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Frequently Asked Questions
Other questions? Call (813) 343-3001.

FAQ

Pre-Trip Questions

How much luggage can I bring?
Bring as much as you need to be comfortable. On our shorter tours, we will only be away from Stuttgart for one or two days. You can leave your large luggage at the Graf Zeppelin Hotel in Stuttgart and just take an overnight bag with you. Your large luggage will be waiting in your room at the Graf Zeppelin when you return. If you are on one of our longer tours, we will be providing a luggage van to carry your large luggage from hotel to hotel. When you arrive at your next hotel, your luggage will be waiting for you in your room.
What should I pack to wear while on tour?
In the past we’ve been lucky with the weather. Consider packing a sweater and windbreaker in case there are rapid changes in temperature. The higher in elevation we go, the cooler it will be – a sweater and windbreaker then will feel great! We’ll be crossing some high Alpine mountain passes and there could be snow on the ground. You might also want to pack your sweater in your carry-on luggage with you on the airplane, especially since the cabins on long plane trips can get quite chilly. As we get closer to your tour date, we will send you information on appropriate attire for the evenings – but don’t panic! Nothing is formal, but there may be an evening or two where it might be appropriate to wear a sports coat or little black dress. Most evenings, however, will be casual.
What is the time difference?
Europe is 6 hours ahead of the East Coast and 9 hours ahead of the West Coast. 6:00 pm in Europe is noon in New York. All flight, train, bus etc. schedules in Europe are on the 24-hour clock. Simply deduct 12 hours from the European “pm” times to get US times, i.e., 18:00 = 6:00 pm; 22:30 = 10:30 pm; 0:15 = 12:15 am. But 07:00 = 7:00 am, 10:00 = 10:00 am; 12:00 = noon. So, let’s get together at 17:45 . . . we’ll meet at 5:45 pm.
What about jet lag?
We recommend that you arrive a day early, if possible, to get acclimated to the time difference. Some people take a nap upon arrival and some stay awake and then go to bed early. The recommendation from physicians is that you should get as much daylight and mild exercise as possible after arrival, stay awake, have an early dinner, and get a good night’s sleep. Please contact us if you would like to arrive a day early or stay longer at the end of the trip. Please call Allyn Ryan in our office at 813 475 5989. Thank you.
What’s the weather like?
The weather usually parallels the mid-Atlantic states in the U.S. You should go to www.weather.com to get a forecast for Stuttgart or the other venues we are visiting. When we drive in the Alps it gets chilly any time of year, so a windbreaker or leather jacket is advisable.
Do I need a visa to go to Europe?
U.S. or Canadian citizens do not need a visa to go to any of the European EU-Member countries. All you need is a valid U.S. or Canadian passport, with more than six months validity before it expires. If you are a non-U.S. citizen, we will advise you regarding visa requirements. You may also check with your respective consulates.
Do I need an International Driver’s License?
Your valid United States or Canadian driver’s license is sufficient for driving in Europe with your own or a rental AVIS, Budget etc. vehicle.  However, if you rent a car from PORSCHE Drive at the Museum in Stuttgart, for example, they do require an International Driver’s License.  Thus, to be safe, we recommend that you go to your local AAA Office and obtain and International Driver’s License.  Check out: www.aaa.com/vacation/idpf.html.
How does driving in Continental Europe differ from the US or Canada?
It is important to remember, however, that driving in Continental Europe is VERY different from driving in the U.S. We will provide detailed instructions, country-by-country. Remember, ONLY Germany has sections on their interstate highway system – the AUTOBAHN – with no speed restrictions. Bear in mind though, it certainly is not a free-for-all, because you must follow some very specific rules and etiquette. Fast Lane Travel, Inc. publishes a pre-trip document entitled “12 Tips for a Safe and Enjoyable Trip from Fast Lane Travel, Inc.” Please read it before you arrive. Remember, you are in other countries and their laws apply which may differ substantially from the laws where you reside!
In Europe, when I make a purchase in a store, do they take credit cards?
Yes, virtually everywhere (except certain remote villages in the Alps) you can use your VISA or Master Card. AmEx has less of an acceptance level in the smaller establishments, but all hotels, major stores etc, take it gladly. However, credit card companies may tack on an “international transaction” fee up to 2% but typically their currency exchange rates are more favorable than when you change dollars at the airport, for example. Remember also when you bring cash, the maximum is $10,000 otherwise you have to declare it.
Europe adds a 16% (value added tax – VAT) sales tax to anything I buy – can I get a refund?
