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Taken Advantage of
Posted by Mrst5d on 02/14/2012
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA -- Advantage lives up to its name because I was totally taken advantage of. I can't argue with the price, quoted at $20.00/day. But what wasn't made clear was the $200.00 hold they put on my checking account, along with the $20.00/day charge. The car was returned yesterday but the $200.00 was not returned to my checking account as of yet. Also, during the explanation of the gas options, I merely shook my head to say I understood I had the option of getting gas myself or having them fill it when I bring it back. I had all intentions of filling it myself, but then saw on my receipt (tucked away in the little brochure they give you so you can't notice pages 2 and 3) they billed me $38.00 for gas for a little Versa! This is a company that is owned by Hertz, by the way. I am disappointed Hertz would run such a shabby business. Will not be taken Advantage of again!

     
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Posted by clutzycook on 2012-02-14:
All car rental companies gouge you to refill your tank.
Posted by FoDaddy19 on 2012-02-16:
Putting an X amount of money on hold when renting car or booking a hotel room is commonplace. I'm a little surprised they let you use a debit card/check quite honestly. Most places ask that you use a credit card. It can take a day or three for the hold to be released back into your checking account. This also happens when you used a debit card to pay at the pump for gas.

As for them charging you to refuel the car. Rental places charge exorbitant fess for this service. If you didn't understand the policy, you should've simply asked them to clarify it for you or simply said "no".

You were not taken advantage of as far as I can tell. As both the $200 hold/security deposit and the excessive refueling fees are both widely known industry standards.
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Lousy Service!
Posted by Lohrjohn61 on 12/21/2011
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA -- First of all everyone should know that Advantage is not located in the rental car facility at the oakland airport that the other major companies are located so you need to take a shuttle to the main facility then call for an Advantage shuttle that backtracks the opposite direction for what feels like several miles. This happens both picking up and returning the cars. With our experience the agent told us the shuttle would be by to pick us up in about 5 minutes. After 11 minutes I called again and was told the shuttle did come by but we were not there. That was total BS because we were standing exactly where we ended up being picked up. Also the reservation was for a full size car but a full size was not available so instead of being offered an upgrade I was given a "downgrade" to a smaller car. Also neither shuttle bus driver (coming and going) offered to help my wife with her luggage.
     
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Posted by Alain on 2011-12-23:
You may want to file an official complaint about this at http://www.dca.ca.gov/consumer/index.shtml
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Lousy Service
Posted by LittleTank on 08/03/2011
P.O. BOX 22091, D-5 TEMPE, ARIZONA -- On June 7th I rented a car from Advantage in Tampa. First we had to wait, then when we got the vehicle it was filthy. Trash was under the seats and dog hair was everywhere. I did like driving the Nisson Versa. We were told we were to pick up the rental at the Tampa Airport where most rental vehicles are rented from. My husband stayed with me until the shuttle came. The guy was helpful and my husband followed me to location in Tampa. Well they tried to push their insurance on us and hadn't mentioned it when we called. We didn't take it. I was going up to Connecticut for a funeral of my best friend of 56 years and wanted to go as cheaply as possible but safely. When we were returning home, we stopped in NYC and parked in a No Standing zone because there were no handicapped spaces available. I sent the ticket back to NYC where it is pending right now and told them about the problem of parking. They haven't made a decision yet but the ticket has been paid. I told ATS-Advantage the situation and told them not to pay the ticket as the hearing is pending. I sent them copies of their letter to me, the ticket front and back and the pending notice I copied from my computer TWICE. Why didn't they wait before they paid the ticket and charged me and extra $40.00 for processing. I wouldn't recommend Advantage or use it myself again. We are on a limited income-Disability-both my husband and myself. I have an excellent driving record and have been driving since 1960. Most states don't ticket handicapped persons if there aren't any handicapped spaces. Why should I pay for the new bldgs. going up on Ground Zero? I'm not a terrorist! Make them pay with the oil in Iraq or whatever they have of value in Afganistan. We are already paying with our taxes for the wars there. If they don't stop all of this there will be a war here between the President, Congress and all the people they are trying to take away their only livihood which they earned during their lives. To threaten to take away a veterans livlihood is just plain not fair. They have given life and limbs to keep us free not to gauge us as Advantage does.
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2011-08-04:
well written review, parking in nyc is a nightmare.
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-08-04:
A handicapped tag does not give you the right to park wherever you want. Of course you got a ticket.

