2019 Business Travel Buyer's Handbook Working with Car Rental Firms Share Download ChapterThough it's a relatively small portion of a travel budget, car rental represents an excellent savings opportunity for corporate travel buyers, as the three dominant North American suppliers are locked in tight competition for lucrative corporate market share. Even as the car rental companies have made slight gains in leisure rates in the past year through tight fleet management and strong demand, corporate rates have remained steady. Car rental suppliers also have made heavy investments in technology in recent years, making pickup and dropoff quicker and simpler and thus giving buyers an extra incentive to drive compliance. The following is a guide to developing a strategy and negotiating with car rental suppliers.I. Gather Data Show potential suppliers as much information as you can gather on past use of car rental, chauffeured services, ride-hailing and other relevant services.Usage statistics from car rental firms should provide the most complete and detailed information. Also tap travel management companies and expense management systems for taxi, transfer and third-party spend like train and ride-hailing expenditures. Most corporate charge card data shows the total spend on such transactions and does not yet detail expenses like insurance costs, fuel surcharges and other miscellaneous state and local taxes and fees. Types of data: Gather as much information as possible on overall usage and break it down for cities or areas with high volume. Also segregate by airport transactions versus off-airport/local market transactions.Total volume, expressed in the number of rental transactions, number of rental days and expenditure level—all broken down by country. If you can break that down by market, it helps suppliers forecast and plan.Average number of miles driven per day and percentage of rentals and rental days that a car drives beyond various thresholds, such as 75, 100 and 150 miles, alongside number of taxi/ride-hailing trips. Categorize as possible, i.e., by miles/cost for short trips and airport transfers.Breakdown by class of cars booked and driven, such as compact, intermediate and full-size.Number of intercity and one-way car rentals, including origins and destinations. Include miles driven and what miles were charged.Number of weekly, midweek, monthly, weekend and one-day rentals by day of the week.Breakdown of rentals by day of the week and weekly and monthly rentals.Locations where all corporate car rentals have taken place and annual rental days in all markets, including the share of rentals at airports.Evidence of travelers' safe driving records while on company business, particularly if you plan to seek collision damage waiver or loss damage waiver coverage and supplemental liability coverage.International car rental usage, highlighting usage by city and country.Percentage of car rentals booked through global distribution systems, TMCs and online booking tools.Compliance with existing preferred car rental deals. Show you can control your travelers.Rentals by those under age 25.Special billing needs, including regional, those coded certain ways for tax purposes and the need to track unlimited mileage, plus the percentage of the total that is master billed.Service requirements, such as onsite availability at your company's location or locations, VIP treatment and off-airport special needs, including off-airport parking, GPS and electronic toll-pass devices.Data that shows your company is growing is important to note, as is demonstrating a strong and enforced travel policy.Suburban locations where the organization has rented vehicles, including number of rentals, rental days and expenditures.Number of rentals and spending for GPS, satellite radio, etc.Refueling history, full-tank option and per-gallon charge.Emergency roadside assistance use.Historical development of data and outlook on development of travel/mobility spend for the next two to five years.Terms of supplier deals with companies in your industry or like-size companies with similar requirements.