I've pretty much done and seen it all in my time with Enterprise. I know a lot of people have a lot of questions about how rental car companies work...so ask away.

My Proof: http://imgur.com/gs495jP

Comments: 259 • Responses: 33  • Date: 

brooksallday119 karma

Do you notice if customers switch the tires?

ecars127784 karma

To be honest, I wouldn't.

Mantisbog55 karma

Are you excited about the New Queens of the Stone Age album?

ecars127751 karma

Never been more excited about anything in my life.

IHateMyHandle54 karma

I once left my tablet in the rental car I returned. Half way home it hit me I left it in the passenger seat. When I returned, they told me there was nothing in the car.

Do you feel like that's common?

I complained, but in the end I never saw it again

ecars127740 karma

I've heard of it, but it's not too common. Didn't really happen was I was there. The car cleaners are always on camera so they'd most certainly be caught, and most no better than to steal a customers tablet. Now, people leave us free presents all the time, beer, cigs...but not usually a tablet.

Mcbeangreg53 karma

Have you seen that enterprise commercial where the girl orders a car and pretends the driver is her boyfriend to impress her parents? Has that ever happened to you?

ecars127749 karma

Great commercial, but it's never happened. Depending on the person who ordered the car, I wouldn't mind!

Stats_Sexy48 karma

So... You haven't seen it all?

ecars127722 karma

I guess not!

true_spokes48 karma

What's the oddest thing someone has left in a returned car?

ecars127771 karma

Drugs. Guy came back. Too late! Lucky the cops didn't take him away.

SatansPal38 karma

Why did we get a scion iq when we booked a toyota matrix or similar? Three grown ass men trying to stuff suitcases in that pos at midnight was very inconvenient

ecars127732 karma

No idea. If you complained they probably would have switched you out. Enterprise is very customer service focused, and employees are empowered to do anything to ensure every customer leaves completely satisfied.

SatansPal15 karma

They had not toyota matrix's available at the time if i remember but we did complain and just got a sorry in return.

ecars127724 karma

You should've asked for a free upgrade on your next rental. They probably would have done at least that for you.

AggieTimber34 karma

My friend has a job interview for a management trainee position. What can you tell me about this job, and what should she expect to make?

Also, any interview tips I can pass along?

ecars127736 karma

ERAC is a great company, and they really do care about their employees. As the saying goes "we work hard and reward hard work". It is very customer service and sales focused. Expect to go out of your way to please every customer, no matter their demands, and be prepared to sell. ERAC employees are highly regarded by other companies, and more than once during my tenure was I asked about a job from someone I was renting a car to.

AggieTimber10 karma

What exactly are you expected to sell? I rent a car at least once per month and I've never really been sold anything, other than maybe asking if I want a GPS or satellite radio upgrade. I make my reservation online and show up and pick up the keys.

Are there people who don't book a car beforehand and you have to sell them at the counter? Should the employees be trying to get me to upgrade my vehicle?

Or, is it more about going to local businesses and trying to get their car rental business?

ecars127721 karma

Both. In home city, it's about going to body shops and dealerships and trying to get them to send their customers who need cars over to Enterprise. Insurance replacements are nearly 50% of Enterprise's business in home city. At the airport, and in home city, the agents try to sell everything: Upgrades, fuel, coverage/insurance, satellite, etc. Walk-in's (or 'pop-fly's') aren't counted the same towards our sales numbers since we can't "upgrade" them because they weren't in for a reservation at all. I'm shocked you weren't offered upgrades or coverage. Perhaps if it was a corporate account you already had coverage included in the rate and it specifically said no upgrades? Happens all the time. In those cases the agent will save you the time and just get you into a car ASAP so you can be on your way.

AggieTimber10 karma

Thanks for the info.

I have a question about the vehicle selection. Sometimes, when I rent, I'll get asked at the counter, "I've got you in an XYZ, is that okay?" I can usually say, "I don't really like the radio or seats in that model, do you have anything else?" Usually, I'll be offered something else in the same class to choose from.

However, especially at National, which is staffed by Enterprise at my local branch, they will have already processed all my paperwork before I arrive. This is not a location with the Emerald Aisle, so they pick the vehicle for me. I've been given a two door Camaro and a 7-passenger SUV in back-to-back visits under a standard rental.

