I am hoping some person smarter than me can help me with this issue. We are looking to rent a car in Opatija, (taking a bus there from Ljubljiana), so that we can drive to Plitvice Lakes Park and spend one night there. We will drive the next morning, leisurely, to Split, and return the car in Split. So not even two days, but we'll have to pay for a 2-day rental. That's fine, and we are going to opt for the best CDW, just in case. The total rental, through Sixt so far, is about $200 for two days. OK. Steep compared to US rates, but that's okay. However, after reading the "fine print" it looks like they will put a hold on our credit card for anywhere from 1200 euros to 2000 euros. Is that normal? Seems excessive to me. Also, does the person renting the care HAVE to be the driver? I am making all the plans for this trip, but will not be the driver. Does the credit card have to be in the driver's name, does anyone know? Thank you for any advice!
The cost is steep compared to the US because it's only a two day rental, and you're paying a small one-way drop fee (which might be waived for a longer rental period).
Yes, the security deposit is pretty standard. It's an authorization for damage to the car, not actually charged unless there is an issue later.
Not sure about the difference between driver vs. renter. Presumably the driver is the one on the hook for everything when signing the renal contract. Will they require the credit card to be in the driver's name? That seems to be the real question. At worst, you could pay a little extra for a second driver - add the driver as the second driver, but you rent the car just never drive it. Contact Sixt or whomever you rent from to confirm.
Out of curiosity, why Opatija? Are you planning spend time there before going to Plitvice? If not, I might suggest taking the train to Zagreb instead and renting the car there. Or taking the train to Rijeka, near Opatija but a bigger town with more rental car options. If you use a site like Economy Car Rentals, you can get a better rate than through Sixt. (They won't tell you the car company until you have booked it - they are a broker not a car rental company - but they have free cancellation up to 48 hours before you pick up the car. I have used both Economy Car Rentals and Sixt before.)
If I were going to stop at a town on the coast (say for a night), it would probably be Rovinj not Opatija, personally. Opatija is an old Austrian spa town that has big Austrian villas and an OK waterfront. Rovinj is a charming old Venetian town that I adored. Like Optaija, it would cost more to rent a car in Rovinj, plus it's another hour or so on to Plitvice from Rovinj. It would be worth it to me. (I'd look at a transfer service like GoOpti to get to Rovinj, otherwise it's a very long bus ride.)
Usually the driver has to be the hirer and a credit card in their name is the requirement. SIXT Does not have great reputation in Croatia, whoever you hire from, make sure to record every single scratch and photograph the car bodywork thoroughly.