Newspaper Archive of
Mercer Island Reporter
Mercer Island, Washington
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April 22, 1998     Mercer Island Reporter
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April 22, 1998
 

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C8 Mercer Island Reporter How to have a European vacation —— apd bring home a new Bimmer Y/ ree European vacations usual— ly get people’s attention. It worked for Mercer Island res- idents Joe and Pat McNamee. Joe, a vice president at Swedish Medical Center. was in the market a new car last fall. Joe’s wife a vice president at J & H Marsh ZIQIcLennon Insurance Brokers. was ii}; the market for a vacation in ifiurope. with Italy on her radar “screen. Joe wasn’t resisting the European vacation notion. He and Pat had made their first sojourn across the Atlantic in I994 to the British Isles. Both agree. it had been a fabulous time. Joe is an avid golfer and couldn’t resist the green links of his Irish cousin’s home turf Ballyshannon. And with a name like Pat. Joe’s wife found doors opened even wider. and smiles stretched even broader as they trav- eled Ireland’s tiny roads and sam- pIed the Emerald Isle‘s famously friendly pubs. Their first European vacation had been a total success. So they were off to replicate the fun on the continent. when the light bulb flicked on. “EUROPEAN DELIV- ER 99 Joe and Pat had heard vague rumblings about picking up a new car at a factory in Stuttgart or Goteborg. but had never looked into it. Maybe this was the time to ask a few questions. Joe had his eye on the S—series BMWs. but had been frustrated in his efforts here in Western Washington to find the high pow— ered 540 model in the color he wanted. His dealer at Seattle BMW told Joe that he‘d probably need to special order the car to ensure get- ting all the right options. The prob- lem was that delivery might take months. That’s when the light bulb warmed up. Could he get the car he wanted if he picked it up at the factory outside Munich? Sure! What would be the difference in price? The dealer pulled out the price page for the next model year (‘98 models) which would become avail- . able in November. and showed Joe and Pat. The prices shown for deliv- ery at the factory were at dealer’s costs —- and no haggling. What about tariffs and duty? Pat asked. “It’s included.“ What was the extra cost of ship— ping to North America and then freighting the car to Seattle? And who makes all those arrangements? Joe inquired. All shipping is included in the previous price'and the Seattle BMW dealer makes all the shipping Call 425-453—4240 for circulation services. . ‘ 1vliftiiiREPORTER IMO I} l , Friday, April 24th Saturday, April 25th Doors open at 6:30 pm. . Community'Center at Mercer View 8236 852401 St. ' t Call 236-3545 for tickets Sponsors: Walgreens, Water to Go, Chabela’s, Seaflrst Bank, ‘Hedm‘ans‘, Caldwell Banker, Mail [Box Eta; ‘ RoyalriFlorlst, wells Fargo / mamnmmzmm arrangements. Yes. but what about insurance to drive around Europe for a week or two? “It’s included. Part of the deal." “Which port do we have to deliver the car to?" Pat wondered. The dealer showed Joe and Pat a list of 20 European cities where they could turn in the car to be shipped to America. There is no cost if you check—in the car on Monday through Friday in any city on the list. There’s a $70 surcharge if you bring it in on Saturday or Sunday. So what’s the, catch? “No catch." ON TRAVEL JOE AND PATLIKED the part about no haggling. Getting the car at the dealer’s cost meant getting it for at least $5,000 less than Joe fig- ured he could negotiate if he bought the same car here in Seattle through the special order process. Getting the precise mix of options offa dealer’s lot at a good deal is a tall order for most European luxury cars. Plus getting nearly free trans- portation around Europe (Pat and Joe only had to pay for the gas.) was another bonus. On top of that. they were able to get the exact car they wanted months sooner. and with special features that are diffi- cult-to-impossible to find on North American dealer lots. There was one potential stum— bling block. They'wanted their new BMW as soon as possible. What was the lead time from order to pick-up in Munich? Most European delivery manufacturers ask for 90 days as a minimum. Ninety days put the McNamee‘s in Munich to take delivery in January. Not exactly the best time to tour the continent. Could they get it any sooner? The North American BMW coordinator, for European Delivery told the McNamee"s they could pick up their new car in 33 days the first week of November! Bimmer Nirvana. PAT AND JOE are positive minded. optimistic people. Still. something had to go wrong. Didn’t it? Since neither spoke German, they could picture themselves get- ting lost en route to the factory. To their amazement, everything was in order. The BMW people made arrangements for a hotel in'Munich. They provide very explicit direc— tions for how to get to the pick-up location and what time to be there. They buy you lunch. They walk you through the paperwork. They shake— down your new car with you. Still. Joe and Pat were right to be Open 1‘1 a.m.