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Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

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Catania, Sicily
posts: 2
reviews: 20
Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

We recently rented a van through Europcar at Budapest airport. There was no one to inspect the vehicle when we arrived and no one to inspect it jointly when we returned it to the airport. Later they charged my credit card for "damage." The photographic evidence showed that it occured 1100 km after my rental, but Europcar refused to change their tune. I believe they were not happy we declined the extra and very expensive additional coverage. The damage they were charging us for is a nick in the windscreen. Customer service is horrible. I recommend that you AVOID this Europcar at the Budapest Airport. Avoid fraudulent businesses like this.

7 replies to this topic
Bath, UK
Destination Expert
for Budapest, Hungary
posts: 6,404
reviews: 36
1. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

I have had this problem elsewhere with europcar - this beaviour is not unique to Hungary, or to europcar.

The rule is, check the vehicle thoroughly before you drive off, and insist that any defects are recorded on the hire document before you leave.

Sydney, Australia
posts: 1
reviews: 1
2. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

We have also been blamed for damage that was present before we took the car and documented on the paperwork for a London Europcar rental. They claim the damage was more than recorded and we have been stung for $320 AUD even though we refused to sign off on the rental agreement. The promise was to investigate further and communicate with the manager but instead there was no communication and they took it out of our bank account. Any ideas on how to start the claims process? We will never use Europcar again and suggest others avoid them too!

San Francisco...
posts: 207
reviews: 7
3. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

Dispute the charges with your bank.. they'll normally side with you.

posts: 2
reviews: 6
4. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

Same story with Europcar Italy..

Even though it was during published opening hours, there was nobody at their return desk at the Milan airport so I had to use the key drop drawer. I took a video of the car in their return parking lot showing no damages.

Damage claims showed up on my credit card - I disputed with the credit card company and the charge never made it back to my card.

Problem is that next Europcar is sending a "bill" with some estimate document to prove the amount. Now what ? Only contact provided is a fax number..

posts: 1,776
reviews: 174
5. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

same problems with car hire the world over, the headline rate is a lie, the Full CDW is extortion and they are mostly staffed by less than enthusiastic employees

I have had problems with car hire in Ireland,Hungary,Italy USA and France

its nothing personal, its the way car hire works

regards tony

posts: 1
6. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

I rented a car this weekend through Europcar Downtown. Never in my life have I experienced such horrible service. I am half Hungarian, and kindly explained to them that I could understand them if they spoke slowly. When I asked them to speak in English they became very aggressive in Hungarian (which I understood.)

At no point were they going to inform me of additional charges, including a hold of AUD $2500.00 on my credit card for over two weeks. I was hoping to rent a car from them again but have decided against this on principle. Why these people work in customer service or tourism industry is beyond me.

On the positive side, the car was very clean and well kept. It is such a shame that these people are so bitter towards tourists, even those that make the effort to speak in native tongue.

Berkshire UK
posts: 241
reviews: 23
7. Re: Beware of Fraudulent Damage Claims at EUROPCAR Hungary

If you take the collision damage waiver I'm not sure that they swipe your credit card (though they may do to cover parking and speeding fines ?).

Also if you don't take CDW you're plain stupid - not only are you risking a major loss through a genuine accident, or damage to the car through no fault of your own - but you're leaving yourself open to disputable claims by the rental company ...

You can get decent deals booking via UK (or your home country), on the web, booking in advance including CDW.

Car hire isn't cheap unless its a corporate deal. I'm always amazed by how cheap picking up a car at the airport can be when on my employer's business account (of course CDW and even basic insurance is covered by my employer's own insurance).

I've never ever hired a car without CDW, even though I've only ever needed it once when losing a wing mirror speeding through the narrow streets of Perugia ... a relatively small cost, but better safe than sorry, and no big deal about inspecting the car pre / post hire, or fearing a scam to get money out of you.

In Budapest I've used Budget on Üllői út, and Sixt on Bécsi út (Budget booked from UK, Sixt arranged by a cousin who's modest advertising company was handling their local campaign, so got an upgrade both times).

I found service at both establishments never less than polite and helpful.

And I can't believe it was just because I was obviously a "foreigner" absolutely fluent in spoken Hungarian (though I do like to play up being British, playing down my language skill ... Hungarians generally love when tourists speak their language.)

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