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Exclusive: Car rental scam at Alicante Airport

Renting a car is usually an easy process, whether it be to explore a holiday destination or if your own vehicle has broken down. But what happens when things go wrong? We spoke with a reader about her rental “scam” experience at Alicante Airport.

Euro Weekly News reader Maria Pettit got in touch with us to tell us of her experience using a rental car company at Alicante Airport. Upon her and her husband returning their rental vehicle, they were met with accusations and charges that they allege were “dishonest” and “extortionate”.

Mrs Pettit alleges that herself and her husband had a “dishonest experience” after returning a car to a rental company at Alicante Airport and being accused and charged €408 for damage which they claim they did not do. Mrs Pettit commented on their experience on Trustpilot and noted this particular rental company has been accused of multiple scams.

Mrs Pettit’s Trust Pilot review for the rental car reads: “We picked up the car late at night from Alicante Airport and in the dim underground car park all seemed as per checkout list.”

“We’ve used the rental company many times over the years and have either dropped keys at the counter on return or a couple of times had a staff member walk around the car to confirm all is ok.”

“On this occasion, when we dropped the keys off at the counter, a staff member came out with a tablet and strong torch and started a minuscule inspection of the car. He pointed to a faint mark that ran along the side of the car which we could neither see nor feel but got picked up by his strong torch when he took a photo. We insisted that this must have been there and there was no way we could have seen it with the naked eye.”

“Furthermore, the checkout paperwork had already listed marks to the front door and we believe the back door would have been a continuation of the mark but got overlooked by staff because it was too faint to see without a torch. We strongly denied having caused the mark and had 48 hours to appeal but had €408 deducted from our deposit without an email of explanation or an invoice explaining this extortionate amount.”

“On recounting the story with Keep Fit friends today, one had a similar experience two weeks earlier with the same company at Alicante Airport. Again, her car was inspected with a strong torch (undercarriage included) and €180 deducted from her deposit for damage not caused by her. Her credit card company took up the case with the company and she was refunded.”

“Having read the reviews on Trustpilot I can see that this scam (and many others) is pretty common.”

When renting a car from a rental company, it is essential to inspect the car thoroughly and take photos of any damage – no matter how small – you can then use this as proof if you are wrongly accused of scratching or damaging the car in any way. Be sure that the rental company also takes photos of any damage and notes it onto the paperwork before you depart from the car park.


Thank you for taking the time to read this article, do remember to come back and check The Euro Weekly News website for all your up-to-date local and international news stories and remember, you can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

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Written by

Laura Kemp

Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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