Thrifty Car Rental

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Consumer Complaints and Reviews

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I had arranged car rental through a broker and prepaid for all the services that I required. When I collected the vehicle at no point were any additional insurances or fees discussed, and I was handed a document headed "incomplete RR" with estimated fees of $268.44. When I asked the clerk what these were for I was told not to worry, and that there were no additional fees to pay.

When I got back to the UK a charge had been made to my credit card of this amount and when I questioned this I was told that the insurances had been fully explained to me and that I was not entitled to any refund. I have been lied to and ripped off by Thrifty, and to cap it all when I collected the car it had not been washed and still contained the previous owners trash in the glove box and behind the Sun visor. I will never use Thrifty again, and recommend that all readers avoid these cowboys.

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This company takes reservation for cars and then has none when you arrive at your destination. Waiting 1 hr in line just to be served and then wait another hour before you get the car you didn't even reserve. This company should have its business license revoked forever!

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NO STARS... EXTRA EXTRA FEES, NEVER USE THIS COMPANY!!! Reserved a car at Thrifty at DFW Airport, Rental quoted at $65 for 3 days. Just a bit cheaper than other Companies. At time of Rental I was informed that it was REQUIRED to BUY THRIFTY INSURANCE and the cheapest was $20 a day added to my rental fee.... THEN TOLL CHARGES were $14 a day and if I didn't buy that toll package it was going to be $15 toll violation fee plus the toll everytime a toll was charged.... That alone was over $100 additional fee... I said that was outrageous over $165 for a 3 day rental... I didn't rent from them.

The agent said I could call Thrifty to get a refund... Multiple phone calls later and an email complaint it's like trying to pull teeth to get the booking reservation of $28 back from Thrifty... It's nearly impossible... So they still get money for false advertising because they say that the required insurance charge is in their Rental conditions... PLEASE STAY AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY.... NEVER RENT FROM THEM!!! Finally went to Enterprise and was out the door with an upgrade, no additional required fees for $72... BOOM LOVE ENTERPRISE... Toll charges were only $4.99 a day (if you used the toll road) plus whatever toll charges you had. That charge is much more reasonable.

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In April I flew into Seattle for a two day trip. Thrifty seemed unusually busy, not enough staff. When I finally reached the counter with my reservation, I was pounded for additional coverage to DOUBLE the cost of the rental. I declined the coverage. The rental experience was fine enough on return. Nevertheless, I sure blew it on anticipating TOLL FEES in town. I had exactly one, (it's the principle though) and this week received a notice of an "ADMINISTRATIVE FEE", being charges. Oh, of course I am legally responsible indicated the document. They also noted I have "10 days to pay" but I just received the bill! (Three days to go!). Logging into the Rental FINE site, I attempted to pay online, but the site links do not work. What an operation! Beware of the Toll areas and these hidden charges folks!

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First off the lines were out the door and only two clerks at JFK airport. Second the clerks mislead you to believe the amount of fees that are associated with the E-ZPass service. Third when you call them to find out why they're rude and nasty. Fourth the car I rented kept losing air in the tire. When I called I was told I had to pay a fee to have someone come to put on spare and then take time from our vacation to go switch out vehicle. Do not use them. Not even as a last resort!

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As previous reviews have stated, do yourself a favor and don't rent from Thrifty. They may seem like a deal, but they have a lot of hidden charges they don't tell you about until the charges show up on your credit card. They claim they tell you about it in the large print out materials you receive, but they should tell you what to watch for at the counter. Make sure you tell them you do not want them to auto-fill the vehicle when your return it. If you don't tell them you DO NOT want the auto-fill it will show up on your agreement as an added charge. You're not saving anything! Also watch for toll roads. A month later you will be charged a $15 administrative fee for every $1.32 cent toll charge. I don't understand why companies are deceptive, but the old adage you get what you pay for is so true. Beware!

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Absolutely disgusted with Thrifty in the US. Rented a car from them in May and was offered a Sunpass for tolls. This was offered for $50 for seven days. We rented the car for 11 days. Our Sat Nav was set up to avoid Tolls so didn't need the SunPass. However when we visited Tampa, due to a RTA we were re-directed down a road with a Toll. When we returned the Car we advised the clerk of this issue. They checked on the system and told us that it was okay and that no Toll charge had been issued on the car, we did offer to pay. Totally unavoidable and not in our control.

