Unless you have arranged your holiday yourself, you will be met
by a representative of your travel company after or during arrival
at the ‘Land’ side of the airport.
They will direct you to your Car Rental Desk.
If you arranged through an 'off airport company' they probably
instructed you when to call, where they would meet you or where to
catch the Shuttle.
At the desk
Have your driving license and passport ready, you may also need
your booking reference that the travel company gave you.
Note – You will be asked to take out extra insurance. It’s up to
you but don’t get fooled by this. As long as you have the insurances
booked through your agent and adequate personal insurance, you
should be OK.
If you came by yourself or without a booking. – You will need to
arrange your insurance with the clerk. Collision Damage Waiver (CDW),
Loss, Third Party Liability and local taxes & cover charges are all
Extra insurance for personal injury will almost definitely be
covered by your holiday insurance... But, it's up to you.
You may also be asked if you want to pre-pay for a full tank of gas
at return of the car. Personally I wouldn’t go for it.
This may be the most expensive petroleum sprit you ever buy.
If you stay for a week and only potter around the local area, you
may not need to visit a gas station and this is another worry off
Don’t worry though, buying gas is ‘a gas’ and well worth the
Some companies offer a free tank on return - you may want to ask!
Finding your car
The Car Rental Desks are at street level...
If hiring from one of the major companies, you will walk out of the
big doors and across to the multi-story car park
Note – This may be your first breath of the outside air.
Hopefully it will be warm and it may be very hot!
Savour the moment. It may be a bit airporty, but you are finally
Follow the signs to your rental company and look for the isle that
has your car type. Compact, Intermediate, Full Size, etc.
Note – If your type isle is empty, just pick the next car ‘up’
This is an automatic upgrade to the next biggest size. Don’t
This type of upgrade is free of charge and gets you a better car at
no extra cost.
Just because they ran out of cars.
Getting to know your steed
You will need all the help from your ‘team’ and your designated
co-pilot that you can muster for the next hour or so…
Load up your bags and return your trolley to its parking bay.
Take a look around the outside of the vehicle and make sure that
everything looks in order.
Watch out for scratches and if you see any, you should report them
to a representative, if you can't find one and/or you don’t like the
look of the car, just pick another.
Note - If at this point you think your car size is too small, go
back to the Rental Desk and ask about an upgrade.
If you want, you can stick with what you have and change it
tomorrow, if you are tired or are apprehensive about your pending
journey. Less hassle. Just give them a call anytime.
Finding the Parking Brake
the Parking Brake can be 'interesting'.
If you got the engine running and in gear but still it won't move,
try the Parking Brake. Should be an indicator on the Dash Board
about this. There will also be an alarm sounding but it can be
Hardly ever will the Parking Brake be where you expect it to be
located - in the centre seat console.
The Release can be found as a handle or lever closer to you than the
The Parking Brake is a small foot pedal on the far left of the foot
Press down on it to apply the Parking Brake and pull the handle or
lever to release it.
The picture shows a 2006 Dodge Charger.
Your pickup location at MCO may be in the centre of the building
where it can be quite dark.
Hopefully this will help you in getting going.
There is a possibility that there is no release handle. Try pressing
the Parking Brake Foot Pedal and see if it releases the brake... A
Press ON - Press OFF action.
Now may be a good time to check out the
page for some hints and tips...
Politely ask the family to calm down and take a look around the
inside of the car.
Most controls are fairly international.
Lights on the left steering column stalk.
Indicators on the right etc..
Windscreen wipers are usually a twist of the left stalk. Doesn't'
rain much but when it does it really comes down. You can suddenly
need wipers after days of not seeing a drop of rain.
Adjust the seat to get comfortable. May need the Ignition to be at
first or second position to get electric seats moving.
Check out that Gear Shift on the right hand side. Even if you are
familiar with an automatic it is still unusual for it to be on the
Check that the Gear Shift is in 'P' (park)
Place your right foot on the Brake pedal and apply some pressure
(this will allow the ignition to operate).
Turn the key to the first and then to second positions. Look out for
lights and alarms that doors, seat belts, parking brake etc. need
Turn the ignition key to the next position to start the engine.
Don't apply any pressure to the Gas Pedal it shouldn't need it to
start the engine.
Many cars are extremely quiet when ticking over.
Lights such as Oil Pressure should go out on the display and the Rev
Counter will spring up from zero to around the 1,000 rpm mark.
A few extra notes -
Automatic lighting controls are common, they switch the lights on
when the engine is running and it is dark outside. If you are in the
dark areas of the parking lot, lights may come on without you
switching them on.
Possibly, auto locking systems can be confusing too.
Learn about this from the User Guide tomorrow, but don’t fiddle with
the options. Many lock the doors soon after the engine starts.
There are Toll Plazas on the roads from Orlando International
Airport (MCO) airport, have your co-pilot prepare the change or
small bills ($20's are largest accepted).
Moving off - continued
Apply pressure to the Foot Brake with your Right foot and move
the Gear Selector to 'D' (Drive). If you have to reverse out of a
parking space - select 'R' (Reverse). You will have to depress a
switch type button on the Gear Selector to get it out of Park.
Via. the North Exit to the Beachline Expressway
(formerly The Bee Line Expressway) for International
Drive and then West towards the Interstate Freeway - I 4
for Lake Buena Vista, Disney Resort Hotels and Kissimmee
-US Hwy 192 West end, Main Gate West & Main Gate East
Via. the South Exit to Route SR- 417 'The Central
Florida Greenway' for Lake Buena Vista, Disney
Resort Hotels and Kissimmee -US Hwy 192 East end, Main
Gate East, Main Gate West & West end areas..
Taking an exit at a point close to the area where you