Fee Detective

Rental Car Theft is Common, Especially at Denver International Airport

Burnout

My family has been the victim of motor vehicle theft twice -- once a 20-year-old Toyota truck (recovered) and once a 15-year-old Renault Alliance (we felt sorry that thief). Motor vehicle theft is a crime that's on an uptick according to the FBI, despite tremendous advancements in anti-theft technology. And although airports possess a reputation of having "cameras and security everywhere", the Denver International Airport and their associated rental car agencies have a profound issue with automotive theft, including one staff member getting run over in the past month.

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The Fee Detective Heads Back to Los Angeles, 15 Years into Building a Consolidated Rental Facility

LAX

AutoSlash and the Fee Detective have visited California multiple times. There's the voluntary assessment of 3.5% rental car companies chose to place on renters to promote tourism. California holds four of the top 10 spots on the "Most Expensive Free Rental Day" list. And then there's San Francisco. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) had escaped treatment by the Fee Detective ... until now. You see, the Fee Detective isn't fond of taxes on imaginary facilities.

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Montana Aims to Use Car Rental Tax Increase to Help Fill Massive Budget Hole

Montana

When states across the U.S. find a budget hole that needs filling, rental car taxes are a comparatively easy target for "revenue enhancement". By this point, it feels as if we've written about this topic more often than the industry trade group Curb Auto Rental Taxes! And while the increased taxes are often earmarked for projects that residents don't want to fund directly (like professional sports stadiums), the recent debate out of the State of Montana's Special Legislative Session is use new taxes on hotels and rental cars to help work their way out of a $227 million budget deficit. The primary opposition so far? The hotels and rental car companies, although the real pushback should be from residents.

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The Fee Detective Visits Indianapolis, Home of High Speeds and High Taxes

Indianapolis

Indianapolis is a great city in many ways. Fans of automotive history (as we are) can always visit the Indianapolis Motor Speedway or the nearby Dallara IndyCar Factory. There are great new hotels built because the NCAA is headquartered (for now) in Indianapolis. And Indianapolis has a very nice airport when the airfare is right. But the members of the AutoSlash team who transit Indianapolis usually do so in our own cars, as we have an aversion to paying taxes that effectively add 50% to the "base" rate of our rentals. We also cringe a bit inside knowing that some of the sites best known in car culture excessively tax car culture! So how do the taxes in Indianapolis stack up and where do the funds go? And will we ever again have a sing along to Back Home Again in Indiana?

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Fee If It's Hot, Fee If It's Cold: In Canada, You Pay Either Way

Hot/Cold

Large swaths of Canada epitomize the definition of "remote." We didn't expect to get search requests for towns that were five hours from the nearest rental car office, but it turns out that's not a rare occurrence in Canada.

In addition to wide open spaces and endless forests (at least occasionally dusted in snow, of course), Canada may be known for its citizens' politeness, but crafty rental station managers (combined with the diverse Canadian climate and government regulations) set the stage for a multitude of fees worth a look by the Fee Detective.

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