Traveling is hard, but car rentals don’t need to make it worse- right?
When I rented a car in Houston Texas- airport location- I thought, what’s it matter what company I rent a car from? What’s the difference between Hertz or Dollar besides the price?
Here is the difference —- price, customer service, dependability, and reliability. AND these are the reasons to NOT use the Dollar Rent a Car location in Houston.
Why do I say that?
First, when I arrived at the airport- after traveling all day – I was tired, hungry and just wanted to get the car and leave- I went to the check-in counter in the airport. No one there. The Hertz lady was there. Yes, she was checking in customers. Dollar Rent lady?- nope. The representative’s purse was on the counter. Her People magazine was parted open- ready to be read — but, no representative?
So, after about twenty minutes – who helped us? Yes, the Hertz lady. “She stepped out to smoke,” she said. “She should be back soon.” Yes, I waited and waited. Finally, the Hertz lady – noticing that the Dollar girl was not coming back, told me to catch a shuttle to the rental location and I could check-in there.
So, waited another fifteen minutes for a Dollar shuttle (by the way, there was always a steady stream of Hertz shuttles available). The ride to the rental location was smooth, comfortable, great air conditioning, and short ride.
When at the rental location, the representatives were quick and swift in checking everyone in and getting me a vehicle. I got a economy car- so nothing exciting about that. It was a death trap car, but I didn’t want to pay more for a better car.
But, the real issue was during the return of the car. My flight was 5:30 a.m. I got to the rental drop off at 3:30 a.m. and the place was dark. The location was NOT open. The website said it was a 24/7 location. Why were they not open?
I called the 1-800 number and only got a round and round voicemail not getting me anywhere and no information. Finally, another man pulled up to the gate and sat and waited. I assumed he was just as astounded as I, but he said the location didn’t open until 4:00 a.m. So, I could breath a little easier. I still had time to get to the airport and go through security and find my gate before boarding – Right?
Well, 4 a.m. came and went. So did 4:15 a.m. Finally, 4:18 a.m. I was mad, grouchy, and freaking out about a flight that I might miss – but, to make it all worse- I got up so early, which is something that I hate to do. But, finally, someone showed up for work. Took time for them to open the office, open the gate, and I don’t know – make breakfast or something.
I, along with six other people, got checked in (they over charged me and charged me for hidden costs that were never disclosed before) and we were waiting outside for the shuttle to take us to the airport. What?? The shuttle driver had not shown up for work?? There wasn’t going to be a shuttle bus to go to the airport? Is this a nightmare? That was the thought that was going through my head.
My experience didn’t get any better than that. I got to the airport and made my flight, but not without worry, rushing and unneeded stress.
Thanks a lot Dollar Car Rental. I’ll remember to pay the extra to use Hertz next time.