scorecardA customer spent thousands of dollars renting from Avis, but it still towed the car — along with his luggage and passport
  1. Home
  2. life
  3. news
  4. A customer spent thousands of dollars renting from Avis, but it still towed the car — along with his luggage and passport

A customer spent thousands of dollars renting from Avis, but it still towed the car — along with his luggage and passport

Ryan Hogg   

A customer spent thousands of dollars renting from Avis, but it still towed the car — along with his luggage and passport
LifeThelife2 min read
  • An Avis customer had his rental car towed despite inconsistent instructions from the company.
  • Adam Pimpsner spent thousands of dollars extending his booking online.

An Avis customer lost his luggage and passport and paid thousands of dollars out of pocket after his car was towed away by the rental company following a monthslong wrangle.

Adam Pimpsner, from New York, rented a car from Avis at JFK airport in early June and was given a free upgrade to an SUV when he collected his vehicle.

On June 10, a day before the rental agreement expired, Pimpsner was in Buffalo with his girlfriend and renewed online rather than make an eight-hour round trip to New York to do so in person. He told Insider that an Avis agent encouraged him to renew the rental online.

He paid $2,000 to extend his agreement for another month, but got an email in early August from Avis saying his car was overdue for return. In a phone call with an Avis agent, he was told to ignore that email. Insider listened to a recording of that conversation.

In a later phone call, an Avis agent can be heard telling Pimpsner that rentals did not need to be renewed in person.

Nevertheless, Pimpsner continued to receive emails from Avis despite paying an additional $3,500 to extend the booking by another two months into September. He was also charged a daily late fee.

Avis said it sent a certified letter to Pimpsner asking him to bring the car back, but he said he did not receive it.

On August 26, Avis sent Pimpsner a text message saying his car would be towed. He took Ubers to La Guardia and JFK airports to try to find the towed car, which contained some of his personal belongings.

When he arrived at La Guardia, he tried to show an agent his bookings.

"I was trying to tell him, 'Look, here's my payments. You see it says my name on the reservation, the payment was deducted.' But he wouldn't even look at it; he wouldn't even entertain it," Pimpsner told Insider.

The car was eventually returned to Pimpsner, minus his luggage, which he estimated to be worth $2,500. Documents including his girlfriend's study visa and both their passports were also missing.

An Avis spokesperson told Insider that Pimpsner had been informed multiple times to return his overdue vehicle, as its policies require a rental longer than 30 days to be renewed in person.

The spokesperson declined to comment on the phone calls Pimpsner had with Avis agents who gave him information to the contrary. Pimpsner was not told about these rules in phone conversations heard by Insider.

The spokesperson said Pimpsner had been issued with a standard "no show" fee for not picking up his vehicles, even though credit-card statements show he was charged the full amount for the extra rental periods.

An Avis executive told Pimpsner in an email on September 19 he was sorry his car had been towed "due to additional rentals not being used to extend the original reservation," and would refund the $5,500 Pimpsner had paid.

Avis also denied that the car had been opened before it was towed and would therefore not be covering any losses connected with his luggage or documents.




Advertisement