Warning: AVIS car rental in Italy

avis-italy-warningBecause of multiple incidents recently and no sign of improvements we have to give out a warning to stay away from AVIS car rental in Italy.

The reason is in short: the potential for not safe cars and scamming.

In more details.

Cars from this provider can be delivered with summer tires even if your rental order promised winter tires on pickup. Adding some noisy cheap chains in the back is far from the same. In Italy cars are not required to use winter tires during winter but when renting out a car for driving in alps during winter everyone should know that require winter tires. With or without spikes. It is crazy to be driving with summer tires in the alps during winter. Irresponsible by AVIS to deliver this. Further, customers must themself add anti-freeze in gas because gas does not handle many minus degrees. Customers have also experienced windshild washer fluid not handling sub zero degrees. There are resons to suspect other car rentals in Italy about the same. Also be aware if you are picking up an italien car in a neighbour nation.

Second trouble area are incidents of scamming. When you pick up your car there are scratches and dents and some is noted on contract paper. But not all. So when you return the car AVIS will point to scratches not in contract paper, and then charge you large repair charges. Doubling the bill or more. These damages are not fixed all the times, just passed on to the next unfortunate driver and potentional scamming case. Insurance cover some damages and expensive insurances cover more, but there are too often room for scamming.


What we recommend is to rent cars from German locations. When going to Val di Fiemme or Cortina/Toblach it is very common and good to fly to Munich, and pick up a rental car there. German rental cars have proper winter tires during winter.

Be careful when renting cars. Check type of tires during booking. Print out your booking as the pickup location may not have all details you have seen. Look at insurance details before driving the car. Check out limit on Damage Waiver,  what you have to pay yourself when accidents happen. You can upgrade your insurance cost to get a lower self payment amount in case of accident. Damage Excess is a limit that shows the maximum payment you must pay in case of accidents. Fixing some paint scratchs can easily be 500-1000 euro. One tip is to take photo of the entire car on pickup. All sides. Document what scratches and dents that exists on pickup. Remember high resulution camera on this.

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