Upon returning a vehicle rented from Thrifty/Dollar in Reykjavik on January 21, 2016, the employees alleged that I damaged the underside of the bumper of the vehicle. Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar employees thereafter threatened to bill me for these damages immediately, despite failing to provide any sufficient evidence that I caused the damage or reasonable estimate of their extent, and then threatened me with denial of shuttle service to my hotel if I refused to pay. These allegations are unmerited, the conduct of the Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar employees were akin to extortion, and they caused me significant emotional distress and jeopardized my ability to make my return flight to the United States, potentially costing me and my partner additional fees to reschedule.
To make matters worse, I write to you after spending 50 minutes of an already busy work day calling various Thrifty/Dollar customer service lines [protected], [protected], [protected]), being shuttled around to eight different "customer service" representatives, and given conflicting information from each. Despite the substandard maze of Thrifty/Dollar customer service and the fact that I have no obligation to provide you with any justification for my denial of these allegations without additional evidence from Thrifty/Dollar, I offer the following information regarding Thrifty/Dollar's spurious demands.
The initial, and notably cursory, inspection of the vehicle was conducted in a pitch black parking lot at 8:00 AM (the sun doesn't rise until nearly 11:00 AM this time of year in Reykjavik) on a black car with its headlights on. There was no inspection of the front bumper during this checkout, as it was impossible to see. Upon returning the vehicle, there was a curiously extensive inspection which included the underside of the front bumper. After the inspection, the employees conversed in Icelandic for 20 minutes without addressing us, then accused us of causing the damage. We were then told that we could not leave unless we paid 1600 Euros immediately.
To date, we have received no evidence documenting the damage beyond an email with an undated photo of an unidentified vehicle that supposedly displayed damage that was not present in the photos we took of the vehicle we rented when we returned it. The photo Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar claims as proof that I caused the alleged damage to the bumper was clearly taken in the daylight: our return of the vehicle occurred during the pitch-black early morning. That being the case, how were the Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar employees able to accurately assess the damage and cost of repair immediately? And why was the photo documenting the alleged damage taken at least three hours later, if not at some other time?
To put things plainly, we did no damage to the car during our rental period. If there was any damage to the car prior to its return, the damage occurred prior to our rental and was not correctly noted or accurately documented. Thrifty/Dollar is now trying to hold me responsible for it because of the incompetence or oversight of Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar employees.
I travel very often for work and have used a number of rental car agencies including Thrifty/Dollar. Generally, I have been left with positive experiences. This was not the case with Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar. The Reykjavik Thrifty/Dollar employees left me in tears with the way they falsely accused me and left me with the fear that we would not be given a shuttle back to my hotel, jeopardizing my and my partner’s ability to make our return flight home. The financial and emotional burden continues for me as this issue remains unresolved, despite my efforts to deal with Thrifty/Dollar customer service, and Thrifty/Dollar continues to pursue payment from me for damages for which I am not responsible.