Sometimes there is no other alternative than to quickly get a rental car: Our 9pm flight from Bergamo (Northern Italy) to Munich was cancelled. We had to be back in Germany by 8 a.m. the next morning. There were no more flights that evening, which is why we had to drive 600 kilometers by car. The shock when renting: The rental price is over 2,000 euros for just 6 hours of rental time. 1,500 euros of this is for the international one-way rental fee. But it gets even more absurd:
Spontaneous rentals abroad: Only possible via the German hotline
After 6 p.m., you cannot simply pick up a vehicle at the Sixt Italy counter and bring it to Germany. The only trainee employee is apparently not authorized to make reservations for expensive international rentals in the system. Also in the Sixt App you can not initiate international rentals “from now on”. Only on the German Sixt hotline could they offer us a vehicle for 15 minutes. For the Opel Insignia class with around 600 free kilometers, around 2,100 euros were also estimated directly on the hotline.
Rental price itself is only 87 euros
When she went back to the Sixt counter at Bergamo Orio al Serio airport, after several attempts, the young lady had the reservation she had just made. Specifically, it consisted of: Only 87 euros for the rent in itself, 110 euros for the additional kilometers, 1,830 euros (according to reservation only 1,500) as one-way rental fee and 32 euros as location surcharge (Airport). Now, a one-way rental fee of 1,500 euros (incl. VAT) can no longer be justified with anything. One-way rentals within a country usually only cost in the double-digit range.
1,800 euros fee for a BMW with a German license plate
Arrived on the parking deck, the joy about the supposed upgrade quickly turned into anger: Although we were assigned the currently best vehicle at the station, a BMW X4 with the most powerful diesel and automatic transmission, it was also the only car in the Sixt parking lot German license plate. For a fee of 1,500 euros, we returned a vehicle from the German Sixt fleet ourselves.
Horrendous one-way rental fees only for spontaneous rentals?
In the days after the rental, we checked the Sixt app several times to see exactly when this fee was due. The result was that the outrageously high fee only applies if you reserve spontaneously – i.e. one day before / on the day of rental. If you rent several days in advance, the fee is much lower. But that also depends heavily on the utilization of the vehicle pool at the respective station.
If the fees are too high, be sure to ask Sixt international customer service!
Within Sixt Customer Care there is a department that is specifically responsible for international rentals. Since stations abroad like to work differently than they are used to in Germany or simply work less cleanly, a complaint is usually worthwhile in order to at least have the chance to have the wrong fees reimbursed as far as possible. With the German hotline, you simply ask “international customer service”.
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