Van and SUV rentals still popular

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Car Rental News - 17/07/2008


Although rising gas prices are leading some to compact and hybrid vehicle rentals, the number of van and SUV rental rese

Lisa Martini, a spokesperson for the Enterprise car rental company said: "We were kind of surprised by that," referring to the sustained popularity of larger, family-style vehicle rentals. Enterprise partners with Alamo and National car rentals, and features around 5000 hybrid vehicles in its fleet of 1.1 million.

Many families still find that a roomier van or SUV makes sense for road trips – and it also makes sense for businesspeople travelling together to meetings. This may account for the steady demand. Overall, though, larger-vehicle rental numbers are down, according to rental car industry analyst, Neil Abrams.

"There will always be a market for SUVs and minivans. But we're seeing car rental companies buying fewer of them," Abrams noted. “They're not necessarily buying more hybrids: Mostly, companies are adding standard vehicles with good fuel efficiency, which is what travellers are after,” he continued.

The advice to customers coming from rental car companies is that if you’re looking to rent a hybrid you should book as far in advance as you can, and also choose a weekday to pick up the vehicle.

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