Sponsor Message:
Non Aviation Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Now This Where The Ridiculous Fees/taxes Are  
User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26495 posts, RR: 75
Posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 1676 times:

So, I am looking up a rental car out of MCI in August and the taxes and fees on the sucker add up to something like $55. That is more than twice what they are on a domestic flight. I get to pay $4 a day for their little HOK Sport designed arena downtown.

Similar experiences?


Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineMaidensGator From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 945 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 1675 times:

How much does the airport get? If you want to feel truly ripped off, buy the insurance....


The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13115 posts, RR: 12
Reply 2, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1664 times:

Local, airport and 'special assessment' taxes and fees or separate rental company fees to pay certain fees on car rentals, especially at airports, are becoming a real scandal here in the USA and need national regulation. Just put a real price on the rental for most customers with all the fees and assessments included. Don't put assessments to pay for stadiums or something that should be paid for by local taxapayers, the users of the facility with higher ticket prices or just not do it at all if you can't pay for it.

User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26495 posts, RR: 75
Reply 3, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1664 times:

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 1):
How much does the airport get?

Actually, not that much. The appalling thing is that the rental car company gets a massive amount in "concession recovery fees" and the like. The $4 per day for the "publicly financed" arena really irks me, seeing as I don't receive a benefit from it, as I don't live in or around Kansas City.

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 1):
If you want to feel truly ripped off, buy the insurance....

No thanks. My credit cards cover me outside the US and Canada and my personal insurance covers me in the US and Canada



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineFreshlove1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1658 times:

Yeah renting a car is crazy. The actual daily price for the car is decent but after all the "extra" fees its rediculious.

User currently offlineMaidensGator From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 945 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1650 times:

Quoting N1120A (Reply 3):
Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 1):
If you want to feel truly ripped off, buy the insurance....

No thanks. My credit cards cover me outside the US and Canada and my personal insurance covers me in the US and Canada

I was kidding. I'd never get the insurance, but I've had the rental agent at the airport tell me that if I declined, they'd just charge my credit card for the price of a new car if it was stolen. She was really pushy; they must get a kickback...

I'd keep checking the rates every couple days. Once I canceled and rebooked my reservation four times, because the weekly price just kept dropping.... At least you can cancel or change the reservation with no penalty, unlike the airlines....



The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
User currently offlineCopaair737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1648 times:

That is a ripoff. The arena downtown there is going to be nice when it opens (I saw it last time I was there), but I wouldn't want to be the one paying for it seeing as I don't live there.

User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26495 posts, RR: 75
Reply 7, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 1603 times:

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 5):
She was really pushy; they must get a kickback...

I bet they do get a commission

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 5):
but I've had the rental agent at the airport tell me that if I declined, they'd just charge my credit card for the price of a new car if it was stolen.

Wow, I am surprised you let her get away with that. Did you have a word with her boss?

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 5):

I'd keep checking the rates every couple days. Once I canceled and rebooked my reservation four times, because the weekly price just kept dropping.... At least you can cancel or change the reservation with no penalty, unlike the airlines....

Yeah, you don't even hold the things with a credit card in most cases.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineAirfoilsguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1583 times:

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 5):
I've had the rental agent at the airport tell me that if I declined, they'd just charge my credit card for the price of a new car if it was stolen

I would tell her that I would then just tell the credit card company to not pay. Also, your own car insurance will cover you on rental cars. I once rented a Ferrari and the agent told me that my insurance would not cover the rental and that I had to buy their insurance. I called my insurer and she told me I was covered no matter what I rented.


User currently offlineMham001 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3649 posts, RR: 5
Reply 9, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1568 times:

Quoting Airfoilsguy (Reply 8):
Also, your own car insurance will cover you on rental cars.

NO. That is entirely dependent on individual insurance policies. Mine for example specifically excludes rental cars.


User currently offlineTSS From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 3068 posts, RR: 5
Reply 10, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1564 times:

Quoting Airfoilsguy (Reply 8):
Also, your own car insurance will cover you on rental cars.

Not always. Read the fine print on your policy or call your agent and ask them before assuming you're covered.

