Europcar Review

Report Filed: Europcar Europcar- Horrendous Service Internet!!

1. I was in Italy with my family during June- July 2010- my husband and my sons ages 9 and 12. We hired a car from Europcar for the period 16 June to 3 July. 2. The office where we had to collect the car was inside the arrival hall at Venice airport. The parking lot was outside. We were given the keys and sent out to the parking lot. No one showed us where the car was (we had to go back when we realized just how big the parking area was and someone came to point us in the general direction.) We found the car. No one ran us through it. There was a manual in the glove compartment so it was find out for yourself! 3. On our second day in Tuscany there was a torrential downpour (Florence apparently got 2 thirds of its annual rainfall in ONE hour!).The country road we were on had been reduced to a mud pit. Our car got stuck. It was almost 6.30pm. We phoned the help line several times we were cut off on occasions and on one told to find someone who could speak Italian to call them. However we eventually got to speak to a very pleasant lady, who and after checking that we were covered by insurance dispatched a truck. In the rain they could not find us. I could give them our GPS co-ordinates but the truck driver apparently did not have a GPS. It was suggested that we walk to the main road so they could find the side road. It was by then dark, still raining and 10’C. I was not going to risk anyone being exposed to hypothermia. We resiled ourselves to spending the night in the car and advised the helpline accordingly- the person on the other end was apologetic. We phoned the owner of the property we were staying in to let him know what we were doing. He came looking for us and enlisted the help of the carabinieri to find us. Which they did at about 1 in the morning. 4. The next day I again called Europcar helpline. I was asked to call their office in Siena and I was given the details of someone to contact to tow the car. The owner of the property took me to meet him at the car where I left him with the keys. He sorted it out during the course of the day. When the time came to collect the car at about 4pm he would not release the car without a letter from Europcar (he said they always gave him trouble) or my paying him. The only person who could do the letter at Europcar was a manager, and after spending an hour and half waiting for the elusive letter and calling back only to find that the person I had been speaking to had left the office I had no option but to pay for the towage (1 215 euros.I had already lost the whole of Monday 22 June trying to sort out the car. I was advised by the helpline to go to Europcar in Sienna the next day for a refund. I duly went to Siena and was told that they could not do a refund but I could sort it out at head office seeing that was where I would be returning the car, or else after my return home. So I was now out of pocket for 1215 euros & had lost a day and a half of my holiday time in Tuscany. 5. I arrived at head office on Saturday 3 July to return the car and spent about half an hour driving around the block trying to find the entrance. I then established that the entrance was in fact closed. I tried calling, but no one answered the phone. I spoke to the security guard in the adjoining property and was advised that they would only be reopening on Monday. I phoned Customer Services- they said Head Office had no key drop off area, so seeing it was closed; they did not know what I should do and had NO suggestions! We sat in the car considering our next step when a garden cleaning van arrived and someone appeared to let them in. I grabbed that person’s attention and he suggested I go to Europcar at Leonardo da Vinci airport- B2/B4. So off we set having NO details on the airport or its set up. Arrived at Europcar at about 1pm. VERY FRAZZLED. Handed the car over no problem. NO customer relations whatsoever. AWFUL. No one would talk to you or give you any attention of any sort..they just took keys out of people’s hands. 6. After my return I received an account. To add insult to injury, they debited my credit card account with R1 786.63 for an extra days car hire! The vehicle had been hired from 10:00 on 16 June to 12:00 on 3 July. If I returned it 1 hour late it was because they were not available to take delivery! I then referred the matter to my travel agent. After some debate Europcar refunded me the hire cost for the extra day. The towage cost refund has however been a nightmare. At first they said: “Client did not have a normal breakdown for the which he needed our normal road assistance BUT he drove into a vineyard and car crashed into half meter of mud .. This means that our normal assistance was not helpful to collect client and car .”” When I sent them a map showing that it was a road this was the response: “” 1. in any case client is not authorised to drive outside the road

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