By February 12, 20094 Comments Read More →

Warning About Online Rental Cars

I seldom just “rant” about something but this issue I had with Hertz rental car just really ticked me off enough to start posting everywhere I could on the Internet about their scam and poor customer support.

I just recently had my 40th birthday and took my family to Colorado for a mini get away vacation. I live in Texas, and there is a new law here that required me to go to the DMV and renew my license…not online like I had done previously.

Long story short….I booked the rental car via Hotwire.com and Hertz accepted my price point of $185 for the 4 days of our trip.

When I got to the rental place in Colorado, I signed the contract, gave them my license (expired at this time because my birthday was 6 days prior) and they gave me the keys and I loaded the vehicle with my bags and kids.

I TRIED to leave the rental car parking lot but their 70 year old female security person asked to see my license and contract so I could drive out of the lot. She noticed my license had just expired and rerouted me to the office again.

Once inside I talked with the manager, and he said he would have to void out the current contract and not allow me to drive off the lot in their vehicle. Now, I do have a Gold Amex card on file and have full coverage insurance….but since I just had a birthday….not a “valid license”.

Now, the customer in front of me in line at the rental car place was from some Latin American country and I heard the Hertz Employee say to this person “I have not seen this drivers license before”. BUT Hertz rented this non U.S. citizen a car with his driver license….maybe it was a real license, maybe not. Remember this same lady did not see that my license was expired, so is she REALLY doing her job well??? I think not.

Sorry, long story short here.

The manager at Hertz would not work with me at all……he just said “I can not rent you the vehicle and I would need to return the keys”

Luckily, I was on vacation with a neighbor and her husband and kids. They too got their rental contract via Hotwire.com. They had already driven off the lot and were in route to the vacation home.

I had to call them and get them to come back to the office, and rent this vehicle which I already had possession of. We then put the vehicle in my neighbors name, and she paid for it with her credit card.

Here is the BUT, BUT, they rented the same, same, same vehicle to her for TWICE the rate they agreed to rent it to me via Hotwire. TWICE the rate.

I can not get my money back from Hotwire, they do not issue refunds, so I was out the original price of $185 and now had to pay an additional $365 for the new contract.

This is a total scam!!! The manager said this happens ALL the time, and the standard procedure is to cancel the online contract and reissue the new contract at the higher “walk in rate”.

I tried MANY times to talk to Hertz about this and I just want them to honor the original $185 price on the second contract…I mean, I still had to pay Hotwire and Hertz DID agree to the $185 price…why would changing the name on the contract cost twice the price???

All they had to do was issue a partial credit to the second contract price…..and charge me just the original agreed upon price which they had agreed upon in the first place.

I would still be a Hertz customer, they would still make a profit…Hotwire made a killing and everyone would be happy.

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, Hertz refuses to offer a credit. Why oh Why do they think they can just screw their customers like this and get away with it…I dont know. That is why I am posting this email thread from them on my site and every other site I can post it to.

If you are still reading this…….join me in thumbing our noses at Hertz and rent a car from ANYONE ANYONE but Hertz!!!

Dear Mr. Davis:

Thank you for your response to our correspondence. We appreciate the opportunity to review this matter again.

Hertz provides rates based on several factors. This includes where and when you rent, the type of vehicle, and whether you receive a discount or special rate through your affiliation with a company or organization. Also, Hertz utilizes a “Yield Management” system similar to hotels and airlines, where rates are assigned based on supply and demand. Some outside travel sources, like HotWire, and Priceline, offer promotional rates that are available only to customers utilizing their service. We apologize for any misunderstanding.

We regret you found our previous response unsatisfactory. However, adjustment credits are based on documented information which, in this case, did not support an adjustment to the rental rate. In this case, the rate applied was listed on the rental agreement when presented for signature. Although the resolution was not what you preferred, we hope you will understand our position in this matter.

We appreciate your business and hope you will give Hertz an opportunity to serve you in the future.

Sincerely,

Dietra Campbell

Customer Relations Administrator
OKC Customer Relations
The Hertz Corporation
P.O. Box 26120
14501 Hertz Quail Springs Parkway
Oklahoma City, OK 73134
U.S. A.

Telephone: 888-777-6095, Ext. 4036

FAX: 405-290-2899
E-mail: CustomerRelations@Hertz.com

For all correspondence sent USPS, please use the address below.

