Vroom Review: How It Works, Pros and Cons, Vroom vs. Carvana

By Zina Kumok
Updated on: Mar 26, 2020

No one loves the car dealership experience. It’s tedious, stressful and leaves you feeling taken advantage of. When you really think about it, why should anyone have to haggle with a stranger just to buy a vehicle?

Like many online retailers looking to simplify traditionally complicated buying experiences, Vroom offers an alternative. You can search, inspect and buy a car in the comfort of your own home.

Instead of negotiating for the best deal and feeling pressured to make a decision on the spot, you can compare their fixed prices at your own leisure.

But is Vroom truly a step forward in the evolution of car buying, or a gimmicky way to avoid the transparency that comes with seeing a car in person? What do Vroom customers have to say about the experience?

How Vroom Works

Vroom is an online car-buying site where you can buy used and like-new cars. Instead of visiting a dealership, talking to a pushy salesman and haggling over cost and features, you can handle the transaction almost entirely online.

The process is simple. You visit the Vroom website, choose a car, pay a $500 deposit and then pay in full or wait for financing. After everything is completed, the car will be delivered to you. Sometimes you can arrange to pick it up yourself if you live nearby. There’s a $599 delivery fee that’s non-refundable.

While you won’t have to visit a dealership, there may be some phone calls required. You also may have to sign and mail documents to the company.

Vroom’s online reviews leave something to be desired. They have a 2.1-star rating here on HighYa, based on 200 reviews. The Better Business Bureau gave them an A+ rating, but the average customer review is also two stars with 63 reviews.

Warranty

Each car comes with a seven-day return policy, up to 250 miles. If you don’t like the car, you can return it during that time. You’ll owe a $599 restocking fee unless you can prove the car didn’t match the description or had some serious problems.

Some Vroom cars have a free 90-day, 6,000-mile limited warranty. If your car needs a repair within that time, you can take it to a dealership or ASE certified mechanic. The 90-day warranty has a $50 deductible per instance.

Every vehicle comes with one year of free roadside assistance if you get a flat tire, the battery dies or you lock yourself out of the vehicle. The Vroom website says they may offer other extended warranty packages and gap insurance, depending on the car

Selling Your Car

Vroom accepts trade-ins and can add the value of your current car to your new purchase. You can also sell a car to Vroom even if you’re not buying a vehicle from them.

You’ll go to the Vroom website and type in the car’s information, like its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and mileage. You will then receive an offer within 30 minutes if done during Vroom’s business hours.

The offer is valid for 10 business days, up to 250 miles. If you agree to the price, the car will be picked by Vroom at a mutually-agreed-upon time. Payment is issued at pickup via cashier’s check.

If you buy a car from Vroom, trade-in your own and then return the new car, you can’t get your original car back. But you’ll still be paid for the value of your trade-in.

Car Selection

Vroom’s selection includes a variety of cars including gas-powered, hybrid and luxury vehicles. You can buy a Maserati or a standard Ford F-150 truck. All the cars have low miles, with the upper limit around 50,000 miles.

The selection isn’t as robust as Carvana’s, a similar online car-buying service. In a search for Toyota Camry models, Vroom had 42 options available while Carvana had 387. Vroom had 12 Teslas while Carvana had 79.

Carvana also tends to offer cars with higher mileage counts, capping at around 100,000, meaning they also offer lower price points.

Financing

Like Carvana and most car dealerships, you can finance a purchase through Vroom or use your own lender. Vroom works with major banks like Chase, Ally, and Capital One.

To see possible rates, you have to select a particular car and scroll down to the payment calculator. Type in the trade-in amount, down payment, estimated credit score and term length. Vroom will then estimate your payment and APR.

It’s still better to get pre-approved through a third-party lender – that way you can see what rates they offer before applying with Vroom.

Vroom vs. Dealership

If you’re buying a car and need to finance it, going to a dealership used to be your only option. Now sites like Vroom make it possible to buy a car without leaving your house.

The Vroom process claims to take around 11–15 days, which will vary if any issues arise with financing. One anonymous reviewer said his car was delivered a day earlier than promised.

One of the downsides to online car-buying services like Vroom and Carvana is that you can’t test drive the vehicle before you buy it. You’re also not able to have it inspected by an objective third-party mechanic.

