Europcar / excessive charges
Been trying for more than a fortnight to contact europcar with the below complaint. No response from them or acknowlegment.
I am writing with reference to car hire booking reference [protected]. My partner Michael Harkess and I rented a Nissan Micra from your Corfu branch between 01/04/15-06/05/14. Upon picking the car up, there were a number of unfixed scratches. During our trip to Corfu, the car sustained some minor scratches to the right hand side due to overhanging and unavoidable gorse bushes.
We accepted that we would probably lose some of our deposit to this, but when we returned to the depot, we were informed that the charges would total 492 euros, our full deposit and the same charge we would have received if we had been in a major accident and written the car off. We then asked staff for clarification of why the costs were so high as the scratches could easily be buffed out by hand as they weren’t through the full layer of paint. We were told that Europcar charge per affected body part of the car – 100 euros per part. This charge is extortionate.
We asked for receipts to prove the cost of repair, but were then told that the car wouldn’t be repaired for some time due to other bookings. We also asked where the car would be repaired and were told it would be done at Nissan on Corfu. However, having researched this, there is no Nissan garage on Corfu. Considering the amount of damage already on our car, and on the others on the forecourt, I’m not even convinced that Europcar will actually even send the car for repair rather than just pocketing the damage charges.
If Europcar expect to charge such high amounts for minor damage, there should be a list provided for customers beforehand. I have taken photographs of the damage and of the car registration plate as evidence.
I expect a partial refund, with proof of actual repair costs and photographs of the car once the repairs have been carried out. I will also be reporting these excessive charges to the BVRLA and the European Consumer Centre so they can investigate further. Please contact me within 14 days to confirm what you plan to do about this issue.
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