When renting a car you want the process to be easy and the car to suite your needs. Recently when visiting Gran Canaria I was put through the wringer with Goldcar. I had searched the Internet prior to travel to find myself a good deal but discovered that although the car was a reasonable price. The stress and worry at my destination plus the hidden extras didn’t make for a pleasant experience and I had a nagging feeling for the whole week.
I used travel supermarket to find a car hire deal plus took the advice from the money expert Martin Lewis. The car was through an agent called arguscar and was to be supplied by Goldcar a company I had seen many times on my travels. I paid £54 for a weeks hire which was more than reasonable and even remembered to print the voucher required to collect the car.
On arrival to Gran Canaria airport I managed to locate the Goldcar office with relative ease, handed my voucher over the counter and then the whole sales pitch started. The customer service agent was very polite and very professional but I left the counter with a sinking feeling.
You see to actually walk away with a hire car for a week I had to pay a £1100 deposit, £18 compulsory car refuel fee, whatever that is. I think it’s £18 for someone to check the fuel gauge on my return and then on top of that €49 for fuel. It is possible to opt out of the €49 fuel fee but you still have to pay the €49 and they refund it only if you return the car full, which is a physical impossibility due to the fact you have to drive from the petrol station back to the car hire drop off point. I was due to drop the car off at 4am when their offices are closed and there is no one to agree or disagree at the level of fuel in the car.
As long as all goes well I should receive the deposit back and maybe some if not all the fuel payment back. However it left me feeling uneasy for a whole week, was I going to have some sort of deductible. After all I wouldn’t be there to contest any charges the company may decide to make.
I had taken out an additional insurance policy based on advice I read from the Martin Lewis website. This insurance was £32 and alegerdly covers me for any incident outside what Goldcar offers, which is nothing. Goldcar charge twice as much, however I wouldn’t have to leave a £1100 deposit. I think for the extra £30 plus the fact I wouldn’t have a deposit to lose, followed by the hassle of making a claim with a third party if anything did happen is worth it.
I will now spend the rest of my holiday with a niggling feeling about the car which means my holiday won’t be as relaxing as it should.