The rear driver side tire of our rental car kept going flat, and I had to keep stopping to fill it; probably since it was 4 below zero. I called Budget, to ask if they wanted me to change the tire, or keep driving on it. The representative told me to do nothing and that they would bring a new car. I had to wait 5 hours for them to bring a new vehicle, greatly delaying our plans.
A month and a half later, I received a notice that they were going to charge me an additional $281.60 for roadside assistance. I at no time requested or needed roadside assistance. I could have easily changed the tire or kept driving and stop frequently to fill it.
I tried to call customer service to dispute the charges, but was told that department does not take phone calls and I had to e-mail them. Two days later Charles Harrington e-mailed me that they were going to charge me the full $281.60 since I “needed” it, even though I did not request it.
I escalated it to James Tucker in the Executive Office of Budget. He said the most he could do is charge me half, claiming I could have refused to listen to Budget’s instructions that they were going to switch out the car.
Then I asked for a receipt, so I could submit it to my insurance, which covers roadside assistance. Over a week and a half, I asked daily, and each time I received a receipt (from Charles Harrington, Blandine Germain & Craig Devin) it either was for the incorrect amount or did not list roadside assistance at all. I called James Tucker to complain, and asked if I could speak to his supervisor. He told me that there was not one higher than him in Budget, and refused to allow me to speak to anyone else. When I finally posted a complaint on the Budget Facebook I got the receipt.
Even though Budget is often cheaper, I’m going back to Enterprise (www.enterprise.com). Their customer service is excellent, and they end up being less expensive in the long run, since they don’t surprise their customers with unsubstantiated charges.
Product or Service Mentioned: Budget Rent A Car Car Rental.
Reason of review: Poor customer service.
Monetary Loss: $141.