Avis Europe reports fleet utilization rise

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Car Rental News - 31/08/2009


Travellers are returning from European holidays reporting high car hire prices this summer.

Along with memories of the beach and the sun and a few bottles of wine, travellers are returning to the UK with stories of extortionate car hire prices. The rise in rental rates has been a major help for many rental car companies that have been struggling with the downturn in demand, however, including Avis Europe.

During the six month period ended 30 June, rental volume fell by 9.4 per cent, and Avis, like other operators, depends on air travellers for rentals. Air passenger traffic was down by 6.8 per cent in the January-July period this year, although July saw a lower rate of decline at 2.9 per cent. The drop in demand is most pronounced in the business travel segment – which is the major source of customers for Avis.

The rental car sector is reporting some healthy groseporting some healthy gross profit margins, however, largely due to the higher rental car rates. The rising hire car rates is being attributed to fewer available vehicles due to the credit crunch and rental car companies not be able to secure the financing to add to their fleets.

Fleet utilization figures are up by nearly five points.

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