More Uhauls Of Shame

Blah blah blah Uhaul wouldn’t rent me a Uhaul because I’m too much of a slacker to show up on time. That’s what ran through our brains when we first read Christopher’s letter. Then we stumbled across this gem.

After not being able to get his reserved Uhaul , Chris decided he would just rent a trailer from them and hook it up to his brother’s 1995 Ford Explorer. That’s when the fun really started.

    “I informed [the desk clerk] that it was a ’95 Explorer, and she promptly informed me that they would be unable to rent me a trailer as the ’95 Explorers had a recall for their Bridgestone tires. I remembered this from many years ago, but on a 10-year old vehicle with 120,000 miles the tires had obviously been changed more than once. I even offered to let her inspect the tires to make sure they were not the original Bridgestones. As you can probably guess, she was having none of it.”

95% of life is showing up on time. The other 5% is resisting the urge to vanquish the fools you find when you get there.


    “I hate to pile on (no I don’t), but here’s another horror story about U-Haul.

    About a year ago I was moving apartments in Chicago, and unfortunately attempted to rent a truck through U-Haul, about 4 miles from my apartment. I went through the usual rent, confirm, repeat business that everyone else seems to endure, but that really wasn’t too much of a hassle. The true disaster started when I arrived to pick up my truck.

    I had made and confirmed my rental for 8AM – 4PM on Saturday. Well, my little brother had agreed to help me move (bless his heart), but was running a little behind schedule as he had to drive up from school in Champaign, IL (2 hrs away). That was fine, because I intentionally rented the truck for the full day so we could take our time and factor in things like running late/long lines at the rental facility. He arrived at 10AM, and we went to pick up the truck, which would still give us about 5.5 hours to move a couple miles and return the truck on time. He dropped me off at U-Haul and headed back towards my apartment. Unfortunately, when I went in to pick up the keys, the employee behind the counter informed me that my truck had been taken by someone else because I wasn’t there at exactly 8AM.

    I had assumed that since my rental was until 4PM, I could pick up the truck whenever I wanted before that and it would be there. I guess according to U-Haul, they just assume you’re bailing on your reservation if you’re not there as soon as they open. To make matters worse, since I was just in a t-shirt and mesh shorts I didn’t bring my cell phone with me, and my brother had already left. So, without rental truck or ride home, I started jogging towards my apartment (4 miles away – not the best option at 10AM, hungover on hot, humid, August day). Amazingly, my brother was stuck in traffic, and I managed to catch him about a mile away.

    But, that still left me sans rental truck and I had to move that day. We went back to the facility, and they informed us we could wait around for the 12:30 returns and see if someone doesn’t show up for their reservation (i.e. doesn’t show up at exactly 12:30 so we can steal their truck). This was unappealing for a few reasons: 1) We had to wait 2.5 hours just for a chance to get a truck, 2) There were ~4 other people waiting for the same thing, and 3) We would be stealing someone else’s truck, which obviously wasn’t fair.

    Well, my brother had a 1995 Ford Explorer with a hitch, so we decided we would simply rent one of the available trailers. We would have to make a couple trips, but I was only moving a few miles, and it was better than the alternatives. I filled out all the paperwork and was ready to go hook up the trailer when the desk clerk asked off-handedly what kind of vehicle we were driving. I informed her that it was a ’95 Explorer, and she promptly informed me that they would be unable to rent me a trailer as the ’95 Explorers had a recall for their Bridgestone tires. I remembered this from many years ago, but on a 10-year old vehicle with 120,000 miles the tires had obviously been changed more than once. I even offered to let her inspect the tires to make sure they were not the original Bridgestones. As you can probably guess, she was having none of it.

    I have a notorious short-fuse, and I was about 2 seconds away from laying into this unhelpful U-Haul employee with all the verbal fury of Don Rickles on crystal meth, but fortunately my brother dragged me out before I could make a total ass of myself.

    To make a long story longer, we ended up hauling my entire apartment in my brother’s Explorer, which took no less than 7 separate trips and 10 hours. And of course, I will never again use U-Haul. I actually never even checked my credit card statement to see if they charged me for “failing to show up” for my reservation, but if you made me guess I’d bet they did.”

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. ChazB says:

    I can agree with being pissed over the refusal to give you a trailer on the grounds of the recall from 10 years ago. But, if you make an appointment anywhere, for any duration, and you don’t show up, do they wait around for you to come in at your leasure or do they serve the next customer?

    My opinion, U-Haul is a bunch of douches but you got the same as you’d get at just about any business for missing your appointment, back of the line.

  2. homerjay says:

    actually, the opposite happened to me. Someone reserved the trailer that I was SUPPOSED TO reserve (even though the screwed up my reservation.).
    I showed up in the middle of the day and the correct one that was already reserved by someone else was still sitting in the lot. They told me they couldn’t rent it to me that day because it was reserved. So whether you show or not, the reservation is there all day waiting for you.

