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Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

Holmfirth, United...
Level Contributor
17 posts
176 reviews
Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

Just got back from a lovely holiday in Italy just to have it ruined by a re-fueling scam by Maggiore car rental. Despite returning the car 100% full and having the Maggiore rep confirm all was okay (including marking the car as 100% full on the return slip) we were very disappointed to be billed for 5 ltrs of fuel (10% of the tank volume)!

Has anybody else had this problem Can anybody give me any guidance on how to report them to some kind of local police? I have reported it as fraud to my creditcard company but I was hoping to take it further.

64 replies to this topic
London
Level Contributor
19 posts
20 reviews
11. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

Presumably they took the car to the fuel station after you had left and found that it still needed another 5l to fill it completely. That's their right, surely ? Looking at the gauge on return and confirming that it appears to look full isn't the same as actually checking at the pump. Can you honestly swear that you filled it right up to the top just round the corner from the airport ? We all play this game as to how far from the airport we can fill up and still have the gauge show full on return. This time they've got you. Fair game !

Holmfirth, United...
Level Contributor
17 posts
176 reviews
12. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

Yes 100 full. Garage outside car park would not take credit card and was not manned. Cash notes into machine only. When you leave 14.73 euro on the pump because the car is over full after repeatedly pressing pump to leave the least amount possible you tend to be really sure! 13% empty is just not physically possible!

M c
3 posts
13. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

Yep, I had exactly the same experience! I was recently in Venice and rented for the first time a car with Maggiore (normally I use more well known rental agencies)... and guess what?! I received an invoice for 5 missing litres of fuel even though I returned the car with a full tank!

I decided to query the charge with Maggiore and they refused to believe my story! I filled the tank at the Tamoil petrol station opposite the Maggiore parking area in Venice airport, which is no more than 20 metres away from the bay were I returned the car I rented.

Unlike Maggiore competitors, when I returned the car nobody was present to do the final check but I certainly didn't question I would have had received an invoice for missing petrol!

My experience is that it is always possible to add some more petrol/diesel to any vehicle after a fuel pump stops when a tank is full, however I struggled to believe they were able to fill an additional 5 litres (or even such a round number: I never managed to fill a tank in my life with 5, 6, 7 or even 10 litres! Why was it not 5.34litres for instance! Was Maggiore so kind to give me 0.34litres of fuel for free?!) since the petrol service station operator who served me before returning the car even added approx an additional 50cents worth of fuel (after the pump stopped) to make my final payment a more rounded figure... which I accepted to pay!

Maggiore than sent me some evidence of the additional charge in a form of a receipt issued by the same petrol service station I used to refill the tank. The receipt lists the amount paid, the total litres and the car number plate... with my surprise however it was noticed that the additional litres of fuel added to the car was just over 50% of what they had originally stated (and already charged me) in their invoice... or approx. 3 litres instead of 5! They apologised for the mistake and asked me IF I wanted a refund for the additional 2 litres they overcharged me for!

I explained to the Maggiore's manager in Venice that if there was a mistake as he claimed he should have had refunded me immediately and certainly not ask me to authorise it! I also explained to the same manager that he should have had refunded me for those 3 missing litres since it was no proof that the car wasn't returned with a full tank... as I said above it is always possible to add a little bit more extra fuel. Moreover this unfortunate situation has never happened before in my long history of car rental in Venice and elsewhere!

It seems to me Maggiore is taking advantage of the situation and to the fact that many of their customers will never argue and waste time on such a small amount of money! If what I am saying it's not true it certainly raises question marks on how they value their customers. The reality is that there is plenty of fish in the sea and I will certainly stick with my better known car rental agencies in Venice on my next trips!

QUESTION: has Maggiore provided evidence of missing 5litres to you as they did with me?

