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SixT rental problems in South Africa
Ben: I joined and status matched SixT following your recommendation from a few weeks ago. Knowing my husband and I were heading to Africa for our honeymoon, I thought it would be good to have a car rental status in case something got messed up. I also liked that I could rent higher end cars from them-in CPT I could rent a Mercedes C class.
We decided to rent a car in Cape Town to drive up to wine country for two nights. I prepaid the rental before we left, carefully reviewed the confirmation to see if I missed anything and was satisfied things would go very smoothly. We arrived at CPT and went right to the SixT counter.
After waiting 40 minutes in line (We literally spent less time buying our last car than just the wait in line) we got to the counter and everything was fine until the agent told me I would have to give them a R6500 deposit. No where did I see that, and while that is extremely irritating, that was the least of our trouble.
SixT requires an embossed credit card to pay the deposit. Take your Citi Prestige card out and try to find raised numbers. Give a look to your Citi Executive card, too. I emptied my wallet; the only card with raised numbers was my main bank’s check card.
They wouldn’t relent. I was stuck, already having paid for the car, being required to pay an additional deposit and no way to do it other than giving them access to my checking account. To say I was angry was an incredible understatement. It gets better.
The agent, who was extremely sympathetic and who was trying to help, called some corporate customer service where the guy wouldn’t let me speak, constantly interrupted me, and finally told me that SixT South Africa was declining renting a car to me because I didn’t have a card with raised numbers. I looked at the agent and asked her “he tells me that you are declining to rent me the car (that I prepaid for weeks ago), is that true?” and she shook her head and said “no sir, I am not declining.” Xolisa, the agent (who cheered my up a lot when I asked her how to pronounce her name and it literally included a click to pronounce) told me that they have been complaining to SixT about this policy and nothing changes.
I finally decided I had no choice but to give them my check card.
I got to our hotel in Franschhoeck and checked my bank account. Not only was there a hold for R6500 that they told me about, there was one for another R3000. All in the car rental was R6300; they now hold a total of R9500 in deposits.
I feel entirely betrayed by SixT. I feel incredibly exposed because they have free access to my checking account (which I promptly moved all my money into a non-linked account) and I am worried that it will only get worse on return. We had reservations at the #3 restaurant in South Africa for that night and it was too late to try to find another car hire.
Needless to say, SixT is out.
[USER=2612]@Judson Vosburg[/USER] – I also had a slightly similar issue where Sixt was requiring me to pay a 1000€ fee for having damaged the car (despite hiring the [B]full[/B] insurance of the car AND having my CC which covered damage which didn’t exceed 1200€). At the end I had to pay this fee, but as soon as I got home I called several times (to their inept customer call service), sent some mails and everything got sorted out (and I received my 1000€ back). Best you can do is try to contact with Sixt USA in a polite manner, mentioning your status and how you were rudely treated by the corporate customer service in SA, in an attempt to find a solution.