SOURCE: Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Enterprise Rent-a-Car

April 03, 2012 11:55 ET

The $4 Gallon Question: For That Summer Getaway, Drive Your Own Car ... or Rent One?

ST. LOUIS, MO--(Marketwire - Apr 3, 2012) - To rent or not to rent. That's the question of the day for savvy travelers who want to make the most of their summer getaway budgets. Now, as gas prices rise and consumers wait longer and longer to trade in their older model vehicles, a newly released economic analysis shows that renting a car can be the best way for many consumers to stretch their weekend travel dollars.

Enterprise Rent-A-Car commissioned Brett Smith, Co-Director of Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology for the Center for Automotive Research, to analyze the total costs of driving one's own vehicle for a summer road trip versus the cost of renting. The groundbreaking analysis factored in the hidden costs associated with the added wear and tear on the owned vehicle and the impact of those extra miles on depreciation. Smith's white paper, which can be found in its entirety on www.enterprise.com/familytravel, reveals that the total cost of driving that car in your garage is 12 cents per mile more than renting a vehicle at Enterprise Rent-A-Car's $9.99 a day weekend rate. The $9.99 rate applies to economy and compact cars.

When consumers with larger vehicles rent a smaller, fuel-efficient compact for their weekend trips, "the savings per mile can be significant," according to Smith.

"Current compacts get a real-world average fuel economy of about 26 mpg," writes Smith. "In the case of a renter who has an older, larger vehicle, with a real-world economy of 18 mpg, the fuel savings could be $20 per 300 miles at a higher price of $4.15 per gallon."

Enterprise Rent-A-Car caters to "weekend getaway" drivers who need a different size or type of vehicle than the one they use for their daily commute. These consumers may prefer driving a more stylish car for a special weekend occasion, a minivan to take kids to a soccer tournament, or a compact car to reduce their pain at the pump.

"There have never been so many compelling reasons to rent for special weekend occasions," said Steve Short, Vice President for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. "As summer approaches, we're looking forward to helping our customers get the most out of their vacation dollars."

For consumers with older model cars, renting also can be the key to worry-free summer travel.

"Especially as vehicles age, the fear of breakdown or other mechanical issues may lead consumers to forgo weekend or holiday trips," according to Smith's analysis. "Renting a car provides an alternative that can reduce the strain, not only on the car and the driver, but also on the driver's budget."

About Enterprise Rent-A-Car
Founded in 1957 and known for an extensive network of locations, everyday low rates and outstanding customer service, Enterprise Rent-A-Car is an internationally recognized brand that has been named to BusinessWeek magazine's annual list of "Customer Service Champs" in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. Enterprise led the car rental industry in an annual North American airport car rental survey, which includes both leisure and business travelers, for seven years in a row. In addition, Market Metrix, LLC, a leading provider of customer and employee feedback and performance tools for the hospitality industry, has recognized the Enterprise brand as the leader in customer satisfaction in the car rental industry 29 out of 31 times. Further, Enterprise won Budget Travel magazine's 2010 and 2011 Readers' Choice Award as their favorite rental car brand for customer service around the globe.

St. Louis-based Enterprise Holdings owns and operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car brand. With annual revenues of $14.1 billion and more than 70,000 employees, Enterprise Holdings also operates, through its regional subsidiaries, more than 1.2 million cars and trucks, making it the largest car rental service provider in the world measured by revenue, employees and fleet. There are more than 6,000 Enterprise neighborhood and airport locations operating worldwide in the United States, Canada, the UK, Ireland and Germany. Enterprise of North America also is part of a global strategic alliance with Europcar, creating the world's largest car rental network. For more information about Enterprise local and airport car rental as well as vehicle leasing, car sharing and vanpooling options, visit www.enterprise.com. This news release and other Enterprise Rent-A-Car announcements are available at the Enterprise Holdings press room.

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