Quoting Airfoilsguy (Reply 8):
I once rented a Ferrari and the agent told me that my insurance would not cover the rental and that I had to buy their insurance. I called my insurer and she told me I was covered no matter what I rented.

 checkmark 
If your personal car insurance covers you on rental cars, then it's not a bad idea to carry a copy of your policy with you when you travel, just in case.



Able to kill active threads stone dead with a single post!
User currently offlineCheckraiser From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1557 times:

Quoting N1120A (Thread starter):
Similar experiences?

I don't remember exactly (and am too lazy to bother looking) but the rental car taxes at DFW are insane. IIRC, the airport tax was the largest.


User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1542 times:

Whenever you rent a car in Maricopa County (Phoenix) one gets the reward of paying for the University of Phoenix football Stadium where the Cardinals (play?) and bowl games are. It was the only way the ballot measure would pass a few years ago, saying the visitors would be funding the construction and that a portion of the money was going to youth sports. The backers rarely would mention that the Cardinals would be using the stadium. which was supposed to be build near the airport, a central location for the entire valley, but it ended up being constructed somewhere near the city limits of Los Angeles (just kidding, but it ways out there.)

User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13115 posts, RR: 12
Reply 13, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1538 times:

http://www.nbta.org/TravelTaxes/
Above is a website discussing the issues and rates of car rental related taxes and government fees as well as presenting opposition to them.
One reason for such tax and fee assessments, is that most car rentals, especially at airports, are to those outside the area and business travelers who can pass along the costs of those fees to their clients or write them off as a business expense rather than local tax sensitive voters. Many localities may want these taxes separately broken out as there may be exemptions to certain users to be assessed them (like Federal and state government agencies, not for profit organizations). The car renter agencies may also break out the fees and special taxes they pay to let customers know the high costs of certain fees and costs Iike registration fees, airport concession fees as well as offer competitive 'teaser' car rental rates. SEA airport has some of the highest rates of total taxation for car rentals, at about 40% of total rental bills.

As to car rental insurance in the USA (usually to cover the Loss Damage Waiver) that is another scam in most cases and a way to add profits but in some cases is necessary. Local laws, people not having a credit card that offers coverage, employers or individuals who don't have insurance polices that cover certain losses, foreign visitors and so on can mean one has to take LDW insurance. Most larger car rental companies are self-insured or have special insurance subs (often based in an easy state or offshore in Bermuda) and purchase excess and reinsurance to cover extraordinary claims or series of claims from storm losses, large losses of property, lives or serious injury,


User currently offlineSrbmod From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 1531 times:

Quoting N1120A (Thread starter):
I get to pay $4 a day for their little HOK Sport designed arena downtown.

A number of cities have used the car rental tax along with a hotel/motel tax to fund sports arenas. Philips Arena here in Atlanta was funded in such a way, with car rentals in the City of Atlanta (including the rental car facilities on the property of ATL since it's owned by the City) and the City of College Park (Since the majority of the car rentals from facilities in College Park are airport-related.).

Is such a tax fair? No. A large number of people renting cars or staying in a hotel will probably never even set foot inside of the arena the tax(es) are funding. In cases where such taxes are funding convention space, they probably might, especially in towns that are popular for conventions. The locals would rather not have higher taxes to fund the arena, so the tourists and the business travelers get forced to bear the burden of these taxes. These people need to use said services (rental car, hotel) and pretty much have very little say in the matter. If people really wanted to protest these taxes, they ought to speak with their wallets. Refuse to hold meetings, conventions, etc., in cities where tourist, business, and convention traffic is being forced to fund projects. Instead of renting a car, use alternate transportation (public transportation, taxis [although cities throw fees on them for airport usage], rent a car from a provider in an area what the tax isn't levied). Stay somewhere in the area that isn't subject to the hotel/motel tax (although in some cases, these taxes get applied to an entire metro area.).


User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26495 posts, RR: 75
Reply 15, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1502 times:

Quoting Srbmod (Reply 14):

Is such a tax fair? No. A large number of people renting cars or staying in a hotel will probably never even set foot inside of the arena the tax(es) are funding. In cases where such taxes are funding convention space, they probably might, especially in towns that are popular for conventions. The locals would rather not have higher taxes to fund the arena, so the tourists and the business travelers get forced to bear the burden of these taxes. These people need to use said services (rental car, hotel) and pretty much have very little say in the matter. If people really wanted to protest these taxes, they ought to speak with their wallets.