My question is this: how much does it tick off the employee if I were to ask for a different vehicle, even though they've already prepared everything and assigned me a car? A sports car is cool, but not if I need to take more than one passenger. Or, the SUV might take twice as much fuel and its just me driving a long distance.

Does it hurt anything to ask for a different vehicle or is there a way to indicate a preference when reserving online?

ecars12778 karma

At my airport, Enterprise was separate from National, and we (National) did have an Emerald Aisle. At Enterprise, we don't assign a vehicle until you arrive, and changing your vehicle class when you get in isn't a problem at all (if it's an upgrade the agent will be very happy to change it for you) I can't speak for National, but I can't imagine it's that hard to modify the contract with a different vehicle. You could always call in advance on the day of and request something if you want to avoid them having to change it out. Otherwise, we're always happy to change it for you :)

Schmancy_fants30 karma

How do you deal with a returned car that reeks of the ganja?

ecars127736 karma

Windows down, trunk open. If it's a cold day hopefully the next customer won't notice. If it's a hot day...don't rent it until after dark :). Normally it's not worth charging the detail fee.

Schmancy_fants11 karma

Why the open trunk?

ecars127732 karma

Another way for the ganja to exit!

RadBadTad23 karma

Why does nobody every answer the damned phone? I memorized the damned hold music.

ecars127721 karma

Airport or home city? Airport is pretty good with phones. Home city has less staff and it's hard when there's customers waiting to be checked in, out, and the phone is ringing. Trust me, when we need to call other branches to get things done we wait on hold as long as you do.

chunwookie15 karma

Should we get the insurance, or just rely on the coverage we have?

ecars127717 karma

Depends on your insurance policy and the credit card you're paying with. If your premiums are high and you have a high deductible and/or your credit card either has secondary rental car coverage (meaning they only pay out AFTER your insurance does) or you are using a debit card, I'd recommend at the very least getting the CDW (Collision/Damage Waiver), which is between $15-30/day. It waives your responsibility for any damage on the car, and covers you up to a total loss on the car without getting your insurance company involved (you don't have to pay your deductible and your rates won't go up). If your premium is low and your deductible is $250 and/or your credit card provides primary coverage for rental cards (some AMEX, Diners Club, and Visa cards do), I'd say waive the Enterprise coverage. Enterprise also offers Supplemental Liability coverage (up to $1 million), roadside, and whats known as PEC/PAI which covers accidental death, medical expenses, stolen items from car, etc. If people buy coverage, it's mostly CDW or the Liability. Some people do take the full coverage though, which runs upwards of $45-50 per day. The good thing though is that Enterprise is very good at paying out if you purchase the coverage. They likely won't fight you.

suicideheadache15 karma

Why are you answering these questions like you are still working for the company?? This AMA seems like its only to promote the Enterprise company. I know that if it were me, then I would be dishing out all the nasty tidbits and ways to scam them to getting better upgrades or prices.

SnapDraco31 karma

He said he parted on great terms and enjoyed working there.

Why wouldn't he say nice things?

ecars127733 karma

Exactly. And I have given tips on getting the best deal. Enteprise was great to me -- why bash them?

blahblah9814 karma

What's the magic phrase to whisper to skip all the excruciating contract detail & car inspection, to just get a car & be on our way(*)?
(The main reason I avoid Enterprise at nearly any cost)

ecars127731 karma

"I don't need an upgrade, don't want coverage, no prepaid fuel or satellite radio." They have to do the inspection, though, it's for your own good. The politer you are, the quicker the agent is likely to work for you.

