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Avoid Fox Rent a Car

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Avoid Fox Rent a Car

Hello everyone,

I am new here on this forum. Did some hotel reviews here on Trip Advisor but this is my first post on TA forum.

I had a very negative experience with Fox Rent a Car that I wanted to share with you so that nobody else is cheated by them.

Somewhen last July I made an online reservation via Fox's website of a mid-size SUV for my month long ski trip in January and Febuary of this year. I was quoted 1018usd for a month, renting in San Francisco and returning the car in Denver. All other companies offered much higher price so I decided to book with Fox. It was a bit strange that the price difference between Fox and others was big but I assumed that that was an offer (like I had renting cars in Spain, UK, New Zealand...).

On January 26th late evening I finally arrived to San Francisco after 4 long flights from Europe and went to Fox's desk at the airport. There I was told that the quoted price was just a base price and that I was obliged to add this and that insurance. The price went up to over 2200usd. The clerk said that it was clearly stated on the website that that was only a base price. That wasn't true but he didn't want to listen. It seems that while all other rental companies quoted their final price with all the obligatory things included, Fox decided to cheat. As I had to rent a car that night, I went to other rental companies' desks but was offered very high last minute prices so eventually I had to book with Fox.

But that was just the tip of an iceberg. As the price was now higher than expected, I asked to split the cost between several of my credit cards. The clerk refused saying that their policy is to use only one credit card. During my past rentals across the world, I had no problems with using several credit cards for paying for the car. Of course, I showed him my confirmation e-mail where they listed all credit cards they accepted but there was no mention that only one credit card had to be used. The only credit card I had without limit was Diners Discover but that was a charge card (not revolving like others) and that meant that I would have to pay 2200usd all at once few days later. That was out of the question. But the clerk at SFO office assured me that that would only be a pre-authorization or pending transaction and that when I return the car in Denver, I could split the cost between different credit cards or even pay in cash. I gave him the credit card and everything went through. Two days later I found out that the whole amount of over 2200usd was charged to my credit card, not only pre-authorizing it. I phoned Fox but they were sorry for the inconvenience and not much help from them. 'Miscommunication' was their explanation.

Also, as this was a ski trip with a lot of driving through the mountains of Lake Tahoe in California, Salt Lake City in Utah and around Colorado, I remembered I asked if the car was an automatic and 4WD. The response from the clerk was 'YES'. I was given the keys, without possibility to choose car from mid-size SUV category, like it always happened when renting a car in the US. I was given Jeep Liberty.

Started driving towards Lake Tahoe when real problems with the car started. On the second day it started indicating that I should change oil. Then whenever I turned on the heating, it was smelling like something was burning inside the car. And worst of all, the windschild liquid was only a normal water that froze down immediately I entered the mountains. It was frozen for few days and then finally I could take it out and replace it with non-freezing winter liquid.

Front lights of the car were so bad that at night I could hardly see. Long exposure lights were not working correctly. But I continued with my trip across California, Nevada, Utah and went to Colorado. The day I arrived there it started snowing heavily. I parked the car in front of my accommodation.

The next morning I was off to ski at Vail but my car wouldn't move. I was surprised because after all I had a 4WD. I asked for it in SFO. But to my disappointment it turned out to be only 2WD and the worst of all - not the front wheel drive but the rear, what was extremely dangerous in Colorado road conditions. Some neighbours tried to help me to move the car but it was useless. The car would't move. I immediately phoned Fox's office in SFO but all I was getting was music over the phone. Then I phoned their Denver's office but again it was only music. My third luck was to phone their central reservation office - music again. For an hour and a half I was listening to the same music over the phone when someone finally picked up the phone. The guy over the phone started to make excuses. It seems that there was a lot of 'miscommunication'!!! I was getting angry but the guy was only reading from the manual and was of no help. He offered me to drive to Denver to change the car but immediately said that he was unable to make reservation and once I arrived I MIGHT get a new car. It would be a risky business to drive 100 miles to Denver only to find out that there were no 4WD cars. And after all, I COULDN'T MOVE THE CAR so I couldn't drive to Denver. He kept repeating that I might try my luck in Denver, not at all listening to me.

I remembered that I paid for road assistance (2,99usd+ tax per day) so I now phoned another number. Again I was listening to music while on hold but "only" for 30 minutes this time. I was told that the assistance would come in 2 hours but that I would first receive a phonecall!!! Needless to say that 1h30min later there was still no phonecall and no road assistance. At that time they were plowing the street so they finally helped me to get out with my car. Tried to phone road assistance to cancel them but again I was put on hold and the music started. I hang up. Didn't want to loose more time with them. Never found out if the road assistance eventually arrived. I doubt.

For most of my time in Colorado my car kept sliding every now and then. Not a nice feeling.

Needless to say that Fox ruined my holidays!

I am going home on Wednesday so will see what they are going to say when I return the car. I doubt they are going to offer any refund. Probably they are going to blame everything on 'miscommunication'!

Liverpool, UK
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1. Re: Avoid Fox Rent a Car

If you rented via the US website (the dot com version) which seems to be the case if the price quote was in $$ then the mandatory insurances that a foreign visitor requires would not have been included as they are optional for US residents.

All of this should have been clearly set out in your rental confirmation but I have no experience of renting with Fox so I'm unfamiliar with how transparent they are with the details.

Edited: 21 February 2014, 09:42
Lewes, United...
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for Road Trips
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2. Re: Avoid Fox Rent a Car


Tom is right, it's quite clear you used the US based .com website. Actually, I'm not even sure they have any other website. This may well not have had large print to warn that insurance was not included. This is because the website is meant to be used by US citizzens who never expect insurance to be included in any rental cost as many make different arrangements for car insurance as many are already covered by other means or sources.

Again, but this is based on my experience and knowledge of the car rental market, it doesn't necessarily per se appear on a website, I would always automatically assume that any SUV rented from Fox at SFO would be a basic model with 2WD. To absolutely ensure you get an SUV with 4WD or AWD, it is necessary always speak to somebody and get that important fact in writing in your rental contract. Again, it seems you failed to do this. I'd comment further, but that would only rub salt in the wounds.

So, while I'm really sorry that your ski trip is apparently ruined by a car rental deal that you are unhappy with, I have to say some if not much of the fault lies with your failure to do enough research to compare car rental quotes and ensure you booked what you actually needed. It seems you were far too influenced by a cheap deal and didn't do enough homework.

If you had asked how to get what you wanted on this forum ahead of your trip, we would have happily steered you in the right direction. You could even have got a car rental deal quoted and billed in Kuna.


Uden, The...
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3. Re: Avoid Fox Rent a Car

Horrible experiences. Thanks for posting. This is not first complaint about Fox and i'm sure it won't be the last one. There's a reason we always recommend to rent with an outside US broker and have all insurances included. And we always check first if the given car is awd/4wd before going on the road.

4. Re: Avoid Fox Rent a Car

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