Facts About the Car Rental Industry
It's been an interesting past couple of years in the car rental industry. The global recession slammed the brakes on a great deal of leisure travel, while rising fuel and living costs put a damper on local excursions. Now, as personal incomes become more stable and corporate travel budgets bounce back to normal, the car rental industry is ripe and ready to provide travelers with fuel-efficient and affordable travel options. It's an exciting time to be a part of the car rental industry as companies are making big changes in order to accommodate the unique needs of modern travel. Here's a look at some of the industries most important improvements, and how they'll impact how you shop for a rental vehicle.
1) Increased Independent Agencies
Four years ago, virtually all of the major US car rental companies were owned and operated by a major motor company. In fact, Ford dominated nearly 80% of the American market. Today, the big name chain rentals are owned by savvy entrepreneurs looking to turn a profit. And while the majority of the market is still dominated by large rental companies, independent outlets are slowly beginning to close the gap. In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau recorded some 5,100 independent car rental locations.
The rise of independent car rental companies is great news for travelers as it signifies a shift in the market. While larger chain companies are focused more on sales and profits, the smaller, independent offices are much more invested in customer service. More independent agencies also opens up the door for increased competition, which will help keep rising rates in check.
2) Reinvented Operating Models
Growth is a major goal for any business, especially a car rental company. Larger car rental agencies can offer a wider selection of vehicles and enjoy constant rental turnover. CRX has been able to identify three key drivers that are currently fueling changes on the car rental landscape. These include:
• Containing Costs – Car rental companies big and small are now focusing on ways to streamline their business by investing in technological advancements and reducing fleet costs. Tools like CRX's convenient agency comparison scores and rental reviews have made renting a vehicle easy, while revenue management software and reporting tools have improved the way that independent car rental companies take care of business.
• Better Information Management – Car rental customers are far savvier than they used to me. As such, they're expecting more from rental agencies, especially in regards to service and convenience. Vehicle availability and selection is more important than ever, as is the ability to guarantee a specific booking. Lost or incorrect reservations are unacceptable nowadays. Easier Internet booking applications and improved internal information management tools are two of the ways CRX is helping independent agencies stay on top of this important trend.
• Branding – A well defined brand is very valuable in the car rental industry. CRX's ability to enhance existing brands and expand brand portfolios has helped hundreds of independent rental agencies expand their following and improve customer retention.
Car Rental Express is focused on creating flexible, customer-focused information systems that make booking an car rental quick, easy, and affordable. Take a look at today's rental rate comparisons and see for yourself why so many travelers are making the switch to independent car rental agencies. Better prices, better service, better systems – Car Rental Express has it all.