Failing Enterprise: Rent-A-Car Corral

Renting cars is a monumental pain in the rear. (We have our own saga that we will probably be discussing in the near future.) We don’t have a particular preference for rental agencies, as they all seem bound by a byzantine set of regulations and limitations that are designed to extract every dollar while at the same time limiting your ability to actually rent a vehicle.

Some people apparently don’t think much of Enterprise rent-a-car, however, and one has set up ‘,’ where he not only details his personal problems with the company, but has set up forums for others to “share their misery” and a blog that details his ongoing attempts at a satisfactory resolution.

The claim to be the “2nd most popular company complaint site,” so if you’ve got an inkling to take on a company yourself, you could do worse than to use Failing Enterprise as a template. (The first most popular?


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  1. nweaver says:

    You know, he doesn’t have to go with Enterprise. If he hates the company so damn much, why doesn’t he go with Hertz, Avis, or any one of a dozen other car rental companies?

    Likewise, WHY is he buying the LDW? Any 1/2-way-decent credit card covers rental cars. Heck, for the amount he’d spend in 2-4 days of rental, he could pay for an Amex card.

    So if he hates Enterprise so much, why does he still rent with them?

    Why? Because Enterprise DOESN’T bend you over and give it to you without lube on the price. I’m traveling down to LA at the end of this month. Hertz, WITH AAA DISCOUNT, wanted $60/day for a cheap-ass econobox, $80 a day for something reasonable. Enterprise wanted $15 a day for the cheap-ass econobox, and $30 a day for something reasonable. Guess which rental place I went with.

    As for the “out of particular cars” issue: this happens at all rental places. I had this happen with Hertz before. You just take what you can get and move on (last time this happened to me with Enterprise, I got “stuck” with a Mustang convertible…)

    Also, I PREFER Enterprise’s upgrade policy over Hertz etc. Why? Because Hertz etc have a corporate rate sheet that they stick to. No flexibility or adjustment to local conditions (eg, tourists don’t want their convertibles in LA in the winter, but you crank up the heater, drop the top, and its all good). At Enterprise, the agents are able and AUTHORIZED to negotiate. You look out on the lot, see what they have, and haggle a little bit.

    As a result, I’ve picked up a Miata for $20/day more than the Cavalier I had reserved (on a vacation trip), and often pay an extra $10/day for a Magnum over whatever cheapo-midsized I had reserved, espcially when I know I’ll end up hauling 4 more to the airport.

  2. Kevin Meyers says:

    Loved that web site. I used to rent from the Enterprise location in Astoria, New York, quite a bit, and laughed out loud when I read about his forced upgrade to the Dodge Ram pick-up.

    Same exact thing happened to me once.

    Another time, they forced me to drive with them out to the Enterprise location in Flushing, just so I could drive off in a cigarette-smelling minivan, when I had rented a non-smoking full-size.

    If you live in one of the cities in which they operate, Zipcars are really the best. Check out Until I purchased my first car ever this summer, I used them all the time.

  3. billhelm says:

    Is there a list of the most popular complaint sites somewhere?

  4. Rick says:

    Even if you don’t rent cars that much, it helps to sign-up with thier frequent renter programs. I regularly use Avis and it has made it infinitely easier. You can tell them ahead of time about your preferences, ie “No, I don’t want full tank” and “No, I don’t want the extra insurance.” So, when you get there, you just sign and go on your way.

    Plus, you get to use the desk *without* the long line in front of it and it’s much easier to get that upgrade.