Hertz Fuel Scam

Old May 9, 2017, 5:20 pm
  #106  
 
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Hertz Fuel Scam

Hi all,

Just got an amusing letter from Hertz and wanted to see if anyone has had a similar experience.

Two weeks ago, I rented a Nissan NV2500 from JFK for one day. Picked it up with a full tank of gas, and returned it with a full tank. When I pump gas, I always lock the gas pump handle in place and wait until the pump shuts off by itself, signaling the tank is completely full. When returning, the agent marked the fuel as full and noted the miles. The final charges were the same as the estimated charges (no fuel and service charges added). Two weeks later, I get a letter from Hertz saying that although the fuel was noted as FULL when the vehicle was returned, 13.17 gallons were needed to refuel for the next rental, and so $157.72 will be charged to my CC (the original rental cost $47).

Of course, in many cars the fuel tank can be short a few gallons and the gauge will still read full. However, an NV2500 holds 28 gallons, so according to Hertz, if 13.17 gallons could be added to the tank, then the fuel tank was actually half empty when it read full! As I always do, I took a photo of the fuel gauge and odometer when returning the NV2500, which shows a full fuel tank. Maybe the fuel tank is leaking. Maybe someone drove it on the lot or let it idle for a few hours before it was serviced for the next rental. Maybe the gauge doesn't work. I don't know and don't care, whatever the reason is it's not my fault. And now of course I have to spend an hour dealing with Hertz CS....

Seems to me like Hertz is just auditing its high volume stations, looking to squeeze more money out of customers that'll miss the letter or overlook the charges on their CCs. With the woeful Q1 2017 earnings reported today, I hope this type of gimmick isn't part of Kathryn Marinello's 'strategy'


I've left the full letter below:

The letter reads:

"Dear Mr. .... ........

Thank you for selecting Hertz as your rental car provider.

Under terms of your Rental Agreement, Hertz audited your recent rental charges. When the vehicle was returned, the fuel tank was noted as "full". However, when the vehicle was serviced for the next rental, 13.17 gallons of gas were needed to refuel the vehicle.

We have corrected your rental charges and applied the appropriate Fuel and Service Charge of $151.72 to the credit or debit card provided as your final form of payment. This charge will appear on a future card statement.

We regret any inconvenience caused by this delay in billing. Should you have any questions concerning these charges, please contact Hertz Customer Service at 800-654-4173 or correspond to Hertz Corporation, 14501 Hertz Quail Springs Parkway, Oklahoma City, OK 73134.

As always, thank you for choosing Hertz. We look forward to serving your future car rental needs.

The Hertz Corporation"
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Old May 9, 2017, 6:14 pm
  #107  
 
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You will have to email proof to them (gas receipt and since you have a pic of the gauge that would help too). It will take them many days to respond. They may issue you a credit after a lot of fussing.

Or, in my case, even though you are right and provided the requested documentation, they will not respond and you will have to dispute it with your credit card company. When you do they immediately put you on the do not rent list.

It's a fairly customer hostile practice that seems to run counter to Ms. Marinello's said strategy.
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Old May 9, 2017, 8:06 pm
  #108  
 
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Originally Posted by SNA_Flyer
You will have to email proof to them (gas receipt and since you have a pic of the gauge that would help too). It will take them many days to respond. They may issue you a credit after a lot of fussing.

Or, in my case, even though you are right and provided the requested documentation, they will not respond and you will have to dispute it with your credit card company. When you do they immediately put you on the do not rent list.

It's a fairly customer hostile practice that seems to run counter to Ms. Marinello's said strategy.
Really? Has this actually happened? I don't doubt you are right but basically you are saying if you are in the right and fight a bogus 150+ dollar fuel surcharge you pay it or go on DNR list?

I feel like if this is a massive viral news story waiting to happen. Like the United incident type thing. News agencies would be salivating at the mouth with this kind of story.
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Old May 10, 2017, 8:37 am
  #109  
 
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Originally Posted by dinanm3atl
Really? Has this actually happened? I don't doubt you are right but basically you are saying if you are in the right and fight a bogus 150+ dollar fuel surcharge you pay it or go on DNR list?

I feel like if this is a massive viral news story waiting to happen. Like the United incident type thing. News agencies would be salivating at the mouth with this kind of story.
If you do a chargeback for any reason, right or wrong, you are likely to go on the DNR list. (It happened to me when I disputed an $1100 charge that hit my card for a <1mm-wide scratch that I was told not to worry about, but I was taken back off the DNR list as soon as I fussed about it.)

Unfortunately, I don't think this sort of issue would have viral media traction because it's too complicated for the average consumer to understand. At best, you might get traction with the overcharging for fuel, but Hertz has been doing that for ages.