The assumption is that any “bigger” item you buy like jewelry, clothing, Gucci purses etc. you will take with you when your leave Europe, i.e., you are exporting the item. Yes, all stores will give you a “tax receipt” which you then take to a department store’s tax refund counter with your passport, and they will give you a cash refund on the spot. For example, at the Galeria Kaufhof, next to the Graf Zeppelin Hotel in Stuttgart, you can get the tax refund on the lower level. When you depart Europe try to keep expensive stuff in your carry-on because the customs folks may ask to see it at the airport – hard to do if you checked your luggage. They also offer that service at the airport, but take my advice, it’s too stressful to do that there. They also don’t give you cash but mail you a check in a couple months from a service center in Croatia.
Can I plug in my curling iron, laptop, etc.?
European electrical outlets are 220 volts, 50 cycles, rather than our 110/120 volts, 60 cycles. If you want to bring something electrical, like a curling iron, bring one that is manufactured for both 110 and 220 volts. Then you will only need a plug adapter. It’s better to purchase a European curling iron or flat iron at the department store next door probably for under 20 Euros. Today, most laptops, telephones, tablets, headsets, etc. have dual voltage and can be charged with the European 220V system. Please let us know if we can assist you with any special needs you may have, such as breathing devices (CPAPs), for example. Plug adapters differ in various countries – hotels typically will sell or provide them. You can also buy them online before departure.
I’d like to bring my sales team on one of your tours as an incentive. Can you handle a group like this?
Yes, we have had several incentive groups on our tours over the years with groups as small as five and as large as 95. We are happy to arrange a special incentive tour for your group that meets your special requirements. We have also arranged special tours for groups of friends, family gatherings and various PORSCHE groups. Please give us a call at 813 343 3001.
The dates for your tours don’t align with my vacation dates. Do you have other options for me?
Yes. We can design a custom tour for you. Just give us a call and we’d be happy to provide you with all the options and price estimates. A good rule of thumb for a custom tour, driving a PORSCHE, is a $1,000 to $1,200 per day per person budget, depending, on factors like the hotels, parking, distance driven, border crossings, insurance, number of travelers and various other key travel elements.
I have ordered a car by my dealer for EURO-DELIVERY? May I bring my own car on the trip?
Of course, in fact it is one of the greatest joys to pick up your PORSCHE in Leipzig or Stuttgart. The advantage of a Leipzig Delivery is that you get a full-day track experience on the amazing Leipzig Test Track.   When you drive your own car on our European Tours, the price is reduced because we don’t have to rent you a PORSCHE or insure it since it comes with the Factory Insurance. Of course, as with all other cars on the trip your gasoline, secure parking, mountain road tolls, Autobahn Permits for each country, walkie-talkies, guides, navigation programming, road book with key contacts and emergency support services are included. There is nothing like driving your own car, safely, on the Nürburgring and bringing it home with the Nürburgring decal. Learn more about our Fast Lane Nürburgring Experience (click here).
Do women enjoy this trip?
The short answer: absolutely YES! Our tours are planned, crafted and delivered with your utmost enjoyment and comfort in mind – you don’t have to think. No need to read maps, guidebooks or worry about parking. Secondly, we stay in THE best five- or four-star hotels that have wonderful spas for you to relax. Lastly, all venues we visit offer plenty of shopping, not only of international brands, but also of fascinating local items. Stuttgart, for example, has wonderful department stores, like Galeria Kaufhof, Bräunigerland, Müller plus dozens of stores on Königsstrasse and the Marktplatz area.
Who is Fast Lane Travel, Inc.?
Fast Lane Travel, Inc. is a registered Delaware Corporation and is also a bonded, insured, registered and licensed Seller-of-Travel Corporation in Florida. Peter Sontag is the Founder & CEO of Fast Lane Travel, Inc. and has been conducting PORSCHE trips for the last 45 years. In total, there have been over 8,000 PORSCHE Trip participants who have enjoyed our services. Of those, approximately 500 PORSCHES (roughly $35 million worth) were purchased and picked up on the trips over the years. Everyone has been gracious, fabulous and loads of fun. Fast Lane Travel, Inc. is the official PORSCHE Club of America (PCA) endorsed provider of the original PCA Treffen® Program to Stuttgart, Zuffenhausen and Leipzig, Germany. Fast Lane Travel’s sister company Fast Lane Luxury Travel, LLC is a fully licensed Travel Agency arranging flights, cruises, tours, car rentals and hotel reservations. When registering for a PORSCHE Tour with us we prefer that you book your flights through Fast Lane Luxury Travel. Ninety percent of our PORSCHE Tours start and end in Stuttgart. Delta 116, a personal favorite, used to fly non-stop from Atlanta (ATL) directly to Stuttgart (STR). For the moment they are schedule to resume flying in April 2022. Allyn, our agency manager is happy to arrange the air, cruise, train and other travel for our PORSCHE Fest guests. PLEASE Call Allyn at 813 475 5989. She has over 30 years of experience.
Peter, you’ve been organizing these trips for 45 years – why do you keep doing them?
Based on my travel industry expertise, German language fluency and PORSCHE enthusiasm, in 1975 the PCA asked me to re-create the original TREFFEN Program to Stuttgart which was discontinued in 1962.