Some customers report problems after buying the car and having a mechanic look at it. These include both minor cosmetic and major mechanical problems.

If you buy a car from a traditional dealership, they’ll usually let you take it to a mechanic for their own inspection. If the mechanic finds something, you can use that information to walk away from the car or negotiate for a better price.

This is where buying a car with Vroom can be difficult. If the car has no issues, you’re golden.

If the car starts having problems shortly after delivery, you have to negotiate with Vroom for a post-purchase discount or reimbursement. Unfortunately, you may have to call several times and provide solid proof for Vroom to refund you any money.

If you chose Vroom because you hate talking on the phone and dealing with salesmen, then initiating a dispute with them over a faulty car will probably be a nightmare.

Pros

Vroom is ideal for someone who wants to buy a car without taking the time to visit a dealership, go for a test drive and haggle with a salesman.

Pricing is fixed with Vroom, so the number you see on the site is the number you’ll pay, excluding taxes and registration fees. However, their website says they sometimes match competing offers, so you may get lucky if you can find the same car for a lower price.

Vroom will deliver your car within 10–14 days after all paperwork has been completed and finalized. This is longer than it would take from a dealership, so buyers should be prepared to wait.

The Vroom free roadside assistance program includes towing, battery service, lock-out assistance, and gas if you run out. This lasts for a year and covers anyone driving the car.

Cons

Some reviewers claim that Vroom delayed sending their car registration information. If you drive a car without proper registration, you risk getting a ticket and late fees. This can be stressful and costly – especially if Vroom declines to cover the late fees.

One Reddit user who bought a 2018 truck through Vroom returned it because of a dent that wasn’t in the description or photos, as well as rust on the bottom of the truck. While many people are happy with their purchase through Vroom, undisclosed cosmetic issues are fairly common.

Even though Vroom offers a seven-day return policy, they can decline to refund the delivery fee. If you can’t prove that the description or photos don’t match the car, you may have to eat that $599 delivery charge.

The Bottom Line

Though Vroom has competitive prices on their vehicles, their poor customer reviews indicate some serious problems.

Unless you don’t have a dealership nearby or you truly hate talking to salespeople, you should consider looking elsewhere for your next car. If buying a car online appeals to you, Carvana has better customer reviews.

If you still want to use Vroom, look at the pictures and description carefully. Vroom offers a free Carfax report which will show if the car has ever been in an accident, used for commercial purposes or on the receiving end of flood damage.

Read through the report carefully for any red flags. A little extra due diligence may prevent some of the major headaches other Vroom customers have reported.


Read 200 Vroom Customer Reviews and Complaints

Write a Review
Average Customer Rating: 2.1
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 37 4 star: 7 3 star: 10 2 star: 22 1 star:  124
Bottom Line: 25% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 200
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  • Exceptional customer service

    • By Danielle M.,
    • Patchogue, NY,
    • Mar 18, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    I've had an amazing experience with Vroom and I especially appreciated the customer service Lamarah Thibedeaux provided throughout the process. So first, as a young female professional, I wanted to purchase a new car but I didn't want to go through the hassle of being pressured into a sale by a dealership. With the digit market growing nowadays, we have access to information online that we've never had before. I like to do my research and it paid off this time. Initially, I read the negative reviews of Vroom and I was skeptical but when I came across my dream car, I decided to call Vroom to gather further information and it was all seamless from there. The initial sales representative provided me with the total rundown of the company, how they operate, and what my sale would look like. As a New Yorker, I recognized I would be open to a larger market by purchasing my car online and was receiving a cheaper price than my local dealer. I especially appreciated the convenience of having my new vehicle shipped to my house. When I decided to move forward with the sale, paperwork was overnighted to me. I spent one day reviewing and then sent back. Once the wire cleared for the remaining deposit, Vroom moved forward with having my vehicle shipped. Expected delivery is between 10-14 days and I received mine in 10! After I received my delivery I had a few questions and concerns. That's when Lamarah stepped in as my CS Representative. She was able to efficiently resolve my concerns and provided superior CS. I'm so happy and thankful I decided to purchase my new car through Vroom. Their service is impeccable throughout the whole process. The company's business model is effective in today's digital world and has great potential for further growth! Job well done!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • Worst than a regular dealer!

