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Budget Rent A Car Vancouver ripping off customers


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#1 Armada

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:52 PM

Three former Budget Rent a Car employees have contacted Go Public to allege the Vancouver-area operation systematically and intentionally rips off customers, by grossly overcharging for minor repairs that sometimes aren’t even done.
“They did it on purpose — charging the customer like way too much,” said a former lot attendant, who worked at Budget’s Vancouver airport location for a year, checking cars for damage. He agreed to speak to CBC News only if he was not identified.
"The system is run like that ... the small charges, they make them big charges. Especially the windshield. They can make more money from the windshield," he said.
"All of the inspectors have to look at the windshield first."
He said staff members were told to inspect vehicles from top to bottom, even after customers were gone, and report any damage to managers no matter how minuscule.
"I remember one time there was a senior couple. The other [employee] found out there was a tire cut. But from our standards, they should not charge them, honestly," he said.
"The other [employee] asked for the manager to come out and take a look. And then the manager charged them, just charged them."
Some repairs not done

“If there was a scratch on the car, we charged their credit card immediately … and that scratch would never even be fixed,” said another former employee.
She worked at the Budget counter at the Abbotsford airport, and also spoke on condition she would not be named.
Posted ImageGreg Harrison, Budget's general manager in Vancouver, said he is looking into the allegations made by ex-employees. (CBC)

“For the three months that I was there, I saw only one car go to the repair shop, and it was rear-ended.”
She said several renters would be charged for rock chip damage on the same vehicle, but no repairs would be done until later when the vehicle needed a new windshield.
"Once the windshield has three rock chips in it, it would get replaced, and then at that point that customer would get charged for a whole windshield," she said.
Upset customers

“I saw customers that cried. They really cried. They were shocked,” said the lot attendant.
He claims some people were made to pay for damage caused by Budget employees after vehicles were checked in.


***Read More in link and there's a video****


http://www.cbc.ca/ne...etinsiders.html

Makes me sick when something like this happens. I hope Belzberg, the greedy owner, gets charged for fraud. Good to see the RCMP looking into it. Sadly this is what happens when companies allow independent owner ship.

Edited by Armada, 27 November 2012 - 11:53 PM.

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#2 Grapefruits

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:09 AM

I've been watching this story unfold on CBC for the past few days. Hopefully heads will roll and they will have to pay out millions of dollars in fines and damages
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#3 Armada

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:14 AM

I've been watching this story unfold on CBC for the past few days. Hopefully heads will roll and they will have to pay out millions of dollars in fines and damages


Absolutely.

What's worse is when someone from another country comes to visit our beautiful province and then have their trip spoiled by these terrible unjust surprises

Edited by Armada, 28 November 2012 - 01:36 AM.

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#4 SkeeterHansen

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:31 AM

My dad works at Budget here in Kamloops...when I showed him the article, he was thoroughly disgusted. He's only a driver, so I don't know if he'd know what was going on if it was happening here, but wow. Thats something.
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#5 goalie13

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:42 AM

I had a Budget in Victoria try to charge me for a rock chip once. The chip was barely noticeable to the point there was no way I would have noticed it on the pick up inspection. They wanted to charge me for a whole windshield. As far as I was concerned it was part of normal wear and tear and not damage as they were claiming. I suggested they could get the chip fixed. He said it wasn't their policy. He claimed they got the windshields replaced. I said that it wasn't my policy to pay for their poor decisions.

I got right angry with them and they eventually backed down. This happened years ago. I always thought it was an isolated incident of an employee taking things too literally and not using any common sense. Maybe it was actually part of their overall business plan.
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#6 Pouria

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:44 AM

http://www.cbc.ca/ne...etinsiders.html

Makes me sick when something like this happens. I hope Belzberg, the greedy owner, gets charged for fraud. Good to see the RCMP looking into it. Sadly this is what happens when companies allow independent owner ship.


I hope someone vandalizes all their cars. This is dirty business and they better pay big fines.
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#7 Pouria

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:47 AM

I had a Budget in Victoria try to charge me for a rock chip once. The chip was barely noticeable to the point there was no way I would have noticed it on the pick up inspection. They wanted to charge me for a whole windshield. As far as I was concerned it was part of normal wear and tear and not damage as they were claiming. I suggested they could get the chip fixed. He said it wasn't their policy. He claimed they got the windshields replaced. I said that it wasn't my policy to pay for their poor decisions.

I got right angry with them and they eventually backed down. This happened years ago. I always thought it was an isolated incident of an employee taking things too literally and not using any common sense. Maybe it was actually part of their overall business plan.


Well, I would never rent from Budget, thats for sure. They will never have my business.
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#8 goalie13

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:57 AM

Well, I would never rent from Budget, thats for sure. They will never have my business.


I won't ever rent from them again after that encounter. I had never heard anything bad about them at the time and there wasn't much to choose from at the Nanaimo airport.
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#9 Armada

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 01:39 AM

I had a Budget in Victoria try to charge me for a rock chip once. The chip was barely noticeable to the point there was no way I would have noticed it on the pick up inspection. They wanted to charge me for a whole windshield. As far as I was concerned it was part of normal wear and tear and not damage as they were claiming. I suggested they could get the chip fixed. He said it wasn't their policy. He claimed they got the windshields replaced. I said that it wasn't my policy to pay for their poor decisions.

