In general I hate keys. They represent all that is problematic in the world. Also, I (and the rest of my family) tend to lose them. I have wondered for some time why keys are still around...why haven't we moved to simple username/password? If we need more "security" could use biometrics. But pieces of metal? That we need to carry around? Come on. That is not even 20th century.
Why am I ruminating on all this? Because we are here visiting the good old US of A, and that means we need to rent a mini-van (remember, we are family of seven). When I even approach a rental car company they start salivating seeing $$ signs. Mini-vans are in short supply, obviously we need one, which in economics means THEY CAN ASK FOR ANYTHING!!! OK, finished venting on that.
Now on to the keys. We rented a mini-van at Newark Airport from . Big Mistake. But I will skip the hidden fees which did not appear on the internet, will skip the long wait. We received a Kia Sedona. Drove it to the Berkshires, to the town of Otis, where my in-laws have a house. Made great time. Then was shabbat, when we let our car rest. Saturday night, looked for keys to move the car....and could not find them. Anywhere. We turned the house upside down, third degreed my 4 year old son, nothing. No keys. Thus began the Nightmare of the Keys.
Late Saturday night called Roadside Assistance of National. Was put on hold for 20 minutes, which started a tradition with National, they never picked up Roadside Assistance line before 15 minutes hold time. Could not believe it, thank God for speaker phone.
I was told to call back on Sunday, they would try to find locksmith. That I might have a transponder type key, in which case key would need to be programmed to the car, which would mean towing the car. Sunday morning I called back, I was promised someone would call me back with locksmith info, no one did. I called again, remember each time waiting 15-20 minutes on hold. My family is grumbling that we do not have use of the car.
Finally I am told locksmith cannot be found with the advanced technology needed to program a key. So I will need to be towed to the nearest Kia dealership...I checked and saw there is a dealership in Pitssfield, about 30 minutes from Otis. I assumed that is where they would tow me...
The next day tow truck comes (with many calls in between to confirm, they never called me back). I get in, we start driving. The driver tells me we are going to a dealership in Springfield. He does not know why. Springfield is an hour away. We get there, he drops the car off and leaves, while I go talk to service department of dealership. They have no idea who I am, no one from National spoke to them. AND....THEY DO NOT HAVE KEYS. They will order them, will take 2 days. A lot more calls to National, who finally admit somebody made a mistake. I am stuck in Springfield. Finally I take matters into my own hands, tell the dealership to order new keys, rent a car from Enterprise, and leave. Another day shot.
I returned today to pick up the car...and the very nice woman at Father & Sons dealership tells me is that they needed to have the key brought to PITTSFIELD to have cut, and it was NOT a transponder key. Nothing to program, no reason for me to have been towed. Just imagine the inefficiencies that must exist in National...so many resources expended in error.
The internet and WWW have been operating with simple sign on for over ten years. When will this technology come to cars?????????????????