Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill

Skiers heading to the slopes this winter face ‘winterisation’ and ‘ski rack’ charges of up to £179 by car rental companies.

The research by iCarhireinsurance.com, the leading provider of stand-alone car hire excess insurance, surveyed the costs of six car hire companies for a week’s car hire, from 27 December 2018 to 3 January 2019, in Barcelona, Geneva, Grenoble, Innsbruck, Sofia and Turin.

The ‘winterisation’ charge, which includes the price of winter tyres and/or snow chains, varies widely and is normally only payable at the rental desk. Hertz in Grenoble, for example, charge £110 to hire a ski rack and £69 for ‘winterisation’ adding £179 to the hire car bill.

A woman with a child on the winter road. emergency sign. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.  Photo: iCarhireinsurance.com
A woman with a child on the winter road. emergency sign. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill. Photo: iCarhireinsurance.com

The average ‘winterisation’ fee across the six destinations is £37, but travellers could pay up to £74 in Barcelona with Budget.  Winterisation is an optional charge in all destinations except for Turin. Here, travellers pay on average £40, and up to £71 with Sixt for this compulsory charge.

Ski Racks are an additional cost and, on average, cost £44 to hire, however prices vary considerably. The average price in Sofia is only £23, but Avis in Barcelona charge £64, and Hertz in Grenoble £110.

It is the driver’s responsibility, not the rental company, to ensure that the hire car is equipped for the wintery conditions they are driving in. This can be difficult when the rules on winter tyres and snow chains differ from country to country.

Winter tyres, for instance, are mandatory in Germany and Austria in wintery conditions.  In fact, in Austria driving without winter tyres between the start of November and mid-April can lead to a fine of around 5,000 Euros as well as the risk of the car being impounded. Expect to pay an average price of £27 for winter tyres and snow chains in Innsbruck.

Photo: Clarise Meyer- Unsplash. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.
Photo: Clarise Meyer- Unsplash. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.

While winter tyres are sometimes only ‘recommended’ in other European countries, the law has recently changed so please refer to look for the latest snows, as you could get a fine for obstructing the road. Read this post 
where we’ve written about winter tyres laws in Europe and North America. 

Ernesto Suarez, CEO and founder of iCarhireinsurance.com, says: “It’s important that drivers recognise that it’s their responsibility to ensure their hire car is properly equipped for wintery conditions, and not the hire car company. Drivers should check the local laws and regulations as fines can be steep and the laws are enforced. In the Alps there are often police roadblocks outside ski resorts in designated ‘snow chain’ areas, and the police can refuse entry and fine drivers of cars which don’t have chains.”

iCarhireinsurance.com has produced a winter driving infographic giving tips on winter driving and details of the rules in different European countries

About Halo Insurance Services

Halo Insurance Services Ltd is a ground-breaking online insurance broker which was founded in 2009 by Ernesto Suarez, a leading insurance expert specialising in non-standard motor insurance. Its products include car hire insurance, van hire insurance and car club excess insurance all of which have been designed to offer more cover for a better price than the excess waivers offered at the rental desk.

Halo operates the retail brands iCarhireinsurance.ie in Ireland, iCarhireinsurance.com in the UK, leihwagenversicherung.de in Germany, Aseguramicochedealquiler.es in Spain, Huurautoverzekering.com  in the Netherlands, Assurancelocationvoiture.fr in France and Insuremyrentalcar.com in the USA. Halo also provides insurance solutions to a number of commercial partners involved in the provision of software and booking services to car hire operators around the world.

More information.

The-Ski-Guru TRAVEL can organise your bespoke ski trip to the Americas, Alps or Japan, including for those going from Britain to Europe, booking your Eurotunnel trip, and for all trips: lodging, lift tickets, rentals, ski school, and all you need for an excellent vacation. Go to https://www.the-ski-guru.com/travel and upload your information – this page will be updated soon with more travel ideas.

Driving with snow- check if you need snow tyres and/or snow chains. Photo Adrian- Unsplash. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.
Driving with snow- check if you need snow tyres and/or snow chains. Photo Adrian- Unsplash. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.

