With the dramatic growth in population, disposable income, and tourism, the rental car industry has become one of the most eminent sectors on the global market, especially nowadays when online reservation channels have become super popular.
Renting cars is often a crucial part of one’s travel plans. Moreover, car rental industry statistics show that many people opt not to own a car but rent it short- or long-term instead.
In this article, we will go through some valuable info to familiarize you with the newest trends in the car rental industry. You’ll also learn a bit about customers and employees, as people are, after all, what it takes to run this industry.
Car Rental Industry Stats (Editor’s Choice)
- The leisure division owns approximately 55%, while the commercial division owns around 45%.
- The industry revenue in 2020 dropped by 27.4% when compared to 2019’s $32 billion.
- One of the world’s largest car rental companies, Hertz, lost 56% of its revenue in 2020, went bankrupt, and exited bankruptcy in 2021.
- The American car rental industry held 132,908 employees in 2021.
- 50.5% of car rental agents are female.
- You can rent a vehicle in New York and Michigan even if you’re only 18.
- Drivers under the age of 25 are required to pay a Young Renter surcharge.
Car Rental Industry Statistics
If you want to know more about the global and American vehicle rental industry, the following stats will give you a glimpse into the topic. We’ll see how the industry changed over the last few years, how the pandemic affected it, and what the predictions for the future are.
We hope that you’ll find these stats informative and fun to read!
1. Private car ownership is reduced by 80% due to increased demand for car sharing, car rentals, and other ride-hailing services.
(Allied Market Research)
Developing countries see yearly growth of 4% in the number of rented cars, which significantly changes the car rental market.
Millennials are to thank for this. They mostly prefer to rent cars because owning and maintaining a vehicle comes out to be more expensive yearly. Moreover, renting a car comes with additional advantages, such as fuel economy.
Statistics also predict that the number of passenger vehicles in the US will reduce to 44 million by 2030, while electric services for ride-sharing will increase.
2. In 2022, there are 15,577 car rental businesses in the United States.
Unfortunately, as car rental industry analysis shows, this is a -0.9% decline from 2020, although the growth rate was relatively steady from 2017 to 2022.
Most rent-a-car businesses operate in California (1,355), Florida (1,050), and Texas (960).
3. The international vehicle rental market experienced a decrease of -32% in 2020.
(Fortune Business Insights)
The worldwide pandemic has hampered the global economy, including the car retail industry. However, as everything gets back on track, it’s expected that the worldwide car rental industry will continue growing post-pandemic.
4. The car rental industry revenue in 2020 dropped by 27.4% compared to 2019’s $32 billion.
(Auto Rental News)
The 2020 revenue ($23.22 billion) declined more than during the Great Recession (from 2008 to 2009). To put things into perspective, it lowered only 6.7% from 2008 to 2009. Moreover, it’s the lowest overall revenue since 2011.
This can be attributed to the worldwide pandemic and quarantine, during which people weren’t going places as much or at all.
5. According to auto rental industry statistics, the global rent-a-car market will show a CAGR of 10.7% by 2027.
(Allied Market Research)
The global vehicle rental market was worth $92.92 billion in 2019, but it’s predicted to amount to $214.04 billion by 2027.
When the global market for renting cars is considered, it’s estimated that the Asia Pacific will have the most significant CAGR growth by 2027.
6. The US car rental market size measured by revenue is $56.3 billion in 2022.
(IBIS World, Allied Market Research)
Compared with the period from 2016 to 2021, when the yearly decline was approximately -2.1%, the US vehicle rental market is expected to grow 26.9% in 2022. Interestingly, this industry’s share showed a faster reduction than the US economy overall.
However, North America had the highest car rental market share in 2020 and is expected to hold its position by 2027. This is attributed to the growing number of local and international leisure and business trips and the adoption of electric cars.
7. Enterprise Holdings is among the largest companies in the world—its three companies combined serve more than 95% of the global vehicle rental market.
