Fake rental car damage charges are increasing, Investigating damage charges on a rental vehicle.

Hit with fake rental car damage charges? Here’s how to make them go away

Could you be accused of causing costly damage to your next rental car even if you didn’t do it? Several hours after returning his Budget rental car Derek Melber found out the answer to that question. That’s when an employee emailed him with the surprising news that the driver’s side window of the vehicle was shattered.

Despite Melber’s best efforts to convince Budget that he didn’t damage the rental car, the company charged him for repairing it. 

Melber says it wasn’t him who shattered that window, but he thinks he knows who did. He’s hoping Consumer Rescue can prove the rental agency has wrongly accused him. And of course, he wants Budget to refund the nearly $500 repair charge it billed to his credit card. 

But without any proof of what the rental car looked like when Melber returned it, that might be impossible. 

Or maybe not.  Let’s break this case down.

Alamo rental car in the desert.

Alamo billed me $662 for rental car damage. Why won’t insurance pay?

After Robbin Yeh’s last car rental, Alamo surprised him with a repair bill for mechanical damage to the vehicle. Despite Yeh’s protests that the rental car had pre-existing problems, Alamo continued to pursue him for $662 to fix it. Reluctantly, Yeh agreed to let Alamo file an insurance claim through his credit card company.

At least, that’s what he thought Alamo was doing to pay for the damage to the car.

It wasn’t until four months later that Yeh discovered that he was responsible for filing that insurance claim, not Alamo. 

Now with the deadline for filing an insurance claim long since passed, Yeh is asking Consumer Rescue for help. He’s hoping we can convince Chase eClaims to make an exception and pay the repair bill for the rental car. 

Can we do it?

car rental nightmare mistake, Thrifty, Hertz car rental counter

How did this $145 car rental turn into a $4,320 nightmare?

Rishabh Gupta expected to pay approximately $145 for his recent one-day Thrifty car rental. So imagine his surprise when the final bill rang in at just under $5,000. 

Gupta’s surprise turned to shock when he asked the car rental company to correct the outrageous billing error. 

That’s when Thrifty explained that the super-sized invoice wasn’t a mistake at all. The car rental giant informed Gupta that he had returned the vehicle to a competing agency, where it remained undetected for a month. 

Now with Thrifty’s parent company, Hertz, confirming that Gupta owes the $4,320 tab, he’s asking for help. He hopes Consumer Rescue can investigate and prove he returned the rental car to the correct location. 

But with no evidence to support his claim, will he remain stuck with this nightmare car rental bill?

A black rental car without damage.

I didn’t damage this rental car! Why should I pay $600 to fix it?

Could a car rental company bill you for damage you didn’t cause — six weeks after you return the vehicle? As you’ll soon read, the disturbing answer is, “Yes, definitely.”

Hertz recently accused Akshay Ghalsasi of causing $600 in damage to a rental car he drove in January. But Akshay says he returned the vehicle in precisely the same state of disrepair as he received it. 

He claims the rental car had a plethora of pre-existing damage, and he’s sure that the company knew about it. Akshay insists he has some powerful evidence that proves he isn’t responsible for the repair of the vehicle.

But unable to get anyone at the car rental company to review his photographic evidence, Akshay is looking for help. He hopes Consumer Rescue can deliver those photos to Hertz and get the car rental giant to drop the damage claim against him. 

So what exactly do those photos of the damage on the rental car show?

This is a dirty rental car being driven through a muddy bog. There are yellow reeds on the sides of the waterway. The car is becoming engulfed in sludge.

You should never return a rental car dirty. Here’s why

Messy people, beware! Car rental companies will charge you up to $450 if you return a dirty vehicle. 

Avis customer Bart M. recently found this out the hard way. Shortly after returning his last rental car, Avis notified him that the vehicle was excessively dirty. As a result, the company intended to bill him hundreds of dollars to clean the car.

Bart admits he left behind “some” garbage in the rental car when he returned it. 

However, he says there is no way it cost Avis much of anything to remove that trash. He suspects the fee to clean the messy rental car is just an illegal cash grab.

Now Bart is hoping Consumer Rescue can convince the car rental company to drop its pursuit of the cleaning fee. 

But just how dirty was this rental car?

Let’s have a look…

car rental might not have unlimited miles, car rental mistakes

Warning: Your rental car may not come with unlimited miles

Richard Wallerstein and his wife made an expensive car rental mistake when they assumed their reservation included unlimited miles. It didn’t. Unfortunately, they discovered the zero mileage allotment on their rented SUV only after they completed a 1,150-mile road trip.

If you’re like the Wallersteins, you may be unaware that not every rental car comes with unlimited miles. Their tale is a reminder that when making your own reservations, it’s important to pay careful attention to all details. The information this couple needed was in plain sight — if only they had looked — before they took their lengthy road trip.

Oregon coast, road trip down the Oregon coast, ocean and flowers to see on a road trip in a rental car.

Budget charged me twice for the same car rental! Can you help?

Eileen Wendorf says a Budget mistake caused her to pay twice for the same car rental. She wants her money back. But there’s a big problem with her discovery — it occurred nearly seven months after she returned the vehicle.

Now she’s asking our advocacy team to convince Budget of its expensive billing mistake and retrieve her $426. Can we do it?