How Car Rentals & Technology Are Interlinked

Ever since Ford’s Model-T, there has been the opportunity to rent a car. A Nebraskan by the name of Joe Saunders is credited in 1916 to being the first to rent his car, with his first customer allegedly being a travelling salesman going on a date. Into the mid 1920’s and some entrepreneurs were recording massive earnings as the concept gained popularity. The industry was truly set on it’s course when a certain business owner became involved to create a well known brand to this day. That businessman was called John Hertz.

Since Hertz’s introduction the industry has gone through many changes as it has battled association with bootleggers and robbers, the growth along railways and airports and now into the world of digital platforms.

In the 100+ years since the first rent-a-car popped up, the industry has largely been dominated by tedious paperwork, stale interactions and hidden charges that have made the process off putting for many. In recent years the hyper growth of technology app based platforms, has offered the opportunity to remove a lot of the annoyance for users.

A standard rental process consists of 3 key steps;

1. Verification

2. Review

3. Return

Verification

This stage involves confirming the renters ability to drive the car and also that they have the funds to pay for any potential damages. It’s at this stage you would need to validate a licence and present a valid credit card.

Review

This is the step where both parties review the contract, insurance and inspect the car itself for damages.

Return

Most standard rentals have clear rules based on the return time, full tank of fuel and require an inspection before handing the keys back over.

New Developments

Much like the decision to offer pick up and drop off in different airports or rail stations previously, technological advancements are now offering a new evolution in the car rental industry.

Online vehicle verification platforms, such as DriveX, now permit a full car inspection without any restrictions or physical interactions. Combined with fully digital rental service apps, this offers a seamless connection between selecting, booking and unlocking a rental vehicle in a few minutes. 

The new rental process now is a matter of clicks having digitally verified your license, connected a credit card and completed a guided pre-inspection process. This full process is available regardless of the local business hours, and offers the ability to provide a service to new customers without additional staffing costs.

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