"Potentially a very troublesome option"
I would not recommend this company to people. We did a rental return for...
I would not recommend this company to people.
We did a rental return for Awesome campers and the camper was fine, an old converted van that ran OK (it had 500k on the clock).
However, we had a misunderstanding when we booked the van. On the website during the booking it gave us the option to reduce the bond/liability on the van and we took it. When we picked up the van we were informed by the company that there was no option to reduce and my card was charged $1500 in bond. It was far to late at this point to arrange another rental return, it was taking the van or fly down.
This was a bit of a pain but not a terrible. The conversation I then had with the GM of Awesome was. I rang up to complain about the issue, I did not ask or demand a refund etc. just wanted to register a complaint with the GM who for some reason we had contact details of. The GM was extremely confrontational and informed me that I was lying and that I had read on the initial booking page that there was no option to reduce the excess. There was no attempt to understand and no reassurance that she would look into the issue.
Later I had a read through the terms and conditions that where in a folder in the car. From my understanding of what is written here our liability was far more than $1500 and there where a lot of restrictions on when and where we could drive, gravel roads for instance invalidate the cover. This is crazy, I’ve rented vehicles for many years and the liabilities of this old and cheap van far exceed anything I have ever seen, even if you can take the reduced bond cover.
On returning the vehicle we where expected to vacuum the van, not a massive issue but the place we dropped the car off to had a vacuum cleaner there in clear view and required us to go and find a car cleaning place and pay to use a vacuum cleaner (or pay them $150 for the clean!).
And finally, they held onto my $1500 for a week after we had dropped off the van. Not a big deal for me but if I was someone without money on a round the world trip this could have put me in a very bad place.
Overall the van was fine, I just pity anyone that rents from these people and are short of money or find themselves broken down on a gravel road because google routed them that way (we ended up for an hour on a gravel road following google.)
I was happy with Awesome. The people were great.
we hired a deluxe camper from there Sydney depot, the staff was really friendly and very accomodating, the camper was great, everything we expected and more. would recommend them to any one.
Awesome campers was a horrible company to rent from. They provided us with a dirty vehicle with a bald tire, down to the metal belt showing. When we refused the first vehicle, the second was not much better. The vehicle was dirty, and missing items. Lawn chairs provided broke on the first day, and we had to go and purchase missing items from the camper. The brakes did not work correctly, the windshield wipers were worn and one was broken, which my husband managed to fix on the road. After driving the vehicle for about two weeks, the fan belt began to slip, and was chirping and squeeling when we drove, and when we came to a stop, the radiator was literally boiling. It was audible when we stopped. When we complained to awesome campers after two weeks into our 5 week trip about our concern of the roadworthiness of the second camper, the response we received from Lauren was what do you expect, it is an old vehicle. I completely expected an old vehicle, but I had expected that it was serviced regularity, oil and fluids were checked before it was rented to us and that it was cleaned, and that inventory was checked. The vehicle was also down a liter of oil when we received it. Condisering that we were driving the van for 5 weeks in the summer, I would have expected that the fluids were topped up, and the basics were checked for us before we hit the road. I did expect that we would have to check oil and water levels, as it is an older vehicle, but I expected a road worthy vehicle.
We received a third vehicle after our complaint, and we did ask for an upgrade for our inconvenience, which we did receive, however, the third vehicle was not much better. This one was at least clean, or so we thought, and had the full inventory of supplies as listed, however, that being said, the first time I had to use the portable propane stove, about a week after pick up, I opened the case to find a dirty stove, with rotten food all over the stove and in the plastic case, and when we had to use the sink for the first time, the drain was not only clogged with old food and black guck, the drain pipe was not properly attached, causing the pipe to pop off, and drain the dirty sink water all over the inside of the kitchen area, which we had to clean up. The drain for the sink was inoperable, and despite our efforts to fix it, the drain hose was made of flexible plastic, and had two 90degree kinks in it, pinching off the water flow, think of a kink in a garden hose, making the sink drain inoperable.
When we returned the vehicle, we brought up our concerns with all three of the vehicles we had or were offered for our 5 week rental. We were told that our expectations were too high, and no, of course they don't check their vehicles regularity. There are old vehicles, what did we expect.
We did manage to negotiate a partial refund for our troubles, but I would have much rather paid the full price, and not be faced with problems we had over our vacation we had planned and saved for for three years. Simple regular checks of oil and water levels, windshield wipers, and that all equipment provided was present, cleaned, and in working order, are not high expectations, just regular expectations of a customer who read what was included in the vehicle description provided in the listing when I booked. You can't tell me the vehicle has a sink in it if I can use it. Just saying.
The customer service at the Brisbane depot was awful. Lady was incredibly rude and unhelpful. The customer service at the depot where we dropped off the van couldn't have been nicer, chilled, helpful friendly guy.
Van drove fine and was comfortable when driving with armrests. A fair bit of damage to panels and missing trim which they 'hadn't noticed' when we collected but on pointing it out they did put it on form. Many of the features we were told would be in van and were stated on website weren't available.
The conversion/living accommodation was ok but poorly thought out and in a lightweight wood that didn't seemed designed for the amount of use hire vans get. The mattress (foam) was very thin, every time you turned over you could feel the boards . The mattress covers appeared hand made and torn. The curtains didn't fit around the van. The van wasn't clean when we collected it although we were told in no uncertain terms that it had to be clean on return. We even found a used bar of soap in the van. Nice kitchen unit. Unfortunately kettle provided in van was too powerful to run off the electrics in the van unless the van was plugged in on site.
I might have been a bit more positive about the overall impression if we had encountered the guy we handed the van back to at the beginning of the trip. Unfortunately the lady in Brisbane soured the whole experience.
I accept these are budget vans but simple fixes are possible. A friendly helpful reception costs nothing. A thicker mattress would require an investment I accept. The kettle should be easily remedied. The website could be changed for free to be accurate.
It is telling that no one ever asked us for any feedback at the end of the hire!
The people at Awesome really were awesome. Very friendly, and answered all of our questions.
The interior of the van was all great, with the exception of the mattress. It is thin. I recommend this company, but I also recommend you budget for some additional padding if you're renting for longer than a few days.
if you were smart you would avoid this company like the plague. terrible vehicles, even worse customer service. and no refund or return policy. once you pay you are left in the dark.. dont walk away from this company.. RUN
Got a van with faulty engine, no air-conditioned. That was be enough.
But now, 3 weeks after return, we get charged 600aud for a damage that was not done by us. My credit card is totally taken into hostage as they can take freely take whatever they want from it without justifying it.
They are crooks of the worst kind. Beware of cheap because this ended up costing us more than the most expensive options out there.