Sunday, July 21, 2024

Tourists warned one car hire firm is ‘best avoided’ on summer holidays

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Holidaymakers are being urged to avoid a car hire company ranked last in a customer satisfaction survey.

Goldcar achieved a score of 52% in the annual report by consumer watchdog Which?.

It was awarded just two stars out of five for value, car details versus reality, record of damage and customer service.

One fifth (20%) of those polled who used Goldcar – which operates in countries including Spain, Portugal, France and the US – said they had issues with the condition of the vehicle.

And 23% reported being charged extra either when they picked up or returned the car. Which? said its previous investigations found cases of the business engaging in “pressure selling tactics” to encourage customers to buy extra insurance at the desk.

The car hire company with the second-lowest overall score was Dollar (56%), followed by Record Go (57%), Budget (61%) and Sixt (64%).

Two brands based on the Canary Islands had the highest scores – AutoReisen (92%) and Cicar (91%) – while the top-ranked broker was Zest Car Rental (90%).

Rory Boland, editor of Which? Travel magazine, said: “Booking car hire should be straightforward, but all too often it feels like the wild west, with travellers lamenting fraught experiences, poor customer service and spurious fees. Goldcar in particular is best avoided, with customers repeatedly reporting serious issues, from pressure selling to poor customer service.

“To ensure you have the best experience this summer, book with a reputable firm.”

Goldcar, which is owned by Europcar Mobility Group, said: “The company takes customer care very seriously, with a code of ethics for counter sales and a guide of good practices, both of which are reviewed annually.”

The research was based on a survey of 2,324 adults.

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