Newest Review: ... of your good nature or inexperience when renting a car and they do not care. I returned my vehicle with no additional damage 6 week... more
Alamo provide good service but it takes a very long time
Member Name: wonkybox
Advantages: Quick processing. Friendly staff. Great car
Disadvantages: Not enough staff resulted in huge queue. No car manual
We booked a car through Alamo as part of a package provided by Trailfinders for our trip to the west coast of the USA.
The initial arrangement was made by Trailfinders themselves so I couldn't comment on this, and seemed to have unwittingly dodged a bullet after reading some of the other reviews online.
When we arrived at the Alamo car depot in central LA (Airport blvd) we had to wait in line for about an hour. Maybe we were unlucky with the timing but there didn't seem to be enough operatives for customers. This was about 9am local time on a Saturday, although as the depot is near the LA Hilton there is probably lots of tourists renting.
Eventually we spoke to a very nice man called Bob who successfully upsold us a satnav and an upgrade on our car. We ended up paying nearly double what we agreed with Trailfinders but both upgrades paid for themselves, especially the satnav. Bob took my credit card details but no deposit or anything was deducted, it was in case we had an accident we weren't covered for. He also explained how our insurance worked and even gave us a few pointers about our journey, recommending places he'd stayed at along the coast.
We were told to pick a car from the lot and we chose the Toyota Camry (brilliant car) and drove it away. Apart from the hour in the queue it took us about twenty minutes until we could drive out.
The car itself was in excellent condition with the bodywork looking like new and the interior also valeted and smelling like a new car. It was missing the manual though and I would have liked to have checked the tire pressure and familiarise myself with the engine for regular oil, coolant and steering/brake fluid checks during our drive. Without a reference for all this I was a bit blind and nervous, but it was all right.
The car successfully got us several thousand miles around California and Nevada, even surviving Death Valley although a warning light did come on. I think this was engine overheating and the coolant evaporating which is acceptable considering it's the hottest place on the planet.
Returning the car was similarly efficient. You just park up, give the keys to an attendant and remove your bags. There is a regular free shuttle to LAX airport you can get on in the depot itself.
Summary: Good service on a key factor for our driving holiday.
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