36000km in three days: 8000 dollars car rental charge shocks Canadian woman

Date Added: August 27, 2022 09:30:54 AM
Author: Sutra Web Directory
Category: Regional: Canada
Car rental companies have long earned a reputation for gouging customers, penny-pinching on frills and finding new and unscrupulous ways to charge for add-ons.

But a Canadian woman says she was billed thousands in extra mileage after a rental company claimed she drove a distance nearly the circumference of the Earth over a three-day period.

Earlier this month, Giovanna Boniface flew from Vancouver to Toronto, where she rented an SUV at the airport to help get her daughter settled into university.

As well as running errands around the city’s downtown streets, she also made trips to visit her mother-in-law in the city of Kitchener, slightly more than 100km away.

In all, Boniface, estimates she drove close to 300km in that period.

After dropping the car off at the airport and preparing to board a flight to Europe, she checked her credit card statement to ensure the billing had gone through smoothly.

“That’s when I notice this charge for over $8,000 from Avis,” Boniface told CTV News.

She panicked and for a moment considered returning to the rental desk to plead her case – but doing so would force her to miss her flight.

All of her calls to the Avis counter at the Toronto airport went unanswered.

Her call with a manager at the general office left her feeling the company “didn’t seem to really get what [the] issue was” and the fee remained in place.

Her rental receipt, posted to Twitter, shows the company levied a charge of 25 cents per kilometre – for 36,000 additional kilometres.

Even if she had travelled from Mexico City to Skagway, Alaska, over the three days, driving nonstop, she would still be nearly 30,000km short of what the company claimed she had travelled – enough to traverse the entire continent of North America three more times.

Visa, her credit card company, said it couldn’t stop a pending transaction.

Only nine days later, after her story was picked up by local media, did Boniface get a response from Avis, which acknowledged the mistake and advised the extra charges would be refunded.

In a statement, the company cited an “error” in the receipt, but didn’t clarify how the mistake was made.

Last month, the company’s American operations came under scrutiny after a customer in Georgia claimed he was over-billed thousands of dollars. The company eventually admitted its error, refunding him the full amount and issuing an apology.