Beware! New policy at Dollar Rental Car!

Discussion in 'Other Car Rental Programs' started by nubiles, Nov 3, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. nubiles

    nubiles Active Member

    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    6
    Status Points:
    90
    Dear Dollar Rental Car,

    I am a long time customer and member of your Dollar Express program who has relied heavily on your business for many years. So far in 2014, I have rented from your company 10 times for a total of about 60 days, just to give you an idea of how often I use Dollar in my business travel. As a result, I consider myself pretty well versed in your company’s policies and how car rental works in general.

    However, I was very surprised and disappointed by a recent policy change that I discovered on my rental of October 31 at your LAX location. For many years, I have always chosen to fill the car up with gas before returning it instead of the prepaid option. The concept is simple: you leave with a full tank of gas, you return with a full tank of gas. Every car rental company that I have ever rented from has this policy.

    Imagine my disappointment and irritation then as I discovered that you have very quietly changed this policy so that now the car must be returned with a full tank of gas AND a receipt for the purchase of gas within ten miles of the return location. If you don’t have that now-required receipt, then guess what? Dollar charges you a $9.99 fee, even if the gas tank is clearly full.

    Dollar, we’ve spent a lot of time together over the years, you and I. And I feel like I know you well enough now to say that this is total bullsh*t and you know it. This sleazy and predatory policy is designed to do one thing: trick people who have already paid for your car and returned it in perfect condition into forking over an extra ten bucks to your company anyway. When I informed your incredibly unlucky rental return agent at LAX of my feelings towards this new policy, he actually agreed with me, but then told me that this was a corporate decision and there was nothing that he could do.

    Well, as it turns out, there are several things that I can do. The first thing that I can do is to stop renting from your company immediately. The second thing that I can do is to let everyone in my social networks know about this new policy so that they will also stop renting from you. Finally, the other thing that I can do is to post this letter on all of the frequent traveler sites that I am a member of, including Flyertalk, Milepoint, Elliott, etc. In my opinion, the only way that I can affect change is to alert everyone that I can about how Dollar is trying to unnecessarily trying to bilk their customers out of their ten dollars with this hidden policy.

    However, there is one other option of how things might change and that would be if Dollar immediately changed their policy back to what it has always been: you leave with a full tank of gas, you return with a full tank of gas. I would strongly urge you to investigate this option as soon as possible, before your reputation as a rental company who is looking to rip people off becomes cemented into the public’s impression of your business.

    If you do decide to change this policy, please let me know and I will be happy to return to using your company again in the future.

    Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter.

    Sincerely,
    Nubiles
     
  2. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,504
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    I wonder if this cuts both ways: take the rental car to the nearest gas station after picking it up and see how much gas you can fit into the tank. Then insist on getting reimbursed for that when returning the car. I have more than once gotten a car that had a "barely full" tank, i.e., a mile past the exit gate the fuel gauge dropped below the F level.
     
  3. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
    I've been asked to show a receipt maybe 2 or 3 times in 150 or so rentals. Once was with Hertz, once Alamo, I don't recall the others, if any. I'm pretty sure when I was asked I was renting with a super low cost rate. Funny thing, I rented from the same location other times and didn't have to produce a receipt. I think it's probably up to the whim of the location -- maybe they spot check or maybe they harass people paying really low rates. On the other hand do see a reference to the 10 mile requirement in the Dollar contract dated February 9, 2012 so it's certainly not a new requirement.
     
    daninstl and B1BomberVB like this.
  4. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,504
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    Souvenir, tax record, or hoarder? ;)
     
    daninstl and traveltoomuch like this.
  5. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
  6. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,504
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    LOL. I had actually looked at that one myself (but not noticed the date at the bottom. Interpreted your message as you reading a particular rental contract you had "on file" :)
     
    daninstl likes this.
  7. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
    Don't laugh, I'm a hoarder too. I have so much crap here it's entirely possible I have that and much older ones. I even have air ticket stubs from when they were really made out of paper.

    Speaking of paper, I recently ran across a couple of imprinting plates I bought at a junk store years back. One for Pacific Southwest Airlines -- looks like PSA was airline ticketing code 520 back then. And Western Airlines, number 017.
     
