Today, I got in the mail, an “amazing” offer from a company that has affiliated themselves with Budget Rent-A-Car called “Great Fun.” Now normally, I would just tear this up and throw it in the mail, but this one made me peeved enough that I decided to write about it here.
I I understand there are certain risks involved when signing up for services these days, and most reputable companies will not ever sell or distribute your personal information out of respect for their customers. Strike one for Budget. According to the customer service rep at Budget that I talked to, this company is not affiliated with Budget. Secondly, I actively seek out and decline any and all third-party marketing offers because I know that that means that my information will be sold or distributed. I especially take extra care when I am using my real information and submitting things like my address, phone and credit card information. Strike two for budget. According to the customer service rep at Budget, I signed up (not not-declined, up signed-up) for this offer specifically. Telling me that they either decided to deceive me by hiding it or placing it elsewhere when I made the online reservation, or didn’t tell me about it when I physically picked up the car. And finally, with my dear old grandma in mind, I expect the companies I choose to provide me services will not use predatory tactics to try and trick you into something you don’t really want. Strike three, Budget is out. The offer (on the front side of the paper) is a check for $10.00, and valid. The back, if you read the small print says that if you cash the check, you will be charged $13.99 monthly on the credit card on file, MY CREDIT CARD!!!!! Which leads me to assume that Budget gave them my credit card information to be used in case I cash the check.
To add further salt to my wound, the customer service rep hcould never give me an exact answer as to why my information was distributed, and acted like I should’ve known because I supposedly ok’d this. That means only one of two things in my book: if they don’t know what’s going on that makes them incompetent, if they know and their not telling me that makes them deceitful.
If this isn’t illegal, it is at least terrible business practice and I feel cheated and violated by the whole experience. I hope the money they made selling my information was worth my trust, because I will NEVER be renting from them again.
And sorry for the negativity in this blog entry, I’ll try and keep it happier next time…