    • By Bokar D.,
    • Jersey City, NJ,
    • Mar 12, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Had to call countless times to find out why I haven’t received my plates and registration yet.

    Took delivery of the vehicle on January 1st, 2020, today is March 10th, 2020 and I still don’t have plates.

    I received a call back from an employee who had an attitude and hung up on me.

    DO NOT PURCHASE A VEHICLE FROM THESE GUYS.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Worst car buying experience ever!

    • By Mike S.,
    • Laurel, MD,
    • Mar 11, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Ok, this is the worst company I have ever bought a car from.

    First off, they will take forever to get you the car and they do tell you that upfront. So, if you need a car ASAP, go to a local dealer. Plan for 10-14 days before the car will be delivered.

    Delivery was another crap show. Delivery company called me at 3 pm and told me the truck was 30 minutes away. I left work early and made it to the meeting spot in 20 minutes. I waited and waited. After several calls with the dispatcher and 5/12 hours later, my car finally showed up on a tractor-trailer transport. (Instead of traveling the most direct route to my home, the driver apparently decided to take a tour of the Washington DC Beltway, at 4 PM).

    I had initially requested to have the car delivered in the enclosed transport option and they charged me the $300 additional, but still sent it on an open carrier.

    Lastly, the car arrived with fresh new damage from the idiot who incorrectly strapped it down and let one of the straps flap in the wind and beat the side of the car for 2000 miles.

    Furthermore, the car was filthy dirty due to the several days of on the road transport. (Main reason why I asked for a enclosed trailer. It was winter.)

    I have now been trying to get a refund for the $300 for over two months. Vroom claims the money was used for "Negative Equity." Not sure what that really means, but there is nowhere in my contract/bill of sale which reflects the $300 was credited to my account. I am now in a dispute with the credit card company over this.

    Anyone who uses this company to purchase a car online is asking for trouble. Stay far away from this place. They do have a large selection to choose from and that is the only benefit of using them. I purchased a Shelby Mustang and using Vroom allowed me to search a larger inventory rather than going to a bunch of dealers. Other than that, my experience with them was absolutely not what I was expecting. If you do choose this company, good luck, you have been warned!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Updated review

    Update

    • By Brett F.,
    • Mar 9, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    After being on perpetual standby for 48 hours - with every 6 hours being told it will arrive in the next 6 hours - it finally arrived. It was loaded on a Car Hauler and covered in road grime - I expected this, no way around having a dirty car delivered straight off a transport. This did not bother me.

    What did bother me was that once I got it home and cleaned it up there was significant damage to the paint. Several areas had "rub" marks that rubbed all the way through the paint to the bare metal. None of this damage had been disclosed in the sales description or photos.

    I called Vroom and they told me to go get an estimate and take pictures. Damage estimates were about $2K in damages.

    If Vroom repairs the vehicle I will keep it as I think it is a good vehicle for the price paid. If not, then I will get to experience their 7-day "love it or return it" policy.

    Will update this at a later date.

    As of now - I would say "maybe" buy a car from Vroom if you love what you see and have a very flexible schedule, and are very patient. If they repair the damages then I would recommend...will update as the situation develops.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

    • Previous review
    • Mar 5, 2020

    Buyer beware - no transparency on delivery delays.

    What started out as a delightful foray into car shopping has my nerves rattled. The sales process - smooth as silk, couldn't be easier; they put their A team on the job. That's about where it all goes to heck. They email, call, and tell you your vehicle will be arriving on X date. Then X date arrives and they don't call, you have to call them and all they can say is that "Something happened with the transport and it has been delayed." They REFUSE to give any specific details on what happened, where it is, etc. etc. They REFUSE to give you any details on the car you just paid for, and they could care less that you had to spend your week's schedule to take delivery on the date they said it would show. I'm highly suspect of any organization that does not offer total and complete transparency on property you paid for.

    After reading several reviews, the "delayed delivery" tactic is a common technique used by this company to keep their customers in the dark while they attempt to fix things that went wrong either in the final inspection, or during transit (broken windows, body damage, etc). Rather than being honest, there is an attempt to cover and hope that you do not notice. I'm not saying that is the case with my vehicle (I haven't received it yet), but when any organization REFUSES to give specific details...it begs the question of integrity and intent.

