Europcar changes to excess (mostly increases) and fleet

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AdMEL

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A heads up for those renting from Europcar...

I've just been pricing a rental for next weekend in Melbourne and noticed that Europcar appear to have changed (read mostly increased) their standard excesses, as follows:

Standard cars: $3,650 excluding GST ($4,015 incl. GST, up from $3,850)
Prestige Cars: $5,500 excluding GST ($6,050 incl. GST, up from $5,500)
Merc E200: $5,500 excluding GST ($6,050 incl. GST, down from $8,250)

Their excess for standard cars is now significantly higher than most of the other car rental companies, especially Avis and Budget (which I suspect will be increasing their standard excess in the near future).

At least they haven't introduced an additional Single Vehicle Accident excess like Hertz and Thrifty have!

Further, I dropped off a Merc E200 to my local Europcar office a couple of weeks and got talking to the manager, who advised the following fleet changes:

Most (if not all) Audis will be replaced by Mercs (this is already well under way, with many C200's in the Audi A4 category and A6's no longer available to book). Apparently the Mercs are more popular and cheaper to run.

Commodore SV6's - being deleted from the fleet for the moment (no longer available to book, but they still have them, I suspect mainly at airports), but they may make a reappearance if a suitable deal can be arranged with Holden for VF's.
 

hummel

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Interesting news, much appreciated.

Did the manager say anything about Audi A5s? Have one booked for 3 days after our wedding later this year. Not sure what the Mercedes replacement would be? E class convert?
 

AdMEL

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Interesting news, much appreciated.

Did the manager say anything about Audi A5s? Have one booked for 3 days after our wedding later this year. Not sure what the Mercedes replacement would be? E class convert?

No worries.

A5 convertible - nice choice! I drove one about 18 mths ago - nice car, especially in the warmer weather (not worth the near $100K they cost though!). Hope you got a good deal on the rental.

Whilst A5's weren't discussed, I suspect they will either be retained, or at the very least, take some time to be replaced. I dropped a BMW 320 off at Hertz in Franklin St, Melbourne, earlier this week and walked past Europcar (which is almost next door) - there was a near new white A5 convertible in the front office. From what I understand, Europcar only have about 4 in the state and they only keep the prestige cars for 6 months. I think you'll have an A5 if your booking is before the end of year.
 

koonyaflyer

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I would never rent a premium car from Europcar again. Daughter and son in law rented 3 A5's for their wedding cars. Europcar claimed damage to rims on 2 of them on return, charged $500 per car damages. We dropped back an A4 in June to Melbourne.....they claimed a 2mm scratch to the rim. We refused to sign their damage acknowledgement slip.....stating that we disagreed and we felt we were under significant duress to do so. This week they charged Amex $545 for damage.

Funny that we regularly rent premium cars from Hertz with no problem. 22 rentals in the past 12 months with no damage claims.

Makes me wonder if the recent fines imposed on the Tasmania licencee for false damages claim is not a wider spread Europcar practice.

amex dispute lodged, and future Europcar rentals cancelled. Don't car how premium their cars are! :)
 

marki

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Thanks for the heads up. Myself have Amex charge card and associated insurance to cover such instances. Remember Avis doing this to me for an alleged scratch on a bumper. No recourse and could little afford it at that time.
 

straitman

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I would never rent a premium car from Europcar again. Daughter and son in law rented 3 A5's for their wedding cars. Europcar claimed damage to rims on 2 of them on return, charged $500 per car damages. We dropped back an A4 in June to Melbourne.....they claimed a 2mm scratch to the rim. We refused to sign their damage acknowledgement slip.....stating that we disagreed and we felt we were under significant duress to do so. This week they charged Amex $545 for damage.

Funny that we regularly rent premium cars from Hertz with no problem. 22 rentals in the past 12 months with no damage claims.

