It happened to me a couple of years ago after what had been a hugely enjoyable and seemingly trouble free trip to southern Spain.
Two or three days after getting home email 1 arrived – You owe €€€ because you dropped off your vehicle at a different airport to where you hired it. I replied that this had been settled on taking charge of the car.
Sorted? Not quite. Email 2 acknowledged that a payment had indeed been made but now informed me that damage had been found on the car and a payment of €250 would be deducted from my Mastercard. They supported this claim with a series of blurry photographs that made it impossible to establish if it was my hire car let alone what damage had been done.
Comfortingly, the company said this amount could be claimed back from my insurance company. Not a thought of possible excess and no claims penalties.
The snag for them was that by a stroke of what turned out to be good fortune, I had left my wallet on the airplane on the flight home and had cancelled all the cards. The car hire company was stumped and when I contested the complaint, the emails mysteriously disappeared from my site – I still don’t know how.
Bad publicity has since dogged the car hire sector and drivers are wise to be wary.
So the good news is that global rental car comparison site, Go4CarRental.net has just released an authoritative 2400-word guide designed to remove the confusion, mysteries, questions and expenses around renting a car on holiday.
Go4CarRental.net founder and travel expert Richard Wolskel says,“Car rental is the biggest mystery of the travel industry. It’s never straight forward, and there’s always hidden costs appearing on your credit card after you’ve dropped the car back. We’ve tried to lift the veil on the entire industry by revealing everything there is to know about car rental. It’s a one-stop-shop for consumers to arm themselves with information before they book, so they can avoid common and often expensive mistakes.”
After extensive feedback from frustrated customers about additional fees charged by the big auto rental companies that Go4CarRental.net’s comparison site lists offers on behalf of, the idea of a one-stop-shop for car hire information and advice was born.
The Car Hire Guide was created “to help customers help themselves” says Mr Wolskel.
Booking a rental car for your road trip is simultaneously exciting, scary and nerve-racking. You’re excited about your upcoming trip but at the same time the fear of the unknown plays on your mind. We’ve all been there.
You search a car rental comparison site and see, “Just €14 a Day”.
“Wow, so cheap” you think. You excitedly lock in your low price, choose your travel dates, grab the extra insurance just-in-case, and finalise your booking.Happy with your deal, you tell your wife and friends about how you practically ‘stole’ a rental car for your upcoming trip. Then you arrive at the car hire desk to pick up the car…
“Mr Smith, your excess will be (some astronomical amount), would you like to reduce the excess to €0 for just €30? Your brain does a quick calculation. “Accident = Some Astronomical Amount. Remove risk for just €30. Yes, I’ll take that extra insurance please.”
They go on to explain the optional extras and that if you don’t fill up the tank prior to returning the car, you’ll be charged €3 per litre if they have to fill up the tank for you.
Then, a week after you drop the car off you notice an extra €80 deducted from your credit card. “Oh, that was for dropping the car back to the garage when no attendant was around, and there was a scratch on the exhaust, so we charged you for that too.”
Go4CarRental.net created their Car Hire Guide to prevent these types of occurrences.
The guide answers common questions like…
- How does rental car insurance work?
- How can I avoid excess charges from car rental companies?
- Are hire cars cheaper at the airport?
- What should I do if I’m offered a vehicle upgrade?
- What is full-to-full fuel policy?
For travellers booking a rental car for their next holiday, this guide is invaluable to ensure their road trip is one to remember… for the right reasons.