1Car1 Complaint - Extortion, Unreasonable Staff, Rogue Trader Company

Review by When did companies get away with extortion? on 2008-08-12
LONDON -- We hired a car from the 1Car1 Rental, (Railway Arches, 133-135 MacFarlane Road Shepherds Bush, London UK) for a weekends fishing up in Wales. The weather was not kind, though we stuck to the sealed roads, we collected some very minor mud splashes. We were tent camping and stayed in several campsites in the Brecons.

On returning the car we were charged for a valet service of £45.00 and additional petrol at £20.00. The total car rental up until this time was originally £77.00 (+an additional £20.00 for a named driver). From the onset, we felt that the rate we had been charged was very low and that we had possibly signed our lives away (especially on closer inspection reading the swathes of fine print, as well as the large "Hirers are responsible for tires and windscreens" emblazoned in red across the hire agreement (they should be responsible for these, as they own the vehicle). 1Car1 should be avoided at all cost.

On leaving the car rental company in high spirits to start our weekend mission, we asked if they had foot mats for the footwells to help keep the car tidy - they said no. There was evidence of plastic keeper lugs which would normally hold the mats! On inquiring where the nearest fuel station was for our return journey to ensure the car was returned with a full tank, we were also told they operate a empty to empty policy and so long as there was roughly the same amount, that there was no problem.

We spilled no food, or left any rubbish in the car, except for the small pieces of grass which was unavoidable staying in campground. We are talking small pieces too small to pick up by hand. We did try and vacuum the small pieces of grass from the car on a layby on the M4, but the cleaner was not working (this was not because the car was a state, but because our suspicions of the company and its extras policies, had already started to worry us gravely). We offered to do it in their yard, but they would not let us. The time was right at rush hour and there were major road works surrounding their office location in shephards bush, which made going else where (with no good idea of the local area or roads), impossible and a very rude suggestion from them. Thank goodness for sites like these.

I am going to submit to all sites I can find, as well as writing letters to the editor of every fishing magazine and travel mags and telling everyone I know. These people are rogue traders and need bringing to task. They operate on extortion tactics, and (if we were lesser people), risk your sanity and chances of a conviction from what would be deserved violence towards the rude and arrogant staff. I am also taking them to the small claims court. I took photographs of the car as returned, which will eventually make them look very guilty. Stick with Hertz or Avis, they are polite and I have used their cars on numerous trips before and once or twice even left the cars in a bit of a state, but with no foot mats, how does one avoid normal use? The advantage of using one of the reputable companies also, is that you can return the car after hours and not have to rent for an additional day too, just to meet their lazy business hours. You can also buy fuel protection policy, for returning it in any state. The old addage, if something sounds too good to be true, then it probably is!
Comments:3 Replies - Latest reply on 2008-12-15
Posted by extremeh2o on 2008-08-22:
I totally agree that 1car1 are a hire company that should not be used by anyone wanting to hire a car or van the staff are abrupt and they are unscrupulous rogue traders. These people should be under investigation by watch dog or the likes. I'm currently fighting with them about an insurance excess that was taken from my account and then I also found out from them that they don't actually use an insurance company for the insurance excess… but administer it themselves, so there is no governing body to ensure the customer gets a fair deal.
Posted by AndyS on 2008-09-17:
Having worked in the car rental industry for some years I thought I would add my two penneth (or 3 cents!)

The first thing that I noted was the comment on the fact that 1car1 don't use an insurance company. You're not quite there with this comment, they do as all UK rental companies do - its third party only. The 'insurance' you referred to is CDW (Collision Damage Waiver. Either way I don't see where they have charged you anything for damage.

You mentioned that the car was fairly clean but you felt the need to try and clean it at a service station. Why would you need to do that?

Tyres & Windscreen: again, its normal practice that the hirer is responsible. If you kerb and damage a tyre through a lack of care why should you expect someone else to pay for it?

Fuel: if you returned the car with the same fuel then why have you allowed them to charge you £20? If 1car1 refuse to refund your money you can initiate a charge back with your credit card company to get your money back.

Finally, 1car1 are members of the BVRLA www.bvrla.co.uk and have to adhere to the terms and conditions. This includes customer disputes so you could raise it with them and they will act as an intermediary.

Good luck.
Posted by GDS on 2008-12-15:
It makes me laugh when time and time again i see these reviews.

Car is as simple as you want to make it,

Your Book you car.
When you collect your car , Both yourself and a rental agent go round and check for:-

Damage (To ensure that no excess is taken unlawfully)
The fuel level (to ensure when you return the car that you return in the same state),

This is knon as Like for like, Not empty to empty.

After you have done this you then READ the T&C and thensign the rental aggreement.

If you Fail to check the car or fail to check the fuel level and just sign it what more do you expect.

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