You can start thinking about your trip, by reading the articles on the Planning your Ski Trip tab.  Or how to pack for your family ski trip.  If taking your furry friend abroad to the continent, read about the new Pet Travel Scheme update from DEFRA. Or our last news on equipment as seen at the London Ski Show. Also, the new range of skis of Black Crows, one of our favourite brands. Lots of snow makes you wonder how the resorts deal with the avalanche danger. Here you can read the interview to Coco Torres, former Head of Operations of Las Leñas, in Argentina, as how they dealt with avalanches at the resort. 

Or perhaps you may choose to read the Ski Resort NewsSki Passes News, and the Must-Read Guides to Lech,  Zermatt,  CourmayeurVal di Fiemme and Crans-Montana. Coming soon will be the guide to St Anton. Or  watch an amazing heli flight over the Mont Blanc Massif. Also see tips on how not to be scammed when booking a ski chalet.

You can also read what’s new at Les Trois Vallées and the last article on what is new at the Tirol ski areas,  in 3 Zinnen Dolomites ,  in Adelboden, Lenk and Kandertal, in Gstaad, in Chamonix,  in Georgia’s Gudauri Resort and in the Skicircus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang Fieberbrunn. And how the US Ski Team has chosen Alpe Cimbra to train for the following four ski seasons as their European home. And Saalbach is getting ready for the Ski World Cup. Here is the link to our post on the My Voucher Codes ranking of best European Ski Resorts. 

Or check how Cairngorm Mountain might not run its funicular this coming season and how that can affect the region. And the terrible storms and gails that provoked havoc to Trentino Alto-Adige and Belluno provinces in Northern Italy. 

Photo: Cameron Kirby. Unsplash. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.
Photo: Cameron Kirby. Unsplash. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.

Thankfully Val di Fassa is ready for opening December 6 as stated here. And the roof of the Rifugio Comici has been fixed in no time and is ready for the start of the ski season in Val Gardena on 6th December. Sudtirol ski areas are ready to start soon and their famous Christmas markets will kick off too. And Cortina D’Ampezzo is getting ready for this winter and the 2021 World Ski Championships. 

Also, you can read how Grandvalira will be staying together as one lift ticket company and how they are adding Ordino Arcalis to  this offer. And also read how someone tried to sabotage some lifts in Vallnord’s Pal Arinsal.  Or read about the latest investments in Whistler Blackcomb. Or see how Taos is going against the industry trend, and instead of merging with the two biggest oligopolies in skiing at the moment, it goes and buys an airline to get more bums in resort. Or how Jackson Hole is appealing to families and beginners – it is not only a resort for expert skiers anymore. Another great area for families is Stubaital in the Tirol. Or read how a group of experienced industry insiders got together to purchase Tamarack Resort. And how Peak Resorts finalised the acquisition of the resorts of Snow Time.

If you want to salivate and think of snow, see our snow report from last weekend here. Or see how Aspen Snowmass has started its snowmaking operation.  Aspen Mountain has already opened, as well as Snowmass Mountain has opened on Thanksgiving day. Sierra Nevada has also opened this past weekend with the best snow base ever in its history. The Sun Up and Sun Down Back Bowls from Vail have opened as well, being the third time in this decade that they could open so early. Grandvalira and Ordino Arcalis in Andorra have opened as well. Also read how one employee of Aspen Ski Co got caught in an avalanche but got out unscathed while scouting terrain for the Aspen Mountain Powder Tours. Or how the a gondola of the new American Eagle lift from Copper Mountain crashed into the snow in a trial run. The resort confirmed that the chondola will be fixed before it’s opening day.

You can keep up to date on how are the sales for the EPIC and IKON passes are doing here. Read how Emma, the first Digital Mountain Assistant, is launched in Keystone now and will be rolled to eight other resorts this season. And even read about the new incorporation to the IKON Pass: Valle Nevado. Here is also a post on the South American resorts.  

Daniel Kainz photography - Unspalsh.com. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.
Daniel Kainz photography – Unspalsh.com. Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill.

Or check out how now with the EPIC Pass you can ski in Europe, specifically in Les Trois Vallées and the resorts of Skirama Dolomiti in Trentino’s Italy. Or see our review of L’Héliopic Hotel Sweet & Spa if thinking in staying in Chamonix this winter.

Feature Image: Skiers Face Winterisation and Ski Rack Charges Adding up to £179 On Car Hire Bill. Photo: iCarhireinsurance.com

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