We have just had a letter from Thrifty telling us that that Toll charged us $0.53c but there was a $15 admin fee. This has already been deducted from our card. This is theft and for a $0.53c charge is totally unacceptable and we will never rent from Thrifty again and suggest people check documentation. Other companies charge a much less admin fee. We don't agree with the charge at all but we were happy to pay the fee not the admin charge. Disgusting.

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Absolutely rotten experience with Thrifty Car Rental in Chicago O'Hare June 13, 2017. After suffering through a Spirit Airlines trip to save a few bucks I was lied to by the clerk and apparently signed for the "insurance" which effectively doubled the rental car cost. I have never, ever bought extra insurance on a car rental because my CC covered rentals. No relief with "customer service" as they insist on the rip-off. Now, I will tell everyone use ANYONE ELSE but Thrifty, or you'll be sorry.

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I rented a Jeep Compass from Thrifty from 6/29 - 7/2. At least that is what I requested. When I arrived in Tampa Florida I was told as a convenience to not have me wait I would be upgraded to a Chevy Malibu. This was not an upgrade given I wanted a small SVU off the ground and I saw the Jeep Compass in the lot. Secondly, I was told that it would save me money to prepurchase gas and I could bring the tank back empty. I returned the tank full though the person who checked me in said it was halfway between three-fourths and full. When I tried to get the money back for the gas (that I didn't use) the representative told me the cost for one-eighth a tank of gas would come to approximately $32.00. I had prepaid $29.37.

Do not rent from this company. You will reserve one car class/group and in the disguise of an upgrade that will give you another car. Also, do not buy the repurchase. The gas was cheaper in Tampa that the rep lead me to believe. If you have to rent a car, do yourself a favor and go with a more reputable company. They will not try to nickel and dime you with fees and have a better selection of vehicles. I will never rent from Thrifty (or Dollar because they are the same company) EVER again.

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I rented a car from Thrifty on May 20th from Moline IL airport. Everything was fine with the car that I rented and I returned it with a full tank of gas. I even paid for extra insurance that I didn't need because I didn't know my husband's covered car rental, which is fine. But, then I just got a charge of thirty dollars on my debit card without warning and I have no idea why. Are they going to keep my card forever and keep charging me for stuff I don't know about? It wouldn't surprise me. It seems like that is how the world makes money so I'm not surprised, but I wish I knew why I was getting charged. And I'd appreciate if they would let me know if it was a true traffic violation or do they just do this scam to every customer. Their reviews were horrible so I think it's probably the latter. Think twice before you rent a car from Thrifty.

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I rented a car from Thrifty Car Rental in Morocco prior to leaving the United States. When I picked up the car in Casablanca for a 3 week rental, I found that they did not have an office, instead it was a car in the parking lot. They had my reservation for the correct amount that I had reserved the car for. They requested two credit card imprints, one for the rental fee and one for a $1700 damage deposit. They stated that they did not process the damage deposit unless there was a problem. However, they processed both charges within days of my rental, even though the rental agreement says I won't be charged until I return the car. Thrifty Car Rental now says that they have no access to the rental charges in Morocco, that it is a contract company to Thrifty and basically that it is my problem. Then the agent said "Have a good day" and hung up on me. DO NOT RENT THROUGH THRIFTY RENTAL for an international destination.

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When prepaying rental Thrifty charges through an Irish company. My bank will add foreign transaction fees although I purchased rental in the US through an American company. Would recommend to use another rental company.

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We made the reservation with pick up and return location at the Las Vegas airport. The Asian guy tried to ask us to buy additional insurance which we said no. He then asked us where we came from and said, "the Arkansas insurance does not cover rental cars." We said we are from Arkansas but we are with an insurance company not in Arkansas. Now looking back, this guy was totally lying as the coverage of an insurance should have nothing to do with the state of residence. Anyway, we just clearly declined any additional insurance and then this guy process with the paperwork.

We then went to pick up area to pick up the car and was asked to sign on an small iPad at the exit. Trusting the guy has not put any charge and assuming everything being taken care of, I just went ahead signed on the iPad without reading the specific items (Who would when you are sitting at the car at the exit?). We returned the car in about a week without any issue but when we came back home, we found a charge of $26.88 per day for insurance, totaling up to $161.28.

