If you plan to rent a car from Enterprise, you may wonder whether they put a hold on your card. A hold, also known as a pre-authorization, is a temporary block of funds on your credit or debit card. Rental car companies often require it as a security deposit in case of damages, additional fees, or unpaid tolls. In this article, we will explore the ins and outs of Enterprise Car Rental’s hold policy and provide some tips on avoiding any surprises or inconveniences.
What is a Hold and Why Does Enterprise Need It?
When you rent a car, Enterprise will ask for your credit or debit card information to cover any additional charges arising during your rental period. These charges may include extra miles, fuel, insurance, or damages. Enterprise will place a hold on your card to ensure that they have enough funds to cover these charges. The amount of the hold varies depending on the type of car, the length of the rental, and the location of the rental office.
A hold is not an actual charge, but rather a temporary block of funds. It typically lasts a few days or until the rental is returned and all charges are settled. The hold amount is not fixed, and it may exceed the total cost of the rental. For example, if you rent a car for $50 per day and the hold amount is $200, you cannot use those $200 until the hold is released.
What Happens If the Hold Amount Exceeds Your Available Credit or Balance?
If the hold amount exceeds your available credit or balance, your card may be declined or you may incur overdraft fees. This is why checking your available credit or balance before renting a car is essential and ensuring you have enough funds to cover the hold amount.
If you are using a credit card, you may want to consider increasing your credit limit temporarily or using a different card with a higher limit. If you use a debit card, ensure you have enough funds to cover the hold amount and any additional charges. You may also want to ask your bank about overdraft protection policies to avoid unexpected fees.
How Does Enterprise Calculate the Hold Amount?
Enterprise’s hold policy varies depending on the location and the type of car you are renting. In general, the hold amount is based on the estimated total cost of the rental plus a security deposit. The security deposit is usually a fixed amount, such as $200 or $300, and it is refunded to your card when the car is returned undamaged and with a full tank of gas.
The estimated total cost of the rental includes the daily rate, taxes, and any additional fees or charges. Enterprise also factors in the potential cost of damages, insurance deductibles, and unpaid tolls. For example, suppose you are renting a luxury car for a week in a high-demand location. In that case, the hold amount may be significantly higher than if you are renting an economy car for a day in a rural area.
Can You Avoid the Hold?
Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid the hold if renting a car from Enterprise. It is a standard practice in the car rental industry and is designed to protect the rental company from potential losses. However, there are a few things you can do to minimize the impact of the hold on your card:
- Use a credit card with a high limit or temporarily increase your credit limit.
- Use a debit card with a low hold amount, such as a prepaid debit card.
- Check your available credit or balance before renting a car and ensure that you have enough funds to cover the hold amount.
- Return the car on time and in the same condition you received it. This will help to ensure that the hold amount is released promptly and that you are not charged for any additional fees or damages.
- Read the rental agreement carefully and ask questions if anything is unclear. This will help you understand the rental terms and conditions, including the hold policy.
- Consider purchasing additional insurance or waiver options offered by Enterprise to reduce liability in case of damages or accidents.
What Happens After You Return the Car?
After you return the car, Enterprise will inspect it for damages and fuel level. If no damages or additional charges exist, the hold amount will be released, and the security deposit will be refunded to your card. However, the hold may take a few days to be released, depending on your bank’s policies.
If there are damages or additional charges, Enterprise will deduct the amount from the hold and notify you of the remaining balance. You can dispute the charges or pay the remaining balance with a different card or form of payment.
What If You Have a Rental Agreement Dispute?
If you dispute your rental agreement with Enterprise, you should contact their customer service department immediately. They will investigate the issue and resolve it as quickly as possible. If unsatisfied with the resolution, you may file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau or seek legal advice.
In summary, Enterprise Car Rental does put a hold on your card as a security deposit when you rent a car. The hold amount varies depending on the location and the type of car you are renting, but it typically includes the estimated total cost of the rental plus a security deposit. While there is no way to avoid the hold, you can minimize its impact by using a credit card with a high limit, checking your available credit or balance before renting a car, and returning the car on time and in the same condition you received it.
It is important to understand the terms and conditions of the rental agreement, including the hold policy, before renting a car from Enterprise. This will help you avoid surprises or inconveniences and ensure a smooth and stress-free rental experience.