Avis Cancels Cheap Weekend Reservations

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Avis has cancelled reservations made with the AVIS free weekend deal.  Thanks to jsafford for alerting me!

I logged into my Avis account and found all my upcoming reservations were cancelled.  Here’s the email which I got from AVIS.

Avis Cancels Reservations

Avis Cancels Reservations

Prepaid reservations are being refunded without any cancellation fees.

This was a mistake so I can understand why Avis isn’t honoring it.  Oh well.  At least they were quick to cancel the reservations.

Though I hate how big companies can get out of their “mistakes” but the average consumer has to pay for his or her mistakes.

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24 responses to “Avis Cancels Cheap Weekend Reservations

  1. Is there a way to get a valid coupon f or Amex Platinum cardholders?

  2. It would have lasted much longer if it wasn’t for these spamming blogs!

  3. Pingback: Free Avis Weekend Rental | Million Mile Secrets

  4. You mean Avis isn’t giving away nationwide free weekend rentals for the next 6 months? You mean your “deal” was really a bunch of hooey?

    You mean you were pimping something completely unrealistic with zero chance of being honored?

    You mean you were just ripping off other sources to pump your page views and Alexa rank?

    “I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here.”

  5. This wasn’t a “mistake”. People were booking car rentals with a discount code that required a paper certificate. The discount is still valid, but only if you have the paper certificate; therefore, it’s not a mistake. The mistake was made by the person who originally posted this code. That person should have pointed out that this was a targeted offer and required paper certificates. If the original poster did post the terms and conditions of the offer, then the fault lies with the other bloggers who did not convey this important piece of information.

  6. seeking aggressive counsel

    Avis should honor it. I booked for this coming weekend at $9/day (which actually isn’t way out of line for a weekend rate compared to Enterprise and Thrifty) and Avis notified me of cancellation the day before my departure (today). Looking for a class action law firm to get us all pennies on the dollar. Alert the media – negative publicity goes a long way – Fox should do it justice.

  7. The “mistakes” by big companies tend to be obvious system errors that affect large numbers of reservations (like a mistake fare), or passengers trying to exploit a loophole that isn’t being enforced (like this free reservation). Other than accept huge losses every time it happens, the company doesn’t have much choice. Note that Avis didn’t really cancel your reservation. It just said it doesn’t think you have a legitimate coupon in your possession and asked you to prove otherwise. In cases where an individual hotel/agency is trying to squirrel its way out, I’ve often found the corporate office intervenes in my favor.

    When consumers make a mistake, it’s usually becuase they booked the wrong hotel, or the wrong dates, or used the wrong name. Often there are 24 hour cancellation periods (at least for airline tickets). But some people just don’t read the confirmation details before clicking “Buy.”

  8. “Wow”. That’s the only thing I can say here.
    Yesterday I wrote a long post in another thread about large companies usually honoring such things as IMO this *should not* be a customer’s headache to find out if the coupon he’s entering on a website had any specific limitations or restrictions, but it seems I was completely wrong with Avis…

    Just imagine you have a legitimate coupon for 2 *weekend* days for free, you try to book a car for Tuesday and Wednesday… and the system *accepts* this coupon and makes this reservation for 2 weekdays for, let’s say, $10.
    It didn’t happen with Avis though – their system was absolutely capable of correctly figuring out what day you tried to book a car for – it worked only for weekends. It didn’t work for NYC Metro area as well. Apparently, there was *a whole set of automated logic* behind this coupon. If this is a coupon for Wizard members with a certain status, why the heck the system has not been checking this at the time of reservation while checking all other conditions (office location, day, length of rental etc)??

    They also had a huge set of conditions listed on a confirmation page, but it said *nothing* about printed coupon.

    And please don’t get me wrong – I really don’t desperately need those reservations I made with this code – it’s simply *NOT* the way how business is done. Period.
    When I open almost every promo email from Avis, they always advertise “Earn a free Weekend day… blah-blah-blah” – should I believe it now or should I consider every such offer as a potential way to get my reservation cancelled later on?

    I’d personally say – no more business to Avis ever…

  9. Ah, what a shame, I must admit this is really lame on Avis’s part. They just lost out on revenue ( I booked more than just the two days and I still got cancelled, won’t rebook).

    Darius, you gave me a good look to a car rental search site, I seemed to have lost it. What do you use to search for car rentals?

    Thanks!
    Leo

  10. that should have read good site*

  11. THE HORNEY TRAVELER

    HOW SHOCKING, NEVER SAW THIS COMING!!!!

    @seeking aggressive counsel/ A class action lawsuit seems like a really bright idea, but then again you watch and obviously believe Fox news.

  12. Ilya, Leo…

    Thanks for the laugh! Are you also going to sue? LOL.