I called their CS and was transferred to a lady in the billing office. She said Thrifty will not refund because we signed the contract. I argued that we declined and were only deceived to sign. She was silent for a few seconds but still refuse to refund. I asked to speak a supervisor or manager but she said there is no supervisor or manager and she is the only person in power.

I should have come here to review numerous complaints on the same issue and then I would absolutely turn to some other car rentals. This company practice is a very unethical and even illegal manner in that they cheat the customers to sign on something declined at the very beginning. So, NEVER EVER use THRIFTY. They STEAL your money!!!!

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Thrifty car rental adds a $15 fee to any toll not paid even if the toll is impossible to pay due to the way the toll is collected via plate camera. No possible way existed to pay the toll except by plate. No cash is accepted yet, Thrifty charges $15 per toll. Even if the toll is $0.10. This is reprehensible conduct for a company. They are profiting from our inability to pay a toll as we go.

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I wish I had looked up reviews before I booked. Thrifty advertises very low rates online but they will add numerous charges on top of what is shown when you book online. If you do not get them to specify exactly what the charges are, the employees will overcharge you. Two employees attempted to charge me for an extra day of rental, saying that I brought the car back an hour late. We took out the car at 1 pm and brought it back just before 1 pm on the drop-off date. Additionally, it was not explained to me when I picked up the car that they would be putting a $246 hold on my credit card. I am now waiting for the funds to be released. I would advise anybody to go with a more reputable company that gives you the total amount upfront. This company operates under 3 different names in one location and have a separate company that handles the booking.

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THRIFTY CAR RENTAL (SUCKS!) I declined the fuel charge on my vehicle, however I returned my vehicle on full. The attendant verified my vehicle was all in order before I left. I received a bill with the correct charges, then 10 minutes or so later, I received an updated bill with a fuel charge. I did not keep the receipt from the gas station because everything was in order and I did fill the car up at a gas station within 10 miles from the return location. I called customer service and they would not help me remove the charge, I even spoke with a manager (Mark) and he would not help me either. I called back and got another representative who would remove half of the charge.

The return process for cars is flawed! If there is a discrepancy it should be noted and made aware by the attendant immediately upon return, not after the fact nor when the customer has already left the site location and more problematic the state the vehicle was returned. Even if I did keep the receipt, I would still be upset with the fact that I have to forward the receipt to remove such a charge.

I am an extremely upset customer and because of this incident I will never use 'Thrifty' ever again! I make for certain to always follow car rental rules and am a very responsible individual who most certainly understands return the car with the amount of gas it was taken from upon receipt. I travel often and rent cars often and this has never happened to me before! Totally upset and completely dissatisfied with the process and the customer service!

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I made a reservation directly through Thrifty's web site this morning because my car is in the shop. This also happened in May 2016 with no problem. I had a friend drop me off at San Diego International Airport because it is the only place where Thrifty is open today (Saturday). My reservation was for 2:00 p.m., and I entered Thrifty at 2:00 p.m. I waited in line for the next 38 minutes!!! There is nowhere for customers to sit while they wait. The two self-serve terminals were out of order. The counter staff are slow.

When I finally got up there, I was told Thrifty adopted a policy in January 2017 that they don't take debit cards from residents. I protested that this was not mentioned on my confirmation email. He called a manager and that idiot was a complete moron who told me it's in the terms and conditions on Thrifty's website. Yeah, I really have time to read pages of terms and conditions with every company I do business with. So, I was stranded at the airport until my friend agreed to come and pick me up again and drop me home. I hope Thrifty goes out of business due to their HORRIBLE customer service. They win the prize for WORST company in the world, represented by the worst excuse for a manager I've ever met and slooow counter staff. In the meantime, let this be a warning to other potential customers.

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Horrible! Do not use this company! My car I rented was gross. It had crumbs everywhere. I found a old bottle under my car, a dirty rag in the side door and there were cheesy poof remnants on the seat. It smelled of smoke and there were cigarette burns in the seats. My service was okay but the guy next to me kept getting yelled at, he was embarrassed. Won't be using this company again and will make sure everyone knows.

