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Priceline Car Rentals

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Priceline is a SCAM
Posted by Special32540 on 04/17/2013
I booked a rental car on Priceline for $22/day, when I went to pick up the car my contract was for $16/day. I was told by the booking agent that was the price that I would have gotten had I just walked up to his counter. I contacted Priceline concerning this discrepancy and they said it was a mistake. I offered to fax the receipt to them, they had no interest in it. They refused to refund the difference. I paid Priceline $261.80 for a car I could have rented without their "help" for $151.20! Will I ever use them again....am I stupid? Don't want you to experience the same scam! That best price guarantee is FALSE ADVERTISING.

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Posted by Dawn on 2013-05-29:
I have been a customer of Priceline for many years but after my last experience I will never, EVER use Priceline again. The next day after I booked my reservation I discovered that the hotel website offered the same room for $60.00 less than what I got through Priceline. I sent an email to Priceline to inform them of this and got a response informing me "You must call us prior to midnight the day before travel if you have a valid Best Price Guarantee claim. Please call 1-800-PRICELINE if you live within the U.S. or Canada. If you are outside of the U.S. or Canada, please dial 1-212-444-0022.

You will also need to have the description and details of where you found the lower price, since Priceline will need to verify the price and availability, and please be ready to enter your trip number (xxxxxxxxxxxxx) when prompted, so you may speak to an agent."

So I called a few weeks later and was first told that they would have to look it up on the hotel website where I found the lower price - but of course when he looked it up the price had gone up. I told him that I had already sent the information in the email and also had printed out hard copies of the price from the hotel website. When he told me that there was nothing that he could do - that THEY had to look up the price themselves, I asked to speak with a supervisor. I was transferred to the "customer care" department and after being on hold for 25 minutes, was disconnected.

I called back and this time miraculously was transferred directly to someone in the customer care department. This time, the woman "Nicole" informed me that it was "too early to call" - that I had to call "prior to midnight the day before travel". I told her apparently there was a communication issue here - that I WAS calling prior to midnight the day before I was traveling - the reservation is in June. She proceeded to tell me that "no, your reservation isn't until June 5, you are calling too early." SO basically, she tried to tell me that I couldn't call BEFORE midnight the day before I traveled, that I could ONLY call in that small 24 hour window of time.

Essentially, if you find a lower price after you book the room (and pay for it - which is non-cancel able, non-refundable) the only way that you will honor this "Big Deal Guarantee" is if you FIND the price AND call NO more and NO less than 24 hours prior to the date you are to check into the hotel! Even though the "Big Deal Guarantee" states "You must call us at the provided number to claim your refund up until midnight the night prior to check-in."

What they are doing is extremely deceptive and is false advertising. I will be looking into this further with the appropriate agencies and will discourage others to fall victim of their unscrupulous, deceitful practices.
Posted by Robyn on 2013-08-20:
I've had the same experience. There is no 'deal'...it's a gimmick to book you with "no refunds, no cancellations".
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Don't Rent A Car From Priceline.com
Posted by Ayn on 01/28/2009
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS -- Warning to other consumers: Do not rent a car from Priceline's website! I was traveling during the holidays, trying to line up a car in Chicago, and they did not have availability at O'Hare. They only had availability at Midway. I was rushed at work, at my clinic, and I kept trying to get a car, but I did not think that they would accept the offer, as I had rented hotel rooms from them before and the offers did not go through. They need to provide customers with a way out, especially for rental cars. This offer went through, but was inconvenient for me to pick up, according to my sister whom I was visiting, so on the advice of my credit card company I did not pick up the car, because they were sure they could dispute the charges. WARNING TO OTHERS: THIS COMPANY does not refund anything, and furthermore will not give customer credit either. The WEBSITE is poorly designed to PREY ON PEOPLES EMOTIONS AND RASH INSTINCTS, with no stop-gap offered to back out of a rental agreement. Go directly through the car rental agency, and you will do much better in finding something convenient to you and those you are staying with especially if you cannot pick it up at the airport you are flying into and do not know the area well. I tried to get Priceline to let me use the money that they stole from me for other services and this was not an option. They can take my $200 for something I never picked up.

