I'm bouncing around the country this holiday season, and just came across the following in the fine print of my Avis rental car contract:
Yes, I read the fine print of my contracts. Maybe that's why I'm not deserving of a "I didn't know better so it's someone elses fault" bailout. Many of us have seen similar "energy fees" from our raw material suppliers and especially shipping providers such as UPS and FedEx. With Avis I had to scratch my head a little bit since I already pay for the fuel in the car, but I guess there are other "energy" costs involved in their business.
I believe August was about the time that record high oil costs began to come down, and now they're at the lowest point in four years. A wicked steep, dramatic decline. Did the myriad of energy fees go away? Of course not… sort of like "temporary taxes." We should actually be getting a rebate as their "pre-fee" business model was presumably based on energy costs significantly higher than they are now.
I tried pushing back at the Avis counter agent. Getting into a discussion of raw material and supply chain commodity prices with a counter agent is a lost cause, although in a somewhat sick way it was frustratingly amusing. Having that discussion with professional materials management and sales agents at raw material and service suppliers should be a different story.
Read the fine print and push back, my friends. You are being taken advantage of at a time when I'm betting your business could use every penny.