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Hotwire.com / no refund!

1 United States Review updated:

I booked a car rental with Hotwire.com. My plans changed due to a new job and child care issues. I called two weeks before the pickup date. I was told that there are no refunds or changes, and that is how they get their discounted rate. I can understand charging a service fee for using their site. But to keep the entire $179.57 for a car rental that will not take place is theft. What, if any recourse do I have. I am planning on disputing this "purchase" with my credit card company. How can they charge the full price for a service that DOES NOT take place? They must be violating some law.

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Comments

  • Ky
      15th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    There has been no law violated, because you agreed to their Terms of Use before completing your booking and they very CLEARLY stated that the reservation was nonrefundable or changeable. They were not hidden, and you were not tricked into agreeing to them. They present that information in size 12 font and even put it in bold to try and make sure you read it. Changes in plans happen, yes, but you typically get a very low rate on the rentals you book through HW and as a condition of that, the reservation has to be NONchangeable.

  • Jo
      14th of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    I had the same situation. made a car rental agreement but due to a death we had to go to the same destination a week earlier. Hertz would not change the date and hot wire will not do anything unless a death certificate is presented along with birth certificates showing the relationship to the deceased. Why couldnt they just give us the car a week earlier. THIS IS IMMORAL, UNETHICAL AND JUST PLAN STUPID. ANOTHER VERY DISATISFIED EX- HOTWIRE CUSTOMER. all this after I was told to just fax a copy of the obituary to them which I did twice. I WILL NEVER USE OR RECOMMEND HOTWIRE AGAIN.

  • Cf
      6th of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    I do believe this policy of billing for unused services is borderline illegal. They use intimidation techniques to convince people that such practices are "normal" and the public has somewhat bought into the concept. We must continue to pressure lawmakers to investigate and shut down such anti consumer activities as practiced by Hotwire and its affiliates such as Expedia.com. Contact your state's attorney, lobby your representatives in DC, and try to get some class action attorneys interested in a case.

  • Ky
      7th of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    Oh please do elaborate on these supposed "intimidation techniques"..

  • Je
      13th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    I booked a Hotel room for Searcy, AR at a Super 8 Motel on 4-12-09 for April 23rd.I then received a phone call from my sister who said I had to be in Indiana for a trial 2 days later(beginning the 26th).I tried to cancel and got the runaround at every turn.I am contacting the State of Texas AG over this as soon as I return from the court in Indiana.I am also contacting the BBB, State C of C, and any other entitiies able to puiblicize this fraud.I will forward the other complaints from this site as well.These people are obnoxious and dont give a d*mn about anyone or anything.I tried to cancel less than an hour after the booking.They said a responce would come about 2 hours later.Another denial came over 12 hours later.They even lie to you ABOUT LYING to you.This one will cost them dearly after I file a claim with the State and the Court.

  • Je
      13th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    addendum: RE Searcy Hotel reservation.

    I called the Motel directly and they quoted me $67.47 for the room.Hotwire said $66.00.They saved me about 2% after saying things like "40%, 28%, 10% savings".All of that was a false come-on.They "saved me $1.47-and now that I cant use it, they are RIPPING ME OFF for all of the money.This is "bait and switch" pure and simple.
    Let them explain that to the judge.

  • Ho
      7th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    I hate hotwire! I'm now in a deep ### of losing an 1000s airline ticket because plan change, and I'm
    going to be in Japan longer than expected. They absolutely refuse to do any change... and said my
    solution is to buy a whole new flight!

  • An
      30th of May, 2010
    0 Votes

    I too had made a rental through Hotwire and due to health reasons (I'm disabled) was unable to use the reservation/car. Hotwire refused to refund the money that was charged up-front. They should have some type of policy for "unusual" or "extraordinary" circumstance. The customer service department was extremely rude to me. Will never book with them again, not worth it.

  • Su
      17th of Jul, 2010
    0 Votes

    Hotwire's 'disclaimer' that they will not make any substitutions or changes for an unused booking is unethical, IMO. People have various reasons why they need to change their booking dates, and Hotwire is raking in the money for unused services.

    They also claim that they are giving you a 'preferred rate', which is marginal, if any, and then, you see a real 'good deal' to your destination in your e-maill inbox within a week.

    We had to re-book our trip to Louisiana, and were turned down flat when asked if we could transfer the use of a rental car that we already PAID FOR.

    There should be a law against these practices with on-line booking agencies. They are supposed to be there for our convenience.

    We live in an age where every dollar counts! No one can afford to sacrifice money paid for an unused service!

  • Yw
      31st of Mar, 2011
    0 Votes

    I just experienced the same dreaded story of not receiving my back due to loss of job. I even went as far as the credit card company and they couldn't do anything either. Hotwire is bad news. The only refund you will ever receive is if you have proof of a Funeral. All future emails are deleted from them. Even if I am a possible travel agent I would definitely get the word out. Travel agents can do better and the car rental companies don't charge your credit card until you return the rental. Yes, paying the extra money may be a problem in a coupon saving world but this has to end so that small business owners can provide great service once again.

  • Ma
      29th of Nov, 2015
    0 Votes

    I had the same thing happen to me with Hotwire. I'll never use them again. Very poor customer service.

  • Ve
      6th of Jun, 2017
    0 Votes

    i think i will sue this company they are terrable

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