WARNING: Watch out for fuel re-charge scam at Avis

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Old Jun 4, 19, 11:00 am
  #46  
 
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This happened to me twice with Budget. I filled up the car and had the receipt, but later got billed for gas. I complained and they removed it, but I don't know what else I'm supposed to do to avoid this.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 3:07 pm
  #47  
 
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Always take a photo of the fuel gauge and all sides of the vehicle when you return it. That way you can prove that the tank was full and there was no damage.

I have had car rental companies try to charge me for non existing damage a couple of times.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 5:33 pm
  #48  
 
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Pick your battles

Originally Posted by jfadds View Post
What app are hey talking about that checks gas levels??

Is this only with Avis??
I'd like to know the app as well, and hopefully it's not created by a car rental company.

So.....I totally loathe hypocrites and will call out most of you. I agree, this car refueling thing is a mess but not certain how this gets resolved.

I used to be a Hertz guy on every trip I took. They had new and clean cars and they didn't sweat stuff like fuel level, tiny marks on the vehicle, etc. They never dinged me on anything but I always refueled it back to where I got it and may have seen a door ding or two but nothing massive like wheel or body damage.
My company arranged for the Hertz Gold Club which made things even easier. But as we all know, people can and will take advantage of this.

Fast forward and rental vehicles for my personal trips that went to Avis. They were a lot like Hertz in that you could bypass all lines and get your vehicle off the board which showed each person's rental by name on the board, but was at a lower price point. Worked well.

Then as the rental prices skyrocketed and the cars to choose from were pathetic, I switched to National. They would get you into a better vehicle at a better price with the same perks as Avis and Hertz.

BUT, one day a greedy a-hole opines that "hey, I can drive this car like I stole it and no one will know or point out the damage. And I can refuel it a day before I need to return it while still sightseeing and steal money from they because the next sucker will get stuck with the 2 gallon delta, not me."

I can see why these rental companies take certain measures. When people were decent and honest you could get your car without the full military inspection you expect at Enterprise and when the gas gauge says F (full), it was truly full. But it got to such an insane point that rental companies starting asking to see a receipt to protect themselvesfrkm losses. That made many people more honest . But the thieves thought to just stop at a station and put in $1 or $2 and show that to the rental employee knowing they were still short a few gallons. As that practice got worse they starting asking for a receipt that showed you filled up nearby and and on the same day, not 20 miles away last night.

But how many of you out there top off the tank of their personal vehicles to the point gas almost spills on the ground but you end up cutting the pump off your rental so early there is no clunking sound? And then you turn the key to see if that fuel line hits F??? I know you're out there. I've checked out of the rental facility at hundreds of airports where the tank displays F on the dash but about 10 miles down the road I'm almost down a 1/4 tank. There was no way to prove it to the rental company at that point because you told the person when exiting the rental lot that the vehicle read Full.

I can see the pettiness on both sides but things were cool at one point. And those who complain at this have behaved in such a way that what is a rental car company to do? I agree things need to be consistent on both sides of the transaction but they are protecting themselves from thieves who are trying to game the system. Some people reading this won't even think this is stealing but whatever. You've got bigger problems in life.

In these instances you have to figure out the rules and play by them best you can. So I'd also like to know the app name so I can figure out how the process works and make sure I leave with a full tank and return with the same level. If there is fraud by the rental company then we'll find that out soon enough. But stop the stealing. Things have a way of evening out on their own.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 5:39 pm
  #49  
 
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Originally Posted by bagwell View Post
just get a receipt when refueling (yes you can get one when paying with cash), problem solved.
I would have to believe that if your gauge reads Full and you have a receipt from 5 miles away or so your in a very good position to argue for a full tank. Call or write the rental car company mgmt and provide receipt. If they play games find a different company to rent from.

