It cost me $27.10 in tolls and fees to make the round trip between the Orlando airport and my home in Winter Springs, Fla., in a rental car last month.
Think of it as an invisible road hazard.
Three months after Joan Cox rented a Ford Fusion rental car in Orlando last summer, a surprise bill from Thrifty Car Rental landed in her mailbox. The company wanted 50 cents for a toll violation on the Beachline Expressway, a toll road that connects Orlando with the East Coast beaches and the Kennedy Space Center.
Oh, and one other thing: there was a $25 “administrative fee” for processing.
Here’s a question about a possible scam from reader Candice Sabatini. She’s noticed that an increasing number of toll roads and bridges no longer have toll booths — you either carry a transponder or pay a fine.
Sabatini thinks that’s not fair to people who rent cars.
“If you rent cars often, it would seem that the simple solution is to buy a transponder and then attach it to the car you rent,” she says. “But the [catch] is that you cannot buy an EZPass unless they have a license plate to register it with.”
As far as surprises go, the one Michael Benson encountered on his drive from Breezewood, Pa., to the Ohio border was small but annoying: an extra $3.90 charged by the Pennsylvania Turnpike. But what followed was anything but small. When he tried to find out about the mystery toll, he was given the runaround by Turnpike authorities.
Then he went to war with them.
If nothing else, the bureaucrats and marketing executives who read this site should note the lengths to which Benson went to get answers for a $3.90 charge. Think about it. If you don’t clearly explain your pricing, this could happen to you.