I, too, do not understand what illegal parking has to do with Iraq or Ground Zero.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2011-08-04:
I have handicapped tags, however, that does not give me the right to park in a illegal manner. Very simple.
Posted by Churro on 2011-08-04:
It's a state by state issue but generally a handicap parking permit gives privileges and parking access beyond designated handicapped parking spaces. Where I am at right now there's about a dozen non-handicap restrictive parking designations and a handicap placard gives legal right to then all.

As far as Advantage goes I've had a lot of bad experiences. In fact at one time there were so many complaints that Advantage got dropped from our corporate contract. I dropped them from my personal contract as well.

I wish you well on your ticket.

Good Review!
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-08-04:
Are the restrictive parking designations marked for handicapped use, too? I would never assume that a permit for handicapped parking would allow me to park in restricted areas. When you say "where I am at right now", are you referring to a parking lot, street parking, etc.? Which states allow this?
Posted by MRM on 2011-08-04:
A long time ago, my family drove a rental truck to NYC to help my uncle move out of the apartment. The street were small to park a rental truck. Then here comes the fire truck blaring its sirens and horns, trying to squeeze through the small street.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2011-08-04:
In my state (TN) the handicapped placards or tags, to my knowledge are good in hc spaces only, however, there is no payment when parking at a meter or gubment parking. Same rules apply to the hc tags as everyone else ie no parking, loading zone, etc.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-08-04:
This should help: http://www.newyorkparkingticket.com/Blog/bid/27301/How-people-with-disabilities-can-avoid-a-NYC-parking-ticket

Looks like the ticket is valid.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2011-08-04:
Good Research jc..thanks
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-08-04:
That's a great find, just. I briefly looked but couldn't find anything. Thanks.
Posted by redmx3racer on 2011-08-04:
Parking tickets are assigned to the vehicle by the registration, not the driver of the vehicle. Advanatage owns the vehicle. Thus, they pay the ticket and bill you. Sorry about your situation, but I don't think Advantage did anything wrong.
Posted by Churro on 2011-08-04:
Nice find JC. So if I read correctly in NYC if you got a handicap permit you can park legally:

1. In any "No Parking" zone, including those marked "except authorized vehicles"

2. At parking meters without using an authorized payment method

3. In "No Standing Except Trucks Loading and Unloading" zones

Even though they're not necessarily marked as handicapped. Every jurisdiction is different and quite frankly if you're not from the area it's tough to know the local law. The courts around here generally dismiss most parking tickets issued to handicap permitted driver unless it's a severe safety issue.

You're always educating me, JC. Thanks!
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-08-04:
No, Churro, that's incorrect.

You must have a valid New York City Special Parking identification permit. And even then, you are prohibited from parking in a no standing zone.
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Advantage will rip you off!!
Posted by Demarkhix on 07/29/2011
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I rented a car from advantage in Orlando. Because of my work schedule, I had to change the reservation twice. The first time I added a day and confirmed that the price was still 25.95 per day. The second time I was taking the extra day off. The service person on the phone did not tell me that the price went up almost 50% because of that change!! It was still the weekend for the weekend rate!! I trusted them to honor the quoted price so I did not review all the charges with a fine tooth comb and signed the estimate - I WILL NEVER BE TRUSTING AGAIN!! I did notice when we dropped off the car and mentioned it to the man checking it in but I didn't have my original quote readily available and he was in a hurry and we had to make a flight so I thought I could deal with it later with customer service. WRONG - they were no help at all even though they did not give me the quoted price. DO NOT TRUST ADVANTAGE!!

