I've posted this on all the forums I'm on to spread the word.
DO NOT EVER USE Nation Wide Airport Parking! EVER.
Online, it shows that their office is based in London:
71-75 Shelton Street, London
This is actually an address of a company that provides alternative address...
If you want to know why, read on.
So, back in September, we went on holidays and booked normal airport parking, as usual. While we were away, in Portugal, the rules have changed and we needed to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival. I've read somewhere that if you go to another country that has a airbridge - your quarantine starts as soon as you leave the country that doesn't have the airbridge. So, we decided to go to Poland for a week after Portugal with a connecting flight in London. My girlfriend quickly booked something that was advertised as ''meet and greet parking''. She didn't think twice as it was on an official Stansted Airport website.
We got back from Portugal, moved the car to the Nation Wide Parking - it is not meet and greet - you go to the Orange zone, have to pay minimum of £8 (hidden fee, that is not mentioned online - same thing on arrival) or so to give the car to a driver (who happened to look like a random dude and smelled of weed). Off we went.
When in Poland, the quarantine rules changed again and we had to come back 3 days earlier. Called the parking as soon as we found out, they said there's no problem, you just need to pay £15 to amend the booking and you can get the car early - fair enough, didn't think much about it. We were instructed to give them a call when we get our bags, so after landing and getting the bags, we did just that. The guy on the phone said ''no problem, the car will be there in 20-30 minutes''. Great stuff. It was around 21:00 already and raining, so we were waiting... 20, 30, 50 minutes. Gave them few calls in the meantime, they answered some, said ''you have to wait'' and hang up. After almost 3 hours (3 hours!) waiting they said our car is blocked by another car and they lost their keys. Therefore, they can't access our car. And guess what... they hang up again! We called and called for another 30 minutes or so and someone answered and said ''customer service will call you soon''. We got a call from a guy instructing us to get a taxi and they will refund the fare, and that our car will be delivered next day. We forced him to send us an email, so we have that in writing, took a taxi home (£240). So, that was Friday. The car was supposed to be delivered on Saturday, no reply, not answering our phone calls. Same thing on Sunday, but at the end of the day some guy on the phone said that they had a guy sick with covid, another guy quit and it's a bit hectic. Ok, fair enough - we can understand it, no problem. He said the car will be delivered Monday by 4pm. Ok, Monday... 4.30pm we get a phone call from a guy who doesn't speak English very well saying ''postcode, coming''. Car showed up at... around 23:00! Filthy. Muddy inside out. The whole drivers door was covered in dry mud, it looked like they left a window open and it just rained mud. Or they did some mud drifting, I don't know. The whole interior was so messed up that the local valet service could get it all out. So, there's that.
We've been trying to contact them for a while now but no luck. We've been in touch with Citizen advice and they have advised us to try and contact them (which we were doing anyway) and if no luck send a letter. So, we wrote a letter, printed all the correspondence we've had, pictures of the dirty car and all. Posted Signed For. The tracking of the letter indicates that it was delivered and signed for on the 21st of October but on the 22nd of October it's been ''refused and returned to sender''. So, they basically opened it, read it, decided not to do anything about it, and next day when the postie arrived they said there's been a mistake or something and we want to refuse it. I am shocked and disgusted by the way this company operates. Reading reviews online this is not an uncommon occurrence. How can they even advertise on the official Stansted website?
We are in contact with Citizen advice to see what we can do next.
I would have thought a matter for Trading Standards rather than Citizens Advice.
They are in touch instructing us what to do and have also forwarded our case onto the Trading Standards. I think they work together.
Sounds awful. I'm not too hot on how SEO works but maybe change the thread title to:
DO NOT EVER USE Nation Wide Airport Parking! EVER.
I've seen something about this scam on tv last year I think, they basically park your car in a field/muddy bank on the side of the road or use it themselves whilst you are away. Proper scumbags
I'd have thought small claims court would be an option too.
Money Claim Online I think is the .gov.uk bit to look at
Last time I left my car at Heathrow it was parked on a farm then they hit 90mph on the M4 bringing it back to me according to my tracker.
This all sounds familiar, had a mate who's car (nothing fancy) came back looking like it had been mini cabbed for a week, and the 700 miles it had clocked up, also had mud packed into archs and exhaust so stank until cleaned out, nice people.
I’m with @duncs. Small claims court and go for the owner and not the business. They can easily fold the business with no assets
I don’t thing well waste our time on this, we’ll see how far we can go with as little effort as possible. The purpose of this thread is just to make as many people as I can aware about this.
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