Rent A Car In Mexico

My husband, Dick, and I flew into Mazatlan and landed at 9 p.m.  I had arranged over the phone, to rent a car at Advantage Rent-A-Car.  We were to pick the car up on Tuesday morning, the morning after arriving Monday night.  We had, I thought, also arranged for a friend to pick us up at the airport upon arrival, take us to our quarters that night,  and then drive us back to Advantage Rent-A-Car to pick up the car Tuesday morn, after breakfast.  Sounds easy enough!

So, we arrived in Mazatlan at 9 PMS pretty tired after a 12-hour flight — yes, we could have just about driven in that time — well, almost.  It was quite dark when we landed, of course, and after going through customs (easy and quick), started looking for our friends who had said they would be there to pick us up, so we wouldn’t have to make the almost half hour drive to Mazatlan by ourselves and tired to boot.

We are VERY careful of driving at night in Mexico — yes — we heed our own advice!

Anyway, while we were standing there, in the Mazatlan airport, luggage in tow, fully expecting friend to show up eventually, one of the men who work at the airport came up to us and in his meager English, asked “Parks?  Advantage Rental?”    I was sort of taken aback, and thought maybe he was looking for another Parks for a moment —  and then realized — no, he was looking for us, and they had brought a car for us — tonight — a day  early??

Dick and I discussed the situation briefly and then told him — in our best Spanish — that, yes, we had rented a car, but had contracted for it to be picked up tomorrow, Tuesday, and could he please explain the situation to the young man who was apparently waiting for us.  And that we intended to wait on our friend, so…Thanks, anyway.Then…well, we waited and waited — no friend in sight, so finally after over 30 minutes of standing around waiting, decided we needed to take action.  We found the original worker, tried to explain to him, that if he could contact the Advantage Rental guy, we needed a ride. No problem — the Advantage fellow was still there — patiently waiting.  We secured our luggage in the trunk and once in the car, explained to the driver, Manuel, where we needed to go.

Now, Manuel basically spoke no English.  But, he recognized the name of the place we needed to go and with a smile, started off down the dark road toward Mazatlan.  I know you’re thinking by now — give your friends a call!  But, I knew something very important must have happened, or they would be here to pick us up.

After just a few minutes of our ride toward Mazatlan, Dick and I realized we could save some time Tuesday if we just took possession of the car tonight.

Well, I finally got our idea over to Manuel, who confidently said ,“Manager … office”.  So, we felt we were now headed to the Advantage Office to acquire the car and everything would be smooth.  How about that!  And we were not wrong.  Manuel drove us straight to the office, where, this late at night, the manager was waiting.

Get this — see if you have ever heard of anything like this even coming close in the States: They, the manager at Advantage, had checked our itinerary I given him, when first arranging for the car rental.  He knew we were coming in Monday night, and knew the car rental was not supposed to start until Tuesday morning.  But, just in case we had made a mistake or something, he had decided to send Manuel and the car when our plane arrived.He wanted to make sure we could get from the airport to town with no trouble– bless the Mexican intuition! …and kindness.

Now, for the price breakdown for a 4-door, airconditioned, automatic, Compact Car @ $96/week (no extra charge for us for the extra night we had the car, by the way)  Unlimited mileage.  We got car insurance through them, of course, $11/day.  And, after returning the car at the end of our trip, they drove us back to the airport — no charge.P.S.  Our friends thought we were coming in two days later than we actually did — oh well.  We made it safely home, just in time to get laundry done and repacked for the next trip to Mexico in about 10 days.

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