Hertz Nightmare: Charges Customer $400 For A Free Car Rental – And Bills His Employer’s Card

Between customers getting fined before even picking up their vehicles, charging customers who rent Teslas for failing to refill the gas, and sending innocent customers to jail I really don’t even know what to say about Hertz anymore. If you get hit with a $500 bill from their toll-tracking scam you’re lucky.

Hertz Tesla Model 3

I’m not even sure what advice to give to this reader who redeemed Hertz point for a free rental but found that they charged his company credit card for it anyway.

  • He booked a week-long rental using Hertz points, which were deducted from his account. He provided his personal credit card with the booking.

  • He picked out a car from the Hertz Presidents Circle lane and provided his ID and credit card at the gate on the way out.

  • At the end of the trip he returned his car, left his keys and headed to the terminal. Hertz e-mailed the receipt. It showed… a paid rental, billed to his corporate card.

Hertz Presidents Circle Pickup Line at Dallas – Fort Worth

He had a copy of his original reservation, showing her personal card attached. But he noticed on the Hertz folio that a different reservation number had been created. There was a daily rate attached, instead of his free rental day awards.

When he followed up with Hertz customer service, they told him that since the rental has already been completed and charged, there’s nothing they can do.

We sincerely apologize for any misunderstanding regarding your points. I am saddened to hear about the inconvenience during the rental. However, please be advised that since the reservation was already completed, we are unable to use your points for a completed reservation.

Purely as a goodwill gesture, they emphasize, they returned the pointed he’d redeemed for his rental.

The concern here isn’t just the $400 – it’s that he has a $400 personal charge on his employer’s credit card. And if it were on his own card, he could easily dispute the charges. He’d probably get banned (and Hertz bans a customer’s descendants, too!). But this is not something he wants to embroil his company in.

With most businesses, there’s a clear path to resolution. If you get caught in an airline’s bureaucracy and offshored customer service, there’s the Department of Transportation. Hotels may be separately owned in most cases, but chains do varying degrees of work for their customers addressing problems.

Hertz? They’ve even refused to retract false police reports out of fear that police won’t believe them in the future (presumably when they file subsequent false police reports). How on earth are you going to crack the customer service nut there and get them to admit error? I’m not even sure what to recommend here, other than paying back the employer and trying to use the points on a future rental instead.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I left Hertz after they took 6 weeks worth of free car points during the pandemic for not renting within a timeframe they never told me about. 35 year customer with half of them Presidents club. ( I even went to one of their high end dinners in SF for top renters)

    Fck them

  2. I stopped renting from Hertz partly from your reports. But I have returned two Budget vehicles (DEN and BOS) in the last year and layer was notified I never returned them. The BOS was on July 1st and they found the car on the 6th. Fortunately I take video and still photos. The first thing they said when I called is if I could prove I returned it.

  3. As Hertz charged his company credit card without authorization, I recommend he ask his work to file a chargeback dispute for this unauthorized charge.

  4. Write off your points and never go near them again. It is like having frequent flyer miles on an airline that crashes 20% of the time – would you want to use them?

  5. 45 years a Hertz Customer. President’s Circle for a couple of decades. I’ve experienced some significant changes and not in the customers favor. Customer Service has diminished greatly

  6. My corporate, including personal use, is Avis/Budget, with backup National. My company typically has 4000 people on travel on any given day, so maybe that keeps these companies in line. A few small issues over the years were always corrected rapidly.

    If we had Hertz, I doubt we would have them for long if they pulled these stunts. They would get on the supplier shit list, just like any other subcomponent or parts supplier who performs poorly. Just ask Sixt.

  7. I will use Uber, take public transportation or hitchhike before I ever rent from Hertz again. They are nothing but HUGE problems. I have been using Alamo problem free.

  8. I disputed an erroneous $2000+ Hertz charge over a year ago; still not banned. I recorded a phone call in which a Hertz rep admitted a Hertz error and said I would be refunded in case I eventually have a problem. After two weeks and no refund, I initiated the dispute.

  9. Wow! Not the first time I’ve heard problems like this with hurtz. Will definitely avoid using them.

  10. In a country with 51 attorneys general (the 50 states plus D.C., excluding the 5 territories), how is there not some politically savvy attorney general going after Hertz? Or the trial lawyers?

  11. This is libertarian dystopia at its finest. On one hand, View From the Right Wing advocates for unbridled capitalism and free markets. On the other hand, here they are complaining about lack of recourse, citing a government consumer protection division in a heavily regulated industry as a parallel.

    So let’s follow the libertarian way to handle this: the employee needs to ask the employer to initiate the dispute with the credit card to compel Hertz to correct this situation. If the employer incurs any costs handling this, they need to bill the employee. The employee in turn needs to seek damages from Hertz. That way everyone is whole.