I had a successful career in the travel & transportation industry. I was the founder and CEO of the $2.4 billion USTravel Corporation with 4,000 employees, 540 offices from Barrow, Alaska to Key West, profitable every quarter. My investors sold the company in 1994.

In retirement, some people paint, some create sculptures . . . I create enjoyment. Our Company Motto is: “It’s our business to do pleasure!” My goal is to provide the perfect travel experience to PORSCHE and other luxury automotive enthusiasts. Designing, organizing, managing and conducting these trips is an art, not a science. Responding to the various requests by participants, coordinating the interaction of the various service providers in Europe and nurturing the relationship with PORSCHE and PCA has been rewarding. I invest about 2,000 hours of my personal time to do this for the PCA. Read the participants’ comments on the bottom of the Home Screen and you see why I enjoy doing this. When you fly back home after one of my trips you will appreciate the thought, preparation, work and long hours that have gone into the creation of my “work of art” the Fast Lane PORSCHE travel experience, because “it is my business to do pleasure.” Peter Sontag, President and Treffen- and Festmeister and Chief.

On Trip Questions

When I arrive in Stuttgart, how do I get to the hotel?
We will pick you up at the airport in Stuttgart, provided you either have us arrange your travel or you give us your detailed itinerary at least two weeks prior to your arrival in Europe. Look for a Hofmann Taxi representative with the Fast Lane sign – Hofmann at the Airport can be reached: +49 711 796 356 or +49 711 948 4409. If you arrive by train in Stuttgart the Steigenberger Hotel Graf Zeppelin is directly across the street from the Hauptbahnhof (main railroad station).
How do I take a train from the FRA Airport Terminal to Stuttgart Hauptbahnhof (main train station)?
Call Allyn Ryan in our office and she’ll book your train ticket 813 475 5989.

After you land and are by the luggage belt, place your luggage on one of the free FRA luggage carts. The carts have rubber teeth in the undercarriage which lock onto the escalators and, therefore, can be taken up and down escalators! You can take the carts directly to the train. There are also elevators. The trains from FRA leave directly from Terminal 1 which is where typically international flights from the US and Canada arrive.

The signage is clear. As you walk towards the trains, there is a ticket office in the center of the hallway and several counters to the right. I booked a 2nd class (Economy) seat on Train #517 ICE 12:54 – 14:08 (1 ¼ hour ride) for €64.00 paid with AmEx. The train left from Track (track = Gleis) 5. There is a map of the train layout every 50 feet on the platform as well as a sign displaying the destination of the next train and the train number.

Before you take the escalators down to the track there is a little coffee shop where you can relax and wait. There is no reserved seating – but plenty of room. The train is very sleek and long. About halfway the train makes a 2 – minute stop in Mannheim. All announcements on the train are easily understood in German and English. The trains are virtually silent gliding along quietly and very smoothly, as they approach speeds of 100 mph+. I worked on my laptop all the way.

Once in Stuttgart, the Hotel Graf Zeppelin is directly across the street. If you need help with your luggage, call the hotel for a porter – local call: 20 48 0; from Frankfurt 0711 20 48 0; from the U.S. 011 49 711 20 48 0. Be sure to tell them the train # you are on so they can find you. It’s smart to call ahead and not when you get into Stuttgart.

If you purchased your train ticket through our Fast Lane Luxury Travel subsidiary, we’ll make sure someone meets you at the train. Please NOTE: we’ll be happy to assist you with your train arrangements – we operate a fully licensed Travel Agency as part of our company. Allyn and Bernice will be happy to help with all your arrangements, including River or Mediterranean Cruises, Safaris or PORSCHE trip extensions. You may reach the ladies at: 813 475 5989. The key advantage of using our travel service is that if something goes awry with your bookings, for example, it’s much easier for us to help you.

There is also a meet & greet service in FRA we can arrange for you, where you are met at luggage claim. They will take you to the correct train and load your luggage on the train for you. In Stuttgart one of the hotel bellmen will meet you at the track and take you across to the hotel.

I have never been to Germany, is language going to be a problem?
Our tours are perfect for first-time European travelers. No, it won’t be a problem. Most educated Northern Europeans speak excellent English and if you should ever have a language problem, all your guides (Peter, Thomas, Hans, Volker, Marc, Sebastian, Tilman, Nicolas, Dawid and Johny) are fluently bi-lingual and will gladly help.

