Manhattan, NY - UPDATE: Avis Apologizes, Says Documentation Policies Had Been Applied Inconsistently
New York, NY - One day after news broke that an Israeli customer had been refused service by Avis on the grounds that his identification was inadequate, the company’s corporate offices have confirmed that an apology has been issued and accepted.
As previously reported on VIN News, Dov Bergwerks, a long time customer of the national car rental chain, arrived at an Upper West Side Avis location on Saturday night to pick up a vehicle he had previously returned. Both the rental agent and an on-site manager told Bergwerks that his Israeli driver’s license was not an acceptable form of identification.
Public outcry regarding the incident, which made the rounds on news sites as well as social media, has been loud and vehement, with many posts and comments on the company’s Facebook page expressing disbelief at the incident and vowing to boycott the company. An online petition calling for the firing of the two employees garnered over 1,300 signatures in less than one day.
In a written statement emailed to Vos Iz Neias, Avis said that it had concluded its internal investigation and that an apology had been issued to Bergwerks, noting that its employees should have asked for a second form of identification in addition to his driver’s license.
“ We have found that we have been inconsistent in applying our policies with respect to documentation requirements with this customer, who has rented from us in the past without providing a second form of identification. We are committed to providing an outstanding car rental experience to our customers and believe that we should have done better here. We have spoken with the customer and apologized for the misunderstanding that occurred as a result of this inconsistency in applying our documentation policy, and the customer has accepted our apology.”
Avis said that it has never denied service to any customers based on religion or nationality and that it would take measures to ensure that all employees are better acquainted with the company’s standards regarding customer identification.
“We reiterate our policy that we do not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, national origin or sexual orientation. We intend to take steps, including additional training, to improve the consistency in our application of documentation policies.”
No mention was made of whether any reprimands were issued to the two employees at the 79th Street location or whether any punitive actions had been taken in regard to the incident.
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