(Sky Scanner, Enterprise Holdings, TravelAge West)
Enterprise Holdings, consisting of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Alamo Rent-A-Car, and National Car Rental, owns 1.85 million rental cars and trucks in more than 6,000 locations. It’s the number one car rental company in the US and the world’s largest by fleet and revenue ($23.9 in 2021).
Founded by Taylor company 60 years ago, Enterprise Holdings sits in 9th place on the Forbes list of America’s Largest private companies. Today, it has around 5,500 offices and 90,000 employees throughout the States.
8. The SUV rental market will increase to revenue of $13,131.9 million by 2027, car rental industry trends predict.
It’s understandable why SUV rentals are becoming more popular by the day. Nothing compares to an SUV when it comes to comfort, space, safety, and convenience.
That’s why it’s reasonable to estimate that SUV rental industry growth will exceed that from 2019 when it was measured at $7,532.6.
8. Due to less demand for rental vehicles during the lockdown, Hertz lost 56% of revenue in 2020.
(Fortune Business Insights)
Hertz, one of the largest car rental companies in the US, had to file for bankruptcy in May of 2020, dispose of any non-essential assets, and lay off many employees.
Luckily, the Hertz Corporation exited bankruptcy in 2021 and continued its 90-year-long tradition of car and van rentals in the States and worldwide, owning Hertz, Thrifty, and Dollar brands.
9. Sixt is the 5th largest rent-a-car company in the world.
You can find their offices at more than 2,200 locations in over 100 countries. They pride themselves on a 50,000-strong fleet of luxury German vehicles, among other cars.
Also, Sixt has the cheapest base rates and excellent average monthly car rental rates across the globe. Their weekly rates and long-term rentals prove to be a tremendous money saver as well.
10. The yearly average wage increase in the American car rental industry was 3.8% from 2017 to 2022.
In 2021, the total amount of paid wages came up to $4.5 billion in the US. As concluded from the car rental market statistics, the average salary in this industry was $105,000 in 2021.
11. The global online car rentals are expected to generate $107,144 million by 2027.
With the impact that technology has on every aspect of our lives, it’s only logical that car rental enterprises worldwide will jump on the virtual train.
Furthermore, the most popular car rental industry trends in 2021 promote businesses through smartphone apps and websites and emphasize how renting cars minimizes harmful exhaust emissions.
Online renting is easier for both company owners and renters. From a company’s perspective, it’s easier and quicker to track multiple rental statuses, bookings, cars, and bills. At the same time, users love the simplified renting procedure where they only need to input their data once.
12. The United States leads in tourism car rentals with its 2 million-strong vehicle fleet.
(Research and Markets)
These car rental franchise industry statistics paint a clear picture of the US supremacy in the tourism vehicle rental market and expect the US to stay on the top during the forecast period of 2021–2026.
13. The leisure sub-segment will exceed the profit of $95,179 million by 2027.
This sub-segment of the car rental industry has shown significant growth on a global scale in the past few years. Globally, the leisure car rental market share holds 55% of the entire vehicle rental market, which is about 10% more than the commercial segment.
The leisure segment of the car rental industry was valued at $61,691 in 2018. Still, its continued growth can be attributed mainly to disposable income, tourists from developing countries, and more domestic leisure trips. In addition, the US Travel Association estimates that the number of local leisure trips will surpass 1,900 million by 2022.
14. The US holds almost 50% of the global luxury car rental market.
The United States holds the largest market share, and Europe comes second, with around 29%. For example, this sub-segment was worth 10 billion in 2016. It’s expected that this market will be worth $22.5 billion on a global scale by the end of 2022 and it will grow at a CAGR of 20% during the period from 2021 to 2026.
Enterprise Holdings, Hertz, and Avis are the largest companies in the sector. Combined, they own 74% of the entire market.
15. The average cost of a rental car in the US was $30 per day in 2019 and $109 in 2021.
(Lazy Trips, Market Watch)
Why the sudden spike in prices? The reason is the increased number of travelers after the pandemic. The demand is so high that some locations don’t have a single vehicle left for tourists to rent.
However, if you decide to rent now, you should be aware of variables that will increase the average car rental rates even more. Some essential cost-altering factors are location, car rental company, car choice, dates, the time of booking, payment method, and car insurance. Renting a car at the airport, train station, or any central city location proves to be the most expensive, so keep that in mind.