German is a very literal language; each letter is pronounced. For example, the word “knee” would be pronounced “kah-nee” in German. That’s also why your car is a por sha not a “porsh.” Also, some of the names we use in English for destinations do not coincide what locals call them; for example: Nuremberg = Nürnberg; Munich = München; Cologne = Köln; Vienna = Wien; Austria = Österreich; Germany = Deutschland, etc. Please be aware of these differences when reading road signs! We are there with you to guide you.

What if I need to cancel my tour reservation?
Please review our tour Terms and Conditions. Our policy is to give you a full refund. However, bear in mind, the purpose of deposits is to secure your hotel or event space in Europe and cover necessary operations expenses. Many hotels and venues require non-refundable deposits, like Italy or Switzerland. You will get a full refund up until 96 days prior to the tour’s departure for TREFFEN tours, 121 days for all other tours. Once we have paid our European suppliers, we will work with you to get the maximum refund that has been applied to the tour. However, we strongly encourage you to purchase travel insurance from our partner, Allianz, to cover any cancellations, medical contingencies or other issues that might prevent you from taking or completing the tour. Please call Allyn in our office for insurance information at 813 475 5989. We encourage you to review the industry standard Terms and Conditions on the back of your invoice and on our website. Our practice has been to also provide credit for future trips in most cases.
What PORSCHE will I drive?
We currently use AVIS for our PORSCHE rentals. We have had excellent experience in the last several years with their pool of over 180 PORSCHES. Ninety-five percent of our guests have gotten their first choice of PORSCHE over the past few years with AVIS. We also have several other suppliers and can get you Turbos, Ferraris, Lamborghinis, etc., for an additional fee. We occasionally have also been able to get TechArt or RUF PORSCHES for our guests. But the latter are for the very serious driver and are generally not comfortable road cars since they typically have a harsher ride than production PORSCHES. Prices for “exotic cars” will be quoted upon request for these specialty cars – but typically you need to add up to an additional €500/day or more for a Turbo, Lambo or other exotic car.

You may also rent a Factory PORSCHE through the PORSCHE Museum in Stuttgart on an individual basis. If you choose to do that, we will deduct the cost of the AVIS PORSCHE from the trip price, however, the cost of the gasoline, parking, mountain tolls, Autobahn permits, navigation programming, roadbooks, walkie talkies and drive guides are still included in your tour price.

What is the dress code on the trip?
This is your vacation. Some of the 5-star hotels are more formal and there might be one or two evenings where I would wear a jacket (no one ever wears a tie) and the ladies might enjoy dressing up in that “little black dress” or a pantsuit. But we have had participants who wear a jogging suit the entire trip, or jeans. You have to be comfortable. In general Europe is more formal than the U.S. Wear comfortable walking shoes. Some folks bring driving gloves or buy them in Germany.

Consider packing a sweater and windbreaker in case there are rapid changes in temperature. The higher in elevation we go, the cooler it will be – a sweater and windbreaker then will feel great! We will be driving into the Alps, including mountain passes that could have snow on the ground in May or September. I’ve seen snow on the Grossglockner in July. You might also want to pack your sweater in your carry-on luggage with you on the airplane, especially since the cabins on long plane trips can get quite chilly.

Then a couple months before departure, typically with the second deposit invoice, you’ll get additional information on your trip, including a day-by-day “dress code” matrix.

What if I get sick or injured while on tour?
There is access to excellent medical care anytime should you need it. We even have a physician on call in Stuttgart who will come to the hotel if needed. If you purchase travel insurance, the insurance will cover other medical needs such as hospitalization, medical evacuation, etc.

If you wear glasses, bring your extra pair. You may also want to bring along your prescription (but sometimes it is difficult to get glasses made up quickly in Europe). If you use any medicines or special items, bring a supply sufficient for the trip. If you suffer from any sinus or allergy ailments or are in any way susceptible to respiratory infections, please ask your physician for a prescription before leaving on the tour. Long transatlantic plane trips, air-conditioned tour buses and hotels, coupled with jet-lag, fatigue and late hours, sometimes produce conditions that can make your trip uncomfortable.

Trip Costs

Is the airfare included in the price?
No, the tour price does not include airfare because our guests come from all parts of the U.S. and Canada plus many different countries. A significant number of guests also use frequent flyer miles or points to book their airfare. Please NOTE: we prefer to book your flights – we also operate a fully licensed Travel Agency as part of our company. Allyn Ryan will be happy to help with all your arrangements, including River or Mediterranean Cruises, Safaris or PORSCHE trip extensions. You may reach her at: 813 475 5989. The key advantage of using our travel service is that if something goes awry with your airline bookings, for example, it’s easy for us to help you.
Why is Europe so expensive?

