Enterprise's Cash Grab Deception | Gripevine
My gripe is about Enterprise Rent a Car.
On April 21st, 2012 I dropped off my 1999 Buick LaSabre at Sterling Autobody in Blue Island, Illinois. Since my car had been broadsided by an Allstate policy holder, I had to bring it to Sterling Auto as it is owned by Allstate.
When I dropped off the car, I noticed that there is an Enterprise Rent-a-Car desk within the premises. And there was a representative of Enterprise present at the time. Great.
I was issued a 2012 Ford Fiesta and I had the car for 2 weeks. On Saturday May 5th at 8:50am I was called by Sterling Autobody, letting me know that my car (Buick) was ready.
I asked the Sterling representative named Noe, if I could return the Enterprise rental to Sterling or if I had to go to an Enterprise location, when come to pick up my car. I was told yes, that I could certainly return the car to Sterling. However, I was told that I needed to do it that same day, on Saturday May 5th because they were not open Sunday. And there would be an extra charge for Sunday May 6th.
I said that I would be there asap!
I arrived at 10:50am on Saturday May 5th at Sterling Auto to return the Ford Fiesta. The rental car was parked next to my Buick.
Noe came and walked me out to parking lot and we both inspected my Buick and the Ford Fiesta from Enterprise Rent-a-Car.
Noe told me that everything seems to be in order and that there were no issues.
I drove away in my Buick.
On Tuesday May 8th, 2012 I was called at 2:45pm by an Enterprise agent, to tell me that charge of $23.32 was added to my credit card for an extra day rental!
I questioned the charge and explained my car was returned as confirmed on Saturday May 5th, 2012. Sterling Auto closes at 1pm on Saturdays. Noe told me and he and the general manager both knew that the car (Ford Fiesta that I rented) was in the lot when they left at 1:15pm on Saturday May 5th, 2012.
The Enterprise agen said "Let me check on that Mr. Olson." And then he put me on hold. When he came back on the phone, he told me he verified car was indeed returned to the lot on Saturday May 5th.
But then he informed me that the car had been tagged as having "hail damage." Apparently over the weekend on Sunday May 6th late in the evening a bad storm came through the South West Chicago area. The storm on Sunday May 6th was bad enough that it woke my wife and I up from our sleep.
The Enterprise agent told me that the issue was now going to be sent to the "damage control department" of Enterprise and that I was responsible for this apparent damage since I signed a waiver in my rental agreement (apparently I am responsible for "Acts of God" that occur after my rental agreement has ended)!!
I immediately called sterling auto and I asked to speak with Noe. Noe told me that the car I had rented was still there when he left at 1:15pm on Saturday May 5th, 2012 and it was still there on Monday May 7th, 2012 in the morning when they came to work.
This is around the same time that I started to receive calls from Quintina Walker out of the Enterprise - Atlanta office.
She stated in voice:
"To whom it may concern....it is Enterprise's policy as dictated in the rental agreement that you are responsible for damage occurred, to the tune of $550 dollars."
I then received an email sent from Drew firstname.lastname@example.org stating that after a "full ingestion" and conversation with the rental location they must continue to hold me contractually responsible at the loss of according to your rental agreement. And to please remit payment within 7 days to the address above.
I went back to Sterling Auto and the general manager Mr. Al Jelinek, again confirmed that the 2012 Ford Fiesta that I rented, was returned in perfect condition when I dropped it off. It is Enterprise Auto's contention that this did not "qualify" as an official drop off.
So I have to ask myself... I can go and get the at an off-site location but I cannot return it in the same place?? Don't normal car rental companies require you to return the vehicle in the same place that you rented it from? And if you bring it to an alternative location, then that's when you are charged?
Later on I was contacted by somebody named John who told me the reason that the car was not picked up on Saturday May 5th was that they closed at noon (Enterprise). Then he said that they are also closed on Sundays.
And then I was contacted later contacted by Mark and he said that records show that the paperwork closing off my rental was submitted on Saturday May 5th, 2012 at and that the car was picked up on Saturday May 5th, 2012 at 2:30pm!
The tried to claim that the damage was due to a storm which occurred in the area on Thursday May 3rd, 2012.
Now, we only have one car garage/carport and I made sure that I kept the car in the carport when it was not in use. I surveyed 4 of my neighbours that left their cars on street on Thursday May 3rd and nobody had any hail damage.
How is my car the only one out of 4 other neighbours with any kind of apparent damage?? And how is it that this car was recognized as in perfect condition when I returned it, only to be told it wasn't??
I paid the $550 because I didn't want my credit rating destroyed.
I feel that I have been taken!
Shortly after the incident, I noticed an article in the paper and also a segment on TV that the CEO of Enterprise Rent-a-Car was stating that "Our damage control is not a profit centre."
I couldn't believe my ears!
I will never ever rent from Enterprise ever again!
I have told every person I know about my experience!
I'm quite upset because the rental was personally inspected and cleared and I did everything I was supposed to do. Nobody told me that I was to take the rental back, any place other than Sterling Auto.