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I made an online reservation through Thrifty's website prior to my trip with my debit card. Once I arrived at the airport in Manchester. The agent said they needed to have a credit card on file... Well I don't use credit cards. I have a debit card. No they said they couldn't take a debit card. Well they had no problem using the debit card when I made the reservation? I had my license, car insurance information and a passport and of course my debit card. Nope none of that was suffice enough to get the keys to the car I prebooked. It was late at night and most car companies were already booked! However the last place I tried was Budget Rent a Car and I was lucky enough to get a car from them hassle free. Okay I get it, it is Thrifty's rules to have a CC and not a debit card however they had no problem using my debit card for a cancellation fee!!!

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My husband and I made reservations to pick up a car at the airport in Panama City Beach Florida. Upon arrival the agent on duty says there are no cars available even though we made a reservation. We were very disappointed we was trying to head to Chicago to make a funeral of our dear aunt who had passed away. Three weeks before her passing her husband had passed so we really needed to be around family. Thrifty rental car let us down don't make sense to make a reservation and when you get there is no car.

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First off their ad said 12 dollars a day to rent a car. I ended up paying 27 for 7 days. I barely used the car and only had to put 8 dollars in. I had to drive the car back to the place so used under a gallon of gas and was charged 9.99 for that gallon plus many other hidden fees came to 47.00 a day. Rip off never again. They are sneaky. A trump company.

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Order and pay for an SUV 5 luggage 5 person vehicle - get a small Nissan that barely fit 2 bags and 3 people and same price. Expedia and Thrifty stink - not going back. Stay clear. Better travel partners out there!

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PLEASE do yourself a favor - do not rent from Thrifty Car Rental, even if it seems like a big savings. I reserved a car March 15th on their website for a pick up at Fr. Myers FL airport. When I arrived my magnetic strip was on my card did was not working for them. They refused to rent me the car I had paid online for $175.38 and had a balance of $55, they told me they were going to cancel my car but it would take 30 days for me to receive my refund. I called my bank and they filed a claim and I received my money back ASAP. My bank was great. Today I wake up with a charge of $175.38, I called my bank and they are saying that Thrifty provided a 24 page report on how they provided me a service online and the cost was $175.38. My bank told me they can't do anything about it because they provided a report proving they provided a online service costing me $175.38. SCAM! STAY AWAY!

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Rented a car for my trip in San Antonio, thought everything was fine until I got home and find $449 in extra charges I did not ask for. I was told at the counter that I would pay $30 for prepay gas but come to find out they added charges for insurance which I had already paid through Expedia, loss damage fee, road service etc... $449 charges when I already paid for the car and insurance through expedia. When contacting the customer service they were not helpful and are saying I asked for these services. This is a scam and a waste of money. All they do is apologize for being useless.

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I will be posting a bad review for Thrifty Car Rental on as many websites as I possibly can. I booked a flight and car rental through Spirit back in February 2017. My car rental ended up being $170 and some change. Once arriving to Denver's Thrifty, there was a man there that did not know what he was doing, took an hour and a half to finally (with another attendant) get my little Ford Fiesta, THE SMALLEST CAR THERE. Other than the deposit, the attendant said there would only be a fee for $55.77 which was for tolls. I told him "that's fine" (Which brings my total to about $225 for a couple day rental). Upon returning the car, there was zero system, you just dropped the car off, they checked everything out and said "you're good to go." NO COPY OF PAPERWORK OR WHAT OTHER FEES THEY WERE GOING TO TAKE FROM YOU.

A day after I returned the car, I was charged the said amount of $55.77, and didn't think anything of it because that was accurate. However, the following day I was charged an EXTRA $226.33 (now my total rental for THE SMALLEST CAR ON THE LOT adds up to approx. $450). I was never told I would be charged this amount on top of the already paid $225, or I would have gotten a car from somewhere else. I filed a claim with my bank, which they said they could not give me the unauthorized charge of $226 back because Thrifty said it was billed correctly. Again, I have yet to receive paperwork or an email. There are apparently Airport fees of $39, State Fees of $60, toll fees of $50, and some "other" fees for $39 that they DO NOT tell you about. This company is taking your money, they are all SCAM ARTISTS. They trick you and do not tell you any of what you NEED to hear, just what they WANT you to hear in order to rent a car from them.

