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Sixt launches January car hire promotion

Monday, December 28th, 2009

Customers seeking car hire in January can take advantage of some great savings as UK car hire giant Sixt launches a new promotion for car and van hire.

Customers hoping to ease the winter blues can take advantage of the promotion by hiring the popular Volkswagen Golf, for just £29 a day which has already been proven to be very popular.

With Sixt’s entire range of VW Golf vehicles starting from as low as £29 per day, anyone thinking of renting a car for a weekend break should not miss this promotion.  Tourists will also benefit as the range of VW Golfs also includes SatNav technology.

Those who are seeking van hire are also not left out, as Sixt is leasing vans from £29 a day, so to transport all those Christmas presents back home or to take advantage of January sales, Ford Transits are also available for just £29 per day.

Sixt operates from 15 locations across London including Kings Cross, Battersea and Ilford, those seeking hire cars around the M25 can be assured of friendly service from a UK company.

The company specialises in offering high quality cars at competitive prices, also including a fleet of luxury cars such as Mercedes, Audi and VW along with a range of smaller cars.  Trucks and vans are also available to hire on a short or long term basis.

Customers who choose to take advantage of this exclusive offer can book directly with Sixt’s website or by using their iPhone or Blackberry to make a booking.

Car leasing clients advised to shop around for the best deal

Friday, December 25th, 2009

Companies seeking fleet solutions are advised to look around for the best car rental contract options, according to Stephen Briers of Fleet news.

Those seeking car hire are strongly advised not to accept the first price offered, and to shop around for the best deal.

Briers claimed discounts and further support must be prioritised by those who are seeking fleet solutions.

For those who lease vehicles, it is important to fully understand the market to ensure the best possible deal from different leasing options from car rental firms.

Briers pointed out since car rental firms want the business, those looking for rental options are in a good position to shop around in order to find the best car hire deal.

He advised rather than hand them business on a place, make the car hire companies work for it.

Leading car hire comparison website named

Friday, December 18th, 2009

Leading car hire comparison website carrentals.co.uk has made the top of the list of Google searches for car hire in the month of September, achieving 54 per cent for the 1.5 million car rental searches, according to independent online marketing agency Greenlight.

The Greenlight report also showed that Carrentals.co.uk took the number one place for both domestic and worldwide search terms in September, with 63 per cent and 52 per cent respectively, as well as being the most visible for all terms related to car hire.

Managing director of Carrentals.co.uk, Gareth Robinson said the report highlighted the strength of the website online, with their expertise in search engine optimisation positioning them at the forefront of the market.

The car hire comparison website has already reported strong results over the summer, with a 38 per cent year on year rise in bookings, and 72 per cent increase in revenue.

Robinson believed the website’s success was down to the quality of service on offer, with the website offering customers a better deal with suppliers benefitting from a fairer, more cost-effective service, and customers having the ability to choose from low prices form a wide selection of providers

Carrentals.co.uk was launched in 2003 as a car hire broker, and relaunched as a comparison site in 2007, has won various prestigious travel awards.

The company compares car hire deals from about 50 car hire firms including Alamo, Budget, easyCar, Holiday Autos and Sixt in over 9,000 locations around the world.

Wife of Justice Minister claims £326 for car hire

Thursday, December 10th, 2009

It has been revealed that Justice Minister Michael Wills, claimed over £300 in a few months for a car share vehicle driven by his spouse, Jill, even though he did not employ her.

He has now admitted that he should not have claimed his wife’s costs in an office account, but added the trips would have been allowed under his separate travel allowance.

Mr Wills, who is the Labour MP for North Swindon, has been a minister of state at the Ministry of Justice for the past two years.

He has assigned a house in his constituency as his second home, on which he claims mortgage interest payments and utility bills, and resides in north London with his spouse and five children.

His office allowance for 2008-09, which is to be published in full by Parliament today, shows that in July last year, he submitted a claim for £326 for car rental.

