One of the toughest things to deal with as frequent business travelers are the promotions and deals that are designed for the novice traveling masses. We see the gimmick, we know better, yet they’re still thrust in our faces with every trip we take. I wish we all had little red badges to wear that identified us as “intelligent travelers” so that TSA agents, gate agents, rental car agents, etc, wouldn’t talk to us and treat us like we were 12 years old. I just might strangle the next check-in agent that condescendingly asks me, “Did you remember to put your name on a tag for your luggage? Ohhhh, coochy-coochy, dat’s a good wittle travewer!” *sigh*
Apparently Avis thinks we’re all stupid now, too. In an attempt to develop an ad campaign aimed at attracting the frequent business traveler, they’ve managed to alienate them even further. Check out what I found during my last Avis rental, it said this on my rental agreement:
“At Avis, We Try Harder™ to make your trip more enjoyable and, now, wrinkle-free. When you pick up your rental at any of the participating Avis locations, be sure to look out for an Avis hanger in your car. The Avis hanger was developed for busy travelers like you to help you keep your coat, suit jacket or other garments wrinkle-free in your rental vehicle. Our hangers are environmentally-friendly and made of 100 percent recycled and recyclable material. Feel free to take the entire hanger with you at the end of your rental – it’s yours to keep! Thank you for continuing to choose Avis.”
Seriously? A plastic coat hanger that I can keep? This ranks right up there with the infamous “Buy a $20,000 car and get a free teddy-bear” promotion I saw in
Look people, we’re not monkeys and we’re not cattle. We spend a ton of cash on airplane tickets, hotels, and rental cars and we deserve better. Hertz is awesome, you get off the shuttle bus and there’s your car, keys are in it, there’s a nice computerized sign that says, “Mr. Walker” on it, and I drive away. National is even cooler. At National you literally walk into the elite status parking lot and pick any car you see! Open the door to one you like, the keys are in it, you drive away.
I’m one traveler that will not be persuaded to spend $300 to drive a car for a week, by a plastic coat hanger. Good grief, I return at least 20 hangers to the dry cleaners every week, just to get them out of my closet. Avis hangers are made out of recyclable material; it says that in black and white. So… recycle them and give me a discount on my next rental. Even better, cut the hangers out entirely and with the money you save, get some lower mileage cars in your fleet that don’t smell like cigarettes! I’m just saying…
EXTRA: If you have questions for Ken regarding business travel, hotels, airplanes, etc, please call 1-877-49-EXPERT. Your questions will be recorded and Ken will answer the best ones in his Ask the Expert podcast show.