Budget Rent-a-Car Bait and Switch

Budget car rental lies

Budget car rental lies

This trip would not be possible without the internet. It is used to find lodging and things to do – completely indispensable. The downside is that every website has an error. The museum hours are incorrect or the entrance fee is slightly off. It is usually something small but we have arrived at places to find them closed which can be very annoying. Do these retailers understand that a large number of people rely on information they have on their website.
Todays adventure has been booking a rental car to take us to Chicago. Our flight leaves on February 6th and we will drive up on February 5th and spend the night. With the weather as it has been I don’t want to risk missing the plane. A one-way rental van and a night in a hotel gets us there with plenty of time to spare.
Like flights, there are many websites to compare rental car fees. We have memberships which offer discounts on rental cars. I spent a good amount of time researching and found an excellent deal with Budget. The picture above is a screen shot of the final step in the transaction through the Budget web-site. I entered every bit of information correctly. The quoted price for a one-way minivan was $89. But at the very last step of the process it indicated I should call the help desk.
The operator informed me that there was a glitch in the system and the price clearly indicated on the website was incorrect. For our requirements the price should be $35 dollars more. That price was more in line with what I found through other rental sites but far more than what was on the computer screen. Regardless of what the on-line system stated, they would not honor the price and somehow the “glitch” had been flagged by their system and I could not conclude the transaction online.
At this point I glommed onto the glitch phrase and expressed concerns about the security of their system. They had a “glitch” with their pricing structure how did I know that they didn’t have a “glitch” with my personal information. The system had allowed for me to enter my credit card number before the transaction was stalled. This got me transferred to someone else.
Della and I went through the entire scenario again. Della gave me the same spiel about a glitch with a slight difference. The amount I should pay was only $15 more. Way to have clear pricing Budget. While I had someone on the phone I took the deal before it disappeared or magically inflated.
If anyone from Budget customer service ever reads this they should know that although we still got a competitive price the bait and switch aspect of the on-line interaction has left us with bad feelings towards Budget’s idea of conducting business. We, and anyone who reads this, will know that the prices they have on-line will not always be honored. For this reason, I will not use them again, they cannot be trusted.


One response to “Budget Rent-a-Car Bait and Switch

  1. Just look at this like the democrat party selling obama to an unsuspecting electorate and then it becomes perfectly clear what’s happening !

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