9 replies
  1. Werner Klauser
    Werner Klauser says:

    You seemed to have had a very nice vacation.
    I strongly agree with your peeves.

    Many of them I blame employees, who do not identify themselves with their work.
    Probably many don’t even identify themselves with their own self…

    • Urs E. Gattiker
      Urs E. Gattiker says:

      Dear Werner

      Thanks for your comment above.
      Yes, agree, our vacation was wonderful and I learnt a lot in the process.

      Yes employees are surely important but it is not always easy to identify with a job when you work for a hotel, but you actually employed by a contractor. Moreover, you are on call and have no guaranteed hours or else you are employed for high season only (e.g., students).

      A big difference is also that we see it as work and no longer maybe as a career where we want to continuously develop our skills further and get to know more about the industry we work in.

      “I want to have fun and enjoy…” is one thing I hear often. Unfortunately, plenty of things I have to do in my work are neither fun nor do I enjoy them much.
      Nevertheless, if these are what I call “bread and butter” kind of activities (e.g., listening to a customer explaining why he needs…. or trying to convince a customer to sign on the dotted line), they must be done well!

      It’s tough…. but somebody has to do it right, otherwise the clients/customers/tourists will not do word-of-mouth marketing for me that I want namely that they got great service or had a wonderful time on this cruise.


  2. wklauser
    wklauser says:

    My vacation in Canada was tainted by my car renting experience.

    I had booked an intermediate car using EconomyBookings.com and was required to pay the first rental day.
    In Halifax Discount Car and Truck Rentals upgraded it to a midsize SUV.

    Being foreigners they refused both our credit card and Finnish car insurances and we thus had to use their insurance. They knew nothing of my prepayment.

    Yes, I uncomfortably touched a wood fence while parking our SUV which we had affectionately named “tank” due to its size and stability.
    I made them aware of the resulting small scuff and paint chip and was then firmly told that both the front bumper and wheel well need to be replaced. They proudly told me that this multi-thousand dollar repair would only cost me 500 dollars because I had purchased their insurance.

    Utter nonsense. The rental company will replace nothing and when the car is sold the purchaser might use a buffing wheel and drop of paint to repair this multi-thousand dollar damage.

    Customer service? Haha. Emails don’t need to be answered and telephone calls not returned.
    By both EconomyBookings.com and Discount Car and Truck Rentals = #bigfail in their customer service. Why do the use the words Economy and Discount?

    Ripoff is more correct.

    • Urs E. Gattiker
      Urs E. Gattiker says:

      Thanks Werner for this comment
      I will reply in 2 parts

      ANSWER 1
      So it looks like #DiscountCarandTruckRentals is a case of #bigfail in regard to service, honesty and providing value for money.

      Sounds like a ripp off to me, does it not.
      Insurance is a general issue. We were asked to pay $20 each day (because we use public transport in the city and thus have no car insurance).
      But renting the car for a month for about CAN $850.00 and paying 600 for insurance, good business to be in. We avoided this problem with the help of American Express …

      That a company does, however, not accept a credit card from Europe (Mastercard/Visa, etc.) as apparently #DiscountCarandTruckRentals did is amazing.

      PS. In Iceland little chips and dents are not an issue when you bring back the car. Main reason being because of the gravel roads. Something I thought was helpful.

    • Urs E. Gattiker
      Urs E. Gattiker says:

      Answer 2

      One other thing I start to get convinced about is the fact, that booking any car via a consolidator, website or travel agent is not necessarily a good thing.

      Your case confirms two things I have been uneasy about in regard to #bigfail in #customerservice – here with the examples of economyBookings.com and Discount Car and Truck Rentals:

      1. economyBookings.com – when the consolidator does not provide…

      Paying this company for the first day of the rental in advance and not having the information passed on to Discount Car and Truck Rentals amazes me.
      Where is the money, somebody has it… which means you as a customer got cheated.

      2. Discount Car and Truck Rentals

      The way they acted is unfortunate because such service gives the company a bad reputation. But even if you have insurance, you may still have to pay $3,000 to the car rental company in case of damage when you drop the car, because they claim that they do not know if the consolidator will pay for the damage.

      Remind you, my friend paid for insurance with the consolidator…. but the car rental office said they wanted to be safe…
      He is supposed to get the money back after the consolidator paid the local car rental outfit. In the meantime, he has to make sure that the consolidator/travel agency pays for the damage…

      Sometimes I feel you pay and you get taken for a ride.

      #DiscountCarandTruckRentals and #EconomyBookings come across as a #bigfail as far as decent customer service is concerned.

  3. wklauser
    wklauser says:

    They accepted the credit card as a form of payment but did not accept that most US issued credit cards include car insurance.

    • Urs E. Gattiker
      Urs E. Gattiker says:

      Hi Werner

      Seems to me like the failed even more #bigfail..

      Even I know that various credit card companies have car insurance included. No wonder if some car company like DiscountCarAndTruckRentals apparently make live for some of their clients difficult.

      Incidentally, when you leave a not so positive comment on https://www.facebook.com/DiscountCarAndTruckRentals it gets removed withon 5 min or less.

      #bigfail #socialmedia I would call this… you take both, positive and negative comments. You most certainly do not eliminate them.

      Another reason why I do not necessarily trust company that brag about their likes….

  4. Maria Biquet
    Maria Biquet says:

    Dear Urs

    Traveling is about experience.
    I appreciate warm people who welcome me in their area and their hotel and offer advice on what to do and how to enjoy my time best in beautiful places that are away from mass tourism.

    That is what it is about for me.

    • Urs E. Gattiker
      Urs E. Gattiker says:

      Dear Maria

      Thanks for your comment in our blog and nice to hear from you.

      Yes, people that come across authentic and with some warmth (e.g., a smile) are generally more appreciated than those that give you the impression of being grumpy.
      Getting advice or helpful tipps if you ask is a bonus.
      And you are right, if you are not local, you are unlikely to know the best places. For instance, we asked at the Reykjavik Tourist Office (ground floor City Hall) and the guy was a gem. He gave us the right tips for our limited stay timewise in the country. We took them and were that much better off… :-)

      Yes people make the difference.

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