Claim of Pet Hair and Sand in Vehicle results in 250 charge

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Nov 1, 2018
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#1
Almost 1 month past return of Avis Rental, we received notice of pet hair, sand and excessive soil that necessitated a 250 cleaning charge. We were not able to follow up before the 250 charged was assessed to our USSA credit card. I called the number listed on the letter to let them know (very politely) that there must have been a mixup, because there were no pets in our vehicle, and it was not soiled when it was returned. There was some sand present upon pick up. Also explained that the mileage counter in the vehicle did not match the paper given at the counter at pick up. I let the desk know, but they stated it made no difference because the vehicle came with unlimited mileage. As an inexperienced renter I did not give it a second thought.

So, after explaining all of this the rep said she would put me on hold and research it. When she returned she told me the charges were correct. I then asked her if she could please send time stamped photographs showing this occurred during our rental period. She agreed and sent a pdf with 4 photos. I do not note a time stamp on them, however the mileage and car number do match the actual rental. Pdf sent by Avis is attached. What I cannot determine is if we should proceed. We did not leave the soil they described, but not sure how and if to proceed. Thanks for any assistance!
 

Attachments

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
14,235
13,557
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#2
https://forum.elliott.org/threads/how-to-deal-with-a-car-rental-damage-claim.1514/

Follow our advice in this thread. You’ll have to modify it a bit.

State you had no pets and there was a slight amount of sand when you picked it up. What was the odometer reading when you brought it back on your paperwork? Does it match the picture?

You can do a cc dispute too. Ask your cc company the last date you can file a dispute and be mindful but try to get them to drop the claim first.
 
Likes: jsn55
Sep 12, 2018
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#3
Oh, wow. Based on their description, I was assuming it’d look like a whole pack of dogs exploded in a sandstorm. Based on the photos, it looks like someone went for a walk outside and then got in the car. It seems to be limited to the floor mats and doesn’t look like anything the quick, standard vacuum job that should occur after any return wouldn’t take care of. I know that attachments sometimes get emails blocked or rejected when emailing executives, but it might be worth trying to include those photos in your requests for assistance. This is absurd, at least based on the photos included.
 
Sep 27, 2018
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#4
Almost 1 month past return of Avis Rental, we received notice of pet hair, sand and excessive soil that necessitated a 250 cleaning charge. We were not able to follow up before the 250 charged was assessed to our USSA credit card. I called the number listed on the letter to let them know (very politely) that there must have been a mixup, because there were no pets in our vehicle, and it was not soiled when it was returned. There was some sand present upon pick up. Also explained that the mileage counter in the vehicle did not match the paper given at the counter at pick up. I let the desk know, but they stated it made no difference because the vehicle came with unlimited mileage. As an inexperienced renter I did not give it a second thought.

So, after explaining all of this the rep said she would put me on hold and research it. When she returned she told me the charges were correct. I then asked her if she could please send time stamped photographs showing this occurred during our rental period. She agreed and sent a pdf with 4 photos. I do not note a time stamp on them, however the mileage and car number do match the actual rental. Pdf sent by Avis is attached. What I cannot determine is if we should proceed. We did not leave the soil they described, but not sure how and if to proceed. Thanks for any assistance!
Here's my thought on this. Considering the mileage you were probably the last person to rent it, before Avis turns it back in to be resold. That is when the pet hair was noticed and the cleaning charge was assessed, because they try to make these vehicles look as pristine as possible before being auctioned. Try to see if you can find out when the photos were taken, my guess is they were well after the rental ended.
 
Jun 30, 2017
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Maui Hawaii
#5
Almost 1 month past return of Avis Rental, we received notice of pet hair, sand and excessive soil that necessitated a 250 cleaning charge. We were not able to follow up before the 250 charged was assessed to our USSA credit card. I called the number listed on the letter to let them know (very politely) that there must have been a mixup, because there were no pets in our vehicle, and it was not soiled when it was returned. There was some sand present upon pick up. Also explained that the mileage counter in the vehicle did not match the paper given at the counter at pick up. I let the desk know, but they stated it made no difference because the vehicle came with unlimited mileage. As an inexperienced renter I did not give it a second thought.

So, after explaining all of this the rep said she would put me on hold and research it. When she returned she told me the charges were correct. I then asked her if she could please send time stamped photographs showing this occurred during our rental period. She agreed and sent a pdf with 4 photos. I do not note a time stamp on them, however the mileage and car number do match the actual rental. Pdf sent by Avis is attached. What I cannot determine is if we should proceed. We did not leave the soil they described, but not sure how and if to proceed. Thanks for any assistance!
What are the dates of your rental? What was the vehicle number on your contract? What was the mileage when you returned the car? Was your rental a red Chrysler Pacifica? If this is not your rental car, you should be able to get rid of this claim.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
7,151
7,012
113
San Francisco
#6
I work at horse shows and return rental cars full of dirt, hay, straw and who knows what. It's especially interesting if it's been raining. Nobody has ever said a word about it. Go after Avis with our tried and tested method.
 
Likes: AMA and ADM
Jul 7, 2018
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#7
I have returned many rentals with more sand, dirt, whatever than these pictures indicate and have never been charged a cleaning fee. It looks like a normal amount of clean up would be necessary. I too would challenge this fee. Now I guess I need to take pictures of the floor mats as well when returning a rental.
 
Feb 11, 2018
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#9
I have returned many rentals with more sand, dirt, whatever than these pictures indicate and have never been charged a cleaning fee. It looks like a normal amount of clean up would be necessary. I too would challenge this fee. Now I guess I need to take pictures of the floor mats as well when returning a rental.
Not on ly do we need to take plethora of photos of every surface, inside, outside, engine compartment, trunk, etc., but we must also give the rental a deep cleaning and thorough wash and wax job. And take more photos.
 
Likes: jsn55
Jun 27, 2017
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#10
How does the OP know if the bottom two photos of the sand and pet hair are actually from the vehicle she rented? I didn't see any identifying markers on the photos in the PDF. Also, if she is really with USAA (and not USSA), I would call a credit card rep with USAA and ask how to proceed.
 
Likes: Neil Maley