Hey, Barack, lets put this type of unethical business behavior out of business. Spread the word: this company is unfair, especially in this time of economic downturn and hardships. Hey, Priceline, either redesign the website, or reap what you sow... Bad ethics, taking money for no goods and services. Sounds like a scam to me... Have you ever heard of the law of threes?
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-29:
I have used Priceline numerous times and have had nothing but exactly what I contracted.

You put in an offer that was "inconvenient" to you (your words) so you just blew it off. I can't be bothered to look up their rules of service right now but I bet my next paycheck it says you are entitled to nothing if you don't use what you paid for. Maybe not fair but you need to know what you're getting into before handing them your credit card. Fault lies with you.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-29:
I changed my mind......after a quick look at their terms and conditions, which took just a few minutes to look up, this is what I found.......

Name Your Own Price® Rental Car Service

Additional Restrictions. In addition, the following restrictions will apply to rental car Requests made using our Name Your Own Price® service:

a. If priceline.com finds a rental car company willing to accept your Request, priceline.com will immediately charge your method of payment the total cost of the rental transaction including applicable Taxes and Service Fees (see above);

b. Priceline.com rental car reservations are non-changeable, non-endorsable, non-transferable and non-refundable;

Paragraph b is the one you should have read. Whether or not it's shady, it's there and you agreed to it by putting in a bid. Please folks......take the time to read the small print and life will be easier.
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Be Wary of Extra Charges That You Won't Find Out About Ahead of Time
Posted by Johnchunt on 12/31/2012
I rented a Hertz car through Priceline - charge to my credit card - $158.40. Hertz added additional charges of $188.45 (none for gas, extra mileage, etc.), the total bill was $346.85. I'll never do this again.
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Posted by At Your Service on 2012-12-31:
What are you referring to with the, "(none for gas, extra mileage, etc.)" So did you go over the mileage and return the vehicle without filling the tank?
Posted by Obsfucation on 2012-12-31:
Did you take the extra insurance?
Posted by bob932304 on 2012-12-31:
What were the additional charges for? They are itemized on your final statement. These can be for extra days, excess mileage (though most rentals have unlimited miles), damage, GPS, road service, etc. that you selected when you checked the car out.
Posted by trmn8r on 2013-01-01:
Sadly, more details are needed to know if Priceline or Hertz did anything out of the ordinary in this case.

Extra charges should be quoted on the contract, and then itemized on the final bill, so it isn't clear what Priceline did wrong.
Posted by Kathleen Wright on 2013-01-14:
Rented a suv from Priceline/Avis and they charged 77.00 for insurance. When we got to Avis they had no record of that, and charged us for insurance with the car rental. Has anyone ever had this happen? Avis had no record of the $77.00. Will never use Priceline again.
Posted by newmoon on 2013-03-18:
I think it is a good idea to check out the car rental company website before booking anything through Priceline. The same thing applies to hotels as well since many have "resort fees" etc. that may come as a surprise. That way you should be aware of any additional charges that may apply to your rental agreement (or hotel stay). Also, your own car insurance for your personal vehicle should apply to cover rentals. I've used my own insurance (showing proof) and not had a problem.
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They Stole Money From Our Bank Card
Posted by Klgosse on 08/01/2012
TAMPA, FLORIDA -- I am writing to inform others of what happened to me when I booked through Priceline.com for a rental car with Avis Car Rentals at Tampa Airport. We picked up our rental (SUPPOSED to be a full size car) upon arrival in Tampa. Due to a shortage in stock, they didn't have what we had reserved. The rental agent went on to insist that we pay for an upgrade, or else we would have no choice but take a smaller car. With kids, a smaller car wasn't an option.

We were not interested in paying an additional $400 for an SUV, although felt they should provide us a free upgrade for not having our vehicle selection. The agent got upset with us because we were not willing to pay more, and told us we had to take a Crown Victoria if we didn't want to pay more. The car was old and had NO options. I called Priceline to complain, and they informed me they would investigate, but couldn't do so until after our rental term had concluded. We brought that peice of junk back to them 2 days later (a storm prevented us from returning earlier).

The next agent kindly gave us a midsize SUV instead, as they still had no full size. This was good, we were pleased, although the next day, we noticed a charge on our bank account from AVIS for $200US. I called AVIS, the "MANAGER" said it was a deposit, that would be refunded when we returned the vehicle. We were not informed of any charge, didn't sign anything for it, and never received a receipt.