The Hertz Corporation
Attn: Customer Relations Department
P.O. Box 26120
Oklahoma City, OK 73126
U.S.A.

Dear Dietra Campbell

Hertz agreed to rent the vehicle to me via Hotwire at a rate I was comfortable with. Hertz RENTED the vehicle to me WITH my expired drivers license, I got the keys, loaded my luggage and tried to drive off the parking lot when one of your employees at the security gate viewed my contract and my license and noticed my license had JUST expired.

She then made me go back to the office, stand in line again….I stood in line 30 minutes the first time to get the keys originally due to a kiosk outage at that location.

I spoke to the Manager on duty, he said he would void the contract with hotwire and reissue under L. Drake……..now my kids and my luggage are still in this vehicle, the keys are still in it and the engine is running. He then redid the contract at a MUCH higher rate……….for the same vehicle…….the one you guys already gave me possession of.

This is a total scam!!! Hertz should have honored the same rate that they honored with Hotwire. You guys charged me (on L. Drake’s credit card) more for the exact same vehicle I already am in possession of and my kids and luggage are already in.

My wife has graciously asked you guys to DO THE RIGHT THING…….and keep me as a future customer, and to refund the difference between the hotwire amount and the overly priced amount you billed L Drake. This is soooooooooo simple I am amazed at the amount of man hours that have gone into this very simple request.

Is this REALLY worth pissing me off to the point I bad mouth Hertz for the next 20 years to everyone I come in contact with? This email thread will be posted on every website I can get my hands on……is this worth it to Hertz over $180, or what ever the amount is?
L. Drake and her husband also rented a vehicle from you guys on this trip…….so you got their business because of me.

So I am giving you one last chance to make this right (I am only asking for the price difference between the hotwire contract and the rate you gouged me for the new “walk in” contract) you are still making money on my rental AND the Drakes rental.

Austin Davis

Dear Mr. Davis:

Thank you for your response to our correspondence. We appreciate the opportunity to review your concerns again.* *

After a thorough review of this matter, we stand by our original decision.* *Although the resolution is not what you preferred, no additional action is warranted.* *We regret we are unable to fulfill your expectations in this instance.* *

Your business is appreciated and we look forward to regaining your complete confidence in Hertz.

Sincerely,

Dietra Campbell

Customer Relations Administrator
OKC Customer Relations
The Hertz Corporation
P.O. Box 26120
14501 Hertz Quail Springs Parkway
Oklahoma City, OK 73134
U.S. A.

Telephone: 888-777-6095, Ext. 4036
FAX: 405-290-2899
E-mail: CustomerRelations@Hertz.com

You must be kidding me!!!

I take this line as an insult to me

“Your business is appreciated and we look forward to regaining your complete confidence in Hertz”

You guys are total idiots!!!

Austin Davis

Please send your comments to CustomerRelations@Hertz.com

AND RENT A CAR FROM AVIS OR ENTERPRISE!!!

UPDATE

Hotwire.com refunded my original purchase, although their policy specifically states there are NO REFUNDS. Thanks Hotwire for doing the right thing!

Posted in: Car Rental

4 Comments on "Warning About Online Rental Cars"

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  1. arlo arol says:

    Do not bother with Avis either. They have the same “rip-off” policy. Also, potential renter be warned. When you go with priceline.com or hotwire.com, you agreeing to their no refund policy. Consumer beware!!!

  2. kathy says:

    After reading this customers letters to Hertz – I was furious and I will never rent a car from them again. They should have given the same rate as when the customer rented it a few minutes prior… I’M ON YOUR SIDE AND WILL GO TO ANOTHER CAR RENTAL COMPANY – IT’S NOT LIKE THERE IS NO COMPETITION FOR HERTZ…..

    • Austin says:

      Thanks for your comment. I posted that letter so people could see how they operate their business and handle customer support problems. Figured it would help the next guy make a better decision than I did.

  3. tekken1282 says:

    I do not particularly care for Hertz, but you should have made sure your license was up to date prior to rental. If they allowed you to rent that car, Hertz would be held 100% liable if you were involved in an accident. You are to blame sir. However, that was an incredible dickhead move on their part not giving your friend the original discounted rate. I am going to have to rule in your favor.

Post a Reply to kathy