I got right angry with them and they eventually backed down. This happened years ago. I always thought it was an isolated incident of an employee taking things too literally and not using any common sense. Maybe it was actually part of their overall business plan.


There are 7 Budget dealers owned by Belzberg in BC. That could have been one of them.

Edited by Armada, 28 November 2012 - 06:34 PM.

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#10 hudson bay rules

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:04 AM

If you scratch my car and you pay me 300 bucks to get it repainted am I under any obligation to fix it?

Just sayin'

This sounds like systematic fraud however.
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#11 n00bxQb

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:14 AM

If you scratch my car and you pay me 300 bucks to get it repainted am I under any obligation to fix it?

Just sayin'

This sounds like systematic fraud however.

Yeah, but if you loan your car to 10 friends and only 1 of them scratches it, do you charge all 10 of your friends $300 and then proceed to never fix it?
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#12 hudson bay rules

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:24 AM

Yeah, but if you loan your car to 10 friends and only 1 of them scratches it, do you charge all 10 of your friends $300 and then proceed to never fix it?


I'd fix it down the road probably as the scratch lowered it's value for resale.

But no, I wouldn't charge multiple people for the same damaged windscreen as was reported.
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#13 mpt

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 04:05 AM

Thats why whenever I rent a car, I walk around the car and take pictures of all the damages. At least it will help you if they charge you for something that is already there.
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#14 hudson bay rules

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 04:19 AM

Thats why whenever I rent a car, I walk around the car and take pictures of all the damages. At least it will help you if they charge you for something that is already there.


as an informed consumer one should inspect any rental car and have all damage noted on the rental agreement before taking possession of the vehicle.
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#15 nucklehead

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:07 AM

How are they able to charge your card once you've left the lot. The solution is fairly simple by doing a damage inspection with the customer at check out time and then again at check in. There is no way a customer can be expected to pay for damage once they've left the property. Seems like a lax system. On the other hand I can understand the company protecting themselves against losses and depreciation. If a repair is not done immeadeatly it doesn't mean it will not have to be done at some point.
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#16 Armada

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:32 AM

How are they able to charge your card once you've left the lot. The solution is fairly simple by doing a damage inspection with the customer at check out time and then again at check in. There is no way a customer can be expected to pay for damage once they've left the property. Seems like a lax system. On the other hand I can understand the company protecting themselves against losses and depreciation. If a repair is not done immeadeatly it doesn't mean it will not have to be done at some point.


Credit card is on record.

Same goes for a Hotel. Once you check out they still have your information and credit car so if you had damaged the room they can charge you.
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#17 jmfaminoff

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 01:07 PM

Legally you are not paying for the repair, you are paying for the diminished value and maybe even loss of use. The best bet is to have rental car insurance through your credit card, or through your insurance company for this. That way if a claim is made, it will be paid out.

Edited by jmfaminoff, 28 November 2012 - 01:09 PM.

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#18 Monty

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:13 PM

Credit card is on record.

Same goes for a Hotel. Once you check out they still have your information and credit car so if you had damaged the room they can charge you.


Not quite the same as a hotel. Unfortunately, I used to work for a car rental company for a few years (not Budget), and it works quite a bit differently; at least it did where I worked.Because you do a proper check-in with the customer prior to them taking the vehicle and dropping it off, legally a car rental company can only ding you for damage if they approach you before you leave. If they call you later, once they have let you leave and accuse you of damage (even if it is damage you had done), all you have to say is "How come you didn't bring it up when I was there. For all I know, your drivers damaged it."Now, it works differently at airport locations as usually you don't do a walkaround with an employee but by yourself; which is why it is important in these circumstances to take before and after pictures for your own records.EDIT: FYI, all car rental companies are shady, not just Budget. And in most cases, employees are strongly encouraged to be incredibly shady to succeed. It's a competitive and sad life renting cars.

Edited by Monty, 28 November 2012 - 03:16 PM.

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#19 Lancaster

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:23 AM

Legally you are not paying for the repair, you are paying for the diminished value and maybe even loss of use. The best bet is to have rental car insurance through your credit card, or through your insurance company for this. That way if a claim is made, it will be paid out.


My friends paid for rental car insurance, yet they were still charged like $300 bucks because of some scratch on the tires. Apparently it didn't cover it or something other bs.
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#20 jmfaminoff

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 11:47 AM

My friends paid for rental car insurance, yet they were still charged like $300 bucks because of some scratch on the tires. Apparently it didn't cover it or something other bs.

What kind of insurance coverage, and with whom? I think that is part of the problem.

Another issue is that you should always get your inspection/ receipt triplicate before leaving. That copy is your proof that no damage was done, and is your proof to sue the car company if they "debit" you after the fact.

I have rented a car many times, and I have never had any problems whatsoever--Avis, Enterprise, Hertz, or National. I do not buy the insurance coverage the car rental company offers because my insurance policy covers my use of rental vehicles, as well as my credit card has rental vehicle insurance.

But remember, it is not just damage that you pay for, you also pay for loss of use. If the tires were damaged, the company has to pull that car out of service to get them repaired and you will pay for each day that it is in the shop. But to defend yourself, you do have the right to ask for the actual service record documenting that they took the car out of service to get the repair done. If they put it back on the road immediately, then it is hard for them to argue loss of usage and you would only be responsible for the cost of damage and/or its diminished value.

Another issue. If the damage is over thousand dollars, it gets reported on that car's history report. And negative information like that can lead to a diminished value claim.
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