    This policy probably varies from site to site given that it appears that UHaul doesn’t have any real corporate policies or even management to speak of.

  3. Blue says:

    F all u metrosexual bitches for not posting my remarks. I’m smart and have a lot to contribute. Your loss!

  4. Blue says:

    look at that it posted………. LOL

  5. homerjay says:

    What the…?

  6. RumorsDaily says:

    Blue, you seem mighty bright. I indeed do feel a sincere regret to not hear what important, well thought out, potentially homophobic, thoughts you might have on the subject of Uhaul.

    Please, continue.

  7. Ben Popken says:

    A shadow slinks slowly through an alley, withdrawing a glint of piano wire from his pocket…

  8. thrillhouse says:

    47? is that you? Oh, its just Ben…

    anywho, after seeing the relics parked outside, why would anyone go inside a Uhaul storefront? And people are then surprised when problems arrise.

    I moved with a Penske truck 4 years ago and I have nothing but good things to say about them. Equipment is all clean and new if not, then fairly new. My reservation was actually reserved. A muuuuch classier outfit than Uhaul. Uhaul is right, because they won’t be.

  9. Xkeeper says:

    Piano wire? Pah. Just drop an ACME-brand grand piano on him. Going out with humor!

    Personally, what little moving we’ve done (most of my extended family lives in the same city, so moving is usually done by hand with family trucks and whatnot) with Uhaul wasn’t too bad. It got our crap from A to B without blowing up and there weren’t many problems, but this was years ago. Chances are practices have deteriorated lately.

    On a funnier note, it’s also easy to tell that their trucks are wearing down — the news here frequently jokes about stalled U-hauls as “No-haul” or “Ustall,” and they seem to happen rather frequently.

  10. Xkeeper says:

    Oh, damnit. I meant to reply to this earlier, but…

    But, if you make an appointment anywhere, for any duration, and you don’t show up, do they wait around for you to come in at your leasure or do they serve the next customer?

    I would agree, except he made a reservation. Not so much an appointment. If I was in his shoes, I would’ve treated a reservation as a “this truck is yours for the time you reserved it, don’t be back late or we’ll charge you extra” — giving it away after it’s already been paid for is just silly.

  11. acambras says:

    ESPECIALLY since U-Haul makes you PAY to make a reservation.

  12. Paul D says:

    I have a 95 Ford Bronco and I ALWAYS have to clarify when I rent a trailer.

    I never really knew why Explorers were verboten by U-Haul (other than being vastly inferior to the Bronco, heheh). But whenever they ask me what kind of truck I’ll be using to tow the trailer and I say “Ford Bronco, full size” they always say “NOT an Explorer, right?”

    Yeah. NOT an Explorer.
    Bronco, full-size, with a Class 3 hitch.

    One time, the U-Haul woman gave me the stink-eye and insisted on going out to the lot to verify my answer.

    Funny that it’s all because of a 10-year-old recall. However, if someone is driving a mid-90s Explorer still on the original tires, they’ve got bigger things to worry about than a mere rejection from U-Haul…

  13. Triteon says:

    Blue? As in Edelman Blue Worldwide?

  14. Nelson @ Evoflux says:

    Actually UHaul will not rent tow trailers to any Ford Explorer. Several times I’ve had to rent one of their trucks and a car hauler moving between cities when a simple mid-sized trailer would have sufficed. I’ve owned a ’97 and ’03 sports package Explorers through the years and those could definately handle the load, recalls be damned.

  15. omicronpersei8 says:

    I spent about 10 minutes too much arguing with the U-haul guy one evening. I asked to rent a truck overnight from around closing time to closing time (24 hour period) but willing to pay 2 day rental. I like to pack the truck the night before and then wake up to a fully packed truck.

    Anyway, I actually stopped by the store to confirm (I’m smart) the day before I had scheduled the pick-up and asked if we were good to go (as confirmed online) for the 24-hour period Friday evening to Saturday evening.

    UHAUL: Well, we don’t rent trucks overnight unless they’re one-way moves.

    ME: That’s not true, just last year I rented the same way and it wasn’t a one-way move.

    UHAUL: Well, we don’t do that anymore. You can pick up the truck first thing in the morning and return it before closing.

    ME: If it’s going to be here first thing in the morning, then why can’t I just pick it up the night before. I’m more than willing to pay the two day rental price.

    UHAUL: We can’t do that unless it’s a one-way rental.

    ME: But you’d be making more money with little to none extra expense. It’s not like the truck is doing anything that night after you close.

    UHAUL: We need don’t rent overnight unless it’s one-way. We need the trucks to be available.

    ME: But it’s not anymore available if I pick it up first thing in the morning and return it in the evening. You’d be making twice the money and not losing any availability of the truck.
    Do you see how this policy doesn’t make sense? I suppose I could understand if I wanted to rent noon to noon. You could potentially lose customers as the truck is only available for two half-days. Am I making sense?

