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 piece 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 $200 US. 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.
WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA -- My boyfriend and his family planned a vacation in June of 2008 to go on a Carnival Cruise to the Eastern Caribbean that was to leave out of Miami, Florida. My grandparents and parents spend time in Okeechobee Florida during the winter so we decided to spend a few days down there with them before all of us were to embark on this cruise together. We agreed to fly into West Palm Beach International Airport, rent a car, and then drive Okeechobee from West Palm. My boyfriend said he would take care of the car rental arrangements. He decided that he would go to Priceline's website to book a rental car, in hopes of getting the car we desired for a lower price. Well, that was a mistake.
My boyfriend booked a Full Size car through Avis by way of Priceline. He booked the car for 9 days total. He was using his own personal Progressive insurance. On Saturday, when we arrived at West Palm Beach Airport, we jumped on the Avis shuttle with 8 pieces of luggage and 4 carry-on bags. At Avis in West Palm, my boyfriend waited in line to get to the counter. After waiting, he waited some more. Time stood still as the line inched along. After reaching the counter and providing our reservation and confirmation numbers, Avis personnel led my boyfriend out to the parking lot to show him the car he would have as our rental. It was not a full size car by any means.
My boyfriend went back inside and stood in line, again, the line inched along as time ticked by. My boyfriend again walked out into the parking lot with Avis personnel, and was directed to another car. Still, it was not a full sized car, but a midsized car. Keep in mind, we had lots of luggage and needed space for all of it in the trunk.
Again, my boyfriend went inside and waited in line to make sure that we were receiving the correct vehicle, that we had already reserved, because we knew that Avis was trying to pull a fast one on us. In the meantime, I called the number that Priceline provided us to find out what kind of cars they considered to be full size. It turns out that the Priceline number is absolutely no help at all unless you want to learn the melody of their advertisement.
Discouraged and frustrated and anxious to start our vacation, my boyfriend's dad called Avis to find out what they considered a full size and or midsize vehicle. Depending on the year, make and model of the car is how they classify it. Body styles and sizes of vehicles change over the year, but Avis' standards do not. After 2 whole hours of negotiating and arguing and haggling to find a car that would at least accommodate our luggage, not to mention, the 4 of us, Avis provided us with a Dodge Magnum. It was a tight squeeze, but we managed to get our luggage and ourselves into the car, and begin our hour long drive to Okeechobee.
We were running 2 hours behind on our vacation, due to Avis and Priceline's song and dance and failure to provide any help to us. We were on our way. Well, here comes the fun part. On Sunday, my boyfriend was involved in a fender bender while driving the Dodge Magnum that Avis had provided for us. No one was injured but the car was no longer in driving condition. My boyfriend was ticketed because that the woman who hit him, her car's airbag deployed and in Okeechobee, their policy is that in that circumstance, they have to issue a ticket.
So, we needed to have a car in order to drive from Okeechobee to Miami before 9am on Monday morning to get on our cruise ship for the remainder of our vacation. It's a Sunday night in a small town, no car rental businesses are open or available. Now, the Okeechobee Sheriff's Department needed to have the Dodge Magnum moved off of the road, so they called a local towing company to come remove the car.
Once my boyfriend's father got on the phone with Avis and told them what had happened, they told us that they could not do anything for us until the car that had been rented was returned to West Palm's Avis parking lot. The total towing cost for the car to be towed from Okeechobee to West Palm would be over $400.00. OK, we would pay the towing if necessary without a guarantee that once the damaged car was returned to them, that they would have another suitable car to rent out to us, we didn't like the sound of that.
Also, once Avis found out that my boyfriend received a ticket in the accident, they terminated the contract that he had with them. We were stranded! They told us there was nothing they could do to help us because my boyfriend had received a ticket. After hours of making phone calls and arguing with Avis personnel, we still had no answers. They would not rent my boyfriend another vehicle, but they would rent another vehicle to another person over 25 in our party. Again, it's a Sunday night and no businesses in this small area are open or available.
Furious and nervous about what would happen after finding out that Avis had basically stranded us and given us a bunch of "no" answers and failing to offer any sort of an alternative solution to our problem, we decided to take a gamble with the rest of our vacation, our cruise, and try to rent a vehicle from the local Okeechobee Enterprise first thing on Monday morning. Enterprise opened at 8am. We were there at 7:45am. By 8:10am, we had a 2008 Toyota Camry rental car with a full tank of gas and we were on our merry way to Miami for the remainder of our vacation.
At Enterprise, we arranged to drop the car off in Miami before our cruise and then pick up another vehicle the following Saturday upon our return. We dropped the car at Enterprise in Miami and we boarded the ship for our cruise. When we returned from our cruise we made our way over to the Enterprise office in the bottom of the Double Tree Hotel. In less than 45 minutes, we received a clean, 2008 Nissan Xterra with a full tank of gas and we were on our way. All of our luggage and all 4 of us were driving back to Okeechobee for our last night of vacation.
So here is what I want to say, the people at Enterprise could not have been more professional, helpful or kind. And, the nice young man even upgraded our rental from a full size to and SUV without charge. He also offered us a free tank of gas, so we took him up on that offer. We were all in shock and absolute delight due to the treatment we received from Enterprise. It was like night and day compared to the terrible and frustrating service and lack of respect we had received while dealing with Avis and their Mickey Mouse operation. The second Enterprise vehicle was wonderful and we had absolutely no problems returning it to the Enterprise office in West Palm Beach International Airport before boarding our flight back to Chicago.
Bottom line, I will never ever, ever, ever allow anyone I know to attempt to book a rental vehicle through Priceline. Pay the extra money, it's worth it. Also, I would like to mention that I would rather walk over broken glass 1,000,000,000 miles than ever, ever, ever attempt to rent a car through Avis ever again. I cannot say enough positive and complimentary things to Enterprise and I cannot say enough negative things about Priceline and Avis.
