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DO NOT use Dan Dooley Car Rentals

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I have been to Ireland several times it always meets all my expectations. Every single time that we have returned we have gone with different car rental companies due to competitive deals. We have used Irish Car Rentals, Budget, Europecar, and Dollar (out of all of them Irish Car Rentals is highly recommended). However, this past trip we decided to use Dan Dooley Car Rentals. What a mistake! Upon arriving at the desk to sign in, we were surprised by an additional 1500EU charge that needed to be held on our credit card for possible damages. Since most car rentals already have a daily fee put into their rates, we immediately started doubting our choice. Ireland is a place where the roads are like sidewalks and its easy to have some damages. The only other option was paying an 18EU charge daily, which worked out close to 200EU for our stay. Obviously most people rather pay the 200EU than 1500EU, if there was a problem. Had we known this originally the rate would have been just as or less comparable to other car rentals.

Now the story of our car... We had signed up for a compact, small car. Most other rentals would give you new Opals, VW Polo's, and etc. We were beyond surprised when the car valet pulled up our 2003 Renault Laguna. Not saying that the make was a bad car but the car was BEAT UP. A jalopy of all jalopies. We had paid for the newer advertised models! The fog light missing, the bumper cracked and scratched, and the car was dented all over. It also had 57,000 miles on it! This is a rental? The interior looked is if someone sprinkled coffee stains throughout. We wanted to run to the desk and demand a refund but we told ourselves that maybe we were spoiled from our previous rental experiences.

However, this was not the case! We drove down to the Beara Pennisula and immediately I felt the car shifting harder than usual. I was wary but continued the drive. After stopping for gas and restarted the car, I realized the maintenance light was flashing. This remained on for the remainder of the trip. The next day on our way to the Healy Pass we drove an incline and the car made a hard jerk forward and the "auto transmission" indicator lit up on the dash. The car's transmission had slipped! I couldn't believe it, they rent this type of car out!?

I immediately called Dan Dooley and spoke with a customer service rep who told me they were very busy and that someone could not come and exchange the car for us. We were already 4 hours down on the coast and to drive up for THEM was extremely poor customer service. I chalked it up and told myself that maybe it was a one time occurrence. However, it wasn't. The transmission slipped at least 3-4 more times. Even the town locals remarked how they had never seen such an old car rental still on the road and agreed that we were taken advantage of. It got to the point where we just stopped using the car and walked most places. We were upset and called Dan Dooley back and spoke with Pat Dooley. Pat Dooley assured us that something would be done for us and we would be taken care of upon arrival at the airport car return. He had also remarked that the reason we were given such an older car was because they had not received their 2007 shipment and that they were incredibly busy at the time.

We arrived the following morning and nobody knew what I was talking about when I said that we had spoken to Pat and that something would be done for us. They called Pat Dooley himself and he wasn't available. I was furious! Again I felt I was being taken advantage of. I thought Irish trickery like this only involved little men dressed in all green! I was told to follow up after the bank holiday when I got home. I did so and of course Dan Dooley had claimed they couldn't find the problem that I had spoken of. Also, the maintenance light was due to a simple oil change and that he was sorry I had such a negative experience with his company. I swore to him I would never use them again and of course he promised "he would personally take care of me and make sure this never happened again". I told him that I felt I was not "taken care of" my entire visit by his company and I would decline his offer.

So, please, if you have made it this far in my post, DO NOT USE Dan Dooley Car Rental. There are so many other reputable car rentals and for the extra 100EU its worth getting a newer car with no damages, that is in good condition. I think Dan Dooley should change their name to Dan DooLITTLE.

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