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Car rental in Switzerland

4 of us are traveling to Switzerland in August and planning to rent a car from Hertz. any suggestions regarding CDW, super collision, theft insurance in Switzerland?
thanks

Posted by
32244 posts

You might find it helpful to have a look at the www.gemut.com website, as they have a downloadable car rental guide which I believe has information on Switzerland. You could also contact them on their toll free number or send an E-mail.

Unless you're planning to visit out-of-the-way locations, using the excellent rail network would be a better idea (IMO).

Posted by
4554 posts

best advice - don't drive in Switzerland, not necessary

Posted by
10344 posts

Many people reporting in here have said the same as ken and phred (the above posts): that it's not necessary to rent a car for most locations in Switzerland, because of the efficiency, coverage, and cost of the train system.

Posted by
7209 posts

The Swiss have one of the nest public transit systems in the world. Clean, efficient, punctual, integrated (buses, boats, funiculars, gondolas, etc). Everything runs like clock work. On top of that many of the most beautiful places in Switzerland are not even accessible by cars...you MUST take public transport to get there. Sometimes I think European Rental Cars were created just for tourists from the USA because we just cannot fathom public transportation that actually works, much less works like "Swiss" public transport!

Posted by
2297 posts

We had a car on loan from family - and we were very happy to have one for the four of us. It did save us a ton of money! Mainly because it allowed us to rent a vacation apartment (2 bedrooms, living room, kitchen, bath, washer) for only 600 CHF/week. It was nowhere near a train station or other public transportation but in a beautiful hilly location in the Emmental Region with the Alps visible from our windows. And centrally located to have Bern, Lucerne, Thun Lake ... close enough for fun day trips.

If you have to pay for a rental car, the calculations will be a bit different. But it can still be worthwhile if it allows you to save substantially on accommodation. And on some meals if you are prepared to cook for yourself.

Posted by
7209 posts

Having a car is nice if you prefer to stay in the middle of nowhere.

Posted by
2297 posts

"Having a car is nice if you prefer to stay in the middle of nowhere."

For us it was not so much a question of "preference" but one of affordability. Our vacation in Switzerland was one of the best family vacations we've ever had. But we couldn't have done it by booking two hotel rooms in Lucerne or Murren.

Posted by
3392 posts

It's true that there are beautiful places in Switzerland that can only be reached by public transport...but the converse is also true - there are many stunning places that you can only get to easily by car. You should decide what you want to see and where you want to go first and then decide if public transportation or a rental car makes better sense for you.

Posted by
328 posts

I've travelled by both car and train in Switzerland and agree that the public transportation system is extremely efficient but I think I would personally choose the flexibility of a car when I traveling in Switzerland again.

There are many posters here who are HUGE advocates for public transportation in Europe and I completely understand why - many of us in North America simply don't understand just how efficient and cost effective train travel in Europe is (or how congested car travel can be) until we've been there and tried it ourselves. Ultimately, know that you will probably be able to see whatever you want by either car or train and there are advantages/disadvantages to both, then make the decision that works best for what you want to see, your budget and your travel style.

We've rented from Sixt very successfully many times and have had less success with AutoEurope (once with Hertz and once with Avis). We always get the CDW from the rental company because we felt it was more clear than using a credit card or other insurance. That is one thing we like about Sixt, it seems to be much easier to understand what we were getting.

Posted by
4554 posts

Beatrix sounds like you lucked into a great deal but keep in mind, you are not the "typical" tourist. For the rest of us, everything we want to see and visit is almost always easily accessible by train, tram or bus.

Now, having said that, my wife found a place in France she wanted to stay out in the country and it would have been quite difficult to do without a car. So there are times.

Posted by
2297 posts

True, I might not be the typical tourist but we still did the typical touristy things. The reason I posted my experience is to show other travellers that you can certainly travel to Switzerland on a budget without having to compromise on comfort - if you think a bit outside the box. You can still see all the typical sights, you do not have to bunk in a hostel!

BTW, even though we can still get a family car on loan for free in most of our European travels, we often don't use it and take the train instead. Often it's just so much more comfortable and less stress. And then there are times when a car has saved us major bucks, especially when travelling in a small group.

Posted by
133 posts

My family that lives there are in towns and farms where getting there is only on roads that are marked with directional signs with white backgrounds i.e. off the beaten path. Nice places to see and to be at that are seldom gone to by tourists. That is the main reason a car is needed.

Posted by
49 posts

We had a very good experience with Sixt. We rented in Lausanne and returned in Zurich. It was very affordable, the roads are very good, drivers are courteous, and I would do it again.