Old Jul 15th, 2016, 04:12 AM
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Just back from a trip to Ireland and we used Europcar at Dublin Airport. I completely agree with the many comments you can find online about the poor service mentality of the Dublin Airport staff and the hard sell/scamming of Europcar on extra charges.
1. There was no prior notice that we would have to catch a shuttle from the airport to a nearby location to collect the car - the desk in the Terminal 2 arrivals hall is just a front. Apparently there are some corporate fleet cars held in the carpark at the airport (and no doubt they will be hired out at discounted rates from the ones we the public must pay) but even though it was a Sunday they would not let us take a car from the carpark. Not a nice experience having to catch the shuttle when you have heavy luggage and kids in tow and have just got to the end of a 24 hour air trip!
2. We get to the nearby location to find the staff watching television and (mostly the men) reluctant to leave it to serve customers, even when explicitly asked to do so by one of the female staff. Disgraceful customer service!
3. They then want to sell me the Super Collision Damage Waiver which doubles the cost of the car hire. The excess was 1800 euros, so I took it. When I later checked out my travel insurance I realised that I was already covered for this under that travel policy, so I rang the Europcar Call Centre to cancel the SCDW cover for the balance of my trip. They insisted that they could not do it over the phone and that I had to go into a branch - and the nearest one was a 2 hour drive away. They claimed that they had to eyeball the car - which made no sense: they just needed a commitment from me, that I could have given verbally or by email, that there was no damage I would be claiming had occurred before the cancellation date. When I did finally get to the branch a few days later, they didn't even come out of the office to look at the car!
4. They also chose to charge me in my home currency which, when I read the fine print later, meant that I was getting charged at the conversion rate of their bank's choosing and a 3.5% commission/margin, not the rate and commission of my trusted credit card provider - another rip off undoubtedly! This was not brought to my attention before the transaction was put through.
In my country these sort of sharp practices would be illegal and the regulator would action a complaint.
It was such a negative 'welcome to Ireland' experience. DO NOT USE THEM.
Now I am waiting for the fraudent claim of damage to the vehicle which seems to be their common practice, despite saying nothing at the time of drop off.
I hope this helps others not to get caught in the same trap - I wish I had searched up this sort of review advice before I use them.
Good luck and safe travels. I hope you meet the many, many good souls out there!
Barballoon is offline  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 05:27 AM
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Sources are telling me the car rental business in Europe this year has taken a hit. Fewer local rentals mean less money. There are fewer automatic vehicles available in the fleets because there isn't enough money to purchase them. Therefore, the risk of someone showing up at the counter and not receiving what they reserved or paid for is much greater. If you want to "guarantee" a particular vehicle to avoid this, expect to pay large sums. Customer service is at an all time low, and foreign customers are being bombarded by the forceful upsell. It's all in the effort to pad the bottom line and get through tougher times.

This is not a great time for a tourist to rent a car in Europe. The risks are there, and they can't be ignored.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 05:37 AM
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Welcome to Fodors

re #1 -- It is very VERY common to have to take a shuttle to get a rental car.

#2 A legit beef.

#3 - That one is totally is on you. You should have known what your insurance covered

#4 DCC is very common and you need to keep an eye open for it. If they in fact did not ask, then you do have a gripe. But if they mentioned using your home currency . . . it is on you.

But since you registered to post it is doubtful you will see this . . .
janisj is online now  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 07:39 AM
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I was going to post a lengthy response, but janisj covered everything exactly. I'll only add that I have rented cars all over the US and very, VERY rarely do you get the car at the airport. The vast majority of the time you take a shuttle to their lot off of the airport property. So I wouldn't blink at all about that in another country.
melodyesch is offline  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 07:40 AM
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1. Very usual
2. Euro cup...
3. I know what I take insurance and stand my ground when needed
4. Also common last if happened without asking me I made them cancel and redo.

So. What was the reason for your rant ?
Whathello is offline  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 07:41 AM
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Hey you goats, get off my bridge!
BigRuss is offline  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 07:47 AM
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#4 DCC is very common and you need to keep an eye open for it. If they in fact did not ask, then you do have a gripe. But if they mentioned using your home currency . . . it is on you.

Unfortunately this item is often included as part of the boilerplate in the original contract, which means that any payments to the rental agency will be subject to DCC. It is difficult to decline because the car agency could then say that there is no contract. It happened to me in Portugal where the repair payments were subject to the DCC. Had I insisted in paying cash (a remote possibility), I could have avoided the payment, but then I would not have been reimbursed by my credit card company.
Michael is online now  
Old Jul 15th, 2016, 08:28 AM
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I love trains and buses in Ireland. But, usually have zero problems when renting in my country and others. You should have done your homework.
Macross is offline  
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