The current U.S. Government policy appears to maintain a low value of the Dollar vs. other currencies. This policy helps our exports. For example, it puts Boeing in better competitive position vs. Airbus Industries. It also attracts visitors to the U.S. to come here and shop or buy U.S. assets, like real estate assuming our Homeland Security doesn’t stop them at the border. On the other hand traveling to Europe is, therefore, much more expensive because it takes more Dollars to buy Euros. The Euro (€) was introduced on January 1st 1999 to further expedite the unification of Europe. Most European countries went along with it and gave up their currencies, some did not, like the UK, Denmark, Switzerland etc. In 1999 you could buy one Euro for $.86 vs. approx. $1.25+ today. In other words, you pay almost twice as much for the same Euro today as on the day it was introduced in 1999. That means you roughly pay twice as much for everything but unfortunately you are not getting any more in return.

Why are prices so high in Germany?

The current U.S. Government policy maintains a low value of the Dollar vs. other currencies. This policy helps our exports. For example, it puts Boeing in better competitive position vs. Airbus Industries. It also attracts visitors to the U.S. to come here and shop or buy U.S. assets, like real estate assuming our Homeland Security doesn’t stop them at the border. On the other hand, traveling to Europe is, therefore, much more expensive because it takes more Dollars to buy Euros. The Euro (€) was introduced on January 1st, 1999 to further expedite the unification of Europe. Most European countries went along with it and gave up their currencies, some did not, like the UK, Denmark, Switzerland etc. In 1999 you could buy one Euro for $.86 vs. approx. $1.20+ today. In other words, you pay almost twice as much for the same Euro today as on the day it was introduced in 1999. That means you roughly paying one-and-a-half times as much for everything but unfortunately you are not getting any more in return.

Where is the best location to change my money, i.e., purchase Euros with Dollars?

If you prefer to exchange Dollars for Euros prior to your departure – which I highly recommend, you should do so at your home bank (you must pre-order them from your bank at least a couple weeks before departure). You can also exchange currency at the airport in Stuttgart or at the bank at the Hauptbahnhof (railroad station) – but their fees are a little high. Most ATM cards issued by U.S. banks work in Europe and there are plenty of ATMs everywhere – just as there are here in the U.S. – with multiple language options including English. When you use an ATM in Europe, you will receive your cash in Euros and the exchange rate is usually much better than at exchange offices or banks.

Why is there a single supplement charged by hotels in Europe?

The hotels in Europe have this peculiar system where they don’t quote the price for a room but they quote the price for a room based on double occupancy. For example if a “double” room costs €300 per night (€150 per person). Thus, trips are calculated on a per person basis, which include the cost of €150 per person per night in coming up with the total trip price. But the hotels’ policy is that if only one person stays in that room they can’t charge the full €300 because it would be unfair but they can’t also charge only the €150 because they lose half the revenue. So they roughly split the difference and charge €225 Euros for the room if only one person stays in it (€150 + €75 = €225). This is called the Single Supplement. Accordingly, following the European model, our tours are designed under the assumption that at least two people will occupy a room and a car. While our tours are designed for double occupancy, be assured we accommodate single travelers almost every trip.

The PORSCHE rental cost is also cut in half on the assumption that two people share the car. If only one person uses the PORSCHE then a “single supplement” is charged to cover the full cost of the rental. It’s irrelevant who drives.

How do I avoid the single supplement charge?

Avoiding the single supplement is easy with Fast Lane Travel, Inc. We offer a “PORSCHE driving buddy” finding service. This service allows you to avoid paying a single supplement for the PORSCHE if you sign up to share a PORSCHE with another solo traveler, but still are able to have your own room by paying the Hotels’ Single Supplement charge.

Be sure to reserve your PORSCHE trip early, it gives us more time to match you with a like-minded traveler.

Other options for avoiding the single supplement include bringing a friend or joining a singles travel network that can help you find travel partners or finding a roommate on your own.

Is my trip deposit refundable?

Please review the Terms and Conditions on our website and on the back of your invoice. Depending on the circumstances, our goal is to give you the maximum refund possible or credit for future travel with us. There are exceptions imposed on us by certain premium properties that requires a non-refundable deposit or full payment as much as a year in advance. We strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance to cover medical contingencies or other non-medical issues that might prevent you from taking or completing the trip. Please call Allyn at 813 475 5989 to get a quote on travel insurance.

Why do you require a deposit per person to secure our trip slots?

