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Old Oct 11, 17, 8:02 am   #1
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To dispute or not dispute?

A few days ago I utilized a local car service for a Mercedes S Class and paid for this with my Platinum charge card.

Their website showed a stock picture of a 2014 and onwards vehicle, I emailed them to ask them what the age of their S Class was and they responded noting it was a 2016. The car that arrived was a very basic S Class of the previous generation (2007-2013), the driver was great and the ride in was fine but ultimately I could have got the same car or similar on Uber Black for about 2/3 the price and had I known that it was an older car upfront I would have looked elsewhere.

I have emailed the company back to ask them but it has been a couple of days without response when my previous email interactions have been responded to in a couple of hours at most.

I've not had to dispute much but the closest I had to this in the past with Amex was when I had to use a credit card in a payphone and was charged $18 for a 30 second local call. I called Amex and they credited $17 back to me which I was not expecting, I just didn't recognise the origin of the charge so called to get more information.

Anyone else with thoughts on this?
Thanks!
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Old Oct 11, 17, 8:34 am   #2
  
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Originally Posted by Fraser View Post
A few days ago I utilized a local car service for a Mercedes S Class and paid for this with my Platinum charge card.

Their website showed a stock picture of a 2014 and onwards vehicle, I emailed them to ask them what the age of their S Class was and they responded noting it was a 2016. The car that arrived was a very basic S Class of the previous generation (2007-2013), the driver was great and the ride in was fine but ultimately I could have got the same car or similar on Uber Black for about 2/3 the price and had I known that it was an older car upfront I would have looked elsewhere.

I have emailed the company back to ask them but it has been a couple of days without response when my previous email interactions have been responded to in a couple of hours at most.

I've not had to dispute much but the closest I had to this in the past with Amex was when I had to use a credit card in a payphone and was charged $18 for a 30 second local call. I called Amex and they credited $17 back to me which I was not expecting, I just didn't recognise the origin of the charge so called to get more information.

Anyone else with thoughts on this?
Thanks!
What are you going to dispute? The model year of the car?
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Old Oct 11, 17, 8:57 am   #3
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What are you going to dispute? The model year of the car?
Yes, the wrong car was sent. Their website shows a new car, they told me they use a new car but sent a much older vehicle.

Might not sound like much to some but I intentionally avoid the older vehicles for a variety of reasons. The current S Class which came out in 2013 is completely different (for the better) for passengers and I was happy to, and did, pay a premium for that.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 8:57 am   #4
  
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What are you going to dispute? The model year of the car?
classic ny'er
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Old Oct 11, 17, 8:57 am   #5
  
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i would assume that the terms and conditions of the service you used do not guarantee a specific model year car. based on that assumption, i don't think you have a legitimate claim.
i would pursue your grievance with the service that you used. i have found that if i present a specific compensation, it works better. e.g. since you said you could get it for 30% less expensive elsewhere, as for a 30% refund. the (discreet) threat of using social media to spread your story also seems to work wonder these days.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 1:49 pm   #6
  
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I understand the complaint. Its costly, its a luxury service, and it was misrepresented. Order the gold Rolex, received a silver one. I'd email the business with a concise, brief statement asking for the partial refund because they did not fulfill their confirmation to you (verbal or otherwise). You can hint that it would be a shame to have to pursue the charge-back with Amex and disclose the details on social media. End with, "please follow up by XX October". Can't hurt. Then throw it into Amex's court if they don't act... might work. Don't mention the model year of the car... in the end, the vehicle represented was not the one sent and that's the fact.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 6:31 pm   #7
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Originally Posted by Fraser View Post
A few days ago I utilized a local car service for a Mercedes S Class and paid for this with my Platinum charge card.

Their website showed a stock picture of a 2014 and onwards vehicle, I emailed them to ask them what the age of their S Class was and they responded noting it was a 2016. The car that arrived was a very basic S Class of the previous generation (2007-2013), the driver was great and the ride in was fine but ultimately I could have got the same car or similar on Uber Black for about 2/3 the price and had I known that it was an older car upfront I would have looked elsewhere.
Did the agent in the email guarantee that it would be a 2016 (or newer) model? As you posted, the website uses a 2014 model. If this distinction is that important to you, perhaps a website that uses a photo of a car too old for your liking is not a good choice for you.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 6:39 pm   #8
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Much ado about less than nothing.

