Future of the car rental industry

24th November 2018

Estimated to be worth EUR 1.6 billion, United Kingdom is the third largest car rental market in Europe. (1) The total value of car rental transactions in the UK in 2012 was estimated to be around £1.2 billion. (2) These sales were generated from 12.3 million transactions and a fleet of 189,000 vehicles. (2) According to the 2013 Mintel market report, in total around 3.4% of UK adults had rented a car in the previous 12 months. (3)

Market Trends

Technology has disrupted many industries, and the car rental industry is no exception. The way people search and rent for car rentals is changing, with more and more consumers using the Internet to search and booking rentals. Market research has shown that between 36-42% of the bookings were made online. (4)

The traditional methods of filling a form in on a website, calling to get a quote or even physically going in and sitting behind a rental desk are considered outdated, with consumers demanding a simpler, faster and more transparent service.

The number of consumers who use online intermediaries to book rental cars has almost doubled since 2007. (2) This suggests that more and more consumers are using online intermediaries, such as price comparison sites, when booking car rentals opposed to the traditional methods such as telephone or visiting the company office. (3)

However, most car rental companies (especially those in the luxury and supercar rental market) have not leveraged the power of ecommerce to provide an alternative channel for taking car rental bookings. Here are a few possible reasons:

  1. Cost

    The main reason is most likely to be the cost as developing, maintaining and hosting a full ecommerce website is not cheap. In addition, there is little point having an ecommerce website if nobody can find it online, hence why money needs to be spent on digital marketing and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) to ensure the website ranks high up in search engine results to be seen by consumers.

  2. Fear of the unknown

    To rental companies who have only taken bookings through customers physically walking into their office and through traditional methods like telephone, the prospect of taking bookings online may seem daunting as they have fear of the unknown.

  3. Slow to adapt

    They may simply not be aware of the changing consumer behaviour when looking to book rentals.

Ultimately, as evidence has suggested, consumers are increasingly using the Internet as their primary means of booking economy, luxury and supercar rentals. This results in small to medium companies who don’t offer an online method to book car rentals being left out.

Carborg is an online car rental-booking agent focusing on the niche luxury and supercar rental market. Carborg works with independent local luxury and supercar rental companies in the SME sector, providing them with an e-commerce platform for them to list their car rentals to be booked and paid for instantly online by customers, enabling them to reach a wider market, increase sales while streamlining their booking and payment processes.

By working with independent local luxury rental companies, we provide customers with a diverse range of luxury and supercar rentals to choose from at competitive prices and make it easier for them to find and book rentals thanks to real-time availability and transparent pricing of rentals.

To conclude, the future of the car rental industry looks strong, it has shown continuous growth since 2007 and is set to continue that way. The technological advances and the subsequent changing consumer behaviour may fast-track this growth.

  1. CA N. European Car Rental. [Online]. [cited 2016 October 9. Available from: http://www.nedrelid-ca.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/European-Car-Rental-Market-Overview-and-Structural-Perspectives.pdf.
  2. International E. Car Rental in the United Kingdom. ; 2013.
  3. Mintel. Car and Van Hire. ; 2013.
  4. International E. Car Rental in the United Kingdom. ; 2013.

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Carborg works with supercar rental suppliers to offer a range of luxury and supercars to hire, including prestige makes such as Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche, Bentley and Rolls-Royce. Our services are available all across the UK including London, Birmingam, Manchester, Walsall, Leeds, Bradford and Scotland.

Carborg Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales with company number 09048269.

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