Ordered a VW UP at Inverness airport.
On arrival met by friendly and helpful staff, we were offered a Audi A4 for £5 extra a day which we took. It was brand new and drove like a dream.
Pick up and drop off was very easy.
Van rented with Europcar in Hamilton through Argus Car Hire. They do an address check with Experian on collection - check failed (although I checked when I got home and got a rating of excellent); so they checked my wife and that went through no problem. However the assistant needed manager approval and he was on the phone, clearly seeing the problem, but did not rush to help. There were other issues with documents brought for identification purposes. All in all not helpful and seemed more interested in finding problems than completing the deal. Then they started a list of optional extras including admin charges if you have to phone in for help.
Definitely not a good experience and the best I got was that I should take it up with Argus, the company I booked through.
I have used Europcar 2 or 3 times before and it has always gone smoothly and has been a good price, but this latest rental (a Transit for a weekend) did not go well.
I was offered a good price (even without asking) and collected the van with no problems, but then 2 hours into the journey as it got dark, I was to discover that the headlights on the van didn't work! This was amplified by the streetlights ending on the motorway, which had been fine to see by with just sidelights up until that point...then pitch black!
A hour or so at the motorway services and the AA (who were very efficient in their part) discovered that both bulbs were blown.
Upon return of the van, the station attendant was not really interested, said he would call back within the hour...that was weeks ago and still no word! The customer service email are way too slow to be acceptable. They state up to 10 days for a reply, and then expect you to be happy when you get it in 5 days. 5 days for communication is terrible. A few correspondences and I was offered a token part refund, which I received anyway but was not happy with just a part refund after an evening being ruined and being put in an extremely dangerous situation. I was told eventually that there would be no further dealings in the matter as the van had been checked and lights working when it left, so it was to be expected that bulbs could blow.
There is no way that both headlights can blow while not being used, within 2 hours of collecting the van, so that says to me that their vehicle checks are just a token tickbox form and cannot be trusted, which puts the whole condition of the vehicle in question when you hire from them.
The fact that I cannot trust the condition of their vehicles and that the service isn't good if any issues arise means that I will not use Europcar again and cannot recommend them to anyone.
I have given the company enough time and opportunity to put this right, but having not got anywhere, the time has come to voice my opinion of them.
I have used Europcar every now and then when going abroad. Vehicles are usually good, but service differs from country to country. My rentals in Germany an USA were smooth, though sometimes I wished there would be more care on Europcar's side at the time when the vehicle is returned. My recent visit to Poland was the worst so far. No problems with the car or pick up, however upon my return home I found out, that my credit card was charged in excess of the pre authorised deposit, despite no problems or delays with the return o the car. It took me 2 months to get all my money back with help of the American Express customer services. Europcar's responses to our communications were late and very poor. Thank you American Express, I owe them another review on here.
My partner and I hired a Transit from Europcar whilst moving house, and we were impressed with the prices and the van provided.
The only problem we had, was returning the keys on the following Sunday. No staff were present, and instructions were sparse. Apparently you're supposed to leave the keys in a letterbox?
We did as instructed, but the next day received a phonecall explaining that we were being charged an extra day for not returning the keys on time, and would consequently be repeatedly charged until they were received back by Europcar.
After assuring them that they were mistaken, and asking them to check, we eventually got told that they were stuck in the letterbox, and hadn't been collected properly. Crisis averted, but not a pleasant situation.
Hired a Vauxhall Insignia from them - got it home to discover the front tyres were totally bald - way below the legal limit.
When I called them to tell them that they had given me a car with bald tyres which I couldn't legally drive, they were disinterested because it was close to closing time!
I had to drive it to another branch (they wouldn't collect) and was made to wait several hours in a freezing cold waiting room until a replacement could be found. The replacement was handed over in a filthy condition, unwashed and with an interior covered in fag ash and stank like an ashtray. To make it worse, the tyres on this were also barely legal.
As I had it for an extended period of time I had to take it myself into kwik-fit to get replacements fitted!!
Europcar provide good quality cars at good prices from an easy-to-use and easy-to-navigate website. With hundreds of pick-up points around the country, there's one near you and they always have a very wide range of cars to choose from, starting with economy all the way up to luxury.
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