    I only went with Vroom due to my bank, USAA endorsing them on their "Online Car Buying" site. USAA has (maybe "had" is a better word) a reputation for excellent customer service, only recommending those services that have been vetted and hold up to scrutiny. In my discussion with USAA, they stated that they will NO LONGER BE OFFERING VROOM in the future due to the many complaints they have had to intervene in - TOO MANY COMPLAINTS.

    I'll update this review once I take possession and look it over.

    (read moreread less...)

  • Updated review

    No thanks

    • By Cody J.,
    • Show Low, AZ,
    • Mar 2, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    I'll stick to buying cars in person.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

    • Previous review
    • Feb 15, 2020

    Atrocious

    Absolutely atrocious! Vehicle arrived days late, damaged, and with additional mileage on it than signed for; if I had to guess, the transportation driver took the car for a joy ride. I found mud and feathers in the passenger rear floorboard. Customer service is non-existent, and continually shows you to slip through the cracks. No resolutions, after taking two days off work to accept the delivery they scheduled that never arrived, they offer no solution for my time or wages lost. Avoid this place, you'll be happy you did.

    (read moreread less...)

  • Horrible customer service, terribly slow every step of the way, so many headaches

    • By Mason D.,
    • Orlando, FL,
    • Feb 21, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Terrible overall experience. I purchased a Lincoln Navigator from Vroom instead of Carvana, because Vroom's pricing was better. I now wish I had just paid the higher price and gotten better customer service from Carvana.

    The customer service is just slow and only gets worse after they have your money. They missed every single deadline by a significant margin. Submitted for financing and to buy the vehicle. Was supposed to be contacted within 24 hours. This did not happen so I had to call them and wait on hold for an extended period to actually get the car reserved. They told me they would overnight documents to sign and assured me that even though it was later in the day the documents would be there the following day. Turns out they didn’t even get dropped in the mail until the following day.

    I signed the documents and overnighted them back with payment. Was told I would receive a congratulatory confirmation email within 24 hours of the docs being delivered. This never happened. In fact, I had to call multiple times over the course of the next 5 days to get confirmation.

    The salesperson had told me we would have the car in 10-14 days and Vroom burned 5 days just sitting on the docs. From the point of confirmation, it was another week and a bunch more phone calls before the car shipped. They claimed it was in "inspection" and could not give an ETA on when it would be out. Once the car was delivered to the local hub they were supposed to call and set up delivery. This did not happen and again I had to call and track down the car again and was again told it would be a couple more days even though the hub where it was sitting was 15 minutes from my house.

    The salesperson on the phone told me the process would take 2 weeks, it ended up being over a month.

    And the headache isn’t over, the car came with a temporary tag which is now 2 weeks from expiration and I have not received a new tag. Called Vroom again and was told they were still processing the docs and could not give me a timeline for their completion, other than that it would take a month to receive the new tag once they were complete.

    I am now left with either being without a car for at least 2 weeks or going to the local DMV to get another temporary tag.

    This has been a poor experience all the way around. Vroom does not stick to any of the timelines references in their marketing material or by their sales or customer service teams. Sure you might get a decent car for a good price, but it comes at the cost of a massive headache and hours and hours spent on the phone following up with them.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • A pleasure to do business.

    • By Gregory C.,
    • South Pittsburg, TN,
    • Feb 18, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Great experience and a wonderful buying place. I’ve had a great experience with them and will buy from them again. Had car in the time they said and the payments are as expected. They really do a great job. Jeremy was the person that helped me and he was excellent at his job. Thank you all so much.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • Great company

    • By Karen O.,
    • Michigan,
    • Feb 17, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Great company! They made buying my car so easy! I would highly recommend using them! I read an article about how Vroom is the way car buying should be. I completely agree. The people who work at Vroom took care of all my paperwork and then called me every day that my car was being shipped to update me on how it was going. They even took care of my registration. My car came so fast too. It only two weeks for the whole process!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • Updated review

    Not such a good experience - but working through

    • By Jen W.,
    • Michigan,
    • Feb 15, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    We had some issues during delivery and after. I was not receiving adequate support and was very frustrated...After I posted my review, I was contacted by supervision at Vroom and we are working through things. I will update again after all is settled.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

    • Previous review
    • Feb 13, 2020

    Awful customer service - BEWARE

    The purchase process seemed too good to be true - turns out it was! I found a car I liked, I bought it. Super easy, just as everything claimed online. However, once we got to the delivery process, the lack of concern for customer service and/or support really showed through. It's been beyond frustrating since that point.