But, if OP wants to pursue it, he ought to ask the car service for something reasonable such as 30% first.

On two bit stuff like this, Amex typically eats the dispute depending on how much it values the customer. But, it does a good job of keeping track of this stuff and there comes a point where Amex figures a customer isn't worth it.

This and the phone thing won't likely do the trick, but it will take OP close enough.

Me, I'd hang on to these chits for things that I care about a lot more.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 6:43 pm   #9
  
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Originally Posted by Nicksta View Post
I understand the complaint. Its costly, its a luxury service, and it was misrepresented. Order the gold Rolex, received a silver one. I'd email the business with a concise, brief statement asking for the partial refund because they did not fulfill their confirmation to you (verbal or otherwise). You can hint that it would be a shame to have to pursue the charge-back with Amex and disclose the details on social media. End with, "please follow up by XX October". Can't hurt. Then throw it into Amex's court if they don't act... might work. Don't mention the model year of the car... in the end, the vehicle represented was not the one sent and that's the fact.
I think this is the best option - requesting a partial refund directly from them because I suspect the others are right you probably don't get a guaranteed car when you book. It is a hassle, and of course the "correct" course of action is to decline the car, but that almost never works in the real world when we have places to be.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 9:11 pm   #10
  
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Not something I would bother with, but good luck.
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Old Oct 11, 17, 10:07 pm   #11
  
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I'd dispute as service not delivered as advertised. For a car service, just like a rental agency, you should get the same or better class/year. If you had a hunch and asked to clarify in writing, it should be an easy win.

Reninds me of my biggest unwanted 'upgrade' I ordered a towncar for 3 before Uber was around (since I was so tired of vomit stained 15yr old taxis in New Orleans). I called to make sure it was just going to be a car. A 14 passenger stetch limo showed up. Kind of embarassing for 2 adults and an infant to be paraded to the airport in a stretch limo.
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Old Oct 12, 17, 5:37 am   #12
  
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Originally Posted by dhuey View Post
Did the agent in the email guarantee that it would be a 2016 (or newer) model? As you posted, the website uses a 2014 model. If this distinction is that important to you, perhaps a website that uses a photo of a car too old for your liking is not a good choice for you.
2014 would still be OK according to what OP writes, though agent stated it's to be a 2016 model.

What arrived would be 2013 model at best.

Although personally I wouldn't care about the single-time incident enough to try to dispute it, I understand OPs POV.
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Old Oct 12, 17, 9:53 am   #13
  
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customers like this

Customers like this are the bane to any small business.
Dude, you got a Mercedes S-class for your ride. And now you want to dispute this? I sure hope that I never encounter you personally or in business. If I were the car service, I'd give you what you want up to 30% off just to keep you off my back, and privately I and my staff would despise you (which you deserve). Save your and the business' time for less trivial items than this. This is a trivial and inconsequential complaint.
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Old Oct 12, 17, 10:16 am   #14
  
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Customers like this are the bane to any small business.
Dude, you got a Mercedes S-class for your ride. And now you want to dispute this? I sure hope that I never encounter you personally or in business. If I were the car service, I'd give you what you want up to 30% off just to keep you off my back, and privately I and my staff would despise you (which you deserve). Save your and the business' time for less trivial items than this. This is a trivial and inconsequential complaint.
Car service is probably not enough for me to care about. But business wise, if I order a current model part and the vendor sends me a refurbished old model... I have no problem demanding a full refund. Don't advertise what you can't deliver.
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Old Oct 12, 17, 10:48 am   #15
mia
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Originally Posted by gsxsilver View Post
...if I order a current model part and the vendor sends me a refurbished old model... I have no problem demanding a full refund. ....
Agreed, but there's a difference between purchasing goods and services. The car used is only one element of the service. There's an issue here, but it's not anything that the credit card company should handle.
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