Rates also depend on extras a company offers. For example, if you’re renting online, agents will try to make you purchase various add-ons, such as Wi-Fi or GPS. In most cases, this will only burn a hole in your pocket.
16. The average daily car rental rates jumped to $259 a day in Bozeman, Montana.
Renting a car in Bozeman, Montana, will hurt your pocket more than renting anywhere else in the whole United States. As data from Kayak suggests, car rental prices have skyrocketed nearly 278% in the last three years.
17. 45.51% of all vehicles in the US are foreign, while 54.49% are domestic.
(Luxury Cars A2Z)
Foreign cars vs. American cars statistics show that almost half of all vehicles on American soil are foreign. Moreover, some consumers even prefer foreign cars, mainly because those are made following stricter regulations.
Finding a 100% American vehicle is not easy. Most manufacturers use at least a few parts not made in the US or assemble the whole car there. For example, out of all vehicles sold in the US, only Tesla vehicles are entirely built in the States, namely in California.
Car Rental User Demographics and Employee Statistics
It’s easy to conclude that the future of the global car rental industry lies in business and leisure traveling and online renting solutions, such as websites and smartphone apps.
But what about people? We need them to run companies, work, rent, and drive cars. So let’s see some stats about user demographics. Of course, we’ll add some stats about employees, too.
18. The number of smartphone users is projected to reach around 970 million by 2025.
(Fortune Business Insights)
We can understand that this will happen because the prices of smartphones are getting more affordable by the day. But how will this affect the car rental industry growth?
Well, it’s logical. Business enterprises around the globe use this as an opportunity to market their car booking apps to more and more users.
19. The American car rental industry has 132,908 employees in 2022.
Even though the employee number significantly declined in 2020, it showed a growth of 18.4% in 2022. This makes the car rental industry the number 248 by employment in the US. On average, there are 5.4 employees per car rental business in the US.
20. Car rental industry statistics point out that more than half of vehicle rental agents are female.
Out of 34,599 employees in the car rental industry in 2020, 50.5% were female, 43.9% were male, and 5.6% were unknown.
Moreover, the average salary for women was $22,759, which was less than male agents in the industry earned ($25,100). This shows us that for each dollar a man earns, a woman makes 91 cents (91%).
21. Although the average minimum age for renting a car is 21 years, rent-a-car statistics show that drivers in New York and Michigan can rent a car at 18.
However, drivers aged 18 to 20 have to pay an additional Young Renter Fee that amounts to $64.50 in New York and 40 bucks per day in Michigan.
Moreover, any driver younger than 25 has to pay a Young Renter Fee as well. On average, this daily fee is $25. In addition, young car renters are usually have restrictions to certain car classes.
On the other hand, government and military employees aged 18 or older are not required to pay any Young Renter Fees.
22. According to car rental industry statistics, 56.6% of all car rental agents are White.
Furthermore, 21.7% of employees are of the Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, while only 12.0% are of the Black or African American ethnicity. The lowest percentage goes to American Indians and Alaska Natives (only 1.0%).
Moreover, the average age of car rental agents is 40+, although it differs depending on the race and gender.
23. In some countries, it’s not allowed to rent a car if a driver is 75 or 80 years old.
This isn’t the case in the United States and Canada, where car rental industry facts demonstrate that there’s no maximum rental age. Of course, you’ll need a valid driver’s license as you can’t drive without it.
We urge both young and old drivers to find out ahead whether they can rent a vehicle at their desired travel location.
24. 62.5% of vehicle rental agents speak Spanish.
The second most frequently spoken foreign language is French (10.7%), and the third most popular language is Arabic (8.9%).
25. Car rental statistics show that drivers who rent a car from Enterprise Holdings are 55% more likely to buy a new vehicle within six months.
Renting a car for some time seems like a great test run, right? That’s what more and more users think and will continue to practice.
Not only is Internet research more prevalent in renting and purchasing vehicles, but a large number of rental businesses with a wide assortment of cars and competitive rental rates make it possible for customers to try more vehicles before they buy one.