When we returned to Canada, I waited a few days to see the return on our account, and nothing came. I called Avis, and they said it could take up to 5 business days. I waited 6 days, then called, and they said that there was no record of them having any deposit. I spoke to 4 people that day, some saying there was a deposit, others saying there wasn't, and one saying we had to PROVE that they had taken a deposit. In the following week, I dealt with Avis by phone and email over 15 TIMES. Each time getting a different story, NEVER having the privilege of speaking with a Manager, and always a different representative.

To date, I have sent them Bank Statements, and I have even three way called the bank WITH them on the phone. Every time they tell me - "We are investigating this. I have opened a case for your issue. It will take 14 business days. Someone from Central Billing will contact you." They have not contacted me. I called Priceline.com for support, and they said they have nothing to do with it. I would not suggest booking with Priceline.com due to their lack of customer support, and I certainly would not recommend AVIS. And should someone from Priceline or Avis wish to contact me regarding this post - I will only speak with upper management at this time. Evidently the staff at either business does not have the empowerment to do anything, and do not take any accountability on behalf of the company.

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Posted by Bob on 2012-08-20:
When has Orlando Avis ever had what is reserved?
4 rentals from Airport have always had to upgrade.
Last two trips in July I booked a Premium auto just so I could downsize to what I wanted. seems odd does it not AVIS ???
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Rip Off
Posted by Mmshelton39 on 07/11/2013
I’ve used Priceline.com for years. Always had to put card info in to make a bid. Nothing has changed as I could see ad, least I thought. I went through the same process of bidding a rental car. I did not read the terms because the process was the same as always. You have to enter your card info in order to get a bid. Priceline have the customer put their card info in before they will give you a quote back on a bid and now they are debiting the customers account without your knowledge and will not refund the customers money.

I wanted to compare your price with your competitors. After seeing that the reservation was processed without my knowledge and checking my bank account and seeing a debit from Priceline I called minutes after bidding to cancel and I was told I could not get a refund. I feel if the person doesn’t call ahead to cancel or show up to complete the transaction that would be a reason not to refund their money. You ripped me off for $74.22 that I do not have to just give away.

They also are taking customer’s money for rental car companies that require you to have a credit card. If you make a reservation with a company that offer the best deal Priceline does not verify whether the company only accepts credit cards which will mean if you don’t have a credit card and you make reservation with one of those companies you can lose your refund because car rental agreements are non-refundable. The deposit varies by the agreement you make with Priceline and you don’t have all the info until you complete the reservation. So you can’t really ask the rental car company questions until you complete the reservation process with Priceline. So that leaves you stuck.

I will never do business with your company again and I will make sure to put the word out about how you mislead your customers by having them putting their card info in before they can get a bid just so you can steal their money.
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Rental Car
Posted by Dnlbeck on 02/10/2011
I rented a car for business purposes for 30 days thru Priceline. I was scheduled to pick up the car at the airport on Wednesday. However, due to a change in business plans, I arrived at the airport three days later on Saturday. The rental company (Hertz) told me that my car was no longer available and referred me to Priceline. Priceline refused to get me a rental car or provide a refund even though I had 26 days left on my rental agreement.
By the way, the rental car company never billed Priceline for the rental car. Priceline felt that they could just keep my money without providing me a rental car (the greedy b*st*ards!). I had to sue them in small claims court and won.
The Priceline customer service representative was uncooperative and rude to me on the phone. Be careful about doing business with Priceline.
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Posted by dan gordon on 2011-02-10:
if you paid for it, I'm hoping you let them know the pickup date had changed? I'm surprised they just let you forfeit the rental. Glad you sued and won. It seems to be the best way to get thru to some companies.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-02-10:
I would have to see the rental agreement for myself before rendering an educated decision on this one. My first thought is that it isn't Priceline's or Hertz's fault that the OP had a change in business plans. So often I hear posts where a customer had to delay traveling for a day or so, and then are infuriated as to why the airlines, rental car companies, and such won't work with them. As if it is somehow their fault?
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-02-11:
Well at least you were able to sue them and win. Good for you!
Posted by Whiteduck on 2011-02-11:
You say you won? Did they show up? I doubt it, so about all you won was the case. I bet you still don't have any money... They don't care if you take them to small claims. It's not like the court will send goons around to break their knees...
Posted by PepperElf on 2011-02-11:
good point wd... if they didn't show up it just means a default win.

mainly because in most rental agreements if you do a "no show" or don't notify them of any changes in schedule before a specific time/date you often lose your money etc.

why? Because if you show up 3 days late and then only expect to pay for the days you used... well that's actually *costing* them money because they could have been renting the car for those 3 days to other paying customers.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-02-11:
PepperElf -- The correct term is default judgment and if you have a default judgment against a healthy corporation they will generally pay it.