I'll usually look for a Costco or Sam's Club the day before abs fill it up and then the day or ret return top ot off and have receipts ready. I've only been asked twice for a receipt and both times I was not charged.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 5:41 pm
  #50  
 
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Originally Posted by AlaskaLavUser View Post
This happened to me twice with Budget. I filled up the car and had the receipt, but later got billed for gas. I complained and they removed it, but I don't know what else I'm supposed to do to avoid this.
That's why Budget has been in bankruptcy twice. Find another company.
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Old Jun 5, 19, 5:39 am
  #51  
 
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Originally Posted by aerophil View Post
Always take a photo of the fuel gauge and all sides of the vehicle when you return it. That way you can prove that the tank was full and there was no damage.

I have had car rental companies try to charge me for non existing damage a couple of times.
I once would have agreed and with other rental agencies I still do, but AVIS is a different ball game at this point. In my three experiences so far, the fuel gauge has read full, even the return attendant agreed that it read full, but his handheld said otherwise and I was charged. He said that the fuel gauge does not matter, it is what the computer reports to his handheld that matters and it is more precise than the fuel gauge, which I think is complete BS but it is their policy as of now.

I should point out that my most recent AVIS rental dropped just below full when I exited the gate, so, so much for ensuring that now all cars exit the gate completely full.
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Old Jun 6, 19, 3:51 am
  #52  
 
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Originally Posted by IAHtraveler View Post
However, if the gauges are not calibrated by the division of weights/measures of a state (like grocery store scales, gas pumps, etc), I don't see how it's legal to use it for charges.
Maybe it's time to start complaining to regulators about this. Somewhere out there, is a regulatory agency who would LOVE to pounce on an opportunity to levy a fine per vehicle for a neat payday.
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Old Jun 14, 19, 11:32 pm
  #53  
 
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I've had this happened to me a few times at Avis where the attendant tried to charge me or 1 or 2 gallons after I filled the tank 2 miles away, saying the vehicle computer told them the tank is low. Went to the counter, showed my gas receipt, and had it reversed. After asking a friend who works for them, there is no vehicle computer that sends the fuel tank level to them. If you have driven less than 50 miles, they assume you didn't fill it up and charge you the difference. A nice scam.
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Old Jun 17, 19, 6:46 am
  #54  
 
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Originally Posted by vickipooh View Post
I've had this happened to me a few times at Avis where the attendant tried to charge me or 1 or 2 gallons after I filled the tank 2 miles away, saying the vehicle computer told them the tank is low. Went to the counter, showed my gas receipt, and had it reversed. After asking a friend who works for them, there is no vehicle computer that sends the fuel tank level to them. If you have driven less than 50 miles, they assume you didn't fill it up and charge you the difference. A nice scam.
I do not want to besmirch your friend, but I have spoken with AVIS corporate about this issue and they do in fact have a system in place which tells the return employee exactly how much fuel the vehicle went out with and exactly how much fuel the vehicle is returning with and the computer adds the charge (not the employee, the handheld unit just alerts the employee to tell the customer). Right now only airport locations are using the technology (and not every airport at that) but AVIS hopes to have the system nationwide sometime in the future. The employee at corporate also explained that I can check the levels myself through the AVIS app if the vehicle is equipped (not every vehicle right now is equipped with the tech either), but unfortunately for myself the app always seem to crash on my Android device.

I have succesfully argued twice to have the charge removed and I have lost the argument three time to have the charged removed, others experiences may vary.

With regards to the charge for driving less than 75 miles that is an entirely different animal all together and that supercedes the charge for X amount of gallons of gas below what the vehicle EXACTLY went out with, if a vehicle is driven less than 75 miles and the employee is not made aware of the customer electing to top off the tank him/herself, the system will automatcially charge the customer X amount of dollars (I cannot remember the exact amount) as a "convenience".
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Last edited by kmersh; Jun 17, 19 at 6:58 am Reason: adding some further info
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Old Jun 17, 19, 4:11 pm
  #55  
 
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after you are done, bring the rental employee to the car you dropped off and make video form your phone and record, not on his face but on the car and conversation showing no damage and gas filled.

also on the rental paper, ask him or write that everything is good with his or her signature. I always do the later and that way problem solved.