     
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Posted by trp2hevn on 2011-07-29:
Posted by trp2hevn on 2011-07-29:
Sounds like when you changed it the 1st time that the rates had not changed. However, by the time you changed it the 2nd time the rates had changed. When changing reservations I think it is like making a whole new reservation all over at the current rate. Rental car rates can change quickly like airline rates.
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Hope they have a car for you
Posted by Andy17 on 11/03/2010
I reserved a car online at their WEB site 2 weeks in advance.
When I arrived at San Jose airport, I was told they had no
cars and I would have to wait 1 - 2 hours for a car to show up.
They claimed they did not have 1 single car available.
I canceled on the spot and had to get a taxi or miss my meeting.
Advantage acted like they were the ones put out.
Stay away from these guys!
     
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Left Stranded
Posted by Leftstranded on 09/26/2010
DES MOINES, IOWA -- So we rented a car through Advantage rent a car, on Travelocity. My flight info was entered. It said that this company meets delayed flights. As our plane left the gate they saw a low oil light on and had to pull back into the gate. We never got off the plane. We arrived at 12 18 am, instead of 11 45 pm. I went to the car rental counters. There was no one there. A girl at the Hertz counter was closing up after renting out a car. I asked her if they were on break or something. She said No, they left at midnight. I started to have a panic attack. What was I going to do? The airport was abandoned. I needed to drive to Iowa City. My sister reserved the car for me because she was at home with her 11 month old and three year old. Her husband has been deployed. She probably wouldn't even hear the phone. I opened up my printed reservation and called Travelocity. The man at customer service called the local Advantage, he of course got no answer. He called their customer service line. He talked to them first, then would come back to me.

Which is good because I was hysterical and probably wouldn't have said anything that made any sense. He sadi that the counter was closed for the night. He suggested taking a taxi to a hotel and coming back in the morning. I had no cash. I only had my debit card on me. Plus that was an expense I hadn't planned for. I knew I couldn't afford that. I asked him if the car company was going to pay for that, my response was they couldn't guarantee it. I asked if they could call someone in to get my car. They said they couldn't. The Travelocity customer service eventually transferred me to their customer service. I spoke with that woman for awhile. Asking the same questions, and not hearing an answer I liked. I finally called my mother, who travels a lot. She told me to go to those one call kiosks and find a hotel that had a 24hr shuttle.

The Des Moines Holiday Inn gave me a ride and a room. The drivers were nice even though I couldn't tip them. The front desk clerk said the rental car companies do this all the time. They gave me their best rate of 119 for the night. I went to sleep at 2 am and was up at 7 to go back to the airport. The girl there said they usually wait, and she had left a note telling them to wait. I was so tired and had taken medication to calm myself down, so I wasn't irate. I told her I was really upset that this happened. She apologized. She showed me the rental agreement. I asked her if there was anything she could do for me. She got the manager and told him what happened. He was very calm about it and said he would address it. He said he would give me a day free. Which because this was an economy car was like 17 dollars. When we finally got to the car I was a little disappointed that it had manual locks and windows. But I knew it was cheap, so we went on our way. I was ten minutes on the highway when I was searching for cruise control and couldn't find it. I couldn't believe it, I asked them for directions to I 80 they asked where I was going. They knew I had a two hour drive. They didn't even think about the fact that cruise control would be necessary? When I got to my sister's I searched my receipt for a local branch #. There wasn't one. I went online and emailed every Advantage email I could get a hold of. I told them waht happened. No one EVER responded. NO ONE! When I finished my trip and returned the rental car, I had to wait at the counter for 5 minutes before an agent came. She was outside. I told her that I had been abandoned, she said "Oh yeah, I heard about that," I told her I would like the mgr to call me because 17 dollars was nothing on the 140 I had to spend on the hotel for five hours. She said ok. I never heard from the manager. My calf had a cramp the rest of that day, no cruise control. When I got home I "liked" them on facebook so that I could post on their wall about what happened. They responded saying to go the Advantage site and send them an email. Which I had already done. I still have not heard anything from them, and think I should go to the better business bureau. Thank you for listening to my story. If there was a way to rate their car company they would get zero!
     
