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A Warning about Firefly Car Rental

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  • 22-09-2015 11:02am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 953 ✭✭✭


    Make no mistake, this company WILL rip you off. Just had an awful experience with these guys at Malaga airport. Very rude & pushy with the add-ons. When we refused their exorbitant additional insurance costs which apparently covered all scratches, they told us we would be charged €130 per scratch & when we checked the car it was already covered in scratches, despite the fact there was no record of existing damage. When I asked the girl at the desk if the car had been checked for scratches previously she said that it mustn't have been checked after the last user because they had upgraded to the higher level insurance that she had been trying to peddle to us beforehand!

    Anyway, we brought the car back on time, in perfect condition & with a full tank. Checked my invoice today when I got home & they have charged me an extra 50% on top of the price originally quoted. The additional costs are all hidden charges with no explanation. I've tried to contact them through their website by filling out a form but it’s been a week now and I haven’t heard a word back. Their whole website looks like it is designed to discourage any kind of after sales service.

    I feel like reporting these guys to the Spanish police because basically I’ve been robbed. Scam.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,127 ✭✭✭✭kerry4sam


    Tim76 wrote: »
    Make no mistake, this company WILL rip you off. Just had an awful experience with these guys at Malaga airport. Very rude & pushy with the add-ons. When we refused their exorbitant additional insurance costs which apparently covered all scratches, they told us we would be charged €130 per scratch & when we checked the car it was already covered in scratches, despite the fact there was no record of existing damage. When I asked the girl at the desk if the car had been checked for scratches previously she said that it mustn't have been checked after the last user because they had upgraded to the higher level insurance that she had been trying to peddle to us beforehand!

    Anyway, we brought the car back on time, in perfect condition & with a full tank. Checked my invoice today when I got home & they have charged me an extra 50% on top of the price originally quoted. The additional costs are all hidden charges with no explanation. I've tried to contact them through their website by filling out a form but it’s been a week now and I haven’t heard a word back. Their whole website looks like it is designed to discourage any kind of after sales service.

    I feel like reporting these guys to the Spanish police because basically I’ve been robbed. Scam.

    Before you left the depot with your rental car did you have a clear record with them on the condition of the car prior to you taking the car?
    Did you & they list the damage already done prior to you leaving the carpark?

    If not, why not? Surely you would have taken the car with an accurate record incl pictures (dated & timed) before and then have pictures of the car when you returned it?

    Just trying to understand this,

    Thanks,
    kerry4sam


  • Registered Users Posts: 953 ✭✭✭Tim76


    kerry4sam wrote: »
    Before you left the depot with your rental car did you have a clear record with them on the condition of the car prior to you taking the car?
    Did you & they list the damage already done prior to you leaving the carpark?

    If not, why not? Surely you would have taken the car with an accurate record incl pictures (dated & timed) before and then have pictures of the car when you returned it?

    Just trying to understand this,

    Thanks,
    kerry4sam


    There was a record sheet where all the existing marks were highlighted on the car that was signed before and after the rental. There were no additional scratches nor damage and tbf the invoice would seem to reflect that, bear in mind scratches were charged at €130 a pop whether you caused them or not.
    According to the invoice, which I only received on my return, there were additional charges for:
    CC FEE
    ServiceCh
    CDW
    TP
    The service charge is the only one that I can make out and this was the largest addition by far. There was absolutely no mention of these charges when I was initially quoted the price through the Ryanair website nor was there any mention of them at the desk when filling out the paperwork & picking up the keys.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 18,268 ✭✭✭✭uck51js9zml2yt


    Looks to be credit card fee. Collision Damage Waiver.
    Not sure what TP is.


  • Registered Users Posts: 953 ✭✭✭Tim76


    Looks to be credit card fee. Collision Damage Waiver.
    Not sure what TP is.

    Theft prevention I'm guessing but you would imagine this would be covered under their standard insurance. Cowboys Ted!


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,127 ✭✭✭✭kerry4sam


    Tim76 wrote: »
    There was a record sheet where all the existing marks were highlighted on the car that was signed before and after the rental. There were no additional scratches nor damage and tbf the invoice would seem to reflect that, bear in mind scratches were charged at €130 a pop whether you caused them or not.
    According to the invoice, which I only received on my return, there were additional charges for:
    CC FEE
    ServiceCh
    CDW
    TP
    The service charge is the only one that I can make out and this was the largest addition by far. There was absolutely no mention of these charges when I was initially quoted the price through the Ryanair website nor was there any mention of them at the desk when filling out the paperwork & picking up the keys.