On a positive note, every time I have written in via Hertz's website to contest being overcharged for fuel (specifically fuel), in amounts ranging from $5 to $300 (!), the error has been corrected by written response to me within a week or so.
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Old May 10, 2017, 10:22 am
  #110  
 
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I'd disagree. With United, AA and Delta all having their issues if something like this dropped right now. IE charged 1100 for a tiny scratch but won't provide documentation and then puts you on DNR. I'd be it would go pretty far because everyone would want to pick up the story to be 'anti corporate travel companies'.
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Old May 10, 2017, 12:51 pm
  #111  
 
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Originally Posted by dinanm3atl
Really? Has this actually happened? I don't doubt you are right but basically you are saying if you are in the right and fight a bogus 150+ dollar fuel surcharge you pay it or go on DNR list?
For me it as a bogus $48 fuel charge that appeared on a revised invoice days later, and yes it put me on the DNR after disputing it when they ignored my request to credit. I dealt with some really nasty billing people that were accusing me of doing something wrong when it was 100% Hertz's fault. Left me with an even worse opinion of Hertz. I already steered 95% of my business away to National years ago. I'm likely going to make Avis my secondary provider now and kick Hertz to the curb for good.
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Old May 10, 2017, 1:26 pm
  #112  
 
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Originally Posted by SNA_Flyer
For me it as a bogus $48 fuel charge that appeared on a revised invoice days later, and yes it put me on the DNR after disputing it when they ignored my request to credit. I dealt with some really nasty billing people that were accusing me of doing something wrong when it was 100% Hertz's fault. Left me with an even worse opinion of Hertz. I already steered 95% of my business away to National years ago. I'm likely going to make Avis my secondary provider now and kick Hertz to the curb for good.
Thanks for the heads up- I really appreciate it ^

I was on the fence about jumping over to National a couple of months ago, but consistent upgrades and quality customer service kept me at Hertz. Already disputed it with my CC and emailed Hertz, hopefully Hertz CS resolves it.
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Old May 10, 2017, 1:39 pm
  #113  
 
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A similar thing happened to me. They respond to BBB complaints so you may want to file one.
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Old May 10, 2017, 2:58 pm
  #114  
 
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Nickel and Dime the Customer

I would expect a large charge like this would get someone's attention, but there are probably a lot of people on corporate travel accounts where this may escape notice. I'm still feeling the chagrin at the energy surcharge I see on every rental at HLE. You think it doesn't add up on the volume they do?
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Old May 10, 2017, 8:06 pm
  #115  
 
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Originally Posted by spartacus
You think it doesn't add up on the volume they do?
In the short run, you're probably right- I imagine the profit margins for fuel charges, like optional insurance, are much higher than those of the renter's actual rental and this gimmick is a decent fiscal shot in the arm.

Maybe the wizards at Hertz have it all figured out , but I was taught that in the long run customer retention is much cheaper than customer acquisition and is key to any sustainable business model. Putting loyal, high-revenue non-corporate loyal customers on the DNR list strikes me as remarkably stupid, no matter how you slice it or dice it.
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Old May 12, 2017, 1:50 pm
  #116  
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Originally Posted by rapiddave
In the short run, you're probably right- I imagine the profit margins for fuel charges, like optional insurance, are much higher than those of the renter's actual rental and this gimmick is a decent fiscal shot in the arm.
So much so that the base rental rate often represents renting the vehicle at a loss, and the incremental revenue from those sales is responsible for the bulk of profits.

Originally Posted by rapiddave
Maybe the wizards at Hertz have it all figured out , but I was taught that in the long run customer retention is much cheaper than customer acquisition and is key to any sustainable business model. Putting loyal, high-revenue non-corporate loyal customers on the DNR list strikes me as remarkably stupid, no matter how you slice it or dice it.
Maybe so, but probably not really when the product is such a commodity and the vast majority of people are barely aware of the brands and simply shop on price.
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Old May 29, 2017, 2:47 am
  #117  
 
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fuel charges

Similar experience. I just returned a 1 week rental in Ft Myers, The receipt I was provided at the airport said the tank was full ( I only put 125 miles on the car and put in 4.5 gals of gas at the airport gas station!). The next day I received the Hertz E-Return email with this statement "If you were charged for fuel and have a fuel receipt to submit, click here to email us. The link generated an email to [email protected] which you are supposed to attach your fuel receipt. They added a $7.72 fuel charge. I have done this and will wait and see if a credit is posted to my charge card. It is ridiculous that I have to do this, the Hertz agent at the airport could have asked me if I had a receipt for gas and saved me this hassle. I have been a Hertz Gold customer for over 15 years and have never experienced this before.
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Old May 29, 2017, 7:00 pm
  #118  
 
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Originally Posted by wmichfel
Similar experience. I just returned a 1 week rental in Ft Myers, The receipt I was provided at the airport said the tank was full ( I only put 125 miles on the car and put in 4.5 gals of gas at the airport gas station!). The next day I received the Hertz E-Return email with this statement "If you were charged for fuel and have a fuel receipt to submit, click here to email us. The link generated an email to [email protected] which you are supposed to attach your fuel receipt. They added a $7.72 fuel charge. I have done this and will wait and see if a credit is posted to my charge card. It is ridiculous that I have to do this, the Hertz agent at the airport could have asked me if I had a receipt for gas and saved me this hassle. I have been a Hertz Gold customer for over 15 years and have never experienced this before.
It's possible it's a location/payment type that requires it. I forgot where I was last year but I was told when I left that I would be required to provide receipt upon return.
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Old Jun 3, 2017, 4:13 am
  #119  
 
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After I emailed the gas receipt, Hertz did refund the fuel charge. I have rented cars at this location for more than 10 years and this is the first time I have had this issue.
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Old Jul 19, 2017, 7:35 am
  #120  
 
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Same thing just happened to me at the Boston Logan location. Just emailed the receipt. A call to "customer service" leads one to a billing person and not to anyone who can do anything about this. I've been Hertz Gold for years. Doubt this will remain my car rental company of choice anymore
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