CALIFORNIA -- To Whom it May Concern,
I am writing to file a complaint with Uhaul, to let you know that I am disappointed with my experience with your company on my last move. I am so disappointed in your reservation process and customer service, in particular with the regional manager I spoke with, that I never intend to use Uhaul services again, and intend to explain this to everyone I contact that is planning to move.
I reserved a moving truck about a week before the move date. I reserved it for 2/13/06, and chose the 6 AM pick up time on your website. I realized at the time that the pick up location was a preference only as clearly indicated below.
Critical reservation advisements
Before confirming your reservation, please read and check each one of the advisements below to indicate that you understand them.
I understand that my pickup location is a PREFERENCE ONLY.
I understand that the U-Haul regional office for WEST VALLEY CITY, UT will be in charge of my reservation.
I understand that they will call me by 5PM on the day prior to my pickup date to schedule my exact pickup location and time.
I understand that to change or cancel my reservation I will contact U-Haul no later than the day prior to my pickup date. I understand that reservations cancelled on the day of pickup are subject to a $50 cancellation fee.
I understand that U-Haul reserves the right to substitute equipment of equal or greater size at no additional charge to me.
However, as you can see above, it is not so clearly written that the pick up time is also only preference. This would not have been any problem for me had I been contacted to let me know of the change.
In fact, I was told three separate times that I would receive a phone call the day before the scheduled pick up time to confirm the exact location and time. The first time was on the confirmation page after I MADe the reservation, the second time was in a confirmation e-mail, and the third time was when I called 1-800-go-uhaul on 2/11 to confirm the reservation. I was told that I would have to wait to confirm the time and location until the following day when the regional manager would call me by 5 pm.
On 2/12 at approximately 5:30 I called again to confirm the time and location. The representative told me that someone should have called and that she would have someone call me between 7-9AM the next day- the day I had reserved the truck for. I explained to her that I was expecting to pick the truck up at 6AM and couldn’t wait until 7 or 9 AM to hear from them. She apologized and told me that I would have t wait to get that call.
The next morning I found an e-mail letting me know the pick up location had changed, and I tried to call to find out when I could pick up the truck. I called the location until 9:30 AM and could not get a hold of anyone, so I called the regional manager over the pickup location in West Valley City, Utah. As bad as I thought that the reservation process had been to this point, It was speaking with this regional manager that made me decide to never use UHaul again.
I told the regional manager that I was upset because I had scheduled the truck for 6 AM and it was now 9:30 AM and I still had not been able to pick it up. She told me that the location opened at 9 AM and there was nothing she could do. I explained to her that I expected to pick up the truck by 6 Am since no one had told me otherwise, that I could not make the move in the day I had to do it, and asked what could be done about it. She then accused me of trying to get something for free, and told me that it was clearly explained before I made the reservation that the pick up time is only a preference, which you can see from the pasted portion from your website above that this is not the case. I told her that it did say that the time and location would be confirmed, but since I had made the reservation a week in advance I would have expected someone to let me know beforehand. She said that there is no location in her region that opens at 6 AM and that there is nothing she can do about it. I asked her if I could speak to anyone else about it, but she refused to give me any information about someone else I could call. I told her that if I had known that there was no way that I could have gotten the truck at the time I reserved, I would have been able to go with someone else, but in fact no one had ever called me- not on 2/12, or on 2/13 like I was told. She asked me what I wanted her to do, and I told her that I thought that an apology and some sort of discount would be in order. This upset her more and she told me that nothing had gone wrong. She did apologize that I did not get a call, but it was not a genuine apology- it was more like she was sorry that she had to talk to me. I asked her if she cared that she lost a customer, and that I would tell everyone I know about the horrible experience with UHaul and she said that was my choice and she wouldn’t do anything.
Is that the kind of company that UHaul is? I have known UHaul since I was a little kid, when my dad rented trucks and trailers. It was in fact the first name I thought of when I was planning the move. But, I think it is reasonable to expect that if you make a reservation a week in advance, the company has enough time to contact you and let you know if it will not work beforehand. By the time I was actually told that I could not get the truck when I needed it, I would have been charged $50 to cancel it. Is that the plan? To charge people $50 for believing that you will deliver the goods they need when you have no intention of delivering? That is how it appears when the regional manager can tell me off the top of her head that no office is open at 6 AM, but she cannot call me to let me know that until it is too late. If that is not the intention then I think you need to work on the reservation process because it allows for terrible things to happen.
Furthermore, your customer service is horrible. Every person I spoke with at UHaul was annoyed to have to deal with me, even when all I was asking for was information that I had been told to expect. I had been told repeatedly to wait for a phone call- in fact two calls on two separate days- I didn’t receive even one call. This meant that the day I had planned to move was now two days off work and a night on the road. I would expect the regional manager to do whatever she could to make me a satisfied customer. Instead she accused me of trying to get something for free- even before I asked for anything. Although I did ask for a discount later, I think it is reasonable. UHaul knew for almost a full week when I needed the truck, and also knew that there was no way that I could pick it up at the time I reserved it on the website. Yet I was not even given the common courtesy of being told that you cannot provide that advertised service in my area. Instead I had to pick up the truck almost 4 hours later than I had scheduled. If I brought the truck back 4 hours late I am sure I would have to pay extra. Isn’t it reasonable that I expect you be held to the same standard? The discount I was asking for was simply to cover the motel room I would have to rent overnight- probably $40. Instead I was mistreated for expecting the services you advertise on your website, and that I had been told by your representatives to expect.
I am writing you this letter out of courtesy to you so that you know how your reservation process and customer service lost you future business from me and everyone in my sphere of influence- which I might ad can be surprisingly large in a services and sales business like I am in. I am not as upset with the whole process because I understand that there will be problems with anything. However, I refuse to do business with a company with such poor customer service representatives and management, and that would rather lose future business over a dissatisfied customer than to give up even just $40 of their profits.