Wednesday, March 21, 2012

It was Traumatic. I'm Still Recovering.

The past two times we have gone to Florida, Brian has reserved us the cheapest rental car possible. The companies are off-site from the airport, making the car pickup process inconvenient. We have never arrived at the airport and not had some sort of mishap.

When it came time to make arrangements for this trip, I was put in charge of booking flights and a rental car.

I insisted we use one of the on-site, more reliable rental car companies so that we wouldn't start off our trip with a headache.

Brian insisted we go the cheap route like always. (He's frugal like that).

So I caved, of course, and booked a car with Economy Rent-a-Car for less than $20/day. (Seriously? So cheap I shoulda known better).

We had an awesome plane ride down to Miami.

We had only carry-on luggage, so we left the airport with no hassle.

I had called the Economy headquarters earlier in the day, and they had provided me with the local number to call once we landed, assuring me that someone would come pick us up promptly when we arrived.

So I did just that- I called their local number.

I spoke to a nice gentleman, told him we had landed, and he told me to head over to Shuttle Stop 2 at the airport's rental car center. Once there, we were to call him back and he would come pick us up.

Ahhh...."Finally!", I thought to myself, "A painless rental car experience!"

I was so happy we were finally there and everything was going smoothly.

So we get to Shuttle Stop 2 and I call the guy back.

It rings, and rings, and rings. No answer.

So I give it another minute, and try again. Still no answer.

In total, I called Economy over thirty times, confused because I had spoken with someone only ten minutes prior.

Brian gave it a try using his phone (Maybe the guy was trying to ignore my number?).

When Brian called, he got a message that their phone line had been disconnected. I tried with my phone again, and sure enough, I began getting the same message that their phone line had been disconnected.

I called the company's main headquarters that I had called earlier in the day. I told them what was going on, and they told me to wait for a minute and they would see what the problem was.

I was put on hold for about 15 minutes. I hung up, called back again, and was put immediately on hold once more.

After waiting more than an hour, we finally decided to just take a taxi to Economy since we had their address.

When we got to our destination, which was in a back alley of Miami, we saw a sketchy building, a gated door, and a dark window. The place was completely empty.

This is pretty much what the building looked like:


This is pretty much what I looked like:


Yes, I lose my composure at times, as hard as that is to imagine.
Yes, I still have tantrums.
No, it wasn't fun...for Brian.

So we took the taxi back to the airport. (The taxi driver didn't speak English and was thoroughly confused at this point).

The 0.5 miles we had driven in the taxi cost $20.

We went inside the airport and rented a car from a different company for $350.

We had wasted two hours of our time. It was almost midnight. We had both not eaten since lunch.

Tired and hungry and angry. Never a good combination.

I was mad at Economy rental car for the hell they had put us through.
I was mad at myself for reserving a car with them in the first place.
But mostly (because isn't this how relationships are?)....

I was mad at Brian.

Because he had convinced me to go cheap in the first place.

I never had to tell him "I told you so."
I just had to give him the look.


 I'll never let Brian talk me into renting from a cheap, off-site rental car company ever again.

....or until our next trip.

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