• Report: #729258

Complaint Review: Thrifty Car Rental - Puerto Vallarta

  • Submitted: Sat, May 14, 2011
  • Updated: Sat, May 14, 2011

  • Reported By: Nanarita — Seattle Washington United States of America
Thrifty Car Rental - Puerto Vallarta
Av. Fco. Medine Ascensio #7926 Puerto Vallarta, Select State/Province Mexico

Thrifty Car Rental - Puerto Vallarta Julio Cesar tried to pin pre-existing damage on us, then put charges on our credit card with authorization Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

*Consumer Comment: Are You Crazy??

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We recently rented a car from Thrifty in Puerto Vallarta, which was by far the worst car rental experience I've ever had.  First, they FORCED us to buy extra insurance coverage, even though we told them repeatedly that our credit card undeniably told us they offered collision and liability coverage.  The rep said no rental place would let us leave without at least extra liability insurance and that we had to purchase it no matter what... fine, even though it was twice the cost of the rental, we did it.

Upon inspecting the car before leaving, I walked around with the guy and pointed out every dent, scratch, etc. and watched to see he made some sort of mark on the drawing.  I especially pointed out a long scratch on the passenger door.  I remember this because I had to point to it twice.  We then drove to Sayulita, where we parked the car in a gated spot where we were the only car for the entire week.

When we returned the car, they informed us that we were liable for damage to to car, which included a long scratch on the passenger door.  I said, no, that was there when we left, and that I saw the guy mark the drawing showing this.  Well, there were some sort of mark made on the drawing, but they claimed it wasn't the right mark to indicate a long scratch, therefore this had to be new.  We repeatedly said it wasn't, and refused to pay for damages we did not inflict.  The rep said, fine, then you cannot leave to go home, smirking the whole time.  At this point, we asked to speak to a manager which was denied, saying the had no way to call him. Then the rep also said they had photos that showed the scratch was not previously there, but when we insisted on seeing these photos, well, they were "buried in the computer system somewhere" and couldn't be found at this time.  Again, I was there during the entire inspection, and never saw any photos taken, at any time.  These supposed photos are completely fictional.

I will be honest and admit that at this point, I was beyond angry at this complete criminal behaviour.  I told them I have rented cars all over the world and never had an experience like this before.  They didn't care and basically said if you keep arguing you'll only miss you flight.  I walked inside and began warning every single person there to take there own photos and guard themselves against this company.  It was then that the rep said we could leave without the charges being put on our credit card, and they would instead email us a bill, which we could then take up with Thrifty upon our return home.  It was suspicious, because he obviously just wanted us out of there, so we repeatedly asked if this was going to be put on our card.  He insisted, no, you will just get an email bill for now.

Of course when we got home, they had put all charges plus damages on the card.  When we called to say this shouldn't have happened, they claimed again that the supposed photos showed no previous scratches.  However, we still did not get to see these.

Now we are left with trying to figure out how to locate Thrifty corporate car rental offices, and get these charges off our card.  The worst part is, it has left a sour taste in our mouth not only about Thrifty, but about traveling through Mexico.  

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/14/2011 09:56 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Thrifty-Car-Rental-Puerto-Vallarta/Puerto-Vallarta-Select-StateProvince-/Thrifty-Car-Rental-Puerto-Vallarta-Julio-Cesar-tried-to-pin-pre-existing-damage-on-us-t-729258. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

Are You Crazy??

AUTHOR: Jim - (U.S.A.)

You seriously rented a car in Puerta Vallarta??  REALLY?  That was your first mistake; whether the company you rented the car from is in the USA or not is irrelevant.  The preferred mode of transportation is taxi - they're dirt cheap to use and you can really get around on them, not to mention you avoid much of the additional costs you've incurred.  There is so much research available online as to the different modes of transportation for tourists that to rent-a-car indicates you didn't even bother looking online to EVEN determine what was best for you.  I mean that's almost last on the list of preferred modes of transportation.

The company was correct in charging you liability insurance despite the fact that you already have your own car insurance.  The laws governing insurance in Mexico are significantly different and getting into an accident in Mexico without their insurance WILL land you in jail.  I've driven cars all over the world - the last place I would drive any car is Mexico because of the laws in-country.

You might be able to get the charges off your card, but it will cost you significant time and money in doing so.  Pursue it, but if it doesn't happen, chalk it up to experience.  Mexico is a gorgeous country, but you have to really know how to get around.
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