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According to Europcar, the UK’s leading vehicle hire company, families taking domestic holidays this summer should look at alternatives to traditional rail travel this summer for value and convenience. With rail fares going up by an average of 6%* this year combined with planned engineering works at weekends on some routes throughout July and August, Europcar is advising families to consider the freedom and affordability of car hire as the ideal way to get to their destination and explore the UK’s more inaccessible countryside attractions and secluded beaches.

Catriona Lougher, marketing director for Europcar, said: "We all want to get our holiday off to a good start and while rail is a great solution for many, the logistical issues of getting to and from the station with children and suitcases in tow can make for a fractious time. Weighed up with higher rail fares and the chance that engineering works often means travel in replacement buses – and car hire becomes an increasingly attractive option. For example, a family of four travelling from Bristol to Edinburgh could save around £600** on the price of a train fare, by opting to get a family car hire for the trip.

"Hiring a vehicle for some journeys not only offers substantial savings but the comfort, convenience and flexibility that rail travel struggles to offer."

Europcar offers customers free car hire delivery and collection from most of its 200+ locations across the UK through its weDeliver service ensuring a stress-free start to the holidays. In addition, Europcar’s Airport Connect service means holidaymakers can hire a vehicle from their local branch and leave it at the airport and then pick it up again at the end of their return flight. Airport Connect means travellers can wave goodbye to hauling luggage across town and dealing with train connections and stressful delays.

Europcar's service also helps customers avoid train delays, hefty fare increases and overcrowding. In addition, there are no worries over maintenance, 24 hour roadside assistance plus the fuel efficiencies of driving a relatively new vehicle suited to the journey and number of passengers.

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Notes to editors:

*Source: Association of Train Operating Companies (Atoc)
**Based on an open return rail fare, compared with a 7 day, pre-pay hire of compact vehicle.

About Europcar

Europcar is the European leader in passenger car and light utility vehicle rentals. The company serves business and leisure customers throughout Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region. Since March 2007 with the acquisition of Vanguard EMEA, its network comprises over 5,300 rental outlets in 160 countries.

Excluding franchise operations, in 2008 Europcar signed more than 10 million rental contracts, with 8000 employees and a fleet exceeding 225,000 vehicles. In September 2008, Europcar and U.S. market leader Enterprise Rent a Car joined forces in a strategic alliance to form the world's largest car rental and network, with more than 1.2 million vehicles and car hire deals in 13,000 locations around the world.

The Europcar fleet has an average CO2 of 158g/km compared to the average UK car park which has 164.9 g/km CO2. 

For further press information please contact:

Dominic Dennis
Churcham House
1 Bridgeman Road
TW11 9AJ
020 8977 9132

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of pr-sending-enterprises in the following categories: Motoring, Travel, for more information visit