Here’s What to Know About Starting a Car Rental Business

June 24, 2018 1395 views

An Overview of a Car Rental Business

This venture is about renting vehicles to individuals who travel and anyone else who may need a vehicle for a short amount of time, such as vacationers, business people, and victims of auto accidents, etc.

As a manager, you must complete the appropriate paperwork, verify each customer’s driver’s license, and collect the necessary deposits.

Once a vehicle is returned, you must complete the final invoice including any additional fuel or mileage charges as well as perform a damage check of the vehicle.

Skill Set:

  • Ability to operate many different vehicle types
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • People Skills
  • Common Business Skills

Employee Considerations:

Rental Agent – A person in this position, books vehicle rentals, provides customer service, offers sales incentives, maintains inventory, answers phones, keeps the working area safe, etc.

Manager – This person oversees the daily operations, manages sales reports, and makes forecasts, sets revenue goals, and manages the plan for reaching such goals, ensures customer satisfaction, manages and trains team members, and ensures that all procedures and policies are being followed efficiently.

Airport Manager – This person oversees the daily operations of the airport location, and has the same duties as outlined in the manager section above.

Security Guard – This position includes ensuring the safety of all buildings, rental vehicles, personnel, and property. They will patrol the assigned area, routinely checking for intruders, unsecured locks or vehicles, or any other irregularities and other danger.

Common Positions

Common Staff Positions Needed To Run Some Businesses

Equipment and Supplies:

  • A wide variety of vehicles
  • Safe parking area, preferably a guarded parking garage
  • Security system
  • Automotive cleaning tools and supplies
  • A shop for detailing and repairs
  • Office Equipment

Monthly Expenses:

See our page on Common monthly expenses


Licenses generally depend on the rules and regulations of the area in which they are located. You will need to fill out an application to receive a certificate of authority in order to operate.

Once you have a license, you must then obtain the proper permits for your area. Most states require a record of insurance submitted to the insurance commissioner. If you operate in an airport, you will have to pay concession fees and are subject to random audits and inspections by the state.

See Our Page on Licenses and Permits

The Pros and Cons:


  • There will always be a market for car rentals.
  • You can be your own boss.
  • The work is not labor-intensive.
  • High profits when vehicles are paid for.


  • You will be responsible for the maintenance of all of the cars, keeping them in perfect order.
  • Sometimes people are hard on rental cars because they don’t own them so they don’t care about the way they drive them.
  • Highly competitive industry.
  • High start-up costs for vehicles.
  • High insurance rates.

Hours of Operation:

This can vary depending on your location. If you are near a busy airport, you may want to stay open 24/7.

Other locations can work normal business hours from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. or so. Either way, you will want to make sure that your customers are able to drop the car off safely at any hour of the night.

Business Considerations

What You Must Consider Before Starting Your Business ~ Your Success or Failure Depends on It!

Business Articles

Starting A Car Rental Business: Schalberg.com

Business – Stake Your Claim: Entrepreneur.com

How Do Rental Car Companies Make Money? Audio: Marketplace.org

How To Run A Successful Car Rental Company By James Daniels

Tips To Running A Successful Auto Rental Company: Everydaylife.globalpost.com

How To Start A Vehicle Rental Business: 7 Steps: Wikihow.com

Car Rental Franchising With Rent-A-Wreck

Care Rental Google Searches

Car Renault Associations

Car Rental Business Plans

Car Rental Business Software

Car Rental Business News

Car Detailing Tips


Start Your Own Car Rental Business With Just One Car