In our experience on average 5 – 10% of participants cancel prior to departure, mostly for business or health reasons. The cancellation rate for non-deposited reservations (which we permitted in the 70’s and early 80’s) is in excess of 85%. Our experience underscores that reservations without deposits are wannabes. In order to secure accommodations in Europe we must reserve hotel space, restaurant reservations, PORSCHES, entertainers etc. They all require deposits and a participant head count, in some cases a year in advance! This can only be accomplished with deposits. For example PORSCHE Leipzig wants to know a year in advance exactly how many participants will be on the track a year later. The European service and accommodation providers only want to know “How many participants do you have under deposit?” That’s the guideline.

Can I pay my deposit with a credit card or can I pay for the trip with a credit card?
YES, and Yes. We currently accept credit cards as a form of payment for initial deposits where we cover the credit card fees.

You may pay for the balance of your trip with a credit card; however, we must add on the 3% to 5% service fee charged by the credit card companies. Thus, paying your deposit or balance of your tour cost with a check is preferred. The credit card number we ask for during the reservation process is also used to secure your PORSCHE from the car rental company to pay any traffic fines, any damage deducible, additional non-included kilometers and additional vehicle insurance you may want to purchase.

Is there a chance that the quoted price may change?
Unlikely, but yes. There could be further currency swings, certain venues could increase their prices, or the number of participants requires that fixed costs, such as busses, guides, entertainment, etc., be spread over a smaller number. In the past, price changes, were typically in the 5 – 7% range. This past year we also had to pass on a Pandemic surcharge levied by some destinations. We’ve had trips where prices went down and we added additional trip benefits or even gave refunds. Since I never know the number of participants and cannot predict the currency swings, hedging is not an option.
Will I need to pay for anything once I’m on tour?

The rental price of your PORSCHE is included in the price of the trip, as is the basic insurance that limits your financial liability for damage to the vehicle to €2,000. The tour price also includes premium gasoline, currently $12.20/gallon, throughout the tour, parking fees and tolls. However, as is common with the rental of premium vehicles anywhere, there is a limit to the number of free miles/kilometers that you can drive each day. For our PORSCHES, this limit is 200 kilometers per day for the first 4 days and 150 kilometers/day thereafter. Unfortunately, the charge for kilometers exceeding this amount is a charge we cannot pre-pay with AVIS because in their system the “renter” – you – are responsible for the car and the additional kilometers. Furthermore, we do not know the number of kilometers you may drive. You may deviate from the planned route and drive on your own or we may need to deviate from our planned route because of detours or road closures. Any kilometers driven above the free kilometers per day will be charged to your credit card by AVIS at the rate €1 per additional kilometer. When you register for the tour, we will provide you with an estimate of the total kilometers we anticipate you will drive so than you can plan for this post-tour expense from AVIS.

Another expense we cannot plan for is traffic infractions. It is very common in Europe for pictures to be taken from a “speed” camera set up to capture traffic violations. Your guide will try to warn you as much as possible as we zip through the little towns or on speed restricted Autobahns. If you are caught speeding by one of these cameras, you will most likely be sent a letter from the jurisdiction with instructions for payment. NOTE: you will also be charged a processing fee on your credit card by AVIS since the vehicle is registered to AVIS. The jurisdiction will send a notice of the infraction to AVIS, who will look up who was renting the vehicle at the time of the infraction and send that information to the jurisdiction.

The insurance that we purchase for the rental of the PORSCHE reduces your liability for damages to €2,000. As you probably know, even minor repairs to PORSCHES can be quite expensive and you will be responsible for paying for any damages to the vehicle up to €2,000. Common damages that most often occur are scratched rims, paint chips, windshield dings, etc., all of which will quickly eat up the €2,000 deductible. These damage expenses will also be charged to your credit card by AVIS. Also, we do not permit drivers to consume alcohol at lunch during our driving days. The penalties in Europe for a DUI are draconian with minimum jail sentences and impounding of the car.

Can I pay in Euros to minimize the currency risk?
Yes. You can wire transfer Euro funds directly to our designee in Europe and, thus, eliminate the currency risk. Just let us know and we’ll give you the wire transfer instructions. To eliminate the currency risk completely and lock in the exchange rate for the trip is to pay for the trip in full in Euros at the point of sign up. If you cancel your refund might be different in US $’s from what you paid because the exchange rate may have changed.
Will I need to pay anything for my rental PORSCHE once I’m on the tour?
The daily base rental price of your PORSCHE is included in the price of the trip. In addition, we have included:

  • The basic insurance for your PORSCHE;
  • Gasoline at roughly 3 to 4 times per gallon than the prices in North America;
  • Autobahn Permits;
  • Mountain Passes Roads Tolls per the itinerary;
  • Tunnel Tolls;
  • Venue and overnight parking;
  • 200 kms per driving day for the first four days; 150 kms per driving day thereafter
What Could Be Additional Charges?
Your Credit Card could be charged:

