Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Hertz Versus Alamo

Two years ago I was driving an Alamo rental car in the Texas panhandle when I got a flat tire. My first thought was, "Cool, it's a rental so they'll fix it for me." I called Alamo and learned that a flat tire is considered "road hazard" damage, so they won't fix it or pay for it. I would have to put on the spare myself (not a big deal except that it meant unloading my stuff from the trunk on the highway shoulder--at least it wasn't raining or snowing). Then I could 1.) drive back to Chicago on the spacesaver spare which meant 55 mph maximum for a thousand miles, 2.) drive to the airport in Lubbock where I could exchange it for a different car (like throwing out the baby with the bathwater), or 3.) get the tire fixed myself and request reimbursement from Alamo although it was against their policy. As it turned out, the repair only cost $8, so I didn't bother to pursue it with Alamo. When I rented my next car from Hertz, I told them about the Alamo policy. They were shocked and said Hertz would have sent someone out to fix it on the spot for free.

Last week I rented another car from Hertz. I noticed that one of the tires was a little low on air. I filled it up the first time I stopped for gas and kept an eye on it throughout the week. Four days later it was low again, so I refilled it. When I returned the car, I mentioned that they should get the slow leak fixed. They said they appreciated the feedback and were sorry for the inconvenience it caused. What happened next really amazed me. They printed out a credit for $30 off my next rental! Heck, it only cost me 50 cents to get air for the tire--I expected nothing and would have been pleased with $5-10.


Anonymous said...

There is obviously a lot to know about this. I think you made some good points in Features also.

BraunSuga said...

This really helped in making a decision. Thank you.