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Posted by Skye on 2010-09-26:
What a mess. I think using 3rd parties for anything like flights, hotels, car rentals is just a waste, as you found out.

It's always a good idea, no matter what, to keep some cash on you.
Posted by trp2hevn on 2010-09-26:
They could have had someone wait there until you got the car. Since your flight info was entered, they would have known that the plane was delayed. As far as the manual locks/windows that is common on an economy car. I don't know of any econony classed car that has cruise control either. If that was such an important feature, you should go with a higher (although more expensive) car class. This time I don't think it would have been any different if they wouldn't have gone through the 3rd party website. Although had they gone directly to the car rental website it might have had the operating hours listed.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-09-26:
I worked at a small airport for a time. 3 airlines and it had 3 rental cars. Long ago (well before 9/11) when our last inbound of the night was late, sometimes the agents from the rental agencies would come down to ask if their res holders were actually on the flights. We really weren't supposed to give them that info but common sense was that they weren't interested in anything except waiting for them if they were on the flight or going home on time if they weren't.

Post 9/11, this info probably isn't given anymore. Doesn't really pertain to your story, sorry, but my feeling is that if you had a res, they should be waiting.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-09-26:
I'll tell you what. I'd be beside myself as well if my flight was delayed and I found myself in a terminal virtually shutdown for the night and no car available. No matter if I had booked through a third party or direct. I really wonder if the outcome would have been different if leftstanded had booked direct? I seriously doubt it.
Posted by Ben There on 2010-09-26:
I wonder how long car rental companies will normally wait for a delayed flight before going home... 30 minutes, an hour, 2 hours, forever? The airline employees obviously have to wait for the plane to arrive, but to what extent will rental car companies and hotels make their employees stay? Overtime must be an issue, not to mention childcare for employees, other obligations, etc...

Advantage is often the cheapest of the cheap, so they are probably least likely to want to pay overtime. Avis and Hertz will probably wait longer since they tend to collect more per car.
Posted by Venice09 on 2010-09-26:
A little off topic, but please don't use cruise control if you are tired or have taken medication to calm you down. It can be very dangerous especially at high speeds. It is better to be in control of your car at all times.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-09-26:
I think Judge probably hit it correctly about how times have changed from the time he worked at a small airport. Even here, and I fly from a regional airport, I recall hearing of here and other regional airports when some of the car rental agency employees would hand the paperwork and keys over to another agency or airport employee when a flight was delayed and they would leave for the night. Not an accepted practice, I'm sure, but at least the traveler on a delayed flight had a car waiting.

With all we've heard recently with many of the rental agencies blaming prior vehicle damages on a current renter, I don't guess that one would work out anymore.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-09-26:
To add to V09 do not use cruise control in rain.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-09-26:
Judge and nohandle, times have definitely changed. The car rental people only had to wait an additional 20 minutes until this person arrived. I, too, would have been very upset to be stranded. Anyone would be.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-09-26:
wonder if the outcome would have been different if the op had dealt direct with the rental agency vs travelustity.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-09-26:
Makes you wonder, jkt, but I have a feeling it may have been the same. They probably just don't wait for delayed flights after midnight.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-09-26:
Helpful, +100 good points. Why your comment went to "other" is beyond me.
Posted by Ytropious on 2010-09-26:
Cruise control? I drive an hour to and from work and I never use it. I drove 1200 miles over 2 days without cruise control. Unless you specifically requested a car with it, I see no issue with a car not having it. I don't think you should blame the company for not looking at your point A and point B and thinking "oh gee we should go out of our way to make sure she has cruise control even though she never mentioned needing it". If it's something you need, YOU need to ask for it.
Posted by Venice09 on 2010-09-26:
Other than the part about not getting a car with cruise control, I think this is a legitimate complaint. The flight info said the company met delayed flights. Since the flight was only delayed approximately thirty minutes, I don't think it was unreasonable for the OP to expect to get the car and not to be left stranded. The OP never said they expected the counter to be open 24 hours. They simply expected their delayed flight to be met since the agency had the flight information.

