Ted's Big Tow---Day Zero

Getting the trailer from U-Haul...A big Freakin' Hassle
May 2, 2007


First of all, I reserved the trailer last week, Wednesday, April 25th from the Laurel, MD service center. Lots of project planning lead time here I thought ...I confirmed the reservation again on May 1st. At that time U-Haul told me that the trailer might have to be picked up at a different location than Laurel depending where a trailer was on Wednesday when I needed it. OK--no worries. On Tuesday UHaul tells me that I have to go to a service center on Rt 1 in Baltimore---OK, only 13 miles further north than Laurel. I leave work with the truck at 5PM Wednesday and head for Baltimore. UHaul is open till 7PM, no problem. I get there at 5:30 and wait my turn in the queue. I'm asked to place my truck in front of the trailer to get checked out. OK so far. I go back inside and the clerk is helping someone else-darn. I wait, then another clerk starts asking me about the truck and the intended car I'll be towing. He doesn't want to see the truck check out the way the first clerk did, he justs wants to know about the towing. The process proceeds until he exclaims that the combination of my truck, the trailer, and the weight being towed is not recommended by the computer. He then summarily states that I cannot rent the trailer! I explain to him that I have already had this discussion with the manager of the Laurel store, and that he told me the computer would say "Not Recommended" and I could just acknowledge that I understood that I was doing something not recommended. I cannot get this guy to even listen to me. This young guy resists and says that if the computer does not recommend the setup, he WILL NOT RENT THE EQUIPMENT. I'm Frosted by this time and it's almost 6PM.

I get in the truck reeling about what I will do now. I had visions of this whole adventure falling apart even before I was able to leave. I head south on Rt. 1 and decide to try the Laurel Center and see if I can get lucky. Traffic is a hassle, and I get to Laurel about 6:30. I can't believe it, there is a auto trailer in the lot! I go inside and the same Manager is there. I wait to get a chance to talk to him, but he says that the trailer in the lot is already reserved for someone on Friday. BUMMER. I explain my experience in Baltimore, and he can't believe that I was treated so poorly. He calls the Manager in Baltimore to explain the situation and get them to help me, but the Manager is not in the store - I had asked when I was there. The Baltimore people also put him on hold for about 5 minutes. He hangs up the phone and says he will just have corporate bring him the trailer from Baltimore for the other reservation, and I can have the one in the lot...A LIFE SAVER! Now just in case you get this far and wonder why I want a trailer in Laurel, MD when I don't need it until I am in Florida...GOOD QUESTION. What I found out was: the one-way rental from FL to MD was $530, and the 4-day roundtrip rental from Laurel was $200. I decided I could buy a lot of gas for $330 and also guarantee that I have a trailer to use when I need it. WHEW! Now off on the adventure. . . .