I may have mentioned my distaste for car rentals before, but my Hertz Gold review has sort of changed my mind. We were able to test it out during our trip out West last month, and overall, were very happy with our experience.
To put it politely, for me, renting a car is the equivalent of the devil itself. I would pretty much rather do, well… anything, but go on a trip that involves renting a car.
When Marriott offered their elite reward members a complimentary one year Hertz Gold membership, I thought, why not? My rental car hatred can’t get any worse. So once we were done in Las Vegas, we arrived at the airport to pick up our rental (and head to California).
The Hertz line was massive. It had to be at least an hour deep.
However, thanks to our gold membership, we bypassed the line completely. We walked straight outside to the car pickup area, found our name on a board, which told us the slot our car is in. We were in and out in under 10 minutes. Insane! Dare I say it, but it was almost an enjoyable process.
We returned the car same day to the JW in Palm Desert and were emailed the final receipt, and all was perfect. I love when things work out as planned!
The second leg of our rental was not as easy, but I don’t necessarily blame Hertz, as much as the guy behind the counter (and us too, for not looking over our paperwork prior to signing). What can I say, I was just so excited to get to Disneyland!
So we picked up our car from the JW and returned it to the Marriott in Anaheim, again a one way rental. The original car we were assigned was in need of an oil change, so we were about to be given a Mustang convertible. However, by the end of our transaction, the Hertz guy realized someone else had already reserved it for today. Hot mess. We were given a minivan instead. Go ahead and laugh. I sure did every time Josh jokingly yelled to our nonexistent kids and asked how they were doing “back there.”
Anyway, our paperwork, which we didn’t realize until after we were already in Anaheim, still said we had a Mustang. Unfortunately, the location at the Anaheim Marriott was closed the day we returned the car, so we dropped the key in the slot and that was that.
We stopped by the following morning, once the counter was opened, to ensure all was well, and the girl had no idea what we were talking about. Apparently, someone comes by to collect the keys and processes everything at a nearby, more central, Hertz location overnight. To make matters worse, we were already emailed the receipt and were overcharged (by a lot) for gas for a Mustang. Argh! The minivan only needed a quarter of a tank, where the Mustang they thought we had, must have needed to be returned on full.
Anyway, once we got home we contacted Hertz, and thank GOD we took a picture of the dashboard. We were able to prove their error and our credit card was refunded the difference within a few days, but holy crap – what a headache! Like I said above, I don’t necessarily blame Hertz, as much as the guy who gave us the wrong paperwork, and us too for not checking it over. We really should have double checked everything.
I’m happy Hertz refunded their error, but they did require the proof on our end. I’d like to think even if we didn’t take that picture of the dashboard they would have been able to figure it out and still refund us, but who knows.
So overall, the Hertz gold program is great, and makes car renting for haters like myself a much more enjoyable experience (or as enjoyable as renting a car could be). I LOVED not having to wait in a long line, or being sold things I don’t want or need (Hertz Gold had all our preferences saved), which meant no insurance upsells. LOVE! We didn’t even have to present our payment method, as that’s already saved in our account too. Easy.
Hertz charges $60 a year for a Gold membership, and even if we didn’t receive a year free, thanks to Marriott status, I still think the price is well worth it, especially if you rent often, or simply prefer to pay a little extra for a lot less hassle.