Budget Car Rental - Ripped off! Clerk lied to me just to "sell her stuff".
HARLINGEN (AIRPORT), TEXAS -- I rented a car for 3 days for $175 through Budget's website - but it ended up being $308 after she swindled me at the counter. No damage, no GPS or car seat or etc., just an unethical way Budget evidently does business. Other people seem to be having the same experience. At the counter, when she put the lengthy form on the counter for me to initial in about 10 places, the insurance option was checked at $15.99/day. I looked at her and said I don't want that (I had declined it on my online reservation). She said, "It's in there." I reiterated that I didn't want it and specifically said I don't want to pay extra for that. She said, "No, it's included." Since the other option wasn't "Decline" or something obvious as the "no" choice, I shrugged and initialed it. Of course she flat-out lied to me. She also went on about how she could save me money by having them having them refill the tank at lower per-gallon costs than at the pump. I should have asked, but she certainly didn't say, that it is for the entire tank regardless of how much I used. I said OK.
The form I was initializing didn't have a total on it, and the contract that she tucked into my car number folder, I didn't even realize I had until after I returned home. I was never asked to sign it - the one with the total on it. My total was $308 for 2 1/2 days in a compact car that I drove a total of 177 miles.
When I called to complain, Daffney (her spelling, not mine) said what I described wouldn't have happened because that clerk "doesn't sell her stuff that way." Sell her stuff? I was there to pick up a rental car, not buy her stuff! She said since I'd initialized the options, there was nothing they could do. I didn't deny that I'd initialized it - I did it because I didn't think they would lie like that.
Also, it didn't affect me, but that tucked-away contract changed the free unlimited miles (on my reservation) to 200 miles/day, and said the car could only be driven within a 100-mile radius of the airport! I shudder to think what would've happened if I'd driven it a long distance.
For those who say "Well, don't sign something you haven't read", I agree. I'm careful about what I sign. But this form would take anyone at least 10 minutes to read and understand, and she told me what each initial was for (ha!) and there was one clerk and a line of people behind me. And I'd never been lied to by car rental clerk before. Budget will never get the chance to rif me off again.
The car, by the way, was nice.