26. Car rental industry stats show that 36% of car rental agents have a high school diploma.
The second most common degree is the bachelor’s degree (26%), followed by the associate degree (24%).
Employees with high school diplomas earn about $25,100, while those with a bachelor’s degree earn $29,351 annually.
27. 47% of millennials who rent cars post their reviews online.
Although millennials are stereotyped as perpetually dissatisfied, they are most likely to post their positive reviews and feedback online. On the other hand, only 27% of Gen Xers and 10% of baby boomers post about their experience.
Car Rental Stats—The Bottom Line
We’ve learned that the car rental industry consists of competitive companies. So, as long as there aren’t any regulatory standards, it will not be bound to any generalized business patterns.
Thus, the purpose of businesses is to simply increase the income while setting a body of norms to obey. However, customers may find themselves at a disadvantage due to the prices companies set and the lack of regulations.
The vehicle rental sector keeps registering stable growth, especially in the developed countries, with the US as the leading country in the international rental industry.
People Also Ask
What industry does car rental fall under?
Car rental falls under the Real Estate and Rental and Leasing industry. This sector features businesses that provide the use of tangible and intangible assets (renting, leasing, or other types of permitted use) and companies providing related services.
Tangible assets include real estate and equipment, such as vehicles, consumer goods, and computers, while intangible assets include trademarks and patents, excluding copyrighted works.
Are car rental companies profitable?
A lot of vehicle rental businesses accumulate huge profits. It is known that car rental businesses generate net income margins of around 5 to 10 percent.
Yet, car rental companies do not make that much profit due to vehicle costs. Also, since a few biggest companies hold 90% of the US market for car rental, it may take a startup vehicle rental business a long time to make great, considerable, and satisfying profits.
How many car rentals are there per year?
The data from 2017 shows that 75.14 million customers rented a vehicle in the United States. In 2020, the US market for car rental owned an average of 1.98 million vehicles. Unfortunately, the demand for rentals in 2020 was pretty weak due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so major companies sold off more than 770,000 vehicles, and some even went bankrupt.
This resulted in the rental car shortage and inflated rental prices in 2021 when traveling and vehicle renting resumed after the lockdown.
How many people rented cars in 2020?
As Statista research shows, the number of car rental customers in the US market will grow to 49.2 million by 2025, and the number of worldwide users will increase to 588.5 million by the same year.
Moreover, 42% of car rental users reported renting from Enterprise Holdings, the biggest vehicle renting company in the US and one of the largest in the world.
How big is the rental car industry?
As we already mentioned, the American rental car industry’s market size was estimated at $39.9 billion in 2021, while the global car rental industry was worth $92.92 billion in 2019.
It’s predicted that the global vehicle rental market will grow at a CAGR of 10.7% and reach $214.04 billion by 2027.
Furthermore, 2020 was a challenging year for the worldwide economy, including the car rental industry that experienced a decrease of -32% compared to the regular annual increase from 2016 to 2019.
Who are the major players in the car rental industry?
The market is somewhat divided, with a vast number of domestic and international businesses working worldwide. The main focus of these companies is to advance their services and maximize profit at the same time.
Several players take significant market share both in the US and worldwide. The main ones include Enterprise Holdings, Sixt, Europcar Group, Hertz Corporation, and Avis Budget Group.
Most companies own other rental car businesses, which helps them dominate the market. For example, car rental industry statistics show that Enterprise Holdings is the world’s largest company by both fleet and revenue ($22.5 billion in 2020). It consists of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Alamo Rent-A-Car, and National Car Rental and owns 1.7 million rental vehicles in more than 100 countries.
- Allied Market Research
- Auto Rental News
- Enterprise Holdings
- Fortune Business Insights
- Globe Newswire
- Globe Newswire
- IBIS World
- IBIS World
- IBIS World
- IBIS World
- JD Power
- Lazy Trips
- Luxury Cars A2Z
- Market Watch
- Research and Markets
- Research Dive
- Sky Scanner
- TravelAge West