Update Live in App Store
Just a quick note about RentalGuard update now available in the App Store.
We wanted to inform you that an update to the app was approved and released by Apple yesterday. We became aware of a problem for those users who used the app on devices with a camera but no flash. The app’s flash control was causing those devices without a flash to crash during the inspection modes. The developers, with their ninja coding skills, attacked the problem right away and submitted the update to Apple and then we had to wait patiently for them to approve the update.
Thanks for the feedback and keep the suggestions coming to help us make improvements.
Bugs, Errors, and Fixes
RentalGuard has been live for a month and we are getting great feedback from our new users. Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to contact us with suggestions, comments, and problems.
With your help we were able to find a bug that is plaguing iPad and iTouch users. Devices with a camera but no flash have been crashing when user’s go into the inspection mode. We tracked it down to the flash control object. If your device doesn’t have a flash, the app doesn’t know what to do with the flash control and will crash.
The developers have fixed the problem and submitted an update to Apple. Apple is currently reviewing the update and we hope to have it live in the next few days.
Keep the great comments coming and help us improve the app!
Pictures Save the Day
A budget rental customer saved himself a lot of work and money by documenting all of the damage on his recent rental. You can read the article on The Consumerist. Even after documenting the damage on Budget’s form they still looked to him for compensation. His forthought to take these pictures stopped Budgets claim in its tracks. In this day an age of smart phones that camera can be a wallet saver!
Rental Cars and Damage Charges
These days renting a vehicle as part of your vacation or business trip can cost as much as your plane ticket or more depending on the size and type of vehicle you want. Adding the rental companies insurance can easily increase the cost by $50+ a day!
We all know that things happen during the course of normal day and when you’re in an unfamiliar place things seem to happen even more often.
One thing to keep in mind, when you return your vehicle most places won’t do a return inspection until just before it is washed and cleaned. Large busy airport facilities are notorious for this! Returning customers are corralled into 50 yard long lanes several cars wide each column with an employee, who quickly scans the car’s barcode sticker, checks the mileage and gas level, and may print off a receipt for you. That receipt is NOT proof of the vehicle’s condition. At smaller airports you may have to write down the parking space number, mileage and fuel level and return to check in at the counter. Here again, no return inspection has been done.
You can ask for an inspection but depending on how busy the counter and employees are, they may simple say it’s not policy or you may have to wait, and how many of us have extra time to waste when we have yet to go through TSA security.
From the company’s point of view, you are responsible for the vehicle until it has been inspected, but you never know when this inspection will actually take place or how far or many times your vehicle will be shuffled around.
Searching the internet, you can find dozens upon dozens of articles about travelers, who after returning a vehicle quickly receive a damage claim letter. The comment sections of these articles are filled with even more horrifying stories. Only a select few are lucky enough to get the attention of the media and start asking questions which causes the rental companies to back down and drop their damage claims.
Many people are shocked at the cost of the damage charges. It could be just a door scratch or bumper dent and the cost is more than $1,000. The damage fee usually consists of a repair estimate cost, a loss of use fee, and an administrative fee. The repair fee is the cost to repair the damage in labor and materials. The loss of use fee is the daily rental price times the number of days the vehicle is being repaired and not able to be rented out. If you received a discount on your daily rental cost you can expect the loss of use fee to be the higher standard rental price. The administrative fee is the claim processing fee.
We are developing the RentalGuard app to make protecting yourself easy and convenient.
Hello All and Happy Thanksgiving!
Just a quick note, we launched the app website this weekend, www.rentalguardapp.com! Visit the site to see what we’ve been up to. Sign up for the newsletter so you can stay updated on our progress on the app and coming launch date!
Very cool! Could you adapt this to a treadmill or spinning bike for instant feedback during your workout?
Philips just released a new iPad 2 app called Vital Signs Camera that uses the camera to measure your heart and breathing rate. It detects subtle beat-to-beat changes in the color of your face to measure your heart rate.
We’re slowly living in the future.