Priceline.com / car rental refused. left stranded
I used Priceline to book a rental car for birthday road-trip for my daughter and friends. I used the prepaid, non-refundable option as it was the cheapest and my dates and times were firm. I paid for the car upon purchase and called the rental company (Avis) the day prior to confirm my arrangements. Everything was set to go, I was told. I arranged a ride to drop me off at the airport (a 30 min one way trip) to pick up the car. I was told at Avis that I must show a credit card---even though I had purchased the car in advance, bought the insurance, and confirmed the information ahead of time. I do not have a credit card so this was important information! Avis refused to release the car. I called Priceline to see if they could help arrange another vendor or assist in getting the car with Avis. I was told the most they could do was cancel the reservation---but not without a cancellation fee! I did not want to cancel the reservation--I needed a car for the trip that was supposed to be leaving! I argued with Avis and Priceline with both vendors pointing to the other. In the end, I was left very upset, stranded at the airport, and without the necessary car for my daughter's birthday trip! I will not do business with Priceline or Avis again. I was treated rudely by the Avis employee and Priceline did nothing to help resolve the situation. I was basically charged a fee to be stranded and without the means I needed. I ended up having to call for a ride and booked on my own through another vendor. It cost me twice as much since it was a last minute booking. I felt swindled and mistreated. I have booked rental cars with only a debit card many times in the past and felt like this should have been made clear that this would not be sufficient with this company and Priceline should have helped make alternative arrangements if their company failed to honor the contracted business. At the very least, Priceline should not have issued a cancellation fee for something outside my control. It was a nightmare for me to navigate, caused a lot of emotional distress and inconvenience for me and others who had to make multiple long distance trips to pick me up from the airport after being left without transportation by Avis and Priceline.
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