Victoria Day Alert: Enterprise, National, Alamo Refueling Charges Half What Competitors Charge; Consumers Should Compare Prices or Risk Sticker Shock



    
    "As the industry leader, we try to set an example on behalf of the
    customer - and we urge the rest of the industry to do the same"
    

    ST. LOUIS, MO, May 12 /CNW/ - As the busy Victoria Day weekend
approaches, thousands of travelers may get a shock at the airport rental car
counter: return a vehicle with no time to fill up the tank, only to get hit
with a staggering $3-$3.55 per litre refueling charge from many of the major
car rental brands.
    With the cost of self-serve gasoline averaging about 90.7 cents per
litre, the parent company of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental and
Alamo Rent A Car agrees that just doesn't add up.
    Enterprise, National and Alamo charge customers only about $1.36 per
litre when they bring a car back to the airport without a full tank of gas
(depending on market pricing). From Vancouver to Halifax, that's roughly 63
percent less than what some of the other major car rental brands charge their
customers.
    Airport customers continue to have several refueling options with
Enterprise, National and Alamo - returning their rental vehicles full of gas,
prepaying for a full tank at a discount, or asking for the tank to be refilled
after returning the rental car.
    "We remain committed to charging a reasonable fee to cover refueling
costs," said Matthew Darrah, senior vice president of North American
operations for Enterprise, National and Alamo. "Furthermore, because refueling
rates sometimes can be a source of confusion, we've revised our policy to
provide not only value, but also greater transparency and clarity."
    Effective immediately, Enterprise, National and Alamo airport customers
will pay the local-market price of self-serve gasoline, plus a mark-up not to
exceed 50 percent of the fuel cost (at all corporate-owned locations and
participating franchises). "Our policy is now based on familiar and highly
visible self-serve gas prices," explained Darrah. "In the end, it is about
listening to customers. It is the same approach that is behind our promise
never to charge our customers a so-called Energy Recovery Fee."
    In 2008, several major car rental companies began charging customers
Energy Recovery Fees on top of their extremely high refueling charges.
Although gasoline prices eventually dropped, many of their Energy Recovery
Fees remained. However, Enterprise, National and Alamo never implemented
Energy Recovery Fees because - as Darrah noted during his keynote address at
the annual Car Rental Show in Las Vegas last month - these fees are unfair,
misleading and almost impossible to calculate.
    "We believe that our refueling policy and our position on arbitrary
Energy Recovery Fees underscore the fact that car rental companies need to
deal with consumers in a fair, honest and transparent way across all areas of
service," Darrah noted. "As the industry leader, we try to set an example on
behalf of the customer - and we urge the rest of the industry to do the same."

    
    Average Car Rental Refueling Fees at Major Canadian Airports (May 2009)

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                  Enterprise
                                                                  Rent-A-Car
                                                                 National Car
                                                                    Rental
    CANADIAN                                                      Alamo Rent
    AIRPORTS      Avis        Hertz        Dollar       Budget       A Car
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ottawa    $2.95/litre  $2.95/litre      n/a      $2.95/litre  $1.28/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Toronto   $2.99/litre  $2.99/litre  $2.39/litre  $2.99/litre  $1.36/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Montreal  $3.25/litre  $3.25/litre  $2.39/litre  $3.25/litre  $1.38/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Calgary   $3.50/litre  $2.99/litre  $2.39/litre  $2.65/litre  $1.23/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Edmonton  $3.50/litre  $2.99/litre      n/a      $2.49/litre  $1.19/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Vancouver $3.25/litre  $2.99/litre  $2.39/litre  $3.00/litre  $1.51/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Halifax   $2.95/litre  $2.95/litre  $2.85/litre  $2.95/litre  $1.36/litre
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Winnipeg  $3.50/       $3.55/litre  $2.39/litre  $3.50/litre  $1.33/litre
               litre(*)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
             (*) after 125 km (up to 125 km, there is a charge of $20)

    Note: data collected by Enterprise, National and Alamo for the week
          ending May 9, 2009


    About the Enterprise Family of Companies
    ----------------------------------------
    
    With industry-leading rental car brands including Enterprise Rent-A-Car,
National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car, the Enterprise family of companies
owns and operates the largest fleet of passenger vehicles in the world today -
more than 1 million cars and trucks. Other Enterprise business lines include
Enterprise Fleet Management, Enterprise Commercial Truck Rental and Enterprise
Car Sales.
    Collectively, the Enterprise family of companies - headquartered in St.
Louis - operates a network of more than 8,000 car rental locations in
neighbourhoods and at airports worldwide and is the most comprehensive service
provider in the industry, unparalleled in size, strength and stability. The
North American Enterprise family of companies is part of a global strategic
alliance with Europcar, creating the world's largest car rental network.





For further information:

For further information: Laura Bryant, (314) 512-4178,
laura.t.bryant@erac.com; Jason Graham, (416) 968-7311 x229,
jgraham@argylecommunications.com

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