He claimed on his expenses form that the vehicles were needed for trips to constituency and trips in constituency.

However on each of three occasions between April and July, they were booked under his wife’s name using the Streetcar service, which gives members the option to book a shared vehicle for any number of hours and pick it up from a normal car park on the street.

In May, Mr Wills claimed the cost of nine taxi trips around Swindon at the same time as his wife was driving the hire car paid for on his office expenses.

Mr Wills admitted that his wife had been the only driver of the hire car, however said it was cheaper for her and their five children owning a vehicle or taking the train.

Young aristocrat banned from driving

Saturday, December 5th, 2009

A young aristocrat who has published photos of himself binge drinking has lost his license after being caught drink-driving for the second time.

Viscount St Cyres, 24, has uploaded dozens of images of himself on social networking sites in which he describes himself as being drunk as a Lord.

The ex public schoolboy, whose family name is Thomas Stafford Northcote, updates his friends with bulletins which say that he’s still drinking too much gin.

St Cyres, who is unemployed, is the only son of the 5th Earl of Iddesleigh, and became a viscount when his father inherited the earldom five years ago.  He has his own Bebo site dedicated to his exploits.

Many photographs on the site feature St Cyres drinking pints of lager and sipping wine and champagne and boasting of his debauchery.  In one picture he is seen in a brightly striped jacket holding a pint of lager above the caption reading lovely lazer, shame about the chap wearing it.

St Cyres, who is set to participate in a Channel 4 reality TV show in which a dozen wealthy American girls compete to win his heart, is heir to a 2,500-acre estate.  He appeared before a magistrate in Exeter, Devon, after he was stopped driving his blue VW Polo after a night out drinking in the city.

Officers issued him a penalty notice for speeding and he was arrested after failing a breath test on September 27.  The court was told that he had a previous conviction for drink-driving in 2006.

The magistrate disqualified St Cyres from driving for three years and ordered him to pay £300 in fines and court costs.

Avis plan to increase prices in 2010

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

Car hire giant, Avis Europe, has told of upcoming price increases for customers.

The company has kept a very tight rein on fleet costs in the fact of less demand and increased prices for individuals and businesses.

The Berkshire-based firm said that it still continued to seek opportunities to raise prices and has more hikes on the way for individual customers next year.

Avis is also in negotiation with raising the price with existing contracted customers, including businesses and insurers who offer replacement car services.

Avis Europe has cut car numbers by almost a fifth to 84,000 has put in place the policy of fleet reductions and price hikes in order to weather the recession and to cut overheads.

Having a smaller fleet has boosted the company’s usage rates and east costs, as well as offsetting declines in business rentals, with higher usage rates also being attributed to the new non-cancellation fee for customers who do not give advance notice when cancelling a booking.

Staff at the Berkshire-based company are feeling the brunt of a group-wide pay freeze as well as further redundancies.

While the hire company’s cost-cutting drive will increase staff productivity, shares in the company fell 2 per cent as the company said it remained cautious on both consumer and corporate spending in the gloomy climate.

The seasonal switch from individual holidaymakers back to corporate customers, who tend to book later, meant limited visibility over prospects, according to the company.

Car costs more expensive than two years ago

Tuesday, November 17th, 2009

A new study indicates that due to more expensive insurance premiums and climbing motoring taxes, the yearly cost of running a vehcile has gone up by 11% since 2007.

Taking out interest repayments on car loans, average yearly car costs are now about £2,338, according to statistics from Sainsbury’s Finance.

These figures are 2.68 % higher than the average figure in 2008 of £2,277 and 11.33 % above the equivalent figure two years ago of less than £2,100.

Car insurance at present averages £551 per year and has gone up by almost 13 per cent since the start of last year and 23 % since two years ago, according to the statistics.

Car Tax, which now costs on average over £167 has increased by 8.45 % since 2008 and though fuel prices are slightly cheaper by 1.22 %, they are over 7.5 per cent higher than in 2007.

