You ONLY get what you pay for with Dollar!
Like this week, I came to Westborough, Massachusetts, and rented a car from Dollar as they were the cheapest. Even though this trip was for business purposes and my company was going to reimburse me, I chose to go with this cheap rental company. Well, there is nothing unusual about them.
They are just a regular rental car that provides you what you pay for. You will not get any kind of special service from them as other bigger rental companies provide for free. Hertz, for instance, provides free shuttle service to and from the airport every 5 to 8 minutes, but you have to call Dollar and have them send a shuttle (which is not too bad, I guess). Also, the customer service representatives are not as friendly as the representatives at Hertz. Dollar representatives treat you like a customer where Hertz representatives treat you like guests and make you feel like you matter (even though you don’t… hehe).
GETTING THE CAR
Okay now, let me explain my personal experience with them. I landed at Boston Logan International airport in the evening and after picking up my luggage I called Dollar with one of the courtesy phones they have at the airport to have them send a shuttle because I had already looked outside and waited but couldn’t find their shuttle (by the way, you do have to tell them if you have a reservation with them or not as with all other companies). I had seen two Hertz shuttles already but no Dollar. But to my surprise, about five minutes after my call I saw the shuttle arrive. So I got on and placed my luggage in a little corner by myself, as the drive was really not interesting (there went his tip). It took about 5 minutes to get to the rental facility and after providing my information and credit card I was provided the key and a parking slot number where the car was parked and I was all set to go. I carried my luggage and walked to the car (luckily the lot wasn’t too big, as expected). Basically there was no one to pull out the car and bring it to the front as Hertz does. The two representatives in the office were sitting watching TV who do not smile as you arrive or greet you with a friendly face.
One thing I did like was that they did give me a map of the city (Boston) and offer me a portable GPS navigation system which I declined because I have my TomTom ONE Portable GPS Navigation System. So after they finally inspected the car for initial damages and scratches I was off. The car seemed to run fine and I was enjoying my 40-minute ride to my destination.
I had originally chosen a small economy car when I made my reservation, but then they recommended an upgrade that I just couldn’t resist for and additional 10 dollars a day. So I got a Mazda 6 instead of a Hyundai Accent which was a great choice I think. The car drove very nicely and had a lot of power. It was clean and the steering wheel didn’t feel sticky like it does with some cars you rent. There was no smoke smell which was great for me as I do not smoke. Basically I had a great experience with the car itself.
The return for me was a bit tricky as my TomTom failed to provide me the correct direction and I failed to provide it the correction information in order to get to the right destination. But I have learned my lesson and will do it right this time around (I am in Boston again this week but am using Hertz this time). So I got lost in downtown Boston and ended up returning the car at their downtown facility and took a cab from there to the airport. But while waiting for the cab I got soaked as it started pouring really hard. So that was an experience first for me. Now I know to go straight to the airport and follow the signs for the rental car facilities.
The return procedure for Dollar is really simple. You just give them then mileage and the amount of gas left and they print you out a receipt and off you go.
Overall I would say I had a good experience with Dollar as I really didn’t have any situations that would make my life miserable. I am satisfied with the service they provided but I think it could have been better. I think if they want to do better in the rental car industry, they should really think about providing better customer service. But for the price, I think all that can be overlooked. So I am giving them 4 out of 5 stars.