A Hertz customer’s ‘very bad’ car rental experience goes viral: ‘It was extortion’

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,“It was not just bad customer service or bad logistics. It was extortion. They had cars, they wanted me to pay more for them. He said that to me at least 6 times.” ,

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He was a disgruntled Hertz customer whose thread about “a really bad experience” trying to rent a car over Thanksgiving weekend went viral on Twitter this week — and he eventually got a refund.

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Kate Klonick, an assistant professor at St. John’s University School of Law, was so dismayed by her experience with the car rental company that she wrote a five-page letter to Hertz HTZ,
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Which he posted in full on Twitter TWTR,
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on Tuesday.

She described reserving a median sedan for pickup on the Sunday before Thanksgiving week, to be used for a week after taxes at a quoted price of $343.27, or $414.93. But when she arrived at her Brooklyn, NY, Hertz location at her appointed time, she says a customer service representative waited in line for two hours before closing up shop for the day and calling customer service to find Klonik another car. asked to call. Meanwhile, Clonik’s husband tried calling the customer service line, and was told they could make a new reservation at a different location for $1,800, which he declined.

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“I had a contract! I had met its terms! Hertz just had to fulfill his side of the deal!” Clonik writes.

A customer service representative sent him to two other locations, including LaGuardia Airport in Queens, to pick up the car. But even then it took days for them to finally get a vehicle that had mechanical problems, had no gas in the tank, and was dirty, Klonik claimed. The rental ended up costing him $943 – over $500 more than the price set in his original contract.

TL;DR: Klonik said Hertz would not honor her contract, and tried to pay her $1,800 for rental four times. He ended up paying over $500 for what he described as a bad car.

And that’s not counting calling Hertz customer service more than 20 times and hanging up six times, by her estimate. In his complaint letter, he requested $748.90 in total damages, including a payment of $528.07 he had made as promised in the breached contract; $133.51 was spent on Ubers going to different Hertz locations to find a car; And the $87.32 she says was spent on a “very nice bottle of Champagne” after the test. Clonick also said that she would file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, and any equivalent state and federal agencies.

Her post went viral, garnering over 10,000 retweets and quote tweets, and over 42,000 “likes”. Several people reported on their own negative experiences renting a car from the company.

Others suggested that they now boycott Hertz after reading about Klonik’s experience.

And many followers couldn’t resist sharing the episode “Seinfeld,” which tackles a similar rental car issue, including the iconic line: “So you know how to take Reservation; you don’t know how Hold Reservation. And this is really the most important part of the reservation. Holding.”

Hertz was not immediately available for comment.

Venting on Twitter seems to have worked for Clonik, though: She later tweeted that an executive customer at the Hertz corporate office called after 5 p.m. ET on Tuesday, requesting it on her credit card. Full amount refunded.

She goes on to say that when she asked how it would have been resolved if the tweet hadn’t gone viral, she was given an “executive” email to use in the future, and the rep said that “they treat all customers equally.” Trying to serve.”

Hertz has hit a few road blocks of late. NS The company laid off 10,000 employees at its North America operations To cut costs earlier in the pandemic. And it filed for Chapter 11 in May 2020, but exited bankruptcy earlier this summer, ready to capitalize on the rebounding travel economy.

That travel rebound helped propel car rental prices across the US this year, as tight vehicle supplies and increased demand from commuters eager to hit the road led to rental car shortages. In fact, one customer told Marketwatch that it was cheaper for him to rent a U-Haul truck for $100 a day, plus mileage and gas, than dropping between $400 and $500 a day for a sedan. “If you can even get one – most were sold out,” he said.

dispatch from a pandemic:Matt Landau wanted to find a rental car at a reasonable price – it was cheaper for him to rent a U-Haul truck

Rental car shortages stemmed from rental car companies nationwide, selling cars in the early days of the pandemic, when people stayed at home, and the lack of chips needed for car security systems, braking and entertainment consoles. During the summer, the average daily car rental rate was 90% compared to 2019.

Read more: $259 per day for rental car? Here’s how to rent this summer without blowing your budget

And: 9 Alternatives to Extreme Rental Cars

What’s more, now more than 165 former Hertz customers from Delaware, California, Florida, Illinois and other states are suing the company for allegedly falsely arresting and imprisoning them It is alleged that the vehicle hired by him was reported missing or stolen. Hertz stated that, “the vast majority of these cases involve renters who were returning vehicles for more than several weeks or months and who stopped communicating with us before the set due date.”

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