If you think about it, it is taxation without representation.

Quoting AirCop (Reply 12):
the University of Phoenix football Stadium

You know, I bet a lot of people might get confused thinking an actual NCAA athletic team plays there for the University of Phoenix  rotfl  rotfl 

Quoting Mham001 (Reply 9):
Mine for example specifically excludes rental cars.

Do you have the bare minimum coverage?



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineMham001 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3649 posts, RR: 5
Reply 16, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1484 times:

Quoting N1120A (Reply 16):
Do you have the bare minimum coverage?

I have a liability only policy with higher than minimum allowances.


User currently offlinePPVRA From Brazil, joined Nov 2004, 8964 posts, RR: 39
Reply 17, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1471 times:

Is that a government tax or a company fee?

Not old enough to rent a car yet, so I have no clue.



"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
User currently offlineGuitrThree From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 2049 posts, RR: 8
Reply 18, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1456 times:

Quoting N1120A (Thread starter):
Similar experiences?

Yep.. I mentioned this in Civil Av a few weeks back.. When that cheap-ie low fairs company started up last month (forgot the name already), Southwest went crazy on their Ding specials to the cities that that airline flew to..

From Nashville, I could flight to Columbus Ohio for $15 each way.. I thought, wow, I could fly out and stop in MDW, then Columbus, then MDW, and back to BNA in a day for only $30!

Not so fast. After it was all said and done, it came to something around $73.50! Thats $43.50 in taxes/fees on a $30 flight! Thats like a 145% tax!

I know, $73 is still cheap, but man, talk about taxes! I decided to keep the money and go rent the 172 and fly for an hour.



As Seen On FlightRadar24! Radar ==> F-KBNA5
User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26495 posts, RR: 75
Reply 19, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 1438 times:

Quoting GuitrThree (Reply 19):

Not so fast. After it was all said and done, it came to something around $73.50! Thats $43.50 in taxes/fees on a $30 flight

That strikes me as beyond strange, because taxes and fees on domestic US flights usually run about $25 on a round trip.

Quoting GuitrThree (Reply 19):
When that cheap-ie low fairs company started up last month (forgot the name already), Southwest went crazy on their Ding specials to the cities that that airline flew to..

Skybus

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 18):
Is that a government tax or a company fee?

A lot of them are company recovery fees, some airport improvement fees, but a large part are local government taxes, about a quarter go to that stupid arena.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineExFATboy From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2974 posts, RR: 8
Reply 20, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1412 times:

The company-imposed fees are just as outrageous as the taxes. For example, the Hertz location across the street from me hits me up for a $2 "Security Fee" on every rental. The hell? Best Buy doesn't impose a surcharge for the guy checking receipts at the door...things like this, concession charges, tire disposal charges, battery disposal charges, etc., (I could go on and on) are part of the cost of doing business and should be included in the base rate.

As for the taxes, so many cities just regard visitors as geese to be fleeced as much as humanly possible.

Quoting MaidensGator (Reply 5):
She was really pushy; they must get a kickback...

At most rental companies, this is an emphatic "YES."

The profit margin on the "Collision Damage Waver" is stupendous. I once worked part-time (late '80s/early '90s) for a car rental company (that has long since disappeared), and not only did we get commissions on CDWs, as well as the other "coverages" they sold and upgrades, but if you didn't sell enough of them as a percentage of your total contracts, you got fired. An internal trainer told us flat-out that the company made no profit on actually renting cars (and in some cases actually lost money), but paid out an average of 65 cents a day against the (then) 9.95 CDW. That's a 93.5% profit. We had weekly rates as low as $69/week, so on some rentals the CDW came to more than the base rental. And if you didn't take it, we took a $300 reservation against the renter's credit line, which doesn't sound like much, but this was many years ago, and we were a company that aimed at the low end of the market. Every night, we had at least one renter (usually a family) leave with their vacation screwed up because either we took the $300, or they took the CDW, which burned through a chunk of the credit line they were depending on too. Either way, they were screwed.

