My family needed to go on a long distance trip to Oklahoma and back. So we shopped around with the different car rental companies to get the best price. We checked Avis, Enterprise, Alamo and finally Budget. Budget had the best price. We reserved a car online and got their “reserved rate guarantee”. Included in this rate was unlimited miles. Well, when we arrived early in the morning of our trip, the store clerk informed us that we could only get unlimited miles if we stay in the surrounding states of Utah. And since we are going outside of these states, the whole trip would be imposed to a mileage restriction. We could only use 150 miles a day. He said he would give us an additional 50 miles a day which made it 200 a day. Just going to Oklahoma and back on our 10 day vacation would be over 2200 miles and he said there would be a 25 cent charge for each additional mile.
When we showed him our reservation paper, he stated that they make their own terms since they (and every other budget rental in Utah) are a franchise and not a corporate store. When I told him that I reserved the car online and it said nothing about the mileage being subjected to store limitations, he said that I should call budget rental’s customer support line. I ended up talking to a very rude support person who talked down to me and said there is nothing to be done.
At this point we were late on our schedule and needed to get on the road. We were over a barrel so to speak. The store clerk told us that there were other customers that were previously able to get credits from corporate since their website was misleading. He said we should call them again later and get the credit which would pay for the overage charges.
While on our trip, we called customer support again and were told that they can do nothing because that store is a franchise. When told that the store clerk said that customers were given credits, they said they do no such thing. After spending a lot of time switching from one department to another, we were finally given a resounding no to any help with the deceitful business practices that they give. They did say they would call the local store and explain the situation.
When we got back to Utah, we dropped off the car at the store (which was already closed) and figured we would call them in the morning (the car wasn’t due until the morning). The next morning we talked to the manager on the phone that never apologized once for our troubles and simply stated that we signed the contract so we were at fault. When we got to the store, he had charged us an excessive damage fee for a small rock chip and tacked on 2 extra hours of rental time which equaled a whole extra day’s rental. They also charged us a regulation fee and a 15% tax fee. I still haven’t figured out why that rate of tax since local tax is 6.25%.
I finally told him that he should charge us for 11 days instead of 10 which would take care of our overage mile charges and the 2 extra hours he was charging us. He made some comment about why didn’t think of that. That made our rental over 100 dollars what the online website’s “reservation guarantee” was.