Enterprise is absolutely amazing and a pleasure to deal with whereas Priceline and Avis are the world's absolute worst nightmare. DO NOT SPEND YOUR HARD EARNED MONEY ON PRICELINE OR AVIS. WITH TOUGH TIMES AS THEY ARE, DUE TO THE ECONOMY, GIVE YOUR MONEY TO ENTERPRISE! Enterprise provides the service that they say they will, and then some! They met and exceeded all of our expectations and we could not have been more pleased!
Thank you Enterprise. Avis and Priceline... get your act together! You have lost 4 customers and everyone else that we choose to tell our story to. Thanks for nothing Avis and Priceline, YOU CROOKS!!
When I went into the Priceline website, I wanted to rent a car from Denver to Kansas City one way. I clearly typed these one-way destination sites into the spaces provided. However when the "name your price" screen came up, without any indication from Priceline, I was kicked into a cheaper price with a round trip destination. So when I showed up at Budget Rental in Denver the clerk told me I was reserved for a round trip destination. The clerk said they couldn't promise that when I got to Kansas City that they would not charge me "hundreds of dollars" for a drop off fee. They told me I had to sort it out with Priceline and Priceline told me I had to sort it out with Budget.
Well, Budget couldn't guarantee that I wouldn't be charged an additional fee upon arrival. This process took me so long that I was already going to be late arriving in K City so I just asked Budget what it would cost to start all over again and get a new reservation with Budget to get a car to K City. They charged me $200. They told me Priceline would refund my money. HA!!! Even though I had pre-purchased insurance and got a screen that told me that with the purchase of insurance I could cancel my reservation.
Priceline told me the reservation was non-refundable. DON'T PRINT A SCREEN THAT TELLS ME I CAN CANCEL A RESERVATION WHEN I CAN'T. FRAUDULENT ADVERTISING!!! I told Priceline that Budget said they would refund the money to Priceline if they called and confirmed that I had not picked up the car. Priceline said they would call. I felt like they were blowing me off to get me off the phone. I received an email that said they were contacting Budget for a resolution and it would take up to 10 days. Mark my word Priceline, I will post that resolution.
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 customer's 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 $74.22 that I do not have to just give away. They also are taking customer's money for rental car companies that require you to have a credit card. If you make a reservation with a company that offer the best deal Priceline does not verify whether the company only accepts credit cards which will mean if you don't have a credit card and you make reservation with one of those companies you can lose your refund because car rental agreements are non refundable.
The deposit varies by the agreement you make with Priceline and you don't have all the info until you complete the reservation. So you can't really ask the rental car company questions until you complete the reservation process with Priceline. So that leaves you stuck. I will never do business with your company again and I will make sure to put the word out about how you mislead your customers by having them putting their card info in before they can get a bid just so you can steal their money.
I booked a car thru Priceline. Due to a blizzard my flight from MD to CA was canceled. Since I was unable to make my scheduled appointment in CA I called Priceline to ask if I could reschedule my reservation to the following week. After a long conversation with the agent and proving that my flight was canceled, they told me that my contract would not allow them to reschedule.
They refused to give me my full refund saying it was in my contract. I asked to speak to a manager and was transferred to a rude woman that kept referencing the contract and would not refund all of my money. I find this totally inexcusable. We cannot control the weather. Do not use this company. Book direct with the hotel or rental car businesses. It will save you in the long run.
CALIFORNIA -- I decided to give Priceline a shot after using Hotwire for my rentals. I tried bidding on a car priced at 39$ 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 overcharge 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 the way to go. Never had any issues with them.
To ANYONE thinking of using Priceline.com: Do not book through Priceline, unless there is absolutely nothing that could possibly happen to prevent you from keeping your reservation!!!!! I wanted to write concerning my complete frustration with the Priceline cancellation policy!! I booked a rental car with a pick-up scheduled in Kailua Kona. Due to unforeseen circumstances, (learning we had to move from our home), I called 2 months and 1 week before our scheduled rental to cancel and was told we were not entitled to any refund on the rental. Nope, not a dime!
Working in the travel industry myself, I understand not being able to resell merchandise, (ex: airline seat, rental car, etc), costs the company money, especially when you cancel a few days or weeks beforehand. However, 2 months and a week is plenty of time to re-rent the automobile, which I have no doubt they will do, making twice the money on that vehicle.
Meanwhile, I am out the entire $235.26. I called customer service, and was told with an almost "Too Bad, So Sad" attitude that they could not help me. They offered nothing, not even a portion of my money back!! I will be passing along my experience to as many people as I can, which is many working in the industry and of course will no longer use Priceline. Frustrated and Disappointed!!!!
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.
LONDON, ONTARIO -- Rented a car through Priceline, and the car was to be in London Ontario, but ended up in Ontario (intl), Ont. which we later discovered is in California. Spent over 1 hour on the original day of the rental talking to many representatives. No luck, rented a hotel plus taxi to the hotel. The next day we did get a car. The company we rented the car from acknowledge the rate quoted by Priceline. Even though it was not the correct rate, the rental company also stated that the error had been made by Priceline but Priceline basically did nothing except to point fingers at everyone but themselves.
Their whole argument is based on the claim that the California address is on the confirmation. It is not and I am quite sure that someone from the car rental agency in both Canada and in the US would have said something when we were trying to find out where our car was. WE were trying to get an answer as to where the car was for over an hour on the night before. We finally gave up and went to a hotel. No compensation from Priceline, just finger pointing. My suggestion is do not use Priceline for car rental.
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?