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We booked a car with Thrifty Los Angeles LAX for the amount of 330 USD. We received the car, and everything went fine. We never received an invoice. As we are frequent travellers we didn't take any of the coverage extras, etc. Two weeks later a total of 700 USD was charged on our credit card. After contact with customer service I received the invoice with on the invoice a max of all extra coverages. Now I am already four weeks email with customer services. They do admit something went wrong, they will somehow not sent me the exact calculation of the charge. They did refund 50% of the overcharge, they are now telling me they are going to refund more, but refuse to tell me how much. This is by far the most bizarre customer experience I have had in my life. NEVER EVER AGAIN will I be a customer of Thrifty.

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Rented a car from Thrifty from April 30-May 3rd. As a Blue Chip member I was assured that any tolls accrued would be included in my final invoice. Late May I receive a $25.30 invoice from Metro Express lane for the.30 toll and now late fees. I contacted the customer service department and Vanessa stated that express lane tolls "Don't count" and that I would also be receiving a $15.00 invoice from Thrifty for having to "Change over accountability" for the.30 charge. In addition, Thrifty policies are modified without any communication and as of the beginning of the year, a debit card is no longer accepted and must be paid for with a credit card. The staff, that was once professional, are now extremely rude. DO NOT RENT FROM THRIFTY!

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I forgot my leather jacket in Thrifty rental car while returning it on Miami airport. When I called consumer service they told me to fill form online. Everytime I went online and filled the form while submitting it, I got an error message "Duplicate Record". I called consumer service again and told them about the error, they informed me that they cannot do anything about it which was really pathetic. She also told me to wait for 20 days for someone to call me which didn't happen. Finally I asked my friend to go there and she told me, "Lost and Found is closed on weekends and is only open on weekdays 9-4 ET". By this point I was really mad. My friend went again to same place on weekday "Friday" and no one was available at lost and found section. Finally after multiple follow-ups some lady showed up and told us there is no jacket which I mentioned in description. Pathetic service I have ever seen from car rental.

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I wouldn't recommend anyone to go here for car rentals. I book a reservation for a full-size vehicle and was giving a compact car. I've spoke to three different people and no one help. Oh btw I tried to get my money back and they was only gonna give me half out of my total pay when I only had the car for two days with a two-week reservation. Very disappointed and I've been going here for almost a year for travel purposes for work and this would be my last time.

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The WORST CAR RENTAL COMPANY in the world! I prepaid for the reservation, paid in advance over $240.00. Right before leaving on the trip, I receive a letter from this company saying "Sorry, no car available." I have a feeling I will have to fight for the credit card to be credited. I read reviews before renting... I should have listened to my gut. The reviews are horrible!!!! DON'T RENT from these RATS!!!!

Expert Review

Lauren FixAuto & Finance Contributing Editor

Lauren Fix, also called The Car Coach, is an automotive and auto finance expert. Her understanding of vehicles has made her the “go to” person on TV, radio, print media and the Internet. She has authored multiple books and writes a column for several outlets, including Parade Magazine, NewsMax and Car Coach Reports. She is a regular guest on major news and morning shows, discussing the latest updates on cars and car financing that will help drivers make smart decisions when buying, maintaining and financing cars.    More about Lauren→

Part of Hertz Global Holdings, Thrifty Rental Car has more than 1,000 locations in 77 countries. It focuses on serving cost-conscious consumers and business travelers.

  • Best-rate guarantee: Renters may book on one travel site, only to find the same terms on another site at a lower price. When booking on the Thrifty website, the absolute lowest price on all rentals is guaranteed.
  • Airline loyalty program: Thrifty Rental Car partners with airline rewards programs to offer miles or points for every rental.
  • First-time rental guide: The first-time rental guide on the Thrifty Car Rental website walks customers through how to make a reservation and what to expect.
  • Contact: Call or email Thrifty Rental Car during normal business hours for fast service, or use its urgent contact line in the event of an emergency.
  • Loyalty program: Blue Chip Rewards loyalty program comes with benefits like shorter lines, faster reservations, faster drop-off services and members-only discount offers.
  • Get more for less: Pay for a compact car rental and get something larger with the Wild Card rental. Any reservation with a Wild Card is guaranteed at least a compact car, but it may be upgraded at no additional charge.
  • Best for Vacationers, business travelers, temporary workers and those with cars in repairs.

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Thrifty Car Rental Company Profile

Company Name:
Dollar Thrifty
Year Founded:
2002
Address:
5330 E. 31st Street
City:
Tulsa
State/Province:
OK
Postal Code:
74135
Country:
United States
Website:
http://www.thrifty.com/