    ^^^ That piece in bold I'm having difficulties getting my head around. I've done a quick search online and not seeing other reviews stating same. Seems highly unusual to me tbh.
    Is that mentioned in your paperwork - you have to pay for damage caused by others?

    Thanks,


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  • Registered Users Posts: 953 ✭✭✭Tim76


    kerry4sam wrote: »
    ^^^ That piece in bold I'm having difficulties getting my head around. I've done a quick search online and not seeing other reviews stating same. Seems highly unusual to me tbh.
    Is that mentioned in your paperwork - you have to pay for damage caused by others?

    Thanks,


    For example, if I had missed a scratch that had been already on the car and did not mark it down and get sign off at the time of rental. On returning the car if the scratch was found it would be attributed to me and I would be charged €130. Another reason to go for the higher insurance policy! Also, your car could pick up a few scratches while you left it parked - very risky according to the girl behind the desk ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,300 ✭✭✭Gatica


    looks like a crappy rental company alright. In future will avoid. Best to get a collision damage waiver thingy that covers any damage to the car by you. You can purchase such insurance separate from the rental company and get better quotes on it too. We've done that in the past and had absolutely no issues when scratched the bumper of a car parking it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,222 ✭✭✭keithclancy


    Tim76 wrote: »
    Make no mistake, this company WILL rip you off. Just had an awful experience with these guys at Malaga airport. Very rude & pushy with the add-ons. When we refused their exorbitant additional insurance costs which apparently covered all scratches, they told us we would be charged €130 per scratch & when we checked the car it was already covered in scratches, despite the fact there was no record of existing damage. When I asked the girl at the desk if the car had been checked for scratches previously she said that it mustn't have been checked after the last user because they had upgraded to the higher level insurance that she had been trying to peddle to us beforehand!

    Anyway, we brought the car back on time, in perfect condition & with a full tank. Checked my invoice today when I got home & they have charged me an extra 50% on top of the price originally quoted. The additional costs are all hidden charges with no explanation. I've tried to contact them through their website by filling out a form but it’s been a week now and I haven’t heard a word back. Their whole website looks like it is designed to discourage any kind of after sales service.

    I feel like reporting these guys to the Spanish police because basically I’ve been robbed. Scam.

    Firefly is normally the Cheapest because its drop back empty (Pretty much impossible)

    did you check if it was Full - Full or Full - Empty ?


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,772 ✭✭✭byronbay2


    I hired a car from Firefly last year and had no problem. It was from Stansted and for 4 days. Was extremely cheap (£40 or so iirc) and definitely got the hard sell on the extra insurance, which I declined. The one interesting part was when I was asked for £10 extra for a diesel model, I had never heard this one before! I declined but was given a diesel anyway, at no extra charge.

    I returned the car full and feared for extra (mystery!) charges on the credit card but none materialised. I was happy enough with them and would definitely use them again from Stansted.


  • Registered Users Posts: 375 ✭✭Meanaspie


    byronbay2 wrote: »
    I hired a car from Firefly last year and had no problem. It was from Stansted and for 4 days. Was extremely cheap (£40 or so iirc) and definitely got the hard sell on the extra insurance, which I declined. The one interesting part was when I was asked for £10 extra for a diesel model, I had never heard this one before! I declined but was given a diesel anyway, at no extra charge.

    I returned the car full and feared for extra (mystery!) charges on the credit card but none materialised. I was happy enough with them and would definitely use them again from Stansted.

    Are they located within the Terminal in Stansted or are they a busy ride away? Trying to organise a car in Stansted, they're the cheapest but I'll happily pay a bit more if it means I walk straight out of the terminal and into the car.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,207 ✭✭✭bungaro79


    there are loads of threads on the different tripadvisor forums about this company and the horror stories associated with them


  • Registered Users Posts: 953 ✭✭✭Tim76


    bungaro79 wrote: »
    there are loads of threads on the different tripadvisor forums about this company and the horror stories associated with them
    There is my friend, but there is a fool born every minute. And that is their business plan.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭naughtysmurf


    Looks to me as even though you declined their insurance they charged you anyway, that's the CDW charge, somewhere on the paperwork normally you sign or initial a section saying you declined their insurance, did that happen? Is the rental agreement in Spanish & do you understand it?