  • For kms over the daily rental allocation at €1.00/km – for example: if the routing of the trip you are on is 1,300 kms and the trip is planned for 6 driving days. Then, 200 kms x 4 days = 800 kms; plus 150 kms x 2 days = 300 kms; for a total of 1,100 kms included “free” by AVIS for 6 driving days. However, since the tour routing is planned for 1,300 kms, the additional 200 kms over the “allowed” included kilometer portion will be charged to your credit card, which in this example is, €200.00 or roughly $250.00.
  • €25 per driving day for the mandatory CDW that limits your financial liability for damages to the vehicle to €1,000. The tour price also includes gasoline throughout the tour, parking fees and tolls.
  • The additional insurance that we recommend you purchase for €27/rental day reduces your liability for damages from €2,500 to €1,000. As you probably know, even minor repairs to PORSCHES can be quite expensive and you will be responsible for paying for any damages to the vehicle up to €1,000. Common damages that most often occur are scratched rims, paint chips, windshield dings, etc., all of which will quickly eat up the €2,500 deductible.
I’ve never been through Customs before. What happens if I want to bring back items I’ve purchased in Europe to the U.S.?

When returning to the U.S., the duty-free limit is currently $800 per person. When you return to the U.S., declare absolutely everything that you buy or receive as a present. If you are over the $800 per person, U.S. Customs charges 3% on the next $1,000 worth of purchases. If you exceed $1,800 in merchandise, you must pay a tax of up to 25% on the amount that exceeds the limit. Be sure to have all your receipts handy for the stuff you bought in Europe.

Hotels – Accommodations

Do the hotels we stay in have Hair Dryers and which brand of electrical converters should we purchase?

Yes, hair dryers are provided. To plug in your computer or mobile phone all you need are adapter plugs to plug into the European socket. Bear in mind that their electrical current is twice ours at 220 volts. Therefore, whatever you’re plugging in from the US must be able to run on 220 V. For example, my laptop transformer runs on both 220 and 110 just as my camera and i-phone recharger does. Personal appliances are inexpensive therefore, for example, it’s cheaper to consider buying a German curling iron than to carry a heavy transformer.

Do the hotels have Internet access?

Yes, they do.

Do the hotels that we are staying in have Televisions?

Yes, but the programs are in German, except BBC, FOX, and CNN.  They also typically have programs in Italian, Spanish, Turkish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and French.  For a cultural experience watch one of the Arabic or Russian stations for a few minutes.  It’s fascinating to learn what’s important to them.

Will I be able to do laundry in any of the hotels?

Yes – all hotels have laundry facilities.   All hotels will do your laundry overnight for you for a charge.

Should I leave my jewelry at home?

On any trip, not just a Fast Lane Travel tour, I recommend leaving your most valuable items at home. There is no safety concern at our hotels, but we know people often lose or misplace things when they are out of their normal routine, like on a trip.  Hotels also feature safe deposit boxes where you may story your very valuable items.

Driving in Europe

Do I need a special driver's license?
The short answer is maybe:  NO, if your drive one of the AVIS rental PORSCHES, for example. Your valid United States or Canadian driver’s license will suffice. YES, if we rent you a PORSCHE from the PORSCHE Driving Experience.  To be safe go to your nearest AAA location and they will issue an International Driver’s License or go to www.aaa.com/vacation/idpf.html or there are other services on line they’ll send it electronically and you have it on your mobile phone, just like a boarding pass.
Is driving in Europe the same as the US or Canada?
It is important to remember however that driving in Europe is VERY different from driving in the States. You will receive a detailed Drivers Briefing before we take the PORSCHES out on the road. Remember, ONLY Germany enjoys the majority of their interstate highway system – the AUTOBAHN – with no speed restrictions. Bear in mind though, it certainly is not a free-for-all, because you must follow some very specific rules and etiquette. FYI, the fatality rate is 2.4 times higher in the U.S. on our interstate highways than on the German Autobahn. The Autobahn is safer!
I have never driven over 100 miles per hour – will that be a problem?
Safety and your enjoyment is our top priority. When you sign up for our trips we ask you regarding your prior PCA or other driver’s training, if any. We also ask you for your estimated speed comfort level on the Autobahn. We then accommodate the participants according to their preferences into driving groups. After the first day of driving, you will know your personal comfort level and we’ll adjust your driving enjoyment accordingly. Our trips are guided by experienced bi-lingual PORSCHE drivers who pace the speed based on your abilities, comfort and, above all, safety. We try segment our participants into three categories: up to 100 mph (slow); 100 – 130 mph (medium); 130 mph plus (fast). Only Germany has no-speed limit portions of their interstate system, called the Autobahn. We’ve had participants up to 86-years old doing just fine. Our average travel speed on the Autobahn is approx. 120 mph – with the opportunity to go faster on certain long straight sections with little traffic. There are strict traffic rules to be observed, however. We will brief you prior to getting into your PORSCHES. You must attend our mandatory drivers’ briefing and video before we get into our PORSCHES in Europe. You are also required to sign the PCA event, Fast Lane Travel, Inc. and car rental company releases.
Can my 16 or 18-year-old son drive the PORSCHE too?
The legal driving age in Germany is 18; however, to rent a premium vehicle like our PORSCHES, you must be 25 years of age or older. However, we do have access to smaller private car rental companies and can get exceptions for participants as young as 18. But there will be additional insurance costs. There is no upper age limit for driving as long as you possess a valid U.S or Canadian driver’s license.