  13. Amused, of course, I will not sue anyone :-))))
    Things like this just help me to create my personal list of companies that will not get even a dollar of revenues from me. Just an example, I’ll never buy anything from Dell in my life due to a very huge problem I had with their service in the past. This kind of experience IMO is much more valuable than possible satisfaction in court as I don’t see any reasons for them to grant any kind of compensation. It’s just unfair practice – something not probably punishable by law, but punishable by customers walking away…

  14. I can’t say I’m surprised that these got canceled, but some of us made multi-day reservations that would actually have made Avis money. I had a 4 day reservation that was $93 for a full size car. Not an amazing deal, but it was quick and easy and I didn’t have to search all of the companies for whose sale was best. Avis probably should’ve cancelled the rentals that were less than $10 or something. They have just compounded their mistake and lost some customers and revenue.

  15. back in the day, the mistakes were expolited by less people. Today with the blogs, thouands of people are on these kind of “deals” within hours, and people are booking mutiple reservations , i bet the $93 full size car for 4 days doesn’t even pay the fix costs associated with the car. There are no way avis could honor these without a writedown.

  16. lu, and what is the fair price for a car rental in your view?
    Let’s say, I am renting a car for a week from non-airport neighborhood location somewhere in PA (might well be FL, MA or anywhere else, just for example). How much it should cost in your view for a rental location to at least break even?

    Just a couple of thoughts: I have recently completed a rental in France, when I rented Standard class car (it was brand new Golf in their definition of “Standard”) for EUR 121 for 6 days, so ~EUR 20 a day or ~$25 a day. In Wash Dulles airport I used to rent Compact class cars for around $32 a day using National web fares in 2011. Was I also ripping of rental agencies or are those prices more or less fair?

    I personally think that $93 for 4 days for any car is a good price for the customer, but unlikely loss making for a rental agency…

  17. Finding Things Funny

    I find it funny that everyone is complaining about the blogs ruining these promos/discounts/etc. I wonder how many of the complainers would have ever known these discounts to exist if they hadn’t read the blogs themselves.

  18. “Though I hate how big companies can get out of their “mistakes” but the average consumer has to pay for his or her mistakes.”

    Bingo. In fact, I made a prepaid reservation for 3 days over the weekend that came out to $40. Avis still charged me $25 because it was cancelled early (BY THEM!). I should charge them $25 😉

  19. Rule #7 for reading blogs. If several blogs go agog all at once over a “deal” that is spectacularly too good to be true, it won’t be honored. Perhaps there are exceptions now and then, but these are ones I always pass on. Here everyone is jumping on a targeted offer as though they were targeted.

    • @MidCentModFan – It sure looks like a mistake to me because the Avis website now says that you can’t use that coupon online. Which is what it should have said initially.

      @Scottrick – They *did* cancel the reservation. The email says “tentatively cancelled” and the reservation shows up as cancelled in my Avis account!

      The 24 hour cancellation policy for air tickets is not because of the airlines’ generosity, but because they are required by law to grant a 24 hour grace period. And some employees of big companies don’t check their work before making it accessible to the world on the internet!

      @Amol (@PointsToPointB)
      – The email says that no cancellation fee will be assessed for prepaid rentals, so give them a call. But ideally you would have got a full refund.

  20. @Ilya

    It’s has nothing to do with what I think is the “fair” price should be. It’s has to do with at what price they can rent the cars out then recover their fixed costs, variable costs, and make a little profit on top.

    My point is that avis would not be in business much longer if they have to give away $3 rentals to thousands of people.

    It’s not the bloggers fault, it is the fault if the Internet. Too many people have access to the information too quickly, the company has no time to act.

    I can tell you I am not a profitable customer to the travel and banking industries. But I really don’t want anyone of them go belly up.

  21. With a bit of searching (really, very little) I got a rental for $107 all in for my 4 days in fl. You can’t tell me $93 was loss making. No way. I’m not super bent out of shape about it, but it was a pain, and they lost some business.
    They absolutely should not charge the cancellation fee for prepaid res. yeah, they can correct their mistake, but it still was a mistake on their part. Let’s be reasonable here. Especially since they should want your business in the future, or even on this trip, just at a price they want.

  22. Bunch O’ Whiners! If you did any research at all, you know that this offer was targeted to a specific population. Nothing worse than a bunch of people who try to abuse a program, then cry like babies when it gets pulled.

  23. Avis offered to honor the promotion for those eligible for it. sounds fair enough to me. I can’t seem to muster any sympathy for customers who only want to get something for nothing. So now you some of you want to boycott Avis when you weren’t even a loyal customer in the first place? Make sure to ask for your upgrade as well. Honestly, Avis probably doesn’t want or need your business, and neither would I.