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An online rental-car rundaround

An online rental-car runaround
A traveler with a confirmed reservation was left stranded. Here's what should have happened.
Laurie Berger
Travel Q&A

August 22, 2004

Question: I booked a weekend car rental one Friday in June through http://www.expedia.com . I received what I thought was a "rental agreement" from Expedia guaranteeing my reservation and a $9.99-a-day rate with Enterprise Rent-A-Car.

When I called the rental location to confirm that the car was ready for pickup, I was told that none was available. When I asked about getting another car at that rate and about who's responsible for fulfilling the rental contract, I got the runaround — and still no car. My weekend trip never got off the ground.

Who's to blame? It seems Expedia's website misleads customers by making a reservation and issuing a confirmation number without advising that cars may not be available.

Paul Lerro

Visalia, Calif.