I don't think it's a good idea to travel with no cash, but not everyone has enough money to cover all the unexpected things that might happen while traveling. Does that mean they should never travel and just stay home?
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-09-27:
This complaint should be directed at Travelu$tity, Advantages' web site seems to show that the Des Moines Int'l location closes at Midnight. I believe the problem stems from Travelu$tity wanting their bucks and not caring for the customer. A 15 minute window is not enough in any airport. VH Review, show another reason to deal direct.
Posted by momsey on 2010-09-27:
I don't know why Helpful's response is hidden in "other comments", because it's exactly what I was thinking.

Cruise control is not necessary at all. I sometimes use it during the day in nice weather, but as others pointed out, it's not a good thing to use in certain weather conditions, or when you're tired or on any medication.

jkt gets best answer since I agree that this complaint should be directed at Travelocity. Since you didn't book direct with Advantage, it's not clear to me that they had your flight information and therefore they didn't know you were delayed. It is a terrible situation, though.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-09-27:
This should not be a Travelocity complaint. Why do you believe that the car agency didn't have the flight info? Do you believe they just a notification from Travelocity that someone wants a car on a particular day? No name, no time, no car type, etc?? Advantage was well aware they had a res off that flight and chose to go home. They are 100% at fault. Travelocity, as much as I hate online agencies, was not at fault in any way, shape or form.
Posted by Ben There on 2010-09-27:
Travelocity only shows prices for car rentals if the location is open and accepting reservations. If Advantage could easily control late bookings by not offering a price for rentals after say 1130pm.
Posted by getoverit on 2010-09-27:
I agree with those who say this is not the fault of Travelocity. And I can't really lay a lot of blame at the feet of Advantage because, if other people are like me, a lot of car rental reservations are no-shows.
That doesn't lessen the fact that this was a really unfortunate experience.

I'm glad I read this post because, if I'm ever in a similar situation, I will call the car rental location and make sure they know I'm coming. To be honest, I'm not sure I would have thought of it before this, but have done that kind of things with hotel late arrivals, etc. It's better not to take things for granted.

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I was ripped off by this company
Posted by Love animals on 08/06/2010
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I rented a car in Orlando. It was supposed to have been for $204 for 9 days. The person at the counter told me that this car was the basic model and had nothing. I decided to upgrade it to $10.00 making the rental for 9 days about $319.17. When I returned the car 9 days later, I happen to have been 34 MINUTES LATE (but with a 29 minute grace period it was only 5 minutes late). I was charged $10.69 for the 5 minutes that I was late plus an extra day for the upgrade of another $10.00. I had been told at the counter that there was a grace period of 3 hours. When I called to complaint, I was told that I only had a 29 minute grace period. However, I was just told today that I was informed incorrectly, that there is no grace period with Advantage rental car. I feel that I was over charged by $26.92. I know that the economy in the U.S. really sucks but these companies should be grateful that we are traveling and renting cars, otherwise they would go bankrupt. From a very upset customer who will never rent from Advantage ever again.
     
