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  1. Default To rent or buy a car

    Hi All,

    I tried searching the forums before posting and was unable to find the information I was looking for, so I appologize if this has been discussed before.

    I am moving to LA from NYC and planning a week-long road trip on the way out. I was originally planning on buying a car here and driving it out, but I was told that I would be better off buying a car in California as it will not have rust or salt damage and I will not have to spend any money upgrading it to California emissions standards. Plus if anything goes wrong with it, I can deal with it better being there.

    So, I tried searching various car rental companies for the cost of renting for about 2 weeks plus the drop off fee and it seem pretty expensive. Some of them had a $1000 drop off fee which seems nuts to me.

    Has anyone out there had experience with either of the two options above and could offer some advice? Or does anyone know of a car rental company or location in NYC that has a reasonable one way drop off fee?

    ANY advice or insight would be greatly appreciated.

    Christine

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,059

    Default Good Advice -- but some perspective

    Quote Originally Posted by Xtine74 View Post
    I tried searching the forums before posting and was unable to find the information I was looking for, so I appologize if this has been discussed before.
    Thanks for looking on the Forum for that information -- I agree that there is so much data here, that sometimes it can be hard to find it all.
    I am moving to LA from NYC and planning a week-long road trip on the way out. I was originally planning on buying a car here and driving it out, but I was told that I would be better off buying a car in California as it will not have rust or salt damage and I will not have to spend any money upgrading it to California emissions standards. Plus if anything goes wrong with it, I can deal with it better being there.
    That advice is technically correct -- but it really only makes sense if you are planning on selling the car in California upon arrival. If you are going to keep the car for a while -- yes, you may need to upgrade to CA emissions standards, but it will still (probably) be less than the cost of the rental and the drop-off fees. Drop-off fees are the standard in the USA. $1000 is not that all unusual. Personally, I think it does make sense to purchase the car locally, get the best quality you can, and then you will have your own car to drive out to LA with.

    Mark

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default California Emmissions

    California emmissions are something you have to worry about if you are going to eventually register and/or sell the car in California. However, that doesn't mean you can't still buy the car in New York. Many, if not most, cars in the US are sold to meet California standards.

    To check if a car does, simply open the hood and look for a sticker on the underside side of the hood. The sticker will either say that it meets Federal Emission standards or it meets California emmission standards.

    Of course even if your car has the correct sticker, it will still have to undergo a smog test in California to make sure everything is working properly.

  4. Default Thanks for the advice!

    Yes, the car I would buy in NY would be the car I keep when I am living in Los Angeles. I was also leaning toward buying it here just because I did not want to have to buy a car by myself once I get out there. I hate haggling of any sort. Funny-I can travel across the world by myself for a month, but the thought of dealing with buying a car myself seems scary. :)

    As much as I would love to take the trek in my own car across the USA...I have not owned a car in almost 6 years so the thought of driving someone else's for a while did look appealing.

    I will keep looking into rentals and research on fees for registering a non-California car out there and then see how things play out as it gets closer to my departure date.

    Thank you all for your help!

    Christine

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