Holmfirth, United...
Level Contributor
17 posts
176 reviews
14. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

Yes, same dodgy receipt with just the number plate hand written on as their proof. My proof that it was pure fraud was their own return slip with 100% clearly marked. Raised it with my creditcard company and they are chasing them! So far money has been refunded to me but they still have the right to appeal. Outrageous fraud and Venice should be ashamed of themselves for allowing them to continue this scam!

Venice, Italy
Destination Expert
for Venice, City of Venice
Level Contributor
8,207 posts
39 reviews
15. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

"Outrageous fraud and Venice should be ashamed of themselves for allowing them to continue this scam!"

I quite honestly fail to see what role, if any, shameful or otherwise, the city of Venice plays in regulating the daily practices of a national car rental chain headquartered in Rome for only one of their (at least three) local offices. With all the problems Venice faces, now they need to appoint a Rental Car Gas Pump Inspector just so tourists that can't mind their own contracts don't risk being taken for a few extra euros? Sure, that's how I want my tax dollars spent, checking your vacation car rental return forms for fraudulent charges since you can't check it yourself. Not.

Sussex, Canada
Level Contributor
36 posts
16. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

I know you heart Venice, but how would you like having to pay many more tax dollars because those, gasp, awful tourists stop coming to your city and keeping it financially afloat? I don't know if a "Rental Car Gas Pump Inspector" is needed just to help those tourists not get ripped off by companies with a pattern of doing so. All that's needed is to make a practice of going out to the car with the renter at the time the car is returned. Yes, that will take a little more time when returning the car.

Venice, Italy
Destination Expert
for Venice, City of Venice
Level Contributor
8,207 posts
39 reviews
17. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

"All that's needed is to make a practice of going out to the car with the renter at the time the car is returned. Yes, that will take a little more time when returning the car"

exactly my point. No need to have a city official hold the hand of the tourist just to return a rental car (from a company the renter chose, not imposed by the city).

And the tourism that is currently invading and overwhelming the city has never in the 1200 years' history of Venice created so many problems, difficulties and desolation as it does today.

So I would think, based on historical precedent, that after a brief period of adjustment, Venice would manage to adapt back again to being a living vital city of commerce, and not the present showcase for Chinese mass produced baubles and trinkets and pizza by the slice and kebab shops intended only for those overstressed run-along awful tourists.

After all, the Venetians have survived the plague more than once, hopefully they can survive *this* modern plague of poor, spoiled, self-important and entitled tourists as well.

Edited: 9:33 am, December 17, 2014
Sussex, Canada
Level Contributor
36 posts
18. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

You volunteered to be a "destination expert" on a web site frequented by that same "modern plague of poor, spoiled, self-important and entitled tourists."

In any case, people who travel want to have a wonderful experience, want to trust others, and sometimes let their guard down and get taken advantage of. Some who've been taken advantage of post here either to vent, warn others, or both, and either way, those comments help others to be on their toes.

Venice, Italy
Destination Expert
for Venice, City of Venice
Level Contributor
8,207 posts
39 reviews
19. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

To be honest, most of the people that frequent these forums that I have occasion to interact with, and certainly any that I have then been able to meet in person in Venice, I don't feel fall into that category in the least. Visitors to the city seem to know how to act and what to expect. Tourists it seems not, they're paying a lot of money and someone should be making it worth all that money they're spending"!! Some yes, but for the most part no. And from my experience, trusting random office clerks and letting your guard down in contractually signed agreements like an automobile rental contract is just plain contradictory to "want to have a wonderful experience", and will more often than not lead to having a terrible experience, particularly in Venice, where there is no shortage of pigeons for the taking.

Sussex, Canada
Level Contributor
36 posts
20. Re: Problems with Maggiore car rental at Venice airport

No need to debate with you, Heart, and I meant no disrespect to you. It's no more accurate or helpful (or pleasing to many readers) to broadside all "tourists" with negative generalities that don't apply to them all than it is for someone to bash all taxi drivers or hotel operators or all of Venice with emotional comments.

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