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Posted by rockfishing on 2010-08-06:
Your comment is inappropriate. There is not grace period. The time due is the time due. You were charged according to the contract you signed.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2010-08-06:
I think the complaint is about being misinformed more than once about the 'grace period' issue.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-08-06:
How did I get a helpful vote on this?
Posted by Venice09 on 2010-08-06:
I think the wires are crossed somewhere. I'm getting updates even though I didn't sign up for them.
Posted by Weedwhacked on 2010-08-07:
You weren't ripped off, you broke the contract by arriving late with their car. The fees are justified.
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Worst Car Rental Experience In 25 Years
Posted by Jhaverfi on 08/02/2010
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA -- I decided I would like to return my car rented in San Diego to LAX instead. To even ask if that was possible, involved multiple phone calls, being on hold for more than 30 minutes, and finally a manager took my name and number and said she'd call me back. She never did, so I called her. She said it would be $150 flat fee. It said I needed to think about it. I decided to do it and called back the next morning. When I called, I was hung up on 8 times in a row. I finally got through and a manager said he was busy but would take my name and number and get back to me. 9 hours later, he had still not called, so I called back. When I called back, was told he was unavailable and they'd take my name and number and get back to me. While I was arguing with them to ensure I would get a phone call returned, the manager miraculously became available. He told me that my record showed I was dropping off in LAX fo $150.

I thought I was through with the customer device nightmare, but when I dropped it off in LAX, they had no record of me coming there and were going to charge me over $1,000 for what was supposed to be $400 total. Trying to get this resolved took 4 phone cals to San Diego and there was never a manager to help. After over 90 minutes, I couldn't risk missing my flight, so paid another wrongly calculated fee which was $250 more than expected. San Diego personnel ensured me that she'd leave detailed notes and someone would take care of me in the morning. So now am on day 4 of the saga...no return phone call and it is late in the afternoon. So, I called them....No manager is available and they took my number and will call me back. I doubt I will ever get a manager or a return phone call - will have to contest my charges through my credit card company I guess.

This company should not be allowed to do business. They are unethical, changed the rate of my signed contract, and have zero customer service skills.

     
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Posted by Weedwhacked on 2010-08-03:
Never break the terms of your original contract and this won't happen.
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Hertz should be ashamed!
Posted by Wisconsin Paul on 11/24/2009
MIAMI, FLORIDA -- I rented a car from Advantage (owned by Hertz). The person that signed me up was very nice until I declined the insurance coverage. He gave me the keys to a car and pointed out towards the car lot. I had to ask him 3 times what he was pointing out before he said the "the black Camry".
When I returned the car, I received the same type of rude treatment from the Agent checking me in. He mentioned that I had not taken the coverage!!! He then added an energy charge to the bill.
Hertz! You have got to be kidding me! I tried to make a reservation with you and you did not have cars available! This was a person trip for me so I did not have access to my work related travel agent. But you can bet from know on I will not be renting anything from Hertz or Advantage.
This was the worst rental experience I have ever had!

Hertz and Advantage, you really are bottom feeders!

Paul
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-11-24:
Ok...huh?
Posted by skelly39 on 2009-11-25:
Could you clarify your complaint a little? Are you mad because they were rude? Are you mad because you didn't take out the coverage and they mentioned that to you? Are you mad about the energy charge which they would have tacked on anyway?
Posted by goduke on 2009-11-25:
You know, sometimes they do run out of cars. They can't keep a car around just in case you decide to take a trip.
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Advantage Ripoff
Posted by Mauibikeman on 10/23/2009
COLORADO -- I rented a van from DIA Advantage rent a car on July 9, 2009 and returned it on July 11,2009. I was charged for extra days (July 15) and extra miles. The car was chugging and gasping climbing little hills around Boulder and so I took it back a day after and they said they would check it mechanically. Later I got a bill for the wrong date and an extra 100 miles. Unfortunately I gave the paperwork to their manager instead of keeping a copy for myself which would have shown the date of return. My bad. I sent letters to all parties and they just said the computer showed July 15 and that was that. Do not rent from this company!!!
     
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Posted by BobJohn on 2009-10-24:
Dispute it with your credit card company immediately.
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