zeev: (wolf)
[personal profile] zeev
If you are going to rent a car in Germany - please (PLEASE!), do not deal with Buchbinder!

Why? Here is my story.

I rented a car for 2 days, I returned it a bit earlier than was stated in the contract and - oops - the guy from Buchbinder found two scratches on the wheel rims.

BTW - have you ever returned a rented car? Most probably, you never saw such an inspection: the guy from Buchbinder touches with his finger every place on the car where he suspects he could find a scratch, goes further, then - returns backs and touches the same place for the second and for the third times ('what if I can say this is a scratch"). This happened to some three cars except for mine, inspection of each car took 10 min or more.

OK - finally they asked to write something in German (the guys had obvious difficulties with explaining in English what are we writing) and said something like "these are just scratches - should cost far less than 800 EUR" (my deductible).

But then, SMS says they charge 826 EUR. WHAT? This is at least more than deductible!

I try to call to Buchbinder by phone: no answer, just auto-reply. In email, I ask why do they charge extra 26 EUR (1) and if they really spend money and change wheel rims (2). 1 - Buchbinder ignores this question, 2 - kinda ignores (says that they will not show any receipt or the like, they just have the "loss estimate done by an expert").

Summary: with Buchbinder, you'll have to pay as much as possible (and even more than your contract says) for each and any scratch. And - frankly - common sense says that nobody changes the wheel rim because of a scratch. So the rental company can charge 800 EUR from the first customer, than - 800 EUR from the second guy if a new scratch appears, 800 EUR from the third one, and so on. After the tenth case, the company probably changes the wheel rim - and still, it has the used rim and can sell it for 1/2 of the initial price.

But wait - does every rental company do this? From my experience: no, the inspection could take less than a minute and in case of minor scratches they could charge some $30 or $100 but definitely not the full deductible amount. So simply forget of Buchbinder, rent a car in any other company (which treats their clients in some reasonable way) - and save your money.
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