Tuesday, October 26, 2010

How to search for Cheap Van Hire

One of the few things that gets me angry is when companies advertise one thing but charges you something else. This was exactly what happened this last weekend from one of the local Van Hire companies around my area. A quick online search pulled up several van hire operators, which I narrowed down to a few that looked promising.

I decided on one and booked with my credit card. The service was supposed to cover insurance, the van itself, fuel and man - (van and man). I booked it for two days, meaning that it should be delivered to my door first thing Saturday morning and returned Monday morning. As it turned out, things didn't go according to plan.

First, the driver arrived late well into the mid-morning on Saturday with the van. Not only was he late, the van was not clean...you could see that it needed cleaning before you. I gently suggested that they should have brought a cleaner van, which he rudely replied that if I didn't want the van I should let him know. Of course, I should have turned down the van hire, but I had to move out to my new house that weekend, so I was not prepared to waste any more time.

The problem did not end there. One of my treasured paintings was torn and ripped from its frame. If this was any other painting, I would not have bothered in the slightest. But as it happened this was a painting that was passed down to me by my father. It has been in the family for over 90 years. So, you can understand how I felt that this van man did not think anything of it.

To make matters worse, my credit card was over charged for the van hire with tax and made to use their chosen insurance company, made to pay for full tank of fuel and late delivery charge. In all, I was not only ripped off, I lost a treasured painting, over charged and had a terrible experience. It later transpired that there was no company - it was the man himself who ran the business from his home. I initially thought of naming and shaming the company, but decided against it as I didn't want to give them any undue publicity.

So, my advice is to never rely on what these little dodgy  companies post on their website, ask around from friends, neighbours and even colleagues for any reputable Van hire service. Chances are they will have used one themselves and should be able to recommend one. And if possible, avoid van and man, and go for van only of you have someone to help with the heavy lifting.

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