Last August, I was involved in a car accident with a rental vehicle and discussed the appalling response I received from Discount Car & Truck Rentals here on the Roamsters blog.
Well, if their response was appalling, dealing with Zoom Rent-A-Car which provided the replacement vehicle (and was arranged for me by Ruta Auto Body) has been disgusting.
An Avenger was dropped off at Ruta on Friday August 31, 2007 at around 2PM and was returned to the same location 2 days later, on Sunday September 2nd at before noon.
On September 12th, my AMEX car picked up a charge of $327.77 from Zoom Rent-A-Car for the pleasure of driving their car — for less than 48 hours. His explanation was that I was charged for 4 days @ $69.99 per day for a full-size rental because it was a 4-day holiday weekend. (He told the guys at Ruta that I was charged for THREE days.)
OK, first of all, that weekend comprised of only ONE statutory holiday, that being Labour Day which was on September the 3rd.
Secondly, in whose estimation would an Avenger ever qualify as a full-size car? Maybe to someone driving a Smart Car, but not to anyone else with whom I’ve shared this story.
To, at no time was I told that I would be charged for either 3 days or 4 days to have the car for less than 48 hours.
It gets more mind-boggling, because according to the Zoom Rent-A-Car website, a 2-day rental for a mid-sized vehicle works out as follows:
Rental Rate $ 59.98
2 days @ $ 29.99 $ 59.98
Sub Total $ 59.98
Maintenance Fee $ 4.99
V.L.A.T.R $ 2.98
T.F.F.C $ 0.80
PST $ 5.50
GST $ 4.13
Free Mileage unlimited
Total Charges $ 78.38
When I asked about the disparity, Mike S. explained that after someone books a car on their site and the long-weekend rates apply, the customer is phoned immediately and told to expect additional charges – because – get this – their website is incapable of producing the correct rate. Well, being in the business, I know better… so that’s another pack of lies to justify extortion.
Despite phone calls to both Zoom Rent-A-Car and Ruta Auto Body, to date I have not received a refund for the excess charges.
The lesson here would be — do NOT do business with Zoom Rent-A-Car unless of course, you LIKE being ripped off.
Follow-up: In a conversation today, Mike S. of Zoom Rent-A-Car agreed to send me a cheque for $159.81, which is still $89.58 short of what he owes me according to their posted rates… and MORE than the cost of a 2-day rental. Aaargh. Unbelievable.