    You've probably been done, tbh don't fancy your chances of a refund, sorry


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,900 ✭✭✭InTheTrees


    Have you contacted your credit card company? They can usually help a little after all they're being scammed too.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭naughtysmurf


    InTheTrees wrote: »
    Have you contacted your credit card company? They can usually help a little after all they're being scammed too.

    Didn't realise when I posted last week but thread is a year old


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,900 ✭✭✭InTheTrees


    Didn't realise when I posted last week but thread is a year old

    ha ha ha...

    I hate when that happens. Ah well.

    :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,600 ✭✭✭Red Silurian


    I'll be going over at the end of the month and got these guys through Ryanair car rentals, got a focus (or equivalent) for €62 for 4 days including insurance on the excess and free breakdown

    Does anybody know what way the Dartford toll works with these guys (do I pay them or the toll operators) as I'll be using it, possibly more than once?


  • Registered Users Posts: 37 thelmascanl


    I'll be going over at the end of the month and got these guys through Ryanair car rentals, got a focus (or equivalent) for €62 for 4 days including insurance on the excess and free breakdown

    Does anybody know what way the Dartford toll works with these guys (do I pay them or the toll operators) as I'll be using it, possibly more than once?


    Hey,

    Just wondering how you got on with this as I am considering doing the same. Also I noticed on the ryanair website it says they may put a hold of €1000 on my card. Anyone know what the story with this is?


  • Registered Users Posts: 3 chiefnudist


    I had a similar experience in Alicante Airport. They stopped just short of threatening me when I refused to take out their insurance. I rent for about 12 weeks a year ... and It'll NEVER be from them again !

    Firefly is owned by Hertz so they're now on the no go list as well !!


  • Registered Users Posts: 3 chiefnudist


    The €1000 hold on your credit card is because you haven't taken out their insurance. Damage the car and they will take out the repair cost from it. I have my own "excess" insurance which I pay here every year ( about €60 for the year ) so I insure myself here for any damage i do thats not covered by the mandatory minimum insurance you get with a rental. Car Hire Excess is the company ( I think its Blue Insurance ). I need to call on them once and everything was dealt with in a flash. Good on them !!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,181 ✭✭✭k123456


    Firefly and Gold Car are gangsters. Hertz doesn't advertise this but FF is owned by Hertz. If you cant get any help from FF, you could do as I had to do and write to CEO of Hertz to resolve

    An annual car hire insurance policy can help

    A new one with GC and FF , is they now charge for a lock not locking, they claim this has been damaged by the hirer. Before setting off in addition to checking for scratches etc , check all locks work, with key and with central locking


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,293 ✭✭✭PGE1970


    I'm off to Sicily next month.

    After a lot of research, i decided that Avis was "the best of a bad lot". Not the cheapest but the horror stories about Firefly and others was eye watering!

    The whole industry seems to be completely unregulated. Another reason why I picked Avis is because they have an Irish office. Because the online contract is "signed" in Ireland, I can sue them here is anything goes wrong.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2 finglasg


    I rented a car from Firefly at Malaga Airport. I submitted my excess insurance policy for inspection and the agent refused to view it and said that is ok and she will take a retention of €990 as a damage deposit. I was hurriedly asked to sign the rental agreement in 3 places. When I checked my Visa bill one week later they had debited a further €189 for excess insurance which I already had. Unwittingly I signed the rental agreement thinking it was for the deposit. I literally only travelled under 200KM and would have been far cheaper to get Taxi's. This is a scam and I want to warn people to check out the paperwork properly before you sign it. I intend to take them to the European small claims court to at least highlight this sharp practice.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,856 ✭✭✭munchkin_utd


    finglasg, that sounds all very strange.

    Theres no excess cover that they sell, just super cover with zero excess. So.... if you paid the extra insurance as it seems you did, then you should not have had to leave a deposit.
    That deposit should only be €950, so they obviously did you for another €40 for some other fee (they list a few on their terms and conditions)


  • Registered Users Posts: 126 ✭✭podge_din


    finglasg.
    What website did you book your car on? Did you tick a box when booking to decline all insurances?
    If all insurances are declined then you are liable for the full cost of any damage to the car. Your excess insurance policy will not cover this as it only covers an excess. They, therefore, may have added the 'basic' cover at the desk in order to reduce your liability to the excess amount(which would be covered by your excess policy). They should have informed you of this at the time if that is what they were doing so it is still bad practice either way.
    The agent not looking at your excess policy is fair enough. This is an agreement between you and a different company. If there was damage to the car it would be you who is liable to the rental company, not the excess insurance company, so the rental company would have no dealings with the excess insurance company.


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