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Old 10th March 2020, 10:31   #1666
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

Maybe the case of spreading themselves too thin and the management not being able to enforce minimum quality standards for rental cars?

I've heard too many horror stories. If I'm not driving, I'd always take a cabbie for a day. A few of them maybe risky drivers, but almost all of them maintain their cars well.
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Old 10th March 2020, 11:10   #1667
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I used Zoomcar in their initial days and was really impressed with their service. I recently booked them for a short 1 day trip and was thoroughly disappointed. Reached the location for pickup, the app shows that the car is parked in that location, even the customer care guy checks his system and says that the car is parked in the same location, except that there's no car there. It was a harrowing experience for sure, it also dampened my spirits for the trip that I'd planned. Eventually I had to book an Ola Outstation to complete my trip.
Zoomcar entered the self drive market when there was nobody else and probably that's the reason that they still have loyal customers. I used Revv last weekend and even though they were a little costlier compared to competition, the business model, customer care and overall experience was definitely much better than Zoomcar.
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Old 10th March 2020, 11:41   #1668
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

Zoom was really good when they initially started. However, customer service and quality deteriorated after a while. I used to use them just to rent out the A class. A couple of years back, when they got the GLA's decided to rent one for a trip. Turned up at the pick up spot, the car was not there. Was told that the car needed new tyres so they had gone to change it. Three hours later and after numerous calls to customer care, along comes this beat up A class with new tyres. No explanation on the model change or the poor condition of the car. There was actually wind coming in through the sun roof which made this horrendous noise. Not sure if someone had flipped the car over. Anyway that was the last I ever used them, did not even bother with some token credits that they offered for messing my entire weekend.
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Old 10th March 2020, 12:02   #1669
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In my opinion there are two sides to this model. One, the onus of maintaining the car, booking process etc is on the service provider (ZoomCar in this case) and the other on the customer who rents it out. I don't think its fair to blame the service provider always when I have seen some customers abuse the crap out of the cars just because they have paid for the service. If customers don't abuse cars then the chances of the car breaking down etc will reduce. There's only so much any service provider can do to be profitable/sustainable and provide good quality service/well maintained cars. On the other hand, if the service provider doesn't invest in maintaining cars, training personnel etc then it is clearly his fault.

Slightly OTT, a popular scooter rental company has similar issues. I have seen this young lad literally kick the scooter out of frustration just because he didn't know how to unlock the bike! I mean, I was like dude how daft are you! I showed him and it unlocked!

By and large, this reflects poorly on us. If it (public property etc) is not ours, then we barely treat it with any respect. Same goes for even "educated people". This ex colleague of mine at my previous company would regularly print dozens of documents for his kids school project using the company printer! He was in a fairly senior position and I'm sure he could easily afford a printer for Pete's sake!
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Old 10th March 2020, 12:18   #1670
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

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Originally Posted by sidpunjabi View Post
Check out Revv car. They have a host of 6+ seater SUVs available.

Pricing wise they're at a slight premium to Zoomcar, but I find it to be VFM as their cars are better maintained (read: cleaner) than Zoomcar's fleet.
Revv ha!! This is how it looked when I picked up a Revv car to pick up my parents from airport in Bangalore.
Attached Thumbnails
Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India-img_20191031_161955_jpeg.jpg  


Last edited by grevvity : 10th March 2020 at 12:23.
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Old 10th March 2020, 12:30   #1671
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Originally Posted by vishwasvr View Post
I don't think its fair to blame the service provider always when I have seen some customers abuse the crap out of the cars just because they have paid for the service.
I agree somewhat. I too have seen self drive rental cars being abused by the users. Once I have seen a brand new Creta driven at about 60KMPH on a series of humps on the ORR service road near Patancheru. The car was literally off the ground several times before it cleared the two sets of series humps. Another time on the same road, I saw a zoom car Hexa parked to a side, all doors open and a full fledged booz and smoke session was on with six or seven guys in attendance. The abuse is mind boggling. They wouldn't do this if it is their own car.

Not only rental cars. Take any public property that is unattended and you are sure to see that it is thoroughly abused and totally destroyed. Remember all those pictures of the new well equipped trains that went into service a few years back? And follow up pictures after the trains' very first run? They were thoroughly abused. Taps in the toilets broken, fans stolen, seats torn: in short every imaginable abuse in their very first run!!

Makes one wonder if we deserve anything nice at all.
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Old 10th March 2020, 12:56   #1672
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I recently did a Zoom trip, Vaododra to Ahmbedabad and it was beyond pathetic, it was so pathetic (the state of the car) that since I had 4 hours after picking it up (originally the meeting was for 8 AM - this was in MG Motors btw - got rescheduled to 1400 Hrs), I got it waterwashed, interiors cleaned at my cost. Total bill was 1k, but Zoom only would reimburse Rs 500, but the interiors were so filthy that I risked picking up so bug or virus, and decided Rs 500 is not worth it and got it fully cleaned and even sprayed a thin sheet of dettol sanitizer on the steering and commonly touched areas (yes, it was really that yucky)

Also took it to a garage next door run by the same guys, got the brakes tested and tightened for which I spent out of pocket Rs 600.

