Jen, who was left stranded in another city recently when her Zipcar lost its zip, managed to get through to the New York area general manager for Zipcar this morning:
I e-mailed the two Zipcar e-mail addresses I had. I thought I’d at least make a last-ditch effort because of all the comments the Consumerist stories were getting.
Joel apologized in writing for the crappy service, and told her “I am reviewing this incident with our team to prevent this from happening in the future.” He also refunded all of Jen’s fees and, for good measure, credited her for the undocumented car wash. And since she may not use Zipcar in the future, he’s sending her a restaurant gift certificate instead of a adding future credits to her account.
Even better, Joel made Jen a sweet offer:
Lastly, I understand your hesitance to use our service again, but should you ever have interest, please contact me directly and I’ll be happy to open your account free of membership charges.
We know this doesn’t mean that any maintenance issues suddenly evaporate, but it’s always good when a company responds promptly to big problems like the ones Jen and Matt both faced. We’d like to think that a particular Mazda 3 in Queens is a lemon, and not all of Zipcar.
Update: Matt—the other customer who was given the malfunctioning Mazda—also contacted Joel to ask about the status of the car and whether it was still being given to customers. Here’s what Joel wrote back to him:
We agree that no member should have been able to access this vehicle until it was repaired, but due to an error in communication the vehicle remained available for reservation.