  12. What a complete non-story in a series of one-sided articles. The renter should simply flag the charge as not authorised, and neither he nor his employer will be liable. What’s more Hertz say they cannot charge the points so it would end up totally free.

    What did Hertz PR say to you when you approached them?

  13. Terrible situation. These types of customer service issues appear to be on the rise in recent years. I’m in a similar customer service limbo with Amerigas over a delivery of propane I was charged for that was never delivered. It’s amazing that companies can simply ignore these things and survive in this digital age. We are starting to expect poor customer service. What happened to a focus on client satisfaction and quality!?

  14. They don’t exist. There are other incompetent companies but this one makes no effort to resolve its problems. If the only car available is from Hertz, there is no car available.

  15. If the Hertz car company is really pulling these Shady actions towards customers, then they should be held accountable for there bad actions

  16. I liked the comment about taking a photo upon dropping the car. I will start doing that.

    One issue (and maybe it’s not just with Hertz) is that there is never anyone present to give you a receipt upon car return. That is always potentially problematic.

    I recently picked up a car from the Presidents Circle and noticed after I had loaded my stuff that it only had a quarter tank of gas. When I returned, I pointed out to someone that I had left with a quarter tank and didn’t want to be charged for gas as I left more in the tank than the car had originally. I didn’t have any issues, i.e., the charges were exactly what I expected. So, my experience as a Presidents Circle member has been good but these stories still give me cause for concern.

  17. I rented a car from Thtiftu which is Hertz subsidiary through Expedia. before the rental period was over, I requested a rental extension which was approved by Thrifty with a new total which was ok with me. at the end of rental period, I returned the car. checked my email for rental receipt. I was shocked. I stead of $1350, they charged me $1979 . They changed the contract terms without my approval. Now I dialed any Thrifty customer service number, I cannot talk to a live person. Credit card company cannot help and they want me ask thrifty to give refund. now I do not know what to do other then never rent from Thrifty. Anybody has any recommendations, please let me know. Changing a rental car agreement without renter approval is a breach of contract and against the law.

  18. A lot of crying… not-much action…it’s a unauthorized chg on a credit card. A high school
    Kid could figure this out. Remember planes, trains and automobiles..Steve Martin ..
    His comments to the rental rep….?

  19. I’ve had no issues with Hertz since I started NEVER returning the car without an agent/return rep intervening. Now I ensure they have the car checked in even if they can’t print a receipt (e.g. have the email a min later). I can also check with the person doing the return that a) fuel/charge level is correct and b) they show the total $ for promotions. Also I photo the car on pickup and return and photo the odometer/fuel/charge level etc – JUST IN CASE.

    If promotions don’t show I go inside and ask the duty manager to to correct the rental – ask the person doing the return to not fully close out the car yet. The one time I did that the mgr corrected it.

    Prior rentals with Hertz before I started to do this attended return had me marked twice for no shows (one time the police called me and I sent them info on the car being returned). The other time Hertz took 3 days to find the car IN THEIR LOT!.

    Also those thinking this is a Hertz issue – uhhh, no. I’ve had lost cars and rebilling issues with Avis, National and Sixt before too.

  20. I’ve not rented a car in while, as I’ve just used Uber or Lyft, but if I had to rent, I’d use Turo

  21. I had a claim for a cracked windshield sent to me 3 months after I returned the call. When I was finally able to talk to someone after multiple leaving messages I was told the claim was filed 79 miles after I returned the car and the claim was dropped.
    Will stick with Avis. I had one small problem of being charged for an extra day because the pickup time was wrong and it was corrected before I even called the next day.

  22. Terrible situation, of course, but just to add some nuance to the reporting re Hertz, I’ve been a long-term, very frequent Hertz customer with zero serious issues. (Writing this from a very nice, brand new Suburban Z71 from Hertz SEA.) When there have been an occational billing issue, Hertz customer service has always solved it via email. On the other hand, I have had many serious issues with Avis and Budget, including a recent court battle about a significant overcharge (I reserved an Escalade at LAX, got downgraded to a Jeep Grand Cherokee as a PC member, and then got charged 2x the original amount and ignored for 9+ months by Avis customer care.)

  23. Two sides to every story. Never had issues with Hertz except bald tires in Hawaii on the mini van they reserved us, didn’t notice until I was driving in rain. My fault for not inspecting and rejecting it at the airport but after that flight with kids we were ready to get on the beach. I get a great rate with corporate account code. I’ve found my name on the presidents board even though I’m only 5 star. Paying a heavily discounted mid size price for president circle feels good.

  24. When I worked at the desk at my hotel for years, I used to understand why people always ask for a copy of the bill to see all their charges lined by line and confirmed the credit card number. Me being a night auditor I used to have to fix it all the time, Now when I check out of hotels I do the same before leaving! Line by line and confirm the credit card.

