I used to be fined £800 for returning my rent automobile three hours early

Gill Charlton has been combating for Telegraph readers and fixing their journey issues for greater than 30 years, profitable refunds, righting wrongs and suggesting options.

Right here is that this week’s query…

Pricey Gill,

I’m a British citizen dwelling in the USA. I pre-booked a automobile rental with Avis at Heathrow Airport for July to go to my household. The 14-day rental value £926. After I returned the automobile, three hours sooner than the time on my rental settlement, the check-in agent issued a last bill for £1,722. Apparently I used to be being penalised by £796 for returning the automobile early.

I’ve complained to Avis’s buyer providers, which says the cost is right. I’m informed that in case you return a automobile greater than 29 minutes early, the reservations system will recalculate all the rental value and apply the upper normal each day fee. That is apparently frequent follow amongst car-hire corporations within the UK. Please are you able to assist me recuperate this unfair cost?

– CE

Pricey CE,

Time period 12 of Avis’s phrases and circumstances says: “As a result of particular gives and reductions usually relate to particular time slots, you could even find yourself having to pay extra in case you deliver the car again early.” The thought behind that is to forestall clients wishing to lease for a number of days profiting from, say, a promotional fee for a full week. This was evidently not the case right here.

I urged that Catherine take her case to the British Automobile Rental and Leasing Affiliation (BVRLA), which runs a really environment friendly dispute decision service. Its arbitrator acknowledged that by returning the automobile early (thus lowering the variety of rental days to 13) you had invalidated the discounted two-week fee. 

Whereas acknowledging that Avis did have the correct to recalculate the cost, the arbitrator however felt it was unjustified and instructed Avis to refund it – which it has now achieved.

I spoke to Avis to make clear this situation and to request it repay an additional £40 held again because of foreign money fluctuations. The corporate apologises in your expertise. “We should always have recognised that Mrs Edmond mustn’t have been charged a revised fee,” mentioned an Avis spokesman, who additionally confirmed a refund of the £40 foreign money cost. 

Avis does now recognise that it wants to point out extra flexibility over early returns, particularly as a result of present uncertainty over flight schedules. Nonetheless, the issue stays that the check-in agent can’t acquire a last bill with out coming into the time of return into the reservations system. 

Examine-in will be delayed, however you received’t then get the automobile signed again in with last clearance on the injury report – which is at all times a threat as new scratches is likely to be discovered.

If you end up having to proceed with an early check-in and are required to pay an additional cost, Avis says it has informed its buyer providers workforce to point out extra latitude and supply a well timed refund on software. 

– Gill 


Gill takes on a unique case every week – so please ship your issues to her for consideration at [email protected] Please give your full identify and, in case your dispute is with a journey firm, your tackle, phone quantity and any reserving reference. Gill can’t reply each query, however she is going to assist the place she will and all emails are acknowledged. 

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