I got let go because my CDW rate was right around zero. I could sell upgrades all day if I had cars to work with - because our target market was on the low end, we had broad discretion on upgrade prices, and it's fun giving people a nicer car at a big discount. But I couldn't justify the CDW policies.

A lot of the reason why rental car charges have gone up faster than the rate of inflation is that the percentage of renters who take the CDW continues to drop, as more people find their car insurance covers rentals or they have a credit card that covers rental car damage.

Quoting TSS (Reply 10):
Read the fine print on your policy or call your agent and ask them before assuming you're covered.

Very true - I'll expand on that a little, because while 99 times out of a hundred the CDW is a rip-off, that hundredth person finds himself badly wishing he had it.

First off, make sure your insurance specifically covers rental car use for travel - a lot of policies cover rental cars only as a replacement if your car is in the shop. (In some cases, it even goes so far as to only cover if your car is in the shop due to an accident that's led to an insurance claim, but doesn't cover breakdowns.)

Second, if you're going to certain states - particularly Florida - determine that if your insurance covers rental cars, that it covers not only the damage to the car but the rental car company's loss of revenue while the car is out of service. Rental car companies got Florida to pass a nice little law that gives them the right to get back the revenue they "lose" while the car is out of service, and they regard the car as out of service from the time of the accident until they get the money for the repairs. If you have coverage from a large, reputable car insurance company, this delay might only be a few days, so this coverage might not be a big deal one way or the other. But if you use a smaller, regional company, this delay could be costly.

(In case you're wondering why I have the quotation marks around "lose" up there, it's because the car company doesn't have to prove that they actually suffered a loss of revenue...they can make the claim even if they're not 100% booked up and don't actually have to turn a paying customer away.

Third, watch out for limitations on the car - many companies limit the value of rental cars they cover. Your policy may specify a specific class of car above which they won't cover, or it may be based on the (depreciated) value of your current car, or on the value of your car when it was new (another way of saying same class of car.) And the coverage may not work in certain countries.

Now if your credit card offers rental car coverage, you may think "well, I'm golden." Not necessarily. Credit card coverage is generally "secondary coverage", which only pays after you file a claim with your primary carrier. And if your primary carrier doesn't cover the car, or if you're like me and don't own a car at all, they generally don't talk to the credit card's coverage provider. They expect you to pay for the repairs and then get reimbursed from the credit card folks. So if you're in a state wth the "lost revenue" provision, the meter is running on that until you pay them. In other states, they can charge you interest on the car repairs, at pretty usurious rates. If the accident was the other guy's fault, the meter's running until his insurance company pays...and if he doesn't have insurance, in many states you're on the hook.

(Also, when going outside the US, keep in mind credit card coverage doesn't work in certain countries. For some reason, all my cards exclude both Australia and Ireland. And there's probably a limit on the value of the car - my cards all stop at $50k except Amex.)

One option if your insurance doesn't cover rental cars, or you don't have a car, is a program American Express offers cardholders. It charges a flat rate per rental ($15.95 to $24.95), not per day, covers rentals up to 42 days, covers a loss to the rental car of up to $100k, and is primary coverage. With a per-contract rate that's comparable to the daily rate for most companies, it's a (relatively) good deal. (And no, I'm not getting a kickback from Amex....dammit!)

I'm lucky - I can afford, between savings and credit cards, to just pay them for the damn car if something happens and get reimbursed later. And if I'm renting a luxury car, I use the Amex program and just pay the $25. But if you don't have that luxury, make sure you're covered somehow...I had a friend who got to pay a third of his paycheck for a year to a car rental company when he got in an accident and had no coverage.

Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 2):
...are becoming a real scandal here in the USA and need national regulation.

Normally, I'd object to this idea, as insurance is generally a state responsibility and I'm something of a strict federalist. However, in this case I'd consider Federal legislation - so many state governments are in thrall to the tourist industry (I'm looking in your direction, Tallahassee...) that I'd support a Federal move to regulate CDWs and the like.

