I reserved a vehicle through Hertz.com for a recent trip to Liberia - Costa Rica, the car was picked up December 5 and returned on December 12. The reservation was for a sub-compact at a weekly rate of $105.97 (that included license charge and service charge). I decided to rent from Hertz as the price was cheaper than the other companies and I figured it was a large well known company.
Issue #1 : Rental Cost : When I went to pick up the vehicle, I was informed that the cost of the rental was $132 / week, plus $13.93 license and $27.93 service charge (a total of $173.86 vs the reservation rate of $105.97). In addition, I was told that the car I had reserved was in San Jose (and not available) and it would cost and additional $5 / day for a vehicle that they had available (now a total of $208.86 vs the reservation rate of $105.97). I have never been to a rental agency where they didn’t honour the reservation rate, and if the vehicle class was not available it would be a free upgrade to the one that was available. When I expressed my concerns with the price I was told if I wanted the car that was the price, otherwise I would have to get a car from somewhere else (take it or leave it). Keep in mind that this is the first day of a week long vacation, and there was a tight schedule to make a wedding at the Tabacon Resort (3 hrs away). I didn’t have the luxury of spending time trying to find another rental car, nor should I have had to.
Issue #2 : Insurance : I had existing rental car coverage for CDW (Mastercard) and Third Party (Monnex), and had paperwork for both. At first Hertz representative wouldn’t except either and insisted I needed to pay both (I was told that neither were opt-outable), finally after a phone conversation with my credit card company the Hertz rep conceded that yes I could opt out of the CDW (which I did), but I could still not opt out of the third party and that it didn’t matter if I had insurance. In doing research when I got home I confirmed that yes you can opt out of it in Costa Rica if you have documentation from your insurance company (which I had). The Third Party Insurance cost an additional $84.
Issue #3: Currency Exchange : The reservation was made in US$, the paperwork at the agency in Costa Rica was in US$, but it was then converted to Colones at an unfavourable exchange rate for final payment (which was never mentioned until I returned the vehicle), an additional 6.4% cost ($20).
When I rent a car, the expectation is that the reservation is honoured, I understand there can additional local fees (like the extra I paid for a road safety kit) or taxes. I feel that in this situation I was taken advantage of because I was on vacation and didn’t have the ability to source another rental car company and it was a “take it or leave it” attitude from the Hertz Representative. At best this is dishonest, I think it borders on criminal (fraud).
Hindsight is 20/20 and now that I’ve had the problem with Hertz I did some searching and found no shortage of similar complaints.
I will NEVER rent from Hertz again.