Car hire companies and their dog policies! It can be a minefield and so expensive (when wanting to take the car outside the UK) that we ended up buying our first car (aka "the corgi mobile") a few years ago. It was simply cheaper at the time and less of a headache!
Things have changed since and whilst those policies are still often unclear and confusing (it's a work in progress), we were pleased to see an improvement when the corgi mobile - after years of loyal services and thousands of miles of adventures in the UK and abroad - decided it was time to retire in January and we've had to find alternatives until we can afford to get a new ones (one cannot simply stop corguiding)!
So when I had the oppawtunity to go back to my beloved Scotland, in February 2018, to celebrate the country receiving the accolade of "Most Beautiful Country in the World" for 2017 by Rough Guides (and teach Papa to shred the gnar at Nevis Range) I was excited to hear Hertz UK was going to lend us four wheels for the week long trip! And not a shabby one!
After we checked in at our hotel near Fort William, the team of Hertz Inverness came to reception to deliver the carriage (a service that would usually involve a premium) and keys, a shiny Mercedes E-Class AMG! We had a good laugh with them as it was the first time they delivered a car to a dog! After showing us the basics (it's not every day that Maman and Papa get to drive an automatic car of such prestige, but then only le best for moi!) they checked our driving licences and had us sign some forms (general note for everything, do read all the fine print before signing anything) and off we went!
The car itself was very smooth to drive on those Scottish roads (Maman and I enjoyed this especially as Papa was on the slopes) and super comfortable for us all! It took us to the bottom of the slopes and then to Inverness, Loch Ness and the likes of Eilean Donan Castle, and we are so glad for it having felt safe especially when deer decided to act as obstacles on the road (fear not, not a single being was hurt)!
Now car rental companies do ask for the car to be returned in a clean state (or surcharges occur), dog or not. Fair enough especially when there are people highly allergic to dogs. And the Highway Code specifies that pets should be restrained when driving, to reduce the risks of accidents and also keep them and humans safe should there be a collision (there have been occurences of collisions where pets were ejected from cars and harmed or scared and getting lost). We encourage every one to check with individual companies and respect the fact that not every one likes a furry seat, and to keep their pets safe (also insurances could be void if it was found a pet was on the loose in a car).
We always bring a waterproof canopy to protect the back seat (saves time when returning the car too, especially when one takes a mud bath within an hour of returning it haha), a lint roller or tool to remove hair from furniture, one of my Dogrobes to keep mud away if needed, and I wear a doggy seat belt (which connects to the seatbelts), which we highly recommend to all of your fluffy travellers, or a crate (either on the back seats or a very strong one if in the booth - as in case of a collision in the back of the car a simple plastic or metal crate won't protect us from being crushed).
Stay safe and have fun mes amis!
If you’re renting with Hertz you’ll be pleased to know that pets are allowed as long as they’re suitably restrained, or in a transport cage, while the vehicle is in motion. The interior of the vehicle also needs to be returned in the exact same condition as it was when the rental commenced, otherwise additional cleaning charges may be applied. If you are renting with Hertz in the UK, please confirm with the particular location you are collecting your vehicle from.
One week’s car hire in Scotland starts from £15 a day. For more info, or to book, visit hertz.co.uk . Hertz standard terms and conditions apply.