roller

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    We just had this discussion with friends we are meeting in Vegas. A rental rate war is in full swing right now between E-Z and Fox, with other companies also coming down to some extent. So it's a good time to rent a car in Las Vegas. You might recheck the rate if you haven't done so recently.

    Except for the first two or three times we visited Las Vegas, we have always driven. We don't drink a lot, so that makes the decision a little easier. I'd say with the dam trip, renting is best for you. If you need advice on navigating Las Vegas, people here can help.
     
  10. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    Renting may be a good idea, especially since I have never seen rates fall the way they have lately. I've been a rebooking fiend the past week or so. Your question does make me wonder if you can get a good deal on private tours and the like. It may be worth calling up and speaking to some of the shuttle/tour operators and seeing what they charge for it. I don't know they can be competitive on the airport transport but maybe it would be a good experience for the Dam.
     
  11. numeno

    numeno VIP Whale

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    On #1. Are all of you staying at different hotels? I just don't see how it would be that much for transportation from the airport otherwise. If you get a car, the only way you save money is if everyone can use it. Are you all arriving at the same time? A taxi for 4-5 is $20-$30 total depending on where. This is much lower than your $15/person estimate.


    #2 - This alone may make it worthwhile. I have no idea how much a tour costs, but if it is say $20-$30/person, the cars are paid for and the decision is very easy.


    #3 - Nice yes, but honestly you are there for 3 days. Are you really expecting to be so bored on the strip that you need to head elsewhere? It is a different choice if there are people in your group that would require the car to get around better instead of walking the strip. I always think about getting a car, but never have. After every trip I realize there was plenty for me to do without the car.


    #4 - Same issue as #3 to me. If you were there for 10 days, that is different. You are there for 3 days though. I don't see why you need more options than you already have between the strip and downtown.





    Again #2 may mean that it just makes sense to get cars if that is the ONLY place they are used. If you don't have anything else in mind off the strip, I don't see why you need more options available for that short of a stay. The strip isn't exactly boring. :)
     
  12. Wanger1969

    Wanger1969 High-Roller

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    Rentals

    Thanks for everyone's advice. You've made a lot of great points. To answer some questions....

    1. Yes, all 9 of us are arriving on the same flight at the same time. We are all staying at the same hotel.
    2. Originally I had wanted to rent an 11 or 15 passenger van for just the day we are going to the Dam. That's proven to be challenging at best. If anyone has any tricks on that situation, it would be welcome advice.

    I think I am leaning towards no rentals, as I've heard in the past couple of days that some may not want to go to the Dam. Uggh.

    If I can give any advice to anyone? Don't plan a trip where you have to plan for 10 plus people. Its impossible to please everyone.
     
  13. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    Heck yeah! On family vacations (we rarely agree to them....) we'll just ascertain dinner time/location the next day and do our own thing. Otherwise, we'd waste hours waiting for the rest of the family to get out of bed, eat, figure out what they want to do, etc. Works MUCH better for me if we have one or two things planned and fend for ourselves the rest of the time.

    You might still find you want to rent a car for a day to get 5 (?) of you out to the Dam on your own - would be cheaper than tours for everyone, probably, and you'd be on your own schedule. The drive to the Dam isn't hard and it's not highway/fast cars etc.:peace:
     
  14. Nevyn

    Nevyn VIP Whale

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    I can believe it. But the secret might be not to try. Identify some things you will all be doing together (a few meals, a show or two), and let them know some things you plan on doing, and then let everyone choose their own adventure.

    And if you're not renting and all on the same flight, take a couple cabs, not a shuttle. They charge per ride not per person.
     
  15. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    My rules for group travel parallel H2's. Let folks do what they want to do. Do what you want to do. Rotate choosing meal locales, and implement a no-whining rule. Rent enough vehicles so that people can come and go, and more importantly, you don't become the designated shuttler.
     
  16. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Even by myself, I would not take the shuttle to the hotel. A royal pain.

    If you rent a car, keep in mind the issues if a non listed driver decides he wants to drive it. Messy.

    As to schedule. Make a few group events, and then be very specific about other times. Statements like "everyone is on their own for Monday afternoon and evening". If you try to plan too much, you are gonna get the raw end of things.

    Oh yea, rental companies know they can get extra money out of larger vans and even mini vans
     
  17. erzeszut

    erzeszut Tourist

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    Yep. Don't. The 15-passenger vans are deathtraps on wheels, and many insurance companies refuse to cover them, which is why they are increasingly hard to find as rentals.

    They tend to be inherently unstable. A 15-passenger van filled with chattering family members, driven by someone who's distracted and unfamiliar with the area, is a disaster.

    Rent two cars, or just take a bus.
     
  18. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    Well, Enterprise in Las Vegas has them at $109 a day.
     
  19. ebbinns

    ebbinns Low-Roller

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    You've been married for a significant time, yes?

    Happy wife, happy life!
     
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