$1.50 per day fee for Dollar rental car?

Old Mar 14, 09, 9:46 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 4
$1.50 per day fee for Dollar rental car?

On a recent visit to Baltimore (BWI), I rented a car from Dollar for 4 days. When I returned the car to the airport, the receipt I was given was $6 higher than the price I had gotten when I booked the car online (at SWA website).
When I asked what the charge was for, I was told it was a fee charged by Southwest because of the .5 credit I would receive from the FF program.
It was $1.50 per day for 4 days equals the $6.

When I called SWA I was told it was not their charge but rather it was Dollar's.
So I called Dollar back and spoke with their corporate affairs manager. She said the charge was a pass-through fee, and it was definitely NOT money they kept.
This time I called SWA's corporate office and spoke with a manager in their Frequent Flyer department. She said Southwest does not charge a fee for the half-a-flight-credit I got from the rental car company.

Neither company can tell me who gets the money!!!

When I asked her to call the manager at Dollar to discuss the matter, she refused. She did say she would issue me a $6 travel voucher as a gesture of good will.

Has anyone else seen this $1.50 per day charge on rental cars?
Any suggestion for getting to the bottom of it?
Rilly Earitated is offline  
Old Mar 15, 09, 12:03 pm
Join Date: Oct 2007
Programs: AGR, PC, HH no status as I stopped paying for travel
Posts: 1,454
I may be mistaken but

All car rental companies I have dealt with impose that charge. I have not rented from dollar but i do know the Hertz and Natioal and Avis all charge the fee unless you take the miles in their program I bet it is hidden in Dollars T&C as well.
It is a pass through in that Dollar has to pay your airline for the miles it gives you.

I booked a resetvetion at Dollar please see T&C NUMBER 5

Chicago - O'Hare International Airport-ORD/In-terminal/CHICAGO, IL

1. Driving Restriction: Driving is restricted to the continental U.S., Canada and Alaska.
2. Gasoline Policy: Vehicle must be returned with a full tank or local refueling charge applies.
Renter may purchase a prepaid gasoline option and return the Vehicle with the tank at any leave, without refund.
3. Driving Age: Drivers 21 to 24 years of age are required to pay an additional charge of $25.00 per day.
4. Additional Authorized Drivers: The cost is $9.00 per day for an additional authorized driver.
5. Surcharge Information: A Motor Vehicle Leasing tax of $2.75 per rental is assessed as an additional charge.
Airport Recovery fee of 11.10 percent per rental.
Frequent flyer miles may be subject to a frequent flyer surcharge.
6. Financial Information: Debit Cards: Customers using debit cards to qualify to rent at the beginning of the rental will be subject to a debit card screening, which may impact the customer's credit evaluation. If the screening fails to meet our debit card criteria, the customer will be required to present a major credit card in order to qualify to rent.
A hold will be placed on all credit/debit cards for the estimated amount of the rental plus 15% OR a minimum of $350.00, whichever is greater. We will remove the hold at the end of the rental when the final charges are settled.
Prepaid credit cards, gift cards and debit/check cards are accepted for payment at the end of the rental.
7. Additional Information: Uninsured Motorist Protection is available at $5.99 per day.
For details on Loss Damage Waiver, Supplemental Liability Insurance, PAI/PEP, and Uninsured Motorist Protection see the General Policies .
In order to rent Premium, Luxury, SUV, or Convertible vehicles, the customer needs a return airline ticket, must be 25 years of age or older and use a major credit card for the rental.
Emergency Number: Call (773) 735-7200 or (773) 686-2030 for emergency breakdowns.
Any changes to your reservation or rental may result in a change of rate or additional fees.
For rentals 28 days or longer the Customer must return the vehicle for maintenance or to renew the contract every 28 days to the location.
Effective December 1, 2008, DTG will be imposing a separately stated Energy Recovery Fee ("ERF") to help recover energy costs related to our business operations to all customers at applicable locations. The fee will be reflected in your reservation total on December 1st and will not exceed $0.70 per day for a maximum of 10 days.

Last edited by darben; Mar 15, 09 at 12:13 pm Reason: update
darben is offline  
Old Mar 15, 09, 6:58 pm
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 4
Is it a fee or a tax?

I heard someone say the fee was to cover tax imposed on the value of the exchange. That would be very different from monies given to SWA as a referral fee wouldn't it?

The basic question remains; does paying $1.50 per day for half (1/2) a flight credit make sense when the car is rented for more than 3 days?
Rilly Earitated is offline  
Old Mar 18, 09, 4:59 pm
Moderator, Alaska Airlines & FlyerTalk Evangelist
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See this thread for the full list of FF charges:


The FFTRS (Frequent Flyer Tax Recovery Surcharge) of $0.06 per day formerly charged for AA and NW miles was (AFAIK) to cover the excise tax charged for the miles (and may have actually been legally required), while the $0.50-per-day FFS (Frequent Flyer Surcharge) formerly charged for all the other airlines was more of a straight recovery on the fees charged by the airlines to Dollar. These have been renegotiated (only AA mileage earners still get charged the FFTRS by Dollar) to the higher amounts shown in the thread I linked to.

Interestingly, though, the dollar amounts of the surcharge are not really tied to the fees Dollar pays. From what I understand, Dollar locations pay around $5 per transaction to DTAG HQ's loyalty program account, regardless of the amount of miles given or length of rental. Therefore, a Dollar location loses money on short rentals and makes money on longer rentals (depending on the program being credited to).

I'm very unclear on the details of how this all works, though, because I've been given conflicting information about it all. I could be entirely wrong and it could be a straight pass-through charge.
jackal is offline  

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