  25. What Hertz did is wrong, you book with points, it should never be charged to a card. However, the missing piece to this why it ended up on the company card. If he was on a work trip and company was paying for all travel expenses, he should have just saved his points.

  26. Do you really think things are any different at National? National fraudulently charged me for a rental of one car while I was in a rental of another car. Two months to get it straightened out. Then they couldn’t credit my card. They had to issue a check to my company.

  27. I’ve used Hertz for over 50 yrs being a number one member most of that time.
    They’ve over the years had some really good schemes. ( LE SHuttle. ) renting from UK and travelling in France via Tunnel.
    In those pre-covid year’s I wouldn’t dream of using any other rental company.
    So covid kicks in and I get a nice email from Hertz saying if I dont use my points soon then I’ll lose them.
    When it was safe to go out again, I noticed the rates had gone ridiculously over the top for renting. Charging double if not more for their service. Also the supreme insurance is more or less double the rental charges.
    You just have to see the queues at the other rental companies desks in airport terminals to see which ones are thriving.

  28. Make a small claims court filing for performance and report them to the dept of transportation. It’s all you can really do. Fraud is a very hard case to prove and expensive for $400.

  29. I had a prepaid rental. A week after our trip Hertz charged my credit card double what the prepaid amount was. I talked to customer service and was called a lair. I disputed the charge and a battle ensued. After sending all the documentation to the collectors, they sent in writing that I infact did not owe Hertz anything! Hertz could care less. I am now on the do not rent list. Hertz is a crook of maximum proportion. We are now with Budget. So far so good!

  30. As a very loyal customer who ditched Hertz because of their absolutely dismal customer service and hidden charges, I will relish watching them subside into obscurity. Too bad the idiots in management who make these policies don’t disappear into obscurity.

  31. Back in 2015 I booked a car rental at Hertz in early September for Christmas week to drive from San Jose to Phoenix, only to be told when I got to the counter that they did not have a car for me, even when I presented them with a receipt and confirmation number clearly showing the dates I reserved it for. Not only that, they had no other cars available within 100 miles. Yes, they did refund my money on the spot, but I was left in an awful bind, how was I supposed to make the trip now? I had to end up driving my questionable Prius that distance and back, carrying many quarts of oil with me as the car had a tendency to use it up very fast and I hadn’t taken it in for repair yet. Thankfully the car made the trip there and back, using a couple of gallons of oil in the process….the last time it was ever driven before I bought a new car. But I never rented from Hertz again.

  32. As for how it ended up on a corporate card–why are people being puzzled by this? Bozo behind the desk charged the card on file rather than the card presented, not realizing they were different cards?

  33. I enjoy renting from Hertz over Budget. Some simple precautions such as getting a printed receipt or taking a picture of the person taking back your car’s ipad, solves a lot of future problems. I would never drop the keys and leave without some confirmation that the vechile has been returned and the cost.

  34. Hertz!


    This woman is dreadful! Hiding behind Hertz’a long reach to:

    This woman has something to prove as she discards integrity and brazenly overcharges committing fraud. Why? Because they can afford to, squeezing their loyal customers for all they’re worth.
    If Hertz pads the bill higher than the allotted credit,

    The pull/ audacity to get credit card companies to raise the customer’s credit to satisfy their wanton greed.

    Myesha Jones is by all accounts.
    to review the matter and respond to you on his behalf. I appreciate you allowing me this opportunity

    I am sorry to learn you have experienced a problem with your rental. Please provide the details of the problem you are experiencing or if you prefer a telephone call please provide your telephone number and I’ll reach out to you to assist.

    Kind Regards,
    Myesha Jones
    Hertz Executive Customer Services

  35. Again!

    Myesha Jones over-chared an insurance rental by over $10,000+.
    Since I have kids, I.limit my apple card to just $5000.

    Myesha Jones wanted about $11,000 from the me-
    to strong arm Apple pay to increase my credit limit and took over $11,000

    She was nasty about my dropping off a car at a different rental office. Had Hertz actually
    1. Answered the phone
    2. Listened
    3. Cared.

    Her choice didbt work, and chose another drop off location. Mysha Jones was more than angry, she sought revenge and tried to saddle me with an $11,000 charge. What she did however, was steal it from Apple- they sided with me, for the win.

  36. Everyone should be boycotting Hertz to send a message that this is unacceptable! Yet some will accept Hertz’s incompetences and excuses and go back to using them. When you all boycott and their earnings go to heck and they start realizing and answering and asking why, then the truth may or will come out. Boycott Hertz and the heck with their retaliations, then met them in court to cost them thousands of $$$.

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