Service costs, at just under £300 have slumped by 0.18 per cent in comparison to 2008 but have gone up by 3.76 per cent compared with 2007.

Car insurance manager of Sainsbury’s Ben Tyte claimed that while some costs of running a car have given way the last year, compared with 2007, the price of motoring has still increased fairly significantly with road taxes and premiums both on the rise.

He concluded by commenting that the cost of driving a car can be kept better under control by shopping around, especially for car insurance and servicing.

UKs best travel operators named

Monday, November 9th, 2009

Britain’s top travel agencies have been named in the British Travel Awards last week.

Travellers World and The Co-operative travel were voted the UK’s top small retailer and large travel retailer of the year in their categories in the awards held in London.

Travellers World beat Prestbury Travel which came in at second place, followed by both Haslemere Travel and Stockton Healh Travel in third place.  Also up for nomination was Althams Travel, Baldwins travel, Dawson and Sanderson, Gates Travel as well as STA Travel.

The Co-operative travel defeated Thomas Cook, which came in at second place as best largest travel retailer of the year.  Other companies which were nominated in the category include Advantage Travel Centres, First Choice, Flight Centre, Global Travel Group, Hays Travel and Thomson.

Thomson Travel was voted large travel operator of the year and Tucan Travel taking out the small operator title.

In cruise categories, Royal Caribbean won the title of supplier sales team of the year, beating P&O cruises in the category, as Cunard Line was cruise line of the year and P&O took out ferry and cross channel operator of the year.

Car hirers would be interested to find Avis Europe as best car hire company.

In the sustainability category, Thomson Airways took the most environmentally and socially responsible airline with Flybe taking out the section for the budget carriers.

Hilton Hotels open in Liverpool

Friday, October 30th, 2009

Hilton Hotels have opened for the first time in Liverpool, the U.K.’s culture capital. The new hotel is situated in Liverpool’s ONE area and offers guests spectacular views over the Chavasse Park and Albert Dock. Its sun terrace allows guests who have spent the day exploring the home of the Beatles or who wish to relax having just arrived in the city the chance to sip a drink whilst enjoying views of a waterfront that has now been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Hilton Hotel is the perfect base from which to visit some of the best shopping, theatres restaurants and galleries available in the whole of the U.K. General Manager of Hilton Liverpool, Marcus Magee says that he thinks the new hotel is ideally situated right in the middle of one of the most exciting cities in the country. He points out that both Lime Street railway station and the John Lennon Airport are merely a short taxi ride away from the hotel and even points out that for those who are keen to take care of their carbon emissions the city bus stop with links to both the airport and the train station in conveniently located a mere stones throw away.

Along with Hilton’s usual high levels of service and range of amenities available to guests, those staying on the executive floor could have the chance to hang out with the rich and famous in its private bar and lounge area.

Room prices start at £89.00 per night depending on availability.

Less Britons applying for passports

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

A new report put together by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee has revealed that the number of people in the U.K. applying for a new passport or applying to have an old one renewed has dropped by ten percent since 2007. Sir David Normington, Home Office permanent secretary said earlier this year that he thought the drop in those applying could be blamed directly on the recession. He said that people were now either not renewing passports or waiting until they knew they would need them before applying. He went on to say that the price of a new passport was probably putting people off. At the time Sir David was speaking U.K. passports cost £72 (they are now £77.50) and he said that at a time when most air fares are cheaper than that people are realising that a new passport takes quite a chunk out of the holiday budget.

Because less people are applying for passports the Identity and Passport Service has had to redistribute around ten percent of its workers to places where there is a high demand for customer service such as JobCentres.

The new figures have been released as part of an investigation into the Home Office’s management of its finances. The investigation was launched in 2006 when the Home Office finances were described as being in disarray. Three years on the report says that there have been dramatic improvements. The Home Office is now being held up as an example to other sectors of the civil service.