    UHAUL: Sir we don’t rent overnight…

    and on and on and on…

  16. omicronpersei8 says:

    I spent about 10 minutes too much arguing with the U-haul guy one evening. I asked to rent a truck overnight from around closing time to closing time (24 hour period) but willing to pay 2 day rental. I like to pack the truck the night before and then wake up to a fully packed truck.

    Anyway, I actually stopped by the store to confirm (I’m smart) the day before I had scheduled the pick-up and asked if we were good to go (as confirmed online) for the 24-hour period Friday evening to Saturday evening.

    UHAUL: Well, we don’t rent trucks overnight unless they’re one-way moves.

    ME: That’s not true, just last year I rented the same way and it wasn’t a one-way move.

    UHAUL: Well, we don’t do that anymore. You can pick up the truck first thing in the morning and return it before closing.

    ME: If it’s going to be here first thing in the morning, then why can’t I just pick it up the night before. I’m more than willing to pay the two day rental price.

    UHAUL: We can’t do that unless it’s a one-way rental.

    ME: But you’d be making more money with little to none extra expense. It’s not like the truck is doing anything that night after you close.

    UHAUL: We need don’t rent overnight unless it’s one-way. We need the trucks to be available.

    ME: But it’s not anymore available if I pick it up first thing in the morning and return it in the evening. You’d be making twice the money and not losing any availability of the truck.
    Do you see how this policy doesn’t make sense? I suppose I could understand if I wanted to rent noon to noon.

    UHAUL: We dont rent overnight… blah blah blah

  17. cstatman says:

    Okay, I’m game. Here is the interesting U-Haul dilemma I face on a daily basis.

    I live in a shite, overpriced, 1940′s 3-2 ranchette neighborhood in San Jose, Ca. the MOST esspensive place on the planet I think.

    2 miles away is? A U-Haul rental lot.

    Apparently, they do not have nough room on their lot, and the constantly park the super GIGNORMOUS trucks on the street in my neighborhood. As a “temporary overflow storage solution” one of the drivers told me.

    Someone wants to come visit us? they may have to park 3 blocks away, and walk, cause our street is full of U-Haul trucks.

    Now “I” would not suggest this. As it is against the law, and encouraging hooliganism, etc….. but SOMEONE (not me, really not me) suggested to all the teens in the neighborhood that U-Haul trucks are a great place to practice Graffiti. Not tagging, that is boring. No, Serious honest graffiti.

    Take that you truck parking, neighborhood sun blocking out bastards at U-Haul. Take that. Every person or animal painted on the side of your crappy wore out trucks seem to leave our neighborhood with moustaches, beards, glasses, etc….

    HA!

    (no, really, “I” did not suggest this to the teenagers, really, it was NOT mE)

  18. Dremagus says:

    My step-dad owns a Ford Explorer and the Reason Uhaul wont rent a trailer to anyone with a Explorer is because the Explorer and the trailer have incompatible wiring systems and would short out the computer on the Explorer so Uhaul is just covering itself on that part.

  19. alicetheowl says:

    My husband and I moved in late May of last year, and our experience with UHaul seems to match up with everyone else’s pretty well. We paid to reserve the 14-foot truck; they gave us a ten-foot van. I asked to pick it up at a place right up the street; they had us schlep across town. They charged us for a dolly they didn’t provide, and the gas gauge was a LOT lower than it said on the receipt. There was a four-hour delay in picking up the truck, including the time they spent arguing with my husband about our payment method. And they demanded we drop it off by 6 AM the next morning, when we’d reserved it for 2 days. (I see now that they don’t even let you have it overnight, which is even sillier.) I don’t know how many Consumerist readers can get up at 6 AM after a day of moving, but we wound up dropping it off that night, after unloading it and getting the gas gauge to where the receipt said it was.

  20. lts10818 says:

    Two years ago I rented a uhaul to move my office. I was attempting to pull out of the parking lot and the transmission started slipping, causing me to start out into traffic and completly come to a stand still almost causing me to get hit. I immediately put the truck in reverse went back in to the U-Haul store in Cincinnati OH and complained. Once the manager realized there was an issue with the transmission she offered to put some fluid in it. I demanded a different truck and I watched as she placed the same defective truck I was just in back on the lot to be rented. Later that summer I witnessed an accident on a brige where a Uhaul truck broke down and was struck from behind by another car. The accident killed the female passenger in the car. I cannot say if that was the same UHAUL truck and I doubt if it was, but there is no doubt that their wrotten servicing of their fleet caused this womens death.

  21. uhaulsucks says:

    hey, i work at uhaul right now cause i need some extra cash. I talked to the regional manager about it when i was training. The explorer thing has nothing to do with the recalls. They won’t rent to Explorers because a couple of kids took a trailer to spring break with them and got high and drunk and rolled the car and trailer. Uhaul was sued because it was obviously their fault, and they lost tons of money. Corporate was obviously pissed and the rule is we can never rent to explorers. expeditions, excursions, and escapes are fine. hope this helps.later