Pick up / return was sheer harassment, I now learn after reading other experiences here that they choose the weirdest, hard to reach places to park cars or pick them up.

Given all this, I never will ever take a Zoom car again. Which brings me to my question, I need to drive from Mumbai (Juhu) to Pune and back, over 48 hours. What is a good option and esp one without the annoying speed governors my Zoomcar had which capped speeds at 80 kmph. Now I am no speed fiend and a cap at 100 kmph would have been okay but 80kmph was in some weird RPM band which made my car (A freestyle) seem constantly underpowered @ 80kmph in 5th gear, downshifting was also not an option to maintain 80 kmph.

Pricing is not a problem as this would be on my company and the norm here is for folks to just hire an Innova, but I have always wanted to drive on the Mumbai Pune eway and this is a good way to do so.
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Old 10th March 2020, 14:06   #1673
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

I have a slightly different take on this. It's true that as a culture we tend to abuse what we don't "own" and that's not changing soon because these values need to be embedded at a very young age.



However, another portion of this problem is simply that there is no way rental cars can survive profitably in India. Most entrepreneurs take the mantra of finding a problem to solve and solving it very seriously. However, no one thinks about if the problem can be solved profitably at scale. The economics and attitude prevalent in India mean this problem cannot be solved profitably. If the company wants to make a profit their pricing will never attract customers. If they price it too cheap and hope to increase prices later then that never happens because someone competes with you or your customer simply walks away. The logistics and manpower required to run this business can never work on margins you get between buying and servicing the vehicle vs. leasing it out. There is never enough money there. That's why Rev may be good to start with but it will go down.



I saw a bike rental business in Aundh Pune. The company was providing bikes at Rs 10 an hour but to do that they had to have custom GPS fitter bikes with locks that will open from a mobile app. They needed people to explain this to customers and people to pick up bikes abandoned by customers. Again no margin to scale and the company shut down.



The only way this business works is if a manufacturer uses electric cars and gets into this business in a full-fledged manner. Electric cars are easier to track and maintain. They will also have to price to ensure quality not scale meaning that it would be exclusive and not open to everyone.



India is an incredibly hard place to do business and I would honestly start writing the epitaph for car rental companies.
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Old 10th March 2020, 14:45   #1674
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

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Originally Posted by Stribog View Post
Given all this, I never will ever take a Zoom car again. Which brings me to my question, I need to drive from Mumbai (Juhu) to Pune and back, over 48 hours.
I had quite a good experience with MyChoize on a recent trip to Lonavala where we needed a 7 seater. It was an Innova Crysta A/T. Their staff is very professional and the vehicle was in good condition, mechanically perfect but a little dusty inside (A good wipe with a cloth will do). You can read more about my experience here : https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/route...ml#post4762901 (Feedback on different Self Drive rental agencies)

They do have an 80 kmph rule (No limiter. Just a fine) but you can safely do 90 kmph on the speedometer without any issue. I believe the 80 kmph limiter is because of the government mandate for commercial vehicles.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10th March 2020, 14:52   #1675
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

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Originally Posted by landcruiser123 View Post
Maybe the case of spreading themselves too thin and the management not being able to enforce minimum quality standards for rental cars?
If management cares about quality, management will provide quality.
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Old 10th March 2020, 15:00   #1676
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

My experiences shared below are from three years of renting with them. It could be at high level; but feel free to ask questions and make comment.

1. Availability: If you are travelling on weekends, the cars have to be booked few days before for your choice and duration.

In my experiences, customer care executives have called me to say before allotment of vehicle (or even after) on booking day that the car has been sent for repairs.
However, They do provide a free upgrade or downgrade with partial refund.
Examples are Brezza to Creta and Q3 to Creta.

In one of the booking for Hyundai Verna (then newly launched) for 24 hours was refused due to ongoing repairs. I had to convince them by sharing information of my planned trip, use of boot, seats and need of same car.
They did give me same car from same pick up location at same booking time.


2. Condition: The small cars which are booked rattled most of the times.
While this has been true for most of the self driven cars in India unless the car is new and not in demand. e.g. Wagon R or Celerio.
If the car is old or has high odometer reading, expect some loose parts and free noises.

Some of the cars were great (surprisingly) but most of them have been strictly average with interior cleanliness.
I will suggest you to pick a car that is new in their garage. It could be a new launch or a fleet that has been added to website recently.
If the pick up location is nearby, do visit and connect with zoomcar guys on excellent condition cars before making a booking.