I've rented cars on hundreds of occasions and not once have I ever had a 'no show' clause mainly because I've never entered into an enforceable agreement when reserving a car. I sign the agreement when picking the car up. If I don't show they don't enough information to charge me anything or even find me.

In this case its not the 'rental agreement' with the rental car company but rather the price line agreement. World of difference.
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Fictitious Negotiators - Fraud
Posted by LovelyLaura on 04/12/2010
Priceline.com is fake negotiator. When I booked my rental car I was told I would pay 173.17 for an economy car from ALAMO in New Orleans Louisiana. Yet, I was charged 394.30 for the vehicle. I called Alamo twice to confirm that what was indicated on my itinerary (173.17)and what Priceline told me was correct. Alamo confirmed the price of 173.17, but also indicated that I was responsible for the total charge because Priceline did not send over the required voucher. When I contacted Priceline to dispute the charge they told me that the 173.17 was an estimate and they could not honor it. If I would have known that the third party negotiator would not do any negotiating I would have never booked a rental. Not to mention, I paid more for my rental than my air fare. I would have paid significantly less if I would have negotiated a price myself.

PRICELINE's business is malicious! Pleas avoid doing business with this company at all cause. If they are unable to give accurate prices and stick to their word they do not deserve to get any of our business. STEER CLEAR!!!
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Priceline committed fraud
Posted by Madinnv on 01/23/2010
In January, 2010, my husband and I booked, on Priceline.com, a last minute flight with car rental to LAX, Ca. When we attempted to pick up our rental car, we were told the Priceline rental reservation number was assinged by Priceline to another customer, who had already picked up the car. I contacted Priceline and was told the car was picked up so I am not entitled to a refund, no matter that the car was picked up by someone else, hours before I was scheduled to arrive in Los Angeles. (In fact, I was still in my home state when the car was collected) The car company, Alamo, representatives, have stated that Priceline assigned the reservation number incorrectly so they are at fault, so they will not rectify the situation either. I had to pay full price to rent another car. So, not only did I not receive my car, I paid double to rent directly from anther car company. I'll never use Priceline again.

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Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-23:
Yes, they're known to screw up travel plans and not rectifying the situations. If it costs them money to fix something, they won't do it.
Posted by Soaring Consumer on 2010-01-23:
Contact Priceline's corporate office in writing, they owe you a refund for the additional rental you had to pay for. Since they are your acting travel agent it is their obligation to make it right.

If they still refuse then the excellent travel ombudsman Christopher Elliott may be able to help you, here is his website:
Posted by Ben There on 2010-01-23:
Or someone from Alamo accidentally checked in another customer with your reservation because it was the first reservation the agent found that was similar to what the customer at the counter was asking for. Did Alamo explain why they let someone drive off the lot with a pre-paid reservation that was booked under someone else'e name?
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Car Rental
Posted by Flora43 on 03/10/2014
Requested a car and arrived at airport to learn that I had to upgrade. Requested car wasn't available. Expected cost was $274. Final cost was $467
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Name Your Price
Posted by Bayarea51087 on 01/24/2014
CALIFORNIA -- I decided to give Priceline a shot after using Hotwire for my rentals. I tried bidding on a car priced at 39$ a day. After putting in bids from 25$ they replied saying it was denied and that I should bid 30$. After exhausting as many prices as I could and being denied I finally put in 30$ and of course it was accepted. Now they take your money once the bid is taken and there are no refunds. Two days later I see the same car for rent on Hotwire for 23.95$, WAY CHEAPER! I asked them for a price adjustment which they did. A few days later the price dropped on Hotwire again to 21.95$. I asked Priceline for another adjustment and was denied. I will no longer be going through Priceline.com.

They over charge you and you can usually get the same rental from Hotwire for 10$ cheaper, WITHOUT HAVING TO BID. Priceline fails as a company. Hotwire is they way to go, never had any issues with them.
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