This happened quite a while ago so forgive me if I don’t remember all the details. I used to work in customer service for a car rental company and I answered both calls and emails. This customer came through email.
The customer wrote a very very very long email complaining about the lack of assistance when their car broke down. This was honestly a shitty company and our assistance was terrible so I figured I’d check all the information before reaching a decision about compensation (I also consulted with my supervisor).
Turns out the customer was on the road and had a breakdown. They were going over to another city where they had booked a hotel, and were now stranded on the road. I checked all the relevant information – the customer claimed they called assistance several times and no one wanted to help (not true, only one call had been made and was answered), they also claimed that the assistance department told them they couldn’t help them in any way and didn’t want to go to where they were (not true, customer was not giving helpful information about the state of the vehicle). A tow truck finally went to them and towed the vehicle. They were told that a replacement would be given the next morning, as it was quite late and no nearby stations were open. Customer threw a fit and assistance said they could arrange for a taxi and that we would refund the amount. They agreed.
Now, the customer didn’t just take a taxi to the hotel they booked. They claimed that they had to book a different hotel. Ok, fine. The email turns super dramatic with the customer insisting that they were stranded on a deserted road in the middle of the night (11PM, they had transportation) and ”no hotel would take them”. They wanted us to pay for the taxi + new hotel + old hotel they did not use + refund the rental. We were not going to do that.
The customer attaches a pdf with all the bills, and writes ”only one hotel was gracious enough to do us a favor and take us in after we begged everywhere”. I open the bill and see that it’s for a 5 star hotel with a jacuzzi in the room along with a fancy spa, and the bill comes close to 1200 EUR for one night. Yeah, apparently that was ”the only hotel that would take them in”.
We ended up refunding the taxi as promised but we did not make any other refunds and the customer never came back with a reply so I’m guessing they knew just how far they were pushing it.