Sunday 8 July 2018

Campervaning in Iceland and the nightmare of Nordic Car Rental (aka Nordic Campers)

We have just returned from our week-long holiday in Iceland. If you are thinking of taking your own campervan to Iceland you can forget it because it will cost you a fortune.

So, since no frills and basic campervaning is what we are about, we thought that we'd rent a camper from Nordic Campers (Nordic Car Rental). It was a big mistake and we will advice you to stay away from them.

Here are some of the things that were wrong with their camper.

1. The mirror on the driver's side was damaged. I did notice this as I was driving away in the rain but I thought that I would cope ok with just the smaller wide-angle mirror at the bottom. As time went on I realised how dangerous it was to be driving a vehicle with a damaged mirror. 

2. By the first evening we were over 200 Km from your depot and it began to rain. It was not long before we could see that the roof was leaking just behind the seats, at the centre. For the next week we were making every effort to try to keep our covers from getting wet. 

3. When it was time to go to sleep we realised that although there were curtains at the back door, there were no curtains at the front or the side. The screws were still in place of where the curtain rods were for the two sets of curtains but alas no curtains for us. This meant that we had to sleep with no privacy and in a space that was too bright very early in the morning.

4. The following day we found that the food we had stored under the sink was all wet. Initially we thought that it was the drain pipe but then we found out that it was the tap. It was leaking from where the hose was connecting to the tap. Eating wet bread is not very appetising. 

5. My wife found that the passenger seat was most uncomfortable and there was no way to adjust the seat or the back.

6. The van's paint left a lot to be desired. It was obvious that this vehicle used to belong to Happy Campers before. The marks of where their stickers with their logo and paint of bird on a branch were still obvious and a Nordic Campers sticker was just placed over it. From all the vans we saw on our week-long travel ours was by far the worst looking.

7. The steering wheel was damaged with a cut on the grip material. This is not something that will be acceptable for a hire vehicle.  Please note that all photos were taken at the moment we received the vehicle.

I must say that in the UK this vehicle would not pass a motor inspection.

8. The lights were another problem that could have been very dangerous. On the OFF position once the motor was on, the Tail Lights  or Daytime Lights came on. This was to be expected in a country were car lights must be on both day and night. Not many foreigners would know that but anyway. 
Click one position to the right to switch on the Tail Lights as indicated on the knob (something that most people would do when driving during the day) and I found to my dismay (as I was parked in front of a glass building and could see my lights) the lights switched off. One could happily drive thinking that the tail lights have been switched on and yet they were off. This makes for dangerous driving and the possibility of getting a fine for driving with the lights off.

I complained to the company afterwards and after a month's deliberations they offered a one-day's rent worth compensation. Instead of accepting that, I chose to make my views known to others so that you could give them a wide birth.