Airlines are offering travel credit for cancelled reservations. Hotels are letting customers with prepaid reservations cancel without penalty. It’s frequently not possible to travel, either because of a government ban or an employer’s policy. The events or activities you planned to go to may not be happening – all of the world’s Disney theme parks are closed, even. Yet Hertz is keeping your money from prepaid car rental reservations.
I’ve never been a fan of prepaid car bookings, and don’t even like them for hotels. The savings just usually isn’t worth it (outside of Hotwire-style opaque bookings). Nonetheless they’ve become increasingly common.
Readers keep asking me when Hertz will let up and become more flexible? At best Hertz is saying
, we are reviewing cancelations on a case by case basis. May you please provide the name of the primary renter and the reservation number starting with a J or H in DM? -Emily https://t.co/XlMbBhg3yW
— Hertz (@Hertz) March 14, 2020
Fortunately Edward Chan points out this hack to save some money if Hertz won’t offer a refund.
To clarify, they will keep up to $100 of your prepaid rental when you cancel, but if you downgrade to a 1 day $30 rental, you’ll get everything back minus the $30 for your changed reservation. Then cancel the reservation a few days later and you get back the taxes and fees.
— Edward Chan (@edwardhchan) March 14, 2020
Hertz once informed me that reservations for their cars are never guaranteed.
There was a time when Hertz was the rental company for business travelers. In this extended montage from Up in the Air when George Clooney is grounded in Omaha he wants to buy a Chrysler Sebring from Hertz.
Now I avoid them.