Enterprise is set up to be very customer-agent interaction focused. It's not like National, or even Alamo, where you can just grab a car and drive away. I personally loved getting to know all of my customers and was happy to go out of my way to make their day. Next time, check in using the automated kiosks, that should help too!

xerxes_montalban14 karma

Does it make sense to always reserve the cheapest car, then wait to see what is offered as an upgrade when I arrive? It seems like those upgrades are cheaper than what is offered when I'm reserving, and there's the chance that the type I reserved isn't available and I'll get an upgrade anyway.

ecars127727 karma

Depends. Usually the lowest we can go for an upgrade is between $8-10/day (besides giving a free upgrade, which we can do at any time, for any reason). If the difference between the Economy and a Full Size car is $20/day, I'd say book the economy and tell the sales agent at the counter you want a full size when you come in. He'll probably start somewhere around $15-20 a day, but will eventually settle on between $8-10, because getting an upgrade is better than getting nothing. Especially if you are going from car to SUV, the counter is usually the way to get the best price. Check online first so you know what the difference is, and if you're actually getting a good deal.

heyyouknowmeto9 karma

What's the strangest thing you've found in a rental?

ecars127720 karma

The most concerning, maybe not strangest, was an open beer can in the cup holder when the guy came back in.

lost_in_life_349 karma

Never been an issue for me, but why is it people are denied cars at the counter due to driving record or credit and it can't be done beforehand?

ecars127716 karma

Depends on the location. Airports are much stricter than the home city (non-airport) locations. Airports require a major credit card that matches the name of the driver on the contract OR a debit card only if the renter has a return flight leaving the airport they are renting from, and can provide proof of return flight. This helps prevent conversions (people taking the cars and not returning them), as if they have a return flight, they are going to come back to the airport. We have people all the time who don't qualify for various reasons, normally because they have a debit card with no return flight. Unfortunately, there's nothing we can do about that. It's a strict policy, and the individual rental agent is on the line if they decide to bypass that rule and rent anyway.

RandomHero10188 karma

When the cars are set to exit the fleet, do you recommend buying one of the used cars or should that not even be considered? Are they well maintained or once near the end of their rental life are they neglected?

ecars127732 karma

I'd recommend buying direct from Enterprise Car Sales. A ton of used cars on used car lots are former rentals -- and show up great when you run the Carfax because there was only one owner (when in reality there was 500 renters). Enterprise takes the best cars from the fleet and sells from in their Car Sales offices, and the rest go to auction and end up on independent used car lots. There's a good chance the used car you buy is a rental anyway, might as well make sure it was one of the best in the fleet and buy direct from them.

50-50ChanceImSerious3 karma

Interesting. Thank you.

Not OP but follow up question:

Every time I rent a car (about once or twice a year, always economy, different companies) they always seem to have VERY low miles. I'm talking less than 1K. I've never seen one over 3K. (and yes, I know how to work the Odometer/Trip gauge).

Why is this? And how many miles are put on a car before it's taken out of the fleet? Also, what makes them "the best in the fleet"?

ecars127710 karma

We got new cars constantly. At the airport we usually didn't keep cars over 20k, those got sent to home city. You probably just kept getting lucky and picking up the brand new cars! I've rented many cars to people with just 5 miles on them, those are always the best!

WilsonHoang6 karma

Have you ever had a person total or crash a car and what happened?

ecars127710 karma

Sure. If they've purchased our coverage, specifically the CDW (Collision Damage Waiver), they can hand us the keys and walk away with no further responsibility for the car. Otherwise, we collect their deductible and work through their insurance company.

deadjava5 karma

Why do car rental companies (not necessarily just Enterprise) charge so much to return a car to a different location? I'm trying to plan a trip where we drive across two provinces and then fly back. But every rental company I've checked is charging an extra $400-$600 on top of the regular rental fee. Is there ever a way to get that lower?

ecars12773 karma

Airport to airport, no. Airport to home city, yes. The airports and the local locations use two different computer systems. The airport system builds the drop fee into the actual daily rate of the car, and we can't change that. The home city locations have the drop fee seperate, and if you ask nicely they can take that off.

69Pasta3 karma

I only have motorcycle insurance, no car insurance, booked through USAA, going to pay with discover credit card, should I get CDW and supplemental liability insurance? My credit card covers the CDW part, right? Do I still need supplemental liability insurance? I heard rental car companies cover the minimum liability insurance required by state law is that true?

ecars12773 karma

They do cover the minimum liability required by law. Because you have no car insurance, the secondary collision coverage on the discover card may kick in and become primary coverage, you'd have to call and ask first. If that's the case, I'd waive the CDW and just get Liability, which covers you for up to $1 Million -- far over the minimum required.

ecars12773 karma

Check with USAA though, they might offer some types of protection even if they aren't your insurer.