We had a father on the trip who purchased a Macan for his 16-year old daughter and had it delivered in Germany. She drove her car all over Europe. Thus, the US driver’s license was OK.

Can I drive another car?
Yes, if you have an open budget, we can accommodate you with other cars such as Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes, Bentley, Rolls, etc. We occasionally have also been able to get a TechArt or RUF PORSCHE Twin-Turbo for our participants. Please bear in mind that there is substantial additional cost for “exotic” or “high performance” vehicles. We rented a McLaren for one of our customers at roughly €2,000/day plus about €2/kilometer over 200/day.
How do you segment the participants driving ability and comfort level?
When you register for our trips, we ask you regarding your prior PCA or other driver’s training, if any. We also ask you for your estimated speed comfort level on the Autobahn. We then divide the participants into the appropriate driving sequences. After the first day of driving, you will know your personal comfort level and we’ll adjust your driving enjoyment accordingly.
If gasoline is included, how do we fill up?
When we stop for gasoline, your guide will pull up to a pump (your gas port is on the passenger side) and the rest of the cars will line up behind him. We then will all tank up from the same pump without hanging up the hose. After your car is refueled, pull forward so the next car can get to the pump. After the last car, the guide will go inside and pay the cashier for all the cars at that pump (try not to have any of the German drivers break into our line). In Europe, for the most part you cannot pay at the pump thus we have developed this much more efficient time-saving system. Try not to be shocked at the $12.20 price per gallon for premium. When you see the prices at the pump in Europe, they are quoted Euros/Liter. To convert to Gallons: € price/liter x 3.8 to get gallons x $1.25 to get $’s. We use the same gas-up system on our US trips. It saves time and gets us on the road quicker.
Do we have to drive together?
The short answer is NO – it’s your vacation you may take off on your own. In Europe 98.5% of participants follow one of our guides because the guide will point out driving elements, scenery, often history and you don’t have to worry about road signs if you don’t speak the language. In addition, for the PORSCHES your drive we will help you to pre-program your NAVI System with all of the destinations for the entire trip. Should you get separated, just follow your navigation. We will all be connected with long-range walkie-talkies while driving. Your drive guides will provide information and road cautions, when necessary, via the walkie-talkies. Again, if you violate driving laws in Europe the penalties can be draconian – you are better off staying with our guides.
What happens if we get separated from the group?
While we are very careful to avoid calamities, there is an occasional breakdown – stuff happens… We follow the U.S. Military procedure of “no man left behind.” If something happens to your car, we’ll double you up in one of the guides’ cars and get you another PORSCHE as expeditiously as possible. NOTE: Each PORSCHE is equipped with day-glow green reflective vests. If you get out of your vehicle on the Autobahn or a country highway in Germany, you MUST don the reflective vest – you’ll get a ticket if you don’t. Depending on the situation, your guide will contact the local authorities, the rental car company, and/or the towing company to remove the affected vehicle as needed.
What if I have a flat tire or something breaks down on the PORSCHE?
While we are very careful to avoid calamities, there is an occasional breakdown – stuff happens… We follow the U.S. Military procedure of “no man left behind.” If something happens to your car, we’ll double you up in one of the guides’ Panameras. While we will help you to rent another PORSCHE as expeditiously as possible, there is no guarantee that another rental PORSCHE will be available. We’ve had cases where your rental PORSCHE has to be taken to a nearby dealer and you will lose a day of driving at a minimum. Secondly, outside of Germany it will not be possible to replace your POSCHE, but we will work to get you another rental vehicle. NOTE: Each PORSCHE is equipped with day-glow green reflective vests. If you get out of your vehicle on the Autobahn or a country highway in Germany, you MUST don the reflective vest – you’ll get a ticket if you don’t. Depending on the situation, your guide will contact the local authorities, the rental car company, and/or the towing company to remove the affected vehicle as needed.

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