Does Hertz try to rip-off its # 1 Club Gold members?Back to Forum
Anonymous3 Dec 2009
For my forthcoming trip to Sydney I made a reservation on Hertz’s web side and I was quoted AU$ 530 for the hiring period and car group I wanted. This quote was slightly better than Avis which quoted AU$ 560.
I went then back to Hertz and this time I logged in as a # 1 Club Gold member.
To my surprise for the same car group and hiring period a price of AUD 830 came up.
After checking whether there were indeed some differences of the terms which I overlooked I found none and decided to ring Hertz reservation centre to query this difference. The lady was very friendly and helpful. She repeated both reservations and was quoted the same difference. She was puzzled and could not explain this.
She suggested then to do my reservation right now on the phone and not as a # 1 Club Gold member. Additionally she saw that I had registered my Amex card and offered me an Amex discount. So the price came down to AUD 467.
I asked her whether I would also have received the Amex discount by booking on-line. She said that would not have been possible unless I knew about their discount program and have a respective code.
Well, it appears to me that online booking seems to be the wrong thing to do.
Better to ring the reservation centre since there are obviously hidden discounts available.
One thing still remains a mystery: Why was I quoted AUD 300 more as a # 1 Club Gold member?
Is there anybody out there with the same or similar experience?
raipol3 Dec 2009
I am a No1 Gold Member and I noticed a price discrepancy started when AMEX , some years ago, offered Platinum Card holders full insurance car hire coverage thereby enabling me to avoid taking the Hertz’s insurances which make a hire very expensive. I changed my Gold profile to reflect declining all the insurances and hey presto every time I went to book online huge price differential – so now I do not bother signing in and the price is reasonable or I use Avis as I have done particularly at LHR where the service is streets ahead of Hertz.. No 1 Club was a good idea but the under hand approach on rates in this respect earns them no credit.3 Dec 2009
I too have had this happen and went through the same scenario of calling the Hertz reservation desk for an explanation. In order to get the best price, I had to either make the reservation on the phone (without my #1 Gold Club details) or online, also without singing in with my #1 Gold Club. This defeated the entire purpose of having “special” recognition in the first place and prompted me to start shopping elsewhere as well (something I hadn’t been doing, assuming that Hertz was giving me the best price available, with the added value of the #1 Club Gold benefits).3 Dec 2009
this is an interesting thread and I am wondering if our friends at BT could contact Hertz on our behalf with a view to asking them to comment on or explain why they do this. You would have thought that there best and most loyal customers would get the best rates.
Over to you Tom and your colleagues, can you help us with this?
Jonathan3 Dec 2009
Such is my frustration with the system, I’ve voted with my feet and now hire my cars from Avis…and I still earn Airmiles!
Just because I’m paying for the car on expenses doesn’t mean I’m going to be shafted on the price!3 Dec 2009
Same experience with Budget as well. More expensive with loyalty cards than without.
Used Hertz a lot in the past, same thing and they quote on-line without insurance, it comes extra and makes everything much more expensive.
Avis preferred looks alright but it pays to shop around.3 Dec 2009
CathayLoyalist is right on the money with this; the problem is that your Hertz #1 Club Gold profile has all the add-on insurances declined.
This means that, when you log-in and search for a rate, the system looks for a rate which matches your profile requests. These days, the likelihood is that any rate offered ‘neat’, without the insurances, is likely to be the equivalent of rack rate.
Conversely, the best available rate in recent years tends to *include* things like CDW, but your #1 Club Gold profile is blocking them from your search.
It’s perverse and would be solved if Hertz offered a ‘neat’ rate that was indeed the best available rate *minus* the add-ons, but they don’t so a workaround is required.
The trick of not logging in, or calling up is one way of doing this, but that’s flawed (as noted) because you then lose all the benefits of having your #1 Club Gold number in the reservation.
I’ve now learnt that the best way is to modify my #1 Club Gold profile to match the inclusions of (from memory) the WOW World on Wheels rate. Having done so, I seem to reliably get the best available rates returned, *with* all my details pre-popped and the car waiting on the Gold ramp etc.
If you want to know what your AmEx CDP is, make one booking through AmEx Concierge/Travel, and the CDP will appear on your confirmation. You can then, in practice, use it online yourself in future.3 Dec 2009
I would agree, and it is not just as No 1 club. I just tried a booking for a trip to Jersey later this month. I entered the booking as a No 1 club with a IOD discount number. I then tried again but with no No club log in and no IOD discount code. Result? same price.
Avis was a couple of pounds cheaper so I went with them. Joke or what!4 Dec 2009
As most of you will know car hire like other perishable travel products i.e hotels, airlines, cruise ships etc operate sophisticated revenue managment systems which juggle a heap of variable data which produces what the industry calls ‘dynamic pricing’ – up one moment and down the next depending on forecast, perceived or actual demand. Along the way common sense gets jettisoned and priority/valued customers do not get the benefits the ‘loyalty programme” promises.The lame excuse given if you make contact with a human is – “oh it’s the computer” By chance I have just had a reply from Hertz following a survey I completed berating their service at LHR and a rental vouncher is on the way so customer power rocks – well it did on this occasion5 Dec 2009
I have also had this, not just with Hertz but with Avis using AvisBA website and BA gold card AWD. While in Denmark last month I discovered that if you book with Budget you get an Avis car. It was 20% cheaper than AvisBA.
On a related theme, has anybody else noticed the tendency of rental car companies to charge for fuel, or damage, even after a fnal invoice has been given when the car was checked in? This has happened to me with Sixt; Avis and Europcar in the last few months. In my opinion, though not according to their contracts, the rental ends when a final invoice is given and no further charges should be made to a card.5 Dec 2009
I have been ticked as accepting to buy a tank of fuel even though I was told by the employee behined the desk to bring it back full!
and been charged “battery useage tax” at orlando a few years back
I dont look favourably on any of the major players in the car hire game5 Dec 2009
I guess this is an eaxmple of the guys in the C-Suite at Hertz are not engaged with their people on the front line or actively encouraging the an under hand modus operandi5 Dec 2009
It gets worse. At EuropCar Hire I redeemed my precious hard earned FF points to pick up a standard car at my destination airport, only to be told on arrival that I will have to pay separately for the Insurance which cannot be waived. the insurance fee in this case was four times what I would have to pay if I booked normally for a vehicle.
This was not mentioned at all in the confirmation and the reservations clerk was not willing to refund my FF funds if I cancelled. It took me over an hour of waiting before I could speak with their manager to express my disgust at this “ploy”, I finally had to settle to pay for an insurance fee about half of the normal rental fee to be able to drive away with a car.
It’s a rip off all round no matter what the rental company is!!5 Dec 2009
Just got a £100 more expensive quote through #1 for same car in Stockholm for 2 days and, they claim no compacts are available (which they are if you log on as normal). Outrageous!27 Oct 2011