Mantisbog3 karma

If Josh Homme were a rental car, which rental car would he be?

ecars12774 karma

Mirage

Oakstock2 karma

Do you refer to the dildos you find with the indefinite article?

ecars12775 karma

huh

LerxstFan1 karma

This one time, my dad was needlessly rude to a rent-a-car employee. When he was given his keys, the car was all the way at the farthest end of the lot. He believes (and I gleefully agree) that the employee did this as a form of petty vengeance. Did he?

ecars12772 karma

Absolutely. Don't be rude to us. What did we ever do to you? If you're nice we'd do anything to make you completely happy. If you're a douche you're only hurting yourself.

LLv21 karma

Who was the biggest, whiniest dick customer you ever had? Also, I apologize.

ecars12772 karma

I've been threatened, yelled at, swore at, etc. Multiple times. It never was my fault, either. It was because they didn't read our debit card policy (which is CLEARLY stated online), their credit cards got denied, they reserved a car at the wrong location, etc. They always seemed to think it was my fault and screamed at me, which never made us want to help them. The people who simply said "ohh, yeah, my mistake" we would go out of our way, do absolutely anything to see if we could fix it for them and get them into a car. But if you yell, scream, and call us names, we'll definitely get you into a car -- but it'll have blue and red lights at the top and you won't be driving it.

snowblossom21 karma

What, if any, shady practices did you encounter or were encouraged to engage in?

ecars12772 karma

I steered clear of shady practices. Can't do that stuff at the airport anyway. Of all of the companies, I'd say Enterprise is the most honest.

fluffy_butternut1 karma

I know the main AMA is long over but just had to comment...

What's with shaking my hand? I'm renting a car, not asking for your permission to marry your daughter? No one else during my trip aggressively wants to shake my hand, No one at the airport, my hotel, a cab, a restaurant...

We aren't friends, I'm not heavily invested in this transaction. I wan a car to drive around.

I started telling the agents, friends don't shake hands, friends hug! Then open my arms wide and smile a HUGE smile. They seem to get pretty creeped out.

There was one exception to this that also coincides with the only bad experience I have ever had with Enterprise.

I had been travelling at least once a week for work at my previous job. My last trip was to SFO and I rented a car at Enterprise. Same as I had done countless times at countless airports.

I end up leaving that job and am not traveling for work in my new job. I get a letter in the mail telling me I have an unpaid rental car. I'm almost 100% certain I do not. I respond by calling and finding out more information. Turns out the same time I rented a car in SFO someone with a similar name rented a car in San Diego (a city I have never been to). I explained that I have never been to San Diego. That they have made a mistake it's not me, I'm not paying someone else's bill. Rinse and repeat TWO MORE TIMES over the next several months. I finally won't get off the phone till I get multiple assurances that the issues has been resolved. I have used Gmail since it was first introduced and all correspondence is in my account. (This is important).

1.5 years later I end up back at the job I left and am taking my first trip. I hitch a ride to the event, but need to rent a car to get back home. Go to Enterprise in Oxen Hill, MD.

At the counter trying to rent a car. Get told they can't rent to me because I have an unpaid rental bill. Explain the whole thing to them. The gentlemen at the counter was a SAINT (I wrote him a really nice letter after all this copying his manager and his district manager). I WAS SO FUCKING PISSED!!!!

He spends 1.5 hrs (my buddy is trying to let me let him rent the car -- I refuse) sifting through various people at Enterprise. I show hime the 2+ year old emails, with all the correspondence. The people he is talking to have none of these records. He moved heaven and earth and got the issue resolved.

That guy. That guy got an actual genuine hug from me!

ecars12772 karma

It's just part of our customer philosophy. Handshake and a smile with every customer -- no exceptions. Some love it, some don't. We will go out of our way to take care of issues, especially if you are polite and we know it isn't your issue. Customer satisfaction was our number one priority!

[deleted]-1 karma

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ecars12771 karma

Lester has seen his better days...and so have the Cubs.