If you’re rented a car or truck from Budget, you may be receiving a check in the mail. But don’t sign it.

There are offers in the mail referencing Budget car rentals, but signing the check will activate your membership in “Everyday Values,” a shopping “club” membership that promises big discounts but costs you hefty membership fees. The program is managed by Trilegiant, a former Cendant subsidiary that specializes in separating people from their money in convenient monthly installments.

But the really sneaky part — and the reason this is relevant to travel — is that your signature on the check gives Trilegiant the right to get the credit card information you used when you rented a vehicle with Budget.

That’s unacceptable. Swiping the card for a rental transaction is intended for use in the rental transaction, and that transaction alone. It’s shameful that Budget has no qualms sharing your card number with a company that uses such fishy customer acquisition tactics.

But this is unfortunately not new. Complaints on the web date back to 2005, and may be even older, based on Trilegiant’s longstanding history of shady offers. Budget and Trilegiant were once under the same corporate umbrella (Cendant). But while they’re no longer corporate siblings, their partnership lives on.

Inquiries to Budget went unanswered.

Full scans of the letter I received after the jump…


budget everyday values Budget is aiding and abetting abuse of your credit card information
budget everyday values2 Budget is aiding and abetting abuse of your credit card information

pixel Budget is aiding and abetting abuse of your credit card information

19 Responses to “Budget is aiding and abetting abuse of your credit card information”

  1. Oliver Says:

    Send it straight to the FTC?

  2. Bill Says:

    It’s high time these trilegiant douchebags were put out of the public misery. Too bad the BBB is such a joke, and most AG’s offices are made up of useless, lazy, overpaid morons. People should just go to company headquarters and start beating on random employees, or calling and harassing them into submission

  3. Bill Says:

    It’s time these trilegient douchebags were put out of the public’s misery. Too bad the BBB is a joke, and most AG’s are nothing more than useless, lazy, overpaid morons. People should show up at company headquarters and just start beating random employees and calling and harassing them into submission

  4. why god hates me » $10 Check From Budget Could End Up Costing Lot More [Budget] Says:

    [...] you’ve rented from Budget and get a $10, check in the mail, don’t sign it, reports Upgrade Travel Better. The fine print says doing so gives “Trilegiant” permission to sign you up in a monthly [...]

  5. Matt Says:

    It may well be perfectly legal, but I cannot understand how Budget could possibly think this is good for business in the long term.

  6. Matt Says:

    I love that, so if I take mark’s check to the bank as the Bearer, I sign mark up for this… that can’t be legal!

  7. why god hates me » $10 Check From Budget Secretly Signs You Up For Costly Club [Budget] Says:

    [...] If you’ve rented from Budget and get a $10, check in the mail, don’t sign it, reports Upgrade Travel Better. The fine print says doing so gives “Trilegiant” permission to sign you up in a monthly [...]

  8. Joe Says:

    Did you notice that the return address is the North Carolina Processing Center, but from Nashville, TN?

  9. Consumerist | $10 Check From Budget Secretly Signs You Up For Costly Club [Budget] Says:

    [...] you’ve rented from Budget and get a , check in the mail, don’t sign it, reports Upgrade Travel Better. The fine print says doing so gives “Trilegiant” permission to sign you up in a monthly [...]

  10. S A Says:

    Hefty membership fees indeed: $74.99 billed semi-annually!

    Budget must really be hurting if they’re in cahoots with these scamsters.

  11. Irv Says:

    This is unacceptable, and shame on Budget for being implicit in this chicanery! Plenty of other rental agencies to use…

  12. thaitourde Says:

    Thanks for taking the time to explain this in a way thats so easy to understand.

  13. NewYorkology (NewYorkology) Says:

    Twitter Comment


    rt @upgradetravel Scam: Budget Rent-a-Car still selling creditcard # to Trilegiant. Got another one of these in mail: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  14. Upgrades and Downgrades — Duty free and other scams, OpenSkies, scorpions, fees, more | Upgrade: Travel Better Says:

    [...] minimal benefits — all billed to the credit card you used when you rented a car from Budget. I reported on this back in January. I just received a similar solicitation this week, offering me a $10 check in exchange for a [...]

  15. MarkSeattle Says:

    Received two of these scam checks in the mail toward the end of September. They innocently look like rebate checks that come back after a rebate request on a product purchase somewhere, and I’m sure some people cash them without really looking at them.

    Both were mailed from zip code 06101 (Hartford, CT), but with two different return addresses and the two checks are for different Trilegiant products:

    Processing Center, PO Box 41249, Nashville, TN 37204 – is for “Privacy Guard” and costs $13.99 monthly for the first year, and then $14.99 monthly for the second year, in monthly thereafter “at the then-current monthly fee.”

    Washington Processing Center, PO Box 41618, Nashville, TN 37204 – is for “Everyday Values” and costs $79.99 every six months for the first year, and then $89.99 for the next two six-month installments, and “the then-current fee” every six months thereafter.

    They went to my home address, even though I use a PO box for my mail. I hate Budget Rent-A-Car for promoting this scam and giving my personal information and credit card info to these thieves.

  16. Danielle Says:

    So how exactly do you get these jerks to stop charging your account? I have trying for months to figure out what the charge was and now that i know i want it canceled. I even changed my card number and it still charges my bank account. I dont get it.

  17. Liza Says:

    Please share your story like I did and take action.

    It’s easy, just contact Freed & Weiss.

    Good Luck,
    Liza

    Details:
    Trilegiant Scam: HELP STOP IT!

    Trilegiant is behind more consumer abuse. If you have been scammed with bogus charges, take action and contact Freed & Weiss – info @ freedweiss (dot) com (No Spaces), or call, toll free 866.779.9610

  18. Michael Says:

    I just received a renewal notice — for $129.99 — from Everyday Values, which of course I’d never heard of. I was told I could just call the phone number on the notice to avoide this ‘renewal.’ The phone number was disconnected. By googling, I figured out Everyday Values is the same thing as Everyday Values Gold…which is the same thing as Trilegiant in Stamford Ct – and they’re all still scamming away, as of today, August 11, 2011. When I reached a ‘supervisor’, and asked how long I’d been a ‘member,’ he blithely informed me that I’d been a member for four years! So four times $129.99 a year (well, to be fair, it used to be just $119.99, explained the supervisor, whose name was Mark Wright)..So that’s nearly $500, all sucked from me without my knowledge, and of course for nothing….and thank you Liza for the heads up on Freed and Weiss. I’m going to follow up right now.

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