As for the local taxes? Not sure - while as a frequent traveller I'm getting tired of getting fleeced, I do have the option of just not going to a specific city that takes the rental car taxes to an extreme. But business travelers don't always have that option.

In all fairness, at least the fees are becoming more transparent - most rental car companies' web sites, and some of the on-line agencies (for example, Orbitz), now quote car rental charges including all the mandatory fees. Even a few years ago, that wasn't true - it was "surprise!" when you got to the airport.


User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26495 posts, RR: 75
Reply 21, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1405 times:

Quoting ExFATboy (Reply 20):

As for the taxes, so many cities just regard visitors as geese to be fleeced as much as humanly possible.

Which is pretty sick, considering that they are not represented in the discussions over taxation.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineTPAnx From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 1021 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1404 times:

Great, informative post. Thanks
TPAnx


something to keep the computers happy.....



I read the news today..oh boy
User currently offlineCheckraiser From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1394 times:

Quoting ExFATboy (Reply 20):
Rental car companies got Florida to pass a nice little law that gives them the right to get back the revenue they "lose" while the car is out of service

This only seems fair, afterall, the vehicle isn't avaliable for their use.

I'm in the trucking biz and from time to time things heat up for a bit and we'll find ourselves renting a tractor or two. It's happened where a driver will hit a deer with a rental truck and it's tied up at a body shop for a week. Even if we turn the truck in with damage and leave it for them to repair the juice keeps running until the truck is fixed.

If rental companies weren't allowed to recoup those costs they would be passed along to all of us in the form of higher rates or a surcharge.


User currently offlineDfwRevolution From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 977 posts, RR: 51
Reply 24, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1391 times:

Quoting N1120A (Reply 21):
Which is pretty sick, considering that they are not represented in the discussions over taxation.

Amen. I know some gentlemen who might have a thing or two to say about such practices....



User currently offlineExFATboy From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2974 posts, RR: 8
Reply 25, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 1381 times:

Quoting Checkraiser (Reply 23):
This only seems fair, after all, the vehicle isn't avaliable for their use.

Well, that would be true if they only charged if they actually lost revenue because the car was out of service. But there's no requirement that they prove that. In fact, during peak season they can go ahead and repair the car, rent it out and continue to charge the previous renter for the "loss" until he pays for the repairs. In both of these cases there is no actual monetary "loss", but they can charge anyway.

In the peak-season case, I would agree the damaging renter should have to pay for the days the car was actually out of service and then pay interest until the car re-entered service and the time he pays for the repairs (from the intial out-of-service date, so the company is compensated for their cost of capital on the repair bill as well.). That would be fair. I'd also say that even if they're not 100% booked up, charging for a reasonable period of time for the repairs, with the same interest requirements, would be fair.

But as it sits right now, in states with these provisions the companies can simply sit back and let the rental charges rack up. I question the fairness of letting hundreds, even thousands, of dollars in "lost revenue" charges rack up when, in many cases, the repair is a relatively simple one that would only take a few days, and there's no real loss.


Top Of Page
Forum Index

This topic is archived and can not be replied to any more.

Printer friendly format

Similar topics:More similar topics...
Where's The Pork? In This $400B Spending Bill! posted Sat Feb 15 2003 21:48:22 by FlyingTexan
The Song/Album You Are Listening Too Right Now... posted Sun Dec 29 2002 20:39:23 by EGGD
MP3's - Where The Heck Are They? posted Tue Jun 25 2002 20:16:00 by Gumah
Now This Is What The World Cup Is Really About! posted Mon Jun 10 2002 02:08:16 by Mcringring
Now, This Is A Truck! posted Thu Jun 28 2007 23:42:12 by AndesSMF
Now, This Republican, I Could Vote For posted Mon May 7 2007 00:05:32 by Falcon84
How Our Taxes Are Distributed posted Mon Mar 26 2007 01:57:35 by Halls120
Could This Be The Worlds Slowest Computer? posted Tue Nov 21 2006 16:04:05 by Thom@s
Need A Laugh...? This Is The Best! posted Thu Nov 16 2006 12:33:45 by Cumulus
Border Patrol Madness - Where's The Justice? posted Tue Oct 24 2006 20:08:57 by IFEMaster