The Road Ahead: This Is How To Rent A Car Now

The car rental business was already moving toward self-service and a digital-first approach. But the pandemic has accelerated it.

For example, Avis Budget Group customers can manage their entire rental experience through the Avis mobile app, which practically eliminates the interaction with anyone at the rental counter…

Car rental companies have also doubled down on their cleaning initiatives. Enterprise rolled out its Complete Clean Pledge last year, which describes in meticulous detail its cleaning protocol before it rents you a car.Hertz has taken similar steps to upgrade the cleanliness of its vehicles. Its new Hertz Gold Standard Clean program guarantees your vehicle will undergo a 15-point process, including a thorough disinfection, cleaning and inspection.

Sridhar Tayur, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business, says the focus on cleaning has affected the operations of car rental companies — and the customer experience. “The sanitizing of cars between rentals increases the turnaround time between rentals,” he explains.