3. Cost: I find Zoomcar to be expensive than Drivezy, mychoize and Revv.
While I am not promoting others, I will say they give discounts and have coupons available online.
Once a front bumper of car brushed a boulder from the bottom. It was not visible until someone leans and inspects the under body.
I am refraining myself to share the attitude of lady who asked me to make payments (I don't pay security deposit being supermiler)
In fewer words, she did not listen and talked like a rowdy. They charged 1500 for it. If possible I would have got the same job done myself for them at half the price.

4. Other bits and experiences :
4.1 In one of the booking I had selected a pick up location which is nearby to my place. It also happens to be the Zoomcar's parking.
The car allotted to me was further 2 kms away. I had asked Zoomcar to change my pickup location to their parking but they refused.

When I reached the place, the car was parked on a road in a daylight with no other cars around.
Road was decently busy though. I had to fill the checklist and unlock it using their app.
I asked if I can drop it at Zoomcar's parking because the pick up location for next booking will still be in a radius of Zoomcar's pick up location. But they refused saying, "it has be parked at same place"
I parked it on road at night. It was the only car in dark and locked it using app.

It's funny that cars are allotted from the Zoomcar's pickup location radius(their parking) and
They were okay having a car far from their parking at night on a deserted road even when no booking was made for it ( I had option to extend my booking then)

4.2 Speed Governors: Some of them had 80kmph speed limit. Imagine driving on a road when everyone is doing at least 90kmph.
I recall a moment of joy when I overtook a bus on Mumbai Pune expressway.

TL;DR
This is a personal experience of renting many self driven cars that nothing beats the pleasure of driving your own car.
If you still want to rent, walk an extra mile of connecting with Zoomcar or any other car rental to show you excellent condition cars that will be available if you make a booking.

Good Luck!

Last edited by procrastinator : 10th March 2020 at 15:10. Reason: typo
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Old 10th March 2020, 15:02   #1677
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Till 2017-18, Zoomcar was good. It had a pick-up spot 1km from my native place and I used to book cars from Zoomcar whenever I visited my native place.

But in December 2019 I had a very bad experience. When I booked the car, the pick-up spot was the garage near my place. But 1 hour before pick-up they changed the pick-up spot ~2kms away from my place. Took a rickshaw and reached the new place, which was quite deserted, to realize that the car which is unlocked by mobile app, was not unlocking. (Seems like to reduce cost they have removed the human intervention of delivering keys, its through the app now). Additionally, the car also had flat tyre. Called up customer care, who remotely unlocked the car after verifying my details. They also told me to get the puncture repaired, which would be reimbursed, or use the spare tyre. I was horrified to see the spare tyre. Took it to a local puncture shop and got it repaired for 50.
Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India-img_4454.jpg
Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India-img_4466.jpg

The interiors were still in better condition.
Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India-img_4464.jpg

Also, this time I observed that when I was going through a State Highway, I received this message.
Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India-image0.jpeg
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Old 10th March 2020, 16:06   #1678
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

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Originally Posted by blackwasp View Post
But it all boils down to the cost. Frankly, I'm surprised that they are letting out the car for such a low price. An auto for the same distance would be more expensive in Mumbai for a fact. I would rather pay 2-3X the current Zoom car rates and get a much well maintained car.
Probably the reason why the cars are so poorly maintained, and yet find takers.
I’ve rented a zoom car only once, in early 2017, and it was mechanical sound, though delivered unwashed even then.

But Zoom cars are often less than half the price of international services like Avis.
A lot of young people would find it within their reach and with the general Indian attitude towards public/ somebody else’s property these cars would end up unusable in a few months.

Last edited by one-77 : 10th March 2020 at 16:08.
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Old 10th March 2020, 17:01   #1679
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

On my experience of having rented a car multiple times in USA, the rental agencies hold the customer accountable about the condition of the car when it is returned. Usually, it should be returned in as-is manner after picking it up. If they find out that the car is exceedingly unclean/dirty other than normal usage, the credit card would be charged for cleaning it. Similarly, anything about the repairs are also clearly mentioned while picking up the car.

Here in India, rules may have been existing on paper but not sure if the customer will be held accountable to the same degree as in USA - especially when it comes to keeping the car clean. I guess, even if the rental agency holds the customer accountable if something happened, we will see cases where customer argues, shouts, losing his temper instead of paying up.

After reading here various experiences on using rental cars, I would never be able to rent one because of unreliability of finding a good mechanical and clean car.

One question: While renting out the car from zoom/revv etc, are there terms & conditions indicating that if the car is unclean when returned, additional charges would be put on customer? If so, it is the failure of the agency to get the car cleaned or the in-charge of the parking lot failing to implementing it properly.

Last edited by bvasista : 10th March 2020 at 17:02.
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Old 10th March 2020, 17:17   #1680
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Default Re: Zoom Car Reviews - Self Drive Rentals in India

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Originally Posted by subhro1988 View Post
Also, this time I observed that when I was going through a State Highway, I received this message.
Attachment 1978604
If they go around texting people who are just entering dangerous / accident prone areas and expect them to read that text while driving, I guess an accident is much more likely to happen.
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