Dubai: Car rental companies in the UAE are not authorised to take a customer’s passport or Emirates ID as a guarantee to rent cars, according to a senior official.
The licence of such car rental companies will be permanently cancelled for this illegal practice, said Major General Mohammad Saif Al Zafein, director of Federal Traffic Council, in a programme named ‘direct line’ on Sharjah TV.
The relevant UAE laws do not permit the companies to demand passports or Emirates ID cards of the customer as a guarantee to rent a car, he said while answering questions on the programme.
The law permits the company to charge the rent from the credit card of the customer and ask personal information related to his or her driving licence only.
The standard contract between the company and a customer does not have such a provision, the official said.
He explained this while answering a question from a foreign visitor who was asked to submit his passport with a car rental in Ajman.
Al Zafein said the law permits the company to charge the rent from the credit card of the customer and ask personal information related to his or her driving licence only.
He urged customers not to submit passport or Emirates ID card with car rentals. Such car rentals are violating the UAE laws and damaging the country’s reputation. If any customer is giving their passport or Emirates ID card, it will be his or her own personal responsibility. Those are important documents and anyone can misuse them, the official said.
He urged the Departments of Economy in all emirates to monitor the functioning of car rentals and take necessary action for violations. The licence of the violators can be permanently cancelled, he said.
Omar Ali, an owner of a car rental agency in Sharjah, said, “We hold the passport or ID to ensure our rights because some customers who come on a visit to the country rent cars and leave without fulfilling their obligations and then we find there are fines worth more than thousands of dirhams to be paid. Some customers also bring back the cars badly damaged,” he said.