My pleasant experience with MyChoize self drive car rental service

MyChoize has a decent selection of cars, from hatchbacks to MUVs, both in MT and AT options. I quickly found an Innova Crysta diesel AT.

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Background:

With the onset of summer vacations, my family from Bangalore decided to visit us in May. This time, however, the kids were adamant that they wanted to go to the beach.

The one advantage of staying in Mumbai is the sheer options and accessibility to some fantastic beaches along the Konkan coast, and so the plans were set in motion for a family beach vacation. Now, however, came the next challenge!

The total number of travelers was 4 adults and 2 children and there was no way in heaven or hell my MY2019 Nexon ZXA+ was going to be sufficient. None of my friends have a 7-seater vehicle that I could borrow, and this led to my search for a self-drive vehicle.

The search:

Over the past few years, there has been an explosion of self-drive rental options for one to choose from. Zoom and Revv have been around for a while and new players are constantly jumping the bandwagon.

However, during my research, I came across some horror stories about Zoom. Right from the condition of the vehicle to the customer service has been slammed on various review portals including Google and hence, Zoom was immediately dismissed. As I was traveling with a family comprising of 2 young children and a senior citizen, their safety was of paramount importance. Hence, the rental company had to inspire confidence. Revv has a good selection of cars, but I was looking for a MUV with an automatic transmission which they did not offer.

After a bit more research, I came across MyChoize, the self-drive rental arm of Orix Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd., which has been in corporate fleet space for years. In my earlier corporate stints, Orix was our corporate car rental company and I have never had any issues with their service or the quality of vehicles.

MyChoize:

Booking the right car was a straightforward process. Download the app, register yourself, upload the necessary documentation (driver’s license/Aadhar Card) and your profile is verified!
(Please note: The address mentioned on the photo ID and the driver’s license needs to match. If not, there is a separate verification process).

They have a decent selection of cars, from hatchbacks to MUVs, both in MT and AT options. Within 10 seconds of searching, I found exactly what I wanted, an Innova Crysta Diesel AT!

Their fare structure is straightforward:

  • Rental cost depending on the number of kilometers/day (120/240/unlimited with INR 13 per kilometer if the daily limit is exceeded).
  • Refundable security deposit of INR 3,000.

I got in touch with the customer service team of MyChoize to clarify certain queries which I had and never had I had such an awesome experience. They are polite to a fault, professional, knowledgeable, and provide all the necessary information. Once my queries were resolved, booked the Innova immediately. The rental breakup was as below:

  • Rental charges for 2 days 10 hours INR 10404.
  • FastTag charges INR 80.
  • Offsite Collection Charges (home pickup) INR 300.
  • Discounts (Summer Offer) INR 2080.
  • GST (14% SGST+ 14% CGST) INR 2436.
  • Total INR 11140.
  • Refundable security deposit INR 3000.
  • Final Total INR 14140.

Points to note:

  • FasTag toll deductions are taxed at 18% GST.
  • Fuel is prefilled by MyChoize up to a certain level. As per the rental agreement, one must return the car with the same amount of fuel. Any additional fuel filled; the amount is credited back to the customer. If the car is returned with less fuel, the balance fuel cost is deducted from the security deposit along with a service charge which attracts taxes.
  • If the car is returned in a dirty condition, there is an additional cleaning charge which is deducted from the security deposit.

Rental Agreement – Issues:

Once the rental amount was paid, I was emailed the rental agreement. After perusing the agreement, I came across multiple contradictions across the document. Examples of these are listed below. After pointing these out to MyChoize, I received a call from Abhishek Jain, the Mumbai regional manager for MyChoize, and the following explanations were provided:

PROVIDING VEHICLE ON HIRE: Point 5 The Hirer is not permitted to use / drive the Vehicle Beyond the speed limit of 125Kms/per hour whereas Annexure A of the agreement stated

Annexure-A SCHEDULE OF CHARGES: Driving at a speed above the maximum speed of 80 km/hr – 1st Instance >= 80 km/hr. – INR 2500 + GOVT. fines (if any) plus expulsion from MYCHOIZE if it happens again in the next booking.

Clarification: All MyChoize cars have built in speed governers limiting the speed to 8 kmph, however certain for cars there are issues in mapping this with the ECU. In such a situation 125 kmph is permissible however any challans issued for traffic violations on account of over-speeding needs to be cleared by the renter.

PAYMENT TERMS: The Hirer should possess a valid credit card – I have made the payment via UPI. I was not informed a credit card is mandatory.

Clarification: Bookings done via UPI do not need a credit card .

ACCIDENTS (PARTIAL OR TOTAL) & THEFT OF VEHICLE:

Damage cost up to INR 6,000/- will be deducted from customer advance security deposit – The refundable security deposit is only INR 3000.

Clarification: If the damages exceed INR 3000 which is the security deposit, the balance will be recovered from the renter. The mention of the advance security deposit of INR 6000 was an error.

The pick-up experience:

The pick-up time which I scheduled was 7AM at their corporate office in Marol. They have facilities for pick up at Bandra Kurla Complex, CSIA, and other locations. Some of these locations are serviced 24 hours and some are serviced starting at 8 AM (ex: Bandra Kurla Complex). Home drop and pick-up are also provided at an additional cost of INR 300 excluding Navi Mumbai and Thane.

After reaching the MyChoize center, a quick signing of the terms and conditions was done. It was mandatory to carry a photocopy of the same residence proof submitted for verification along and the driver’s license. The Innova was spic and span. The interiors were thoroughly cleaned like how you would receive your car after an interior cleaning treatment at your vehicle’s service center. A complete walkaround was done along with the MyChoize representative to point out the existing dents and scratches. This was noted done by me and the representative via photographs and a video. Sharing some exterior images for reference:

Note the scratch.

Note the scratch.

The representative took the time to show me the location of the jack and the placement area in case of any eventualities. A copy of the RC, PUC, road tax, and other documents was provided. Formalities were completed in under 30 minutes. Half a tank of diesel was provided along with the car.

Innova Crysta Diesel 2.8 V AT:

The Crysta assigned to me unfortunately did not have a navigation system. This was my first experience driving the Crysta or any car larger than my Nexon. What surprised me the most was how easy it was to get used to the size and power of the engine. In under 15 minutes of driving from the MyChoize center towards my residence, I got an adequate feel of the driving characteristics, engine power, and road manners.

On the highway, she was bliss to drive. Never out of its powerband, the engine and the automatic gearbox combination kept me happy, and cruising in her is fun. The Crysta is one car that you can drive for hours without any issues and the interior space and comfort were excellent. An excellent mile muncher to boot! Bad roads are gobbled up and smooth tarmac driving was exhilarating. Overtaking heavy vehicles was done without any fuss. I even got to try the Eco and Power modes, which helped tremendously during my journey. All in all, my heart was at peace!

Returning the Crysta:

Since I had selected a home pick-up post my journey, the representative came over exactly at the time selected by me. A quick inspection of the interiors and exteriors was done to match the condition of the car. This was done completely via their service application. A quick confirmation and signature and the representative was on his way.

Wrapping up:

My experience with MyChoize was brilliant. Despite the niggles in the service agreement, the team took time out to explain and clarify my concerns, the car was in top-notch condition with immaculately cleaned interiors, hassle-free and professional customer service, and a wide range of cars for all budgets and needs making them an ideal self-drive partner.

I am definitely using their services again when needed without an iota of doubt.

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