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Experience with Zafira car rental

Singapore
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21 posts
6 reviews
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Experience with Zafira car rental

I engaged Zafira car rental for my Bandung trip 2 weeks ago. As none of us in the group couldnt speak Bahasa Indonesia, I specifically request for an English speaking driver and Pak Tam, the owner of Zafira car rental assure me that the driver is able to communicate in English.

It turn out that on the day of arrival, the driver was late. I have to called Pak Tam and he told me that the driver is on his way. We waited almost 20minutes before the driver reached to pick us up. I have indicated the time of arrival in the email and Pak Tam even emailed me few days before to reconfirm the timing.

The driver couldnt communicate with us in English and we can only rely on the itinerary which I have printed out to inform the driver where we wanted to go. We even have to ask the hotel's receptionist to translate for us as we changed some of our itinerary.

The other thing which I would like to highlight is Zafira car rental would collect the full payment on the first day. I asked Pak Tam in the email about paying the driver at the end of the service and he replied that I can pay at the end of each day or full payment on the first day. Through the translation of the hotel's receptionist, we should have an invoice from Pak Tam which we didnt received at all. I dont feel comfortable paying the driver and we ask the hotel's receptionist to translate for us that we will pay when we received the invoice. The driver brought the invoice on the second day and we paid him full at the end of the second day for our four days trip. I have read in this forum about this but I'm still skeptical that the driver may not turn up after we made the full payment. My worries was put to rest as the driver did turn up for the rest of the trip.

I have engaged drivers in other destinations which I have been to and all are paid at the end of the day. This is the first time I have encountered full payment on the first day. For those who wanted to engage Zafira car rental, please take note of these points which I highlighted.

St. Gallen...
Destination Expert
for Bandung
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1,869 posts
59 reviews
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1. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

Thanks for pointing this to us and these are the few points to take note the next time other travellers book driver in Bandung:

1) The driver could be late due to traffic jam in Bandung, if that's on the weekends.. Other than that, it should be no excuse..

2) I prefer not to book drivers in advance in a foreign country, even if it costs more to book on the day itself.. Did that in Vietnam on Christmas Day!!

3) I don't think paying in full on the second day is needed.. The first person that you should call regarding the invoice is Pak Tam.. The problem here is probably due to language communication instead of company mismanagement..

4) Drivers are usually not conversant in English probably with the exception of Bali, no matter which country they are.. the best is to do your own itinerary and show it to the driver, in which the OP did the right thing..

Cheers

Jakarta
Destination Expert
for Jakarta, Bandung, Singapore
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44,981 posts
86 reviews
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2. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

rainy_girl84,

Thank you very much for the IMPORTANT and current update. The info on car rental service is BDG is vital for the majority of visitors.

The conclusions:

1/ i will remove zafira car from the recommended rentals list

2/ expectation of the SUFFICIENTLY fluent English speaking driver in BDG is in vain. If your driver can distinguish YES from NO - in local way he SPEAKS english. EXPECT no more.

3/ payment without invoice and for the whole service in advance is unacceptable practice

4/ being late and delaying visitor/ client with their itinerary is also unacceptable.

5/ zafira car is ALREADY spoiled with customer attention and our support on the forum. It will have none from now on..........................

Lombok, Indonesia
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8,312 posts
5 reviews
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3. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

Sounds appropriate Schonefeld, English ability must extend further than Yes/No, though it would be quite unwise to expect any decent level of fluency .

The driver, or manager should have had the customers contact number and advised of a legitimate delay.

Payment up front is also a little odd.

I would not do it myself, other than to advance money from the daily amount to buy fuel if the driver was sent out without cash.

That should not happen though and normally I would reserve that action only to someone I already knew as it could lead to misunderstandings concerning the agreement as negotiated daily rates often include fuel.

Sounds like Zafira may have lost the plot/

Edited: 23 April 2012, 11:44
St. Gallen...
Destination Expert
for Bandung
Level Contributor
1,869 posts
59 reviews
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4. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

<<5/ zafira car is ALREADY spoiled with customer attention and our support on the forum. It will have none from now on..........................>>

Agreed!!

Jakarta
Destination Expert
for Jakarta, Bandung, Singapore
Level Contributor
44,981 posts
86 reviews
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5. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

Stefzzz and j_hurcules,

thanks for support.

Kuala Lumpur...
1 post
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6. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

I'd been to bandung twice and enganged with zafiracar..but never have problem with them

The service was very good and excellent even my mother who never trust an outsider felt very comfortable with Pak Tam and the staff .The service from the driver was excellent and sufficient.

We dont have any problem with the payment to be given on the first day to the driver.

And defenitly i will engganged with zafira car in the future with no regret

Edited: 16 June 2013, 15:24
St. Gallen...
Destination Expert
for Bandung
Level Contributor
1,869 posts
59 reviews
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7. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

Bandunglover3812.

While most of the time car rentals deliver their services perfectly, however there are actually times that they put travelers at the disadvantage and did something not consistent.. It is unacceptable to put travelers into such situation due to the amount of emotional stress.. All these 'small' incoveniences brings shame to our country..

Had a terrible driver in Vietnam, and I won't recommend the company big time.. although other visitor may not feel the same way..

Since you are a frist time poster, I don't know whether you are a representative of the company or a genuine poster.. however, Your wish to engage them is your personal choice and I hope you don't advertise this company in the forum..

Cheers

Edited: 16 June 2013, 18:03
8. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

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Removed on: 28 May 2014, 20:30
Kuala Lumpur...
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31 posts
27 reviews
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9. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

Hi there,

Just to share my experience:

I engaged Zafira twice. Once in Mar12 and another in June12.

For March, we took the service from Bandung. The driver was prompt, and I was prepared with my itinerary. Even though I could speak Malay which is close to Indonesia, I do not want to take chances. He looked at my itinerary and suggested some tweaks due to road condition and know hows. I accepted it. The car was pretty good for the price I paid. He did give a bill which he says a practice to pay on the first day, but I told him I am more comfortable paying by daily (end of service). He said he will come back to me after talking to the owner, and which they obliged. It was a pleasant experience with that driver and throughout the course of 4 days. We even met Pak Tam on one of the days since I said its good if I could meet him. We gave him good tip.

2nd trip was taken from Jakarta, but depart from Bandung. The driver was not as good. He was not even wearing the company uniform, and do not provide any recommendation or anything. He was basically a driver and not a tour guide. We arrived Bandung on 2nd day night, and 3rd day there was a new driver for my Bandung location. He was extremely pleasant and provided good information. He said he is new in the company (less than 1 year) but his driving and guidance skills are good.

I do not remember all the drivers name since it has been a year.

However, the conclusion that I made was:-

- The pricing this company gave was good which included car, driver and gas. Sometimes they extend their hours even.

- The drivers can vary in terms of commitment and skills. The best way is to feedback to the owner if you think the driver is not good.

- This is a local managed business - do not compare with big travel companies service, when in fact you are paying much lower (which I believe why most people go with this company in the first place)

- Have your itinerary or idea where you are going. Dont expect the driver to be a genie :)

- I would definitely use this company again. I have recommended personally to some of my friends and the feedback has been good too.

St. Gallen...
Destination Expert
for Bandung
Level Contributor
1,869 posts
59 reviews
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10. Re: Experience with Zafira car rental

NrlY,

Thanks for your report.. I have to agree that driver quality can b very inconsistent.. I do find that people who are not first time visitors in Bandung have better experiences with car rental companies since they are more experienced.. Still I won't recommend car rental companies, they have caused too much 'trouble' to many first time visitors..

Cheers

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