It was our second day in Greater London and we had to first pick up our rental car from Hertz car rental. We had already booked online from Car Hire & Van Hire - Europe & Worldwide – Hertz Car Rental for a Vauxhall Astra or similar as the booking terms mentioned. Unlike car rental during the Iceland trip where we went for the local start up the Blue Car Rental, here we opted for the more conventional Hertz rental. The decision was based on:
1. Positive reviews available online in favour of Hertz Car rental in the UK.
2. The booking terms of Hertz rental didn't specifically mention the requirement of IDP for reservation whereas other car rentals had specifically mentioned their requirement for IDP.
I would like to mention here that the official website Driving in Great Britain on a non-GB licence allows standard visa holder(tourists) to drive on a non-GB licence for a specific number of days. You can just check and proceed with the mentioned link to get the result.
3. Non availability of convenient local/start up car rentals. I found some online which rent them for only a few hours during the day.
We only opted for the standard insurance during the booking. In our case we didn't subscribe for the additional driver option and it worked .
There is only one Hertz car rental pick up point at London Heathrow(location: Hertz - London Heathrow Airport). Other car rental companies also have their offices at the same location. Each Heathrow terminal has Hertz car rental kiosks. You can also avail the Hertz Car Rental Courtesy van service to commute from Heathrow arrival terminal to Hertz main office. The same service is also available after returning the vehicle. You just need to know the stoppage point at the arrivals. There is plenty of space for luggage and the driver usually cooperates and is obliged to help.
We used the London city bus from Greater London and got down at the nearest bus stop somewhere along the Bath road and walked around 1km to reach the Hertz car rental office. At the registration we were allotted the Kia Stonic a 1000cc compact SUV. It was quite new and had hardly run 10106 miles during the pick up. According to an instruction sticker on the windshield it is mandatory for the car rental companies to rent vehicles run for 75000 miles at max.(I can't exactly recall the figure but it was quite low).
One at the Hertz parking bay during car inspection
Like the commonwealth nations vehicles are right hand drive and run on left side of the road. We drove on our Indian licences and had no IDP. The distances are in miles and speed in mph.
It was quite a long drive and it was dark by the time we reached Ruberslaw camping. I had booked for camping in the wild woods but the owner suggested against it as there was no one pitching in the wild woods and there would be no one but us. So we decided to pitch our tent in the walled garden in the darkness. The campsite had sink and an open kitchen and we prepared some noodles and porridge for the night.
Drenched and tired after the long drive it was time for a deep sleep. Our tenting accessories had fared well in the Icelandic weather but here the temperature was relatively moderate and hence comfortable.