Atlas Choice Fails to Pay Car Rental Companies

Thousands of customers may have worthless car rental bookings through Atlas Choice this holiday season, according to a report by The Guardian.

Atlas Choice customers have reported being told at the rental car counters that their bookings wouldn’t be honored unless they paid again. Atlas Choice hadn’t paid the car’s actual provider for the bookings, says the report.

Angry customers have posted comments about the London-based company on Twitter and other social media.

Chris Clifton-Brown wrote online: “Booked through them recently, and when I turned up to collect my car the hire firm made me aware that Atlas Choice are not paying the actual hire firms. I had to pay the hire firm for the car again even though Atlas Choice had already taken my money.”

Operating since 1999, Atlas Choice has partnered with several web-based travel businesses and used the booking agent website via the TravelSupermarket comparison website. A TravelSupermarket spokeswoman told the Guardian that it pulled Atlas Choice from its listings three weeks ago when Atlaschoice missed a payment and couldn’t be reached.

Currently, the Atlas Choice website says it’s not accepting any new bookings.

“We have requested that all car hire companies keep cars in place to fulfill bookings and honor the previously agreed price,” Atlas Choice states on its website. “In the event that this does not occur, we recommend that you visit a travel search engine like Skyscanner or TravelSupermarket to source an alternative supplier — at the present time, Atlas Choice is unfortunately unable to assist. Please accept our sincere apologies for any inconvenience that this may cause you, especially at this time of year.”

Click here to read the full Guardian report.


  1. [ December 27, 2016 @ 11:16PM ]

    They are in Liquidation. Wonder how this has been missed in the entire writeup?

    So if you ask for a chargeback from the creid card company, they clearly mention, refunds can't be completed because they are liquidating (not sufficient funds to refund)

  2. Robert Pettitt [ January 4, 2017 @ 02:55AM ]

    The car hire companies are recouping their losses from the card numbers left by their customers for damage cover. I hired a car in Latvia in October 2016 through Atlaschoice, having paid in two payments in February and August. I have now been charged again (less Atlaschoice's profit, presumably) in December 2016 by using the card number I left for security in October.

  3. Peacock [ January 7, 2017 @ 08:44AM ]

    Beware,Atlas Choice have gone bankrupt but they are now using previous customers emails to try and sell Atlasdirect travel insurance!!

  4. Franck [ January 20, 2017 @ 11:52AM ]

    I hired a car in September 2016 via Atlas choice paying nearly £900 excess deposit. After many emails still no payment returned. How oh How do I get my deposit back ??!

  5. J R Brown [ January 24, 2017 @ 03:11AM ]

    I arranged for a hire car through Atlas Choice over the last Christmas & New Year period in Spain. They advised me, the night before I was due to fly to Alicante, of the fact that my voucher would not be accepted by the hire company. Firefly. They also advised me to contact my credit card supplier to obtain a refund under the "Charge Back" scheme that is operated by card companies. Also to check with Firefly that the car was still available and if so the revised cost, or to find an alternative car supplier. I eventually re-hired the car at Alicante, with Firefly, at a somewhat higher cost.
    I contacted my card provider,Barclaycard Visa, whilst in Spain, who were very helpful, and who advised me to contact them again when I returned home to the UK. All details given to them during the call were logged in a report and I was given a reference number and a direct contact number to call when I got home. So, no press 1 for this, press 2 for that etc. I was also advised to keep copies of all correspondence from Atlas Choice, voucher details, emails etc. As instructed, I called Barclay Card on my return to the UK and as all the details of my claim were already on record Barclay Card IMMEDIATELY advised me that the money I had paid to Atlas Choice would be refunded on my next statement.
    I received the refund on my February statement as promised.
    The only proviso was that in the event I did get a refund from Atlas Choice I would repay this to Barclaycard. Needless to say no refund has been forthcoming or is likely to.
    Barclay Card would obviously not pay the increased difference I had had to pay when re hiring the car. Only the amount charged against the card by Atlas Choice, obviously.
    Given more notice of the problems at Atlas Choice I could probably have obtained a cheaper deal elsewhere.

    Well done and thank you Barclay Card.

    p.s. I had used Atlas Choice on numerous occasions previously without any problem.

  6. Kelli [ February 21, 2017 @ 12:10PM ]

    We were in Rome In July and rented a car with another couple. We paid this rental at the time. This past week, my friend has been billed again for this rental !!!!! Buyer/Renter beware * * * * * * This is fraudulent and you should be cancelling your old credit cards and getting a new one before this happens to you !!!!

  7. Linda [ February 23, 2017 @ 02:03PM ]

    placed a booking with Atlascars last February for a hire car from Verona airport in August. The booking was placed with Laucauto who have now taken the full cost plus extra direct from our credit card. We had problems when we arrived to pick up the car because Laucauto said they had no booking for us but after speaking to Atlascars who assured us the booking had been paid for, it was sorted out. Obviously lied to us. Now a battle to try to recoup our money.

Comment On This Story

Comment: (Max. 10000 characters)  
Please leave blank:
* Please note that every comment is moderated.


Newsletter: Sign up to receive latest news, articles, and much more.

Read the latest

Auto Focus Blog: A blog covering fleets, auto rental and the business of cars

What Does the Future Hold for Fleet Sales to Car Rental?

With domestic automakers pulling back on rental fleet sales and lower overall light-duty sales projected, the car rental industry will have to adjust.

Who is the Local Operator of the Future?

In an autonomous vehicle environment, the business model will change, but fleet management will be more important than it is today.

Five Business Model Trends for 2017

As new forms of mobility take flight, the borders with traditional car rental are starting to erode.

Job Finder: Access Top Talent. Fill Key Positions.