    I attempted multiple times to find out when to expect my vehicle. Vroom never had any information until, all of a sudden, the car was in route and scheduled for a time/date that NO ONE was going to be available to get it. At no point in time did anyone even ask my availability! I was just expected to deal with the date and time given. Vroom had no concern for the inconvenience. I could cancel the delivery and start the delivery process all over (but they couldn't even give me a date range for when the new delivery would be!) or find a way to get someone to sign for the vehicle. I had to have my brother-in-law come into town to help. Then they missed the delivery window anyway. I requested to speak to a supervisor a minimum of 4 times and never heard from anyone. They refused to refund my delivery fee regardless of the massive inconvenience and headaches. They claimed that since it was during the allotted 10-14 day window, there would be no refund, regardless of the fiasco.

    We also were only given one key and one key fob for our vehicle and they are not even OEM. I called about it since the fob doesn't have the features that are shown for the vehicle and was told the fob was just worn out and they wouldn't pay for a replacement. This is a 2019 vehicle - there is no way that the remote is so worn that you cannot see the buttons. And it doesn't have the functions they say it should. It will unlock the car but not do anything else - not open the hatch, not remote start. I've asked again to speak to a supervisor and have yet to hear back after three requests.

    Vroom has provided the worst customer service I have experienced in a long time. I am a business owner and we purchase cars frequently. I would not go this route again and caution anyone considering it. I only hope we don't have more issues because Vroom is clearly not interested in resolving them.

    (read moreread less...)

  • Poor customer service and communication

    • By Scott W.,
    • Albuquerque, NM,
    • Feb 14, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Super deal on cars. Horrible follow through, closeout on documentation and communication beyond delivery. Buyer beware. It has taken me well over 100 days so far and I know for a fact that my state had registered and plated the car almost 40 days ago.

    The Vroom team hasn't reached out to advise of the situation, rather I am calling them, reminding them and trying to speak to anyone in charge who can close the deal simply by getting me my registration and license plate.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Started out promising, ended up disappointed

    • By Corrie M.,
    • Portland, OR,
    • Feb 13, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    The purchase of the vehicle was quick and efficient, completed within a few days. However, the trouble really began with the delivery of the vehicle. I was told I would receive daily updates during the transportation period, which I did not. The first "update" I received was the day before the delivery was originally scheduled. The support team informed me that my delivery had been delayed with no explanation as to why. What made matters worse is the team members I spoke to didn't seem to care about the impact of the delay nor concerned about remedying the situation. This became the norm over the next few days as I continued to receive news that the vehicle was further delayed with each passing day. After several calls to the support team with unclear updates, I asked to escalate the issue to a supervisor. Once I was in contact with the Supervisory team, there was a clear difference in the way the staff handled the delay. The supervisors I was in touch with were much more professional and helpful, followed through with communications and showed concern for the continued delays. They were able to get additional information about why the delivery continued to be delayed, beyond the 10-14 day window Vroom touted throughout the purchase process and stayed in touch through the remaining delivery experience.

    On the day of delivery, despite the numerous confirmations of the scheduled delivery window, the vehicle showed up outside of that delivery window with little prior communication. The vehicle was filthy on the outside (not incredibly surprised due to travel), however, we were surprised by the number of dings and scratches discovered on the vehicle. The interior was unkempt and smelled unsavory. We even found personal items from the previous owner left inside the vehicle. This created concern that the vehicle was not inspected at the level Vroom indicated in previous correspondence.

    There have been several reviews left for Vroom online that were unfavorable but I was hopeful those were the exception to the rule. Unfortunately, my experience seemed to mirror many of those unfavorable reviews. I am extremely disappointed by the level of service provided and after having the vehicle in possession for nearly 2 weeks and reaching out to Vroom concerning this experience on several occasions, I still have yet to hear back from a representative regarding any of my feedback.

    Not only will I not be returning as a customer, I would not recommend Vroom to anyone until there has been a clear overhaul of the customer experience.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


Showing 1-11 of 200

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Vroom Review: How It Works, Pros and Cons, Vroom vs. Carvana