Avis Budget Group have announced the introduction of a new service for their customers traveling to or within Europe.
Renters are now able to add Mobile Wifi units to their car hire bookings in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
These units are roughly the size of a deck of playing cards - actually, about the size of a credit card and the thickness of an iPhone so can be comfortably carried in a pocket or handbag. The usage allowance included in the daily rental price is 1GB per day and the download speed is 21.6Mbps which facilitates video conferencing according to Avis.
Up to 5 devices can be connected at the same time so you can have multiple mobile or cell phones connected as well as tablets and laptop computers. This means that for the flat daily rental price offered by Avis and Budget, you can completely avoid expensive international roaming traditionally charged by mobile phone providers. There is also no need to pay for hourly or daily internet access in your hotel and because the device is portable, it can be used anywhere - by passengers during car travel or even at the beach.
From personal experience, having used handheld units on each of the last 3 times that I have traveled to Europe, they are absolutely fantastic and I honestly wouldn't travel without one anymore. I affectionately refer to mine as "the pebble". Whether you get one through your car rental company or elsewhere, the money that you will save by avoiding international roaming and hotel charges is completely worth it. I carry one around in my pocket when traveling internationally and have not only stayed online on a mobile phone but even participated in video conferences and online presentations whilst avoiding completely international roaming charges on my phone.
To get a quote in £GBP, you can use these links to Book Avis or Book Budget. Often you may also find special offers or coupons that provide discounts available in the destination where you need to hire a car here.
Have you used one of these units and what is your opinion of them? What else do you never leave home without when traveling abroad?