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Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

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washington
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Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

In January 2011 I reserved an Economy class car (Nissan Sentra 4dr or similar) through Expedia for pick up at the San Jose airport for our February 2011 trip to Costa Rica. However, upon arriving at Dollar I was informed that they did not have Nissan Sentras for rent. Their only Economy class car was a Suzuki Alto, which is substantially smaller than a Nissan Sentra. Since we needed a larger vehicle for 4 adults and 4 suitcases I had to upgrade to a Suzuki Grand Vitara on the spot, which more than doubled the cost of our car rental. Upon returning home I checked Dollar's website and it only shows Suzxuki Altos as their Economy class car while Expedia shows Nissan Sentras as Dollar's Economy class car.

After resolving this issue we enjoyed our 16 day trip.

washington
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1. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

Here is Expedia's response to my complaint about the rental car problem.

Dear Expedia Customer,

Thank you for contacting us about your rental car.

We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused you and we would like you to know that Expedia has your best interests at heart.

We would like you to know that we do not intend to mislead our customers as we rely solely on the information that the vendor posted on our website give us. We do thank you for bringing this incident to our attention.

If this does not answer your question or solve your problem, feel free to reply to this message or call us at 1-800-EXPEDIA (1-800-397-3342) and reference case ID: M-498997.

Thank you for choosing Expedia.

Expedia Customer Service Team

Canada
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351 posts
18 reviews
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2. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

As a business traveller who travels 2-3 weeks per month I can tell you this is very normal with any car agency. It's rare to get the make of car that you think you have reserved and not uncommon to not even be able to get the class of car you've chosen. It happens everywhere with any of the agencies. That's why most often in the car description it will have"or similar" in the wording, it gives them an out when they don't have your car. I've even shown up to pick up a car that was reserved well in advance and they have no cars available.

washington
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6 posts
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3. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

That would not be a problem if there was a similarity between a Suzuki Alto and a Nissan Sentra - in this case there is no similarity.

Ann Arbor, Michigan
1 post
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4. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

We had a really similar experience with Europcar and Expedia, but they just weren't going to give us a car at all! We made a reservation with Europcar in Costa Rica through Expedia, and when we arrived in Costa Rica at the car rental agency, we saw our names on their reservation list, but they refused to honor the reservation and give us a car. So we were essentially stranded in the Europcar shack on the first night of our vacation trying to figure out how our vacation would unfold without a car. The manager, Jose Ballesteros, told us we should leave the store and he would drop us back off at the airport to figure out how to get around the country on our own. He did not even want to let us use the phone!!

We made a second reservation for almost $200 more on the spot at Thrifty and four hours later got a car, but neither Europcar nor Expedia would refund our money or help us at all. When we called Expedia when we got back to the States, they told us that they had fulfilled their end of the bargain by having the reservation number show up on the Europcar desk, and that they were not responsible for the fact that Europcar would not give us a car. They did not reimburse our money and they basically said that none of this was their fault at all. In the future, I will never book through Expedia, I will always book through the rental company site and I will never ever book Europcar again.

San Jose, Costa Rica
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3,528 posts
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5. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

It is too bad to hear what happened to you, not good at all. Thanks for sharing.

Alajuela
Destination Expert
for Alajuela
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321 posts
36 reviews
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6. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

Another common problem with the big so called online travel agencies is they forget to quote the mandatory insurance in part because Costa Rica is somewhat unique in that you cannot decline what is referred to here as "basic insurance". Make sure any car quotes include the basic insurance. You can reduce the cost of this by about $8 a day by taking some of the insurance on a credit card that covers CDW.

Also be aware of the costs of "full insurance" or what I call "zero deductible" - this will add $10 to $20 a day if you choose it. 70% of our guests choose it, 00000.1% actually use it. OK the stats are fuzzy there but few people have any accidents despite the reputation of my and other local driving skills.

Berni

Alajuela

Slovenia
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
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14,805 posts
60 reviews
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7. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

Yeah, the biggest problem using a middle man is that nobody wants to accpt the blame. While it is more expensive having a reservation directly at least 1. You know exactly whos the culprit and 2. Could resolve the financial side with your bank. It dos not asure you that your reservation will be always honoured but ... And using small companies in that case has its benefit. They are much more vulnerable to bad reports on forums so they are trying their best to avoid overbookings.

San Jose, Costa Rica
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46,257 posts
35 reviews
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8. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

Thank you...next time dealt direct with service provider...and avoid middle people...many jokers around playing travel agent or car wholesalers!

roadadvisor

9. Re: Expedia Car Rental from Dollar Rental Car - Beware

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