If you don't do this, then it is hard to to fight back their lies and scam!
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Old Jun 18, 19, 6:56 am
  #56  
 
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Originally Posted by Blueskyheaven View Post
after you are done, bring the rental employee to the car you dropped off and make video form your phone and record, not on his face but on the car and conversation showing no damage and gas filled.

also on the rental paper, ask him or write that everything is good with his or her signature. I always do the later and that way problem solved.

If you don't do this, then it is hard to to fight back their lies and scam!
I am not sure that will work when the fuel guage shows as FULL, but the computer is more accurate than the gauge and shows the return employee that the tank is down a small amount (as an example if the tank held 12 gallons of gas and it was down 11.8), I have actually said to him/her the gauge reads FULL and he actually said to me, it does not matter what the gauge reads, it matters what my computer says and he went and charged me for the gallon even though it was only down 2/10 of a gallon.
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Old Jun 18, 19, 3:21 pm
  #57  
 
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Originally Posted by kmersh View Post
I am not sure that will work when the fuel guage shows as FULL, but the computer is more accurate than the gauge and shows the return employee that the tank is down a small amount (as an example if the tank held 12 gallons of gas and it was down 11.8), I have actually said to him/her the gauge reads FULL and he actually said to me, it does not matter what the gauge reads, it matters what my computer says and he went and charged me for the gallon even though it was only down 2/10 of a gallon.
if you read what i mentioned earlier. After you drop off, have the employee come to you at the car with you, check the car and and then ask him to sign his name and a note on the rental paper saying car checked and everything is good. I always did that and never had nay issues later. You can even do better by taking 20 secs cellphone video of the car and conversation saying" yep it is good!".
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Old Jun 19, 19, 7:34 am
  #58  
 
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Originally Posted by Blueskyheaven View Post
if you read what i mentioned earlier. After you drop off, have the employee come to you at the car with you, check the car and and then ask him to sign his name and a note on the rental paper saying car checked and everything is good. I always did that and never had nay issues later. You can even do better by taking 20 secs cellphone video of the car and conversation saying" yep it is good!".
I am not the most eloquent with the English language (never have been, my mind is more wired for match and science) what I am trying to say is that the employee has AGREED with me that the gauge in the car reads FULL, but that his/her handheld says otherwise and it is what the handheld says that governs, not the vehicles fuel gauge. I have asked him/her to sign the receipt stating everything is A-OK and have either been told absolutely not or yeah whatever but it does not matter what the car says, it is the handheld which matter and it says the tank is down.

My point is from what I can (and anyone else) the fuel gauge reads FULL, but the handheld which the employee uses to check-in the vehicle says otherwise because it accurate (or so AVIS claims) up to the 10th of a gallon which the fuel gauge is not and nobody disputes (the employee, the manager, myself) that the fuel gauge reads FULL, they all say it is what the handheld says which matters and it says for example the tank went out with 12.4 gallons of fuel (gauge read FULL) and I brought it back with 12.2 (gauge reads FULL) therefor AVIS is going to charge for me for one gallon of gas.

To be clear nobody from the check-in employee to the Managers I have spoke with doubt for one second that the vehicle's fuel gauge reads FULL, but they all say that many of the cars are equipped with a computer which is far more accurate than the fuel gauge and AVIS is going by that computer and not the car's fuel gauge, no amount of signatures or videos will change that.

In fact my last rental the employee said yes the gauge reads full and even wrote that on the receipt and said you can speak with the Manager inside but most likely he will say that the computer says it is down x .10 of gallon and the charge stands. He turned his screen towards me, showed me that the car went out with 14.1 gallons of gas and I returned it with 13.9 gallons of gas and thus the charge was accurate even though he agreed with me and my pic of the gauge reading FULL as well as the employees written statement on the back of the receipt that the gauge read full.

He did remove the charge as a gesture of good will, but said that not all Managers will be willing to do that as AVIS really wants us to use the new system and not credit customers for gas charges.

Last edited by kmersh; Jun 19, 19 at 7:41 am
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