  8. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
    For the guys on the run here, it just occurred to me if the doctor wants to give you a PSA test you can now say you don't need to take it because you already know the answer. It's 520.
     
    icurhere2 likes this.
  9. Max M

    Max M Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,639
    Likes Received:
    2,160
    Status Points:
    1,245
    They've had this policy since 2013.

    You must have rented at locations that didn't bother to enforce the policy.

    Being non-elite with Dollar, I was made aware of this policy of having to fill up within 10 miles of the airport with a full tank only by reading the entire rental contract fine print.

    And upon returning the car to TUL, [Tulsa ironically was Dollar's World Headquarters until being purchased by Hertz] for a rental in 2013 they checked my gas station receipt and made sure it was within 10 miles of TUL.

    I normally rent from National or Hertz and have elite status with both.

    Dollar's price was right for the rental, but the condition of car and policy like the one enforced upon nubiles makes me even more grateful for Hertz and National.
     
  10. RCyyz
    Original Member

    RCyyz Silver Member

    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    389
    Status Points:
    495
    Simple solution for me - I will not rent from Dollar.

    Thanks for the heads up on this stupid policy!
     
    daninstl likes this.
  11. jakem4800

    jakem4800 Silver Member

    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    76
    Status Points:
    275
    I have seen this policy with thrifty, but it is never enforced when I return the car
     
    daninstl likes this.
  12. radonc1951

    radonc1951 Gold Member

    Messages:
    5,114
    Likes Received:
    11,606
    Status Points:
    11,070
    Simplier solution for me. Fill up the car within 10 miles of the airport and get a receipt :oops:

    (which is no different than my normal rental car return behavior).
     
    KyRoamer likes this.
  13. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,504
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    I do the same (fill up near airport, and I generally have a receipt. However, if they don't trust me and their fuel tank gauge, why should I trust them when they say the car is full when I pick it up?
     
    daninstl and flyforawg like this.
  14. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
    Well, if you know they enforce the 10 mile rule then it's highly likely the car you rent will have been filled up within 10 miles. Which means little anyhow -- see next post.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2014
  15. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
    The problem with the receipt is that it doesn't prove much. Sure, it shows someone visited a filling station less than 10 miles away but A) I could have just put a gallon or two in till the gauge looked "full enough" or B) I could have even picked a receipt off the floor, take one someone left behind or just picked a pump and asked the attendant for a "duplicate" or C) I could have filled up less than 10 miles away and still drove 50 miles after that.

    So since it's basically meaningless why do they bother? Just turns me off from renting from them.
     
    HaveMilesWillTravel likes this.
  16. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,504
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    Exactly.

    My rental last weekend ended with visits to two gas stations within 10 miles (more like 3 miles actually). The first one had a pump that stopped filling too early, so when I drove off the needle remained slightly under F. I stopped at another one and that pump "squeezed" another gallon in. So now I had two receipts, and it wasn't even a Dollar rental.
     
  17. 8MiHi

    8MiHi Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,015
    Likes Received:
    1,255
    Status Points:
    945
    National asked for my receipt at MCO two years ago (had it!). I have been keeping these receipts handy ever since whenever I turn in a car from whatever agency I got it from.
     
  18. alaskanriley

    alaskanriley Active Member

    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status Points:
    90
    Or get in the car and start to drive away in Seattle and just happen to see thrifty has given you a half full tank for your car..That was a first.
    My favorite $10 dollar charge was when they tried to bill me in Boston on the same trip for my EZ pass misses. seemed like $10 per miss - 4 or 5 misses plus a big handling fee. That tech sure seemed great when I was driving through the toll booths but it seemed like about a 50% capture when I got the bill. No problem to solve - I had rented the pass - but a surprise at the $135 bill in the mail a week later!
     
  19. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,288
    Likes Received:
    1,677
    Status Points:
    1,120
    Wow. I know all rental car companies add junk fees like this. I was just getting ready to pull the trigger on a Dollar rental and this made me change my mind. I have never had this problem with Hertz or Avis. I'm sure they do it but never had it happen to me.
     
  20. KateBennet

    KateBennet Member

    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    3
    Status Points:
    30
    I use Car Rentals Market App https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=hotels.car.rentals.flights.ukasoft&hl=en to find good services. There are shown the closest and the cheapest places next to you. So you can easily find the one which fits you.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2015
    daninstl likes this.

Share This Page