Many of you have been following my adventure in attempting to lease a vehicle from a new company called Breeze so that I could use it to drive for the ride share programs and other app services. The following is a timeline of events of how that turned out.
On Mon, Dec 8, I attended a preliminary orientation at the Breeze office in Santa Monica to find out what the service was all about. There were about twenty of us crowded in a small room with a TV that played a video describing all the various app service available in Los Angeles that we could utilize once we got the car. It also took us through the fee breakdown which goes like this:
$250 registration fee = $50 VIN registration + $200 “administrative” costs
$195/week lease for a 2015 Toyota Prius – 1st week due the Friday after leaser takes ownership of vehicle
I took my time to greatly consider and weight my options cross referencing the pros and cons of what the program and vehicle would allow me to do. Though the program is surely expensive, I essentially do not have any other way to lease/obtain a car because of my current credit rating and a number of other factors. Thus, I decided to proceed. Thanks to a successfully funded GoFundMe campaign, I was able to pay the registration costs and sent an email for the company to debit the money from my account. That amount was debited from my account on Fri, Dec 12.
As they do, Breeze negotiated an insurance quote with their partners. I received what they stated was the lowest quote on Sat, Dec 13.
On Wed, Dec 17, I received an email from Jay with Breeze issuing me my official VIN number. With that on hand, I did my own insurance research and, unsurprisingly, was able to find a much lower insurance quote. With my new policy ready, I sent another email and awaited the next steps.
After sending a few more emails and attempting to contact someone at the office multiple times without a reply, I finally received a call from Matthew McSwain on Wed, Dec 24 scheduling me to come in to sign final paperwork and have my car delivered on Mon, Dec 29.
Monday brought an very unusual rain to the usual-sunny Southern CA which made for an interesting Lyft ride to the Breeze office when my driver’s navigation software just wouldn’t work right and ended up taking far longer than it needed to get there. While in transit on the way to the office, I received a voice mail from Matthew informing me that there was something that needed to be amended to my insurance contract before I would be able to take ownership of the car. *Great.* Once I finally arrived, there were several others there also waiting to get their vehicles. We were instructed to wait while the final bit of business was taken care of on their ends. That final bit of business had us waiting well over two hours after which Matthew came in to inform us that we would not be able to pick up our cars because of some sort of issue with “putting together our packages” whatever that meant.
Onto Tue. Once again, I took a Lyft to the Breeze office in Santa Monica. For those of you who are screaming “Why didn’t save money and take the bus?!” Well, that’s because I expected to be there quite a while and it was also raining again. Thus, the bus – not a great idea. Anyway, after once again waiting in the office for over an hour, those of us there were once again told we would not be able to pick up our vehicles because our “packages were still not ready.” As you can imagine, I was extremely frustrated but decided to stay positive – because I was on the precipice of having my very own brand-new Prius – so I just said very politely, “Please call me when all paperwork and vehicle are absolutely ready.”
Then came Wed. Well, I spent all morning and afternoon going back and forth with my insurance guy, Matthew, and the Toyota dealership to make sure every single little thing was absolutely ready to rock. It seemed that it was. But then after I replied to a voice mail Matthew left in regards to the goings on, he told me that there weren’t any vehicle deliveries being scheduled due to it being New Year’s Eve. In other words, I was not only missing out on yet another day of getting my vehicle I had already been scheduled to receive two days prior but I was also going to be missing out on making well over $1k driving on NYE surge prices. Yeah…
At that point I was beyond livid. Out of all I went through to pull this off and all the help I had to pull in and others that contributed to my cause so warm-heartedly, I was still going to have to wait until at least Fri, Jan 2 to get my car so that I could start making real money, thereby not only helping me pay my rent but to get all these freaking people off my back that keep screaming at me to “GET A REAL JOB!!”
In light of everything the company put me through, especially considering their lack of communication and dicking around caused me to loose out on the mountain of money I stood to make on New Years, I very civilly requested that the company wave my first-week’s lease payment. I thought this was exceptionally more than fair with all the ridiculousness.
I was wrong. I received a call on Fri, Jan 2 from Chuck (the CEO of the company I believe) who said the request was unacceptable and that the asking of which made me someone the company does not feel comfortable allowing to represent the company by driving one of their vehicles.
So after all that, this is, unfortunately, where the story ends. No car. No driving opportunity. Right back to square one…again. Thanks Breeze. You ruined what was to be one of the best opportunities to come my way in quite a while. Forgive me if I hope your business fails before the next New Year.