-3 pm. Fridays Next To Seafirst ' Mercer Island 232-3124 arsenic.“ «m MORTON skeptical. A week be, fore they were to take off for Munich. they received a call from the North American coordinator. The car they had special or- dered would not be c0mpleted in time for their arrival. The pro.- posal was to'drive an- other almost identical BMW while in Europe. put the kilometers on BMW's car, not their own, then receive their ~ own car as planned in Seattle without any delay. In reality. the bad news was more good news. ‘ That was the only hitch. The rest might add up to the best free vaca- tion Joe and Pat have ever had. “We left Munich and headed to- ' ward Salzburg, which was wonder- ful. We took a ‘Sound of Music’ tour that introduced us to the many lakes that lay behind Salzburg. We want to go back there for a week andjust stay in these tiny towns on these Austrian lakes with the Alps all around.” THE MCNAMEES WERE worried that November could be a dicey time to vacation in Central Europe. In fact they enjoyed clear. fresh, sunny autumn days that were spectacular. I “From Crazy Ludwig’s castle to the Romantic Strasse to towns like Rothenburg, to the Rhein. it was beautiful.” Pat reports. Joe’s favorite day was the one driving from Rothenburg to the Rheinland. He had enough miles on the BMW 540 that he felt he could open it up on the autobahn. (Most German autobahn’s are absent speed limits.) The Bimmer shot to 120 MPH (200 KPH) without breaking a sweat, but Joe felt that Pat enjoyed the ride more when he kept the speed closer to the IOO MPH range. Pat and Joe’s favorite surprise came as they left the much-tourist— ed; half-timbered wine-hamlets along the Rhein River like St. Goar, Boppard and Loreley to discover the even cuter, less touristed vil~ lages aside the Mosel River. In Cochem with the best castle in Germany, Berg Eltz. nestled above the Mosel like a fine lady’s hat. they happened on a New Fall Wein Fest. It was just a local affair. and it took the McNamee’s about 30 seconds to join the festivities. I bet Herr und Frau McNamee may find some excuse to buy anoth— er BMW sometime down the auto— bahn. [Lightweight 1.4 lb / sq.ft. ‘ I Lifetime warranty I Wide color range I \i‘arranted for 120 mph winds I UL. Class ‘A' fire rating (\‘i'hen installed with specified underlayment) I Patented interlocking design I \‘i'ari'zmtcd against liziil. Lifetime Booting Technologies, Inc. 14019 NE 8T“ #B,'BELLEVUE,WA 98007 WASHINGTON CONTRACTOR LICENSE LIFETRT033BG 7: /‘ iii/it‘ll Beauttfiil (.‘(wdt'linu Wednesday. April 22. I998 ' Matt Brashcars/Mercer Island Reporter Pat and Joe McNamee display their new 1998 BMW 540, which they ordered and picked up in Europe. They; got the exact car. they wanted, and with the savings, their trip was essentially free. at FREE “LIVING TRUST” SEMINAR “What You Ought to Know About Living Trusts" (What you don't know could cost your family thousands of dollars!) I you own a home I... or you have assets worth at least $60,000 you owe it to yourself and your family ~to get the facts on living trusts and proper estate planning. If you think you’re protect- ed with a simple Will think again A Will goes through probate. which means your family may not be able to take possession of your estate for many months. or even years! Plus. if your estate is over $625,000. without proper planning your family may owe federal estate taxes of 37%—55%. This means your family have to may sell some assets just to pay the estate taxes! Proper estate planning avoids these pitfalls by avoiding probate and minimizing or eliminating estate taxes. Plus. proper planning will protect your estate if you become incapacitated by avoiding a guardianship. This means your estate will be managed as you see fit. not as a court-appointed guardian or conservator sees fit. To find out more about the benefits of Living Trusts. attend one of these free seminars V ISSAQUAH ‘ Saturday. April 25 . . 7:0u9;00p.m. 10:00 a.m.‘~12:00 pm. ‘ Holiday Inn Issaquuh . Holiday Inn 18‘ IXUI IZ"‘N.W. .‘ ’ ISSAQUAH Thursday. April 23 4199i: 0419 . ISSAQUAH BELLEVUE Tuesday, April 28 Wednesday. April 29 2:004:00pm. ‘.72':00—4:00,p.m. I} Holiday Inn Issaqmih QvorIake Hospitai IKUI 12”’N.W. Educat ‘Confereiwe to. tom. 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