Makes me wonder if the recent fines imposed on the Tasmania licencee for false damages claim is not a wider spread Europcar practice.

amex dispute lodged, and future Europcar rentals cancelled. Don't car how premium their cars are! :)
I commented here a few years ago about problems with Europcar of a similar type. From experience it seems to vary with outlets. I now always take photos on pickup and make sure they see me taking pictures on drop off.

OT. Two weeks ago in Cairns I booked a standard vehicle and got an X-Trail then last week booked a standard vehicle and got a C200.
 

jetlagger

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I commented here a few years ago about problems with Europcar of a similar type. From experience it seems to vary with outlets. I now always take photos on pickup and make sure they see me taking pictures on drop off.
.

Likewise! Wise Idea.

Slightly o/t :
I've still have a very serious issue on hand at present with one of the AVIS International franchises & am awaiting feedback from their HQ before I diligently name & shame them.
 

AdMEL

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I would never rent a premium car from Europcar again. Daughter and son in law rented 3 A5's for their wedding cars. Europcar claimed damage to rims on 2 of them on return, charged $500 per car damages. We dropped back an A4 in June to Melbourne.....they claimed a 2mm scratch to the rim. We refused to sign their damage acknowledgement slip.....stating that we disagreed and we felt we were under significant duress to do so. This week they charged Amex $545 for damage.

Funny that we regularly rent premium cars from Hertz with no problem. 22 rentals in the past 12 months with no damage claims.

Makes me wonder if the recent fines imposed on the Tasmania licencee for false damages claim is not a wider spread Europcar practice.

amex dispute lodged, and future Europcar rentals cancelled. Don't car how premium their cars are! :)

I just checked the Vehicle Fair Wear and Tear Guide from my last Europcar rental - surprisingly, it does actually state that whilst scratches and dents on panels and bumpers up to certain sizes are acceptable, no damage whatsoever to alloy wheels is acceptable. I find this unreasonable. Most of the bad stories I've read have been about Europcar. I much prefer to rent from Hertz and Avis, who are much more reasonable, but sometimes I want a car that only Europcar has and other times, paying 50-100% more to rent from Hertz or Avis isn't in my budget.

Which Melbourne location are you referring to? City? Airport? Other?

I commented here a few years ago about problems with Europcar of a similar type. From experience it seems to vary with outlets. I now always take photos on pickup and make sure they see me taking pictures on drop off.

OT. Two weeks ago in Cairns I booked a standard vehicle and got an X-Trail then last week booked a standard vehicle and got a C200.

What level Privilege are you? I wouldn't consider an X-Trail an upgrade under any circumstance, but I would be very happy with a C200 in place of a standard vehicle! Was that also at Cairns?

Overall, I find Europcar customer service quite bad. I'm Privilege Exec and my last rental of a Merc E200, they didn't have the paperwork ready when I arrived to pick up the car at my local office and asked to see my credit card, which they have on file. When I advised that it was a Privilege rental and queried why I needed to show them a credit card they have on file, I was told that Privilege doesn't apply there, only at the airport! What cough!
 

koonyaflyer

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Which Melbourne location are you referring to? City? Airport? Other?


Melbourne Airport. I actually have insurance ....so ultimately no cost, but I feel on principle I want to challenge their practice. Seriously I can't even prove that they even have undertaken the repar!
 

hummel

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Interesting experiences from everyone and now makes me a little concerned about my A5 booking... However doesn't seem anyone else has an equivalent vehicle...
 

AdMEL

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Interesting experiences from everyone and now makes me a little concerned about my A5 booking... However doesn't seem anyone else has an equivalent vehicle...

Which location will you be renting from?

You're right, none of the other car rental companies have anything similar. Others have prestige cars (Hertz - BMW's, Thrifty - Lexus), but no convertibles.

If you're renting from Melbourne City, whilst their service is rubbish, I've never had a problem with damage charges (or anywhere, for that matter). Just make sure you check the car thoroughly and get them to note any damage (I've had to demand they note a large scratch on an Audi, which they initially refused to note). Make sure you check the odometer and fuel readings match the rental agreement too!
 
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