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Digital travel assistants: an innovative service for car rental companies

digital travel assistant for car rentals

A number of changes occurred in the travel and car rental industry over the last decade. Growing environmental awareness and technological advances have been the main factors triggering this transformation.

Out of all technological innovations, digital travel assistants are one of the most interesting for both companies and their customers. These smart devices are playing an important role in improving the travel experience of car renters and, at the same time, in providing a valuable investment for car rental companies.

 

What is a digital travel assistant for car rentals?

A digital travel assistant is a customized smartphone with free calls and connectivity, tour guides, audio guides and travel maps for a richer and more personalized rental experience.

This additional feature has been introduced nationwide in Italy in 2018 to offer an ancillary service to travellers, mainly to overseas visitors planning to spend their holidays outside their own country. In 2019, this service consolidated its footprint as a result of its adoption by leading international brands. The impact of the pandemic on international tourism has not restricted the spread of this ancillary, which has increased its distribution thanks to other major car rental companies.

 

What kind of services does a digital travel assistant offer to car rental customers?

The digital travel assistant offers countless functions. It is delivered upon car pick-up and usually provides Internet connection at no extra charge, with free international calls, unlimited data traffic and a secure Wi-Fi hotspot.

The rental experience becomes even more immersive thanks to tour guides, audio guides and travel maps, providing information on historical monuments along the route and suggestions on gastronomic tastings and the best places to stop and admire the breathtaking views.

In addition, a number of useful travel tools such as a translator, currency exchange, emergency numbers and parking facilities will be available, as well as the possibility of purchasing tickets for museums, events and attractions.

The digital travel assistant is easy to use and secure: at the end of the rental period, when the device is returned, it undergoes an automatic data cleaning process activated by the car rental company’ staff at the drop-off point, so personal data is completely removed and privacy is guaranteed.

 

What advantages does a digital travel assistant offer to car rental companies?

The digital travel assistant mainly contributes to increasing the profits of the car rental company, because it is hired over the counter as an innovative ancillary service. In addition, the device is able to improve the rental experience and thus positively affect customer satisfaction.

By using suitable features, the digital travel assistant also collects customer feedback to optimize the service and keeps in constant touch with travelers with customisable push notifications.

 

How can the digital travel assistant be a great investment for car rental companies?

The over-the-counter rental of a digital travel assistant as an ancillary service enables a high return on investment in a short time, as witnessed by important use cases of leading brands that have adopted the solution. Data below illustrates two real-world use cases in Italy involving two of the most important international car rental companies operating in the country.

Scenario 1

50+ rental locations, 10 months.

Results: 3.8k devices rented,
26k total days of rental.

ROI: 1,03x

Scenario 2

20+ rental locations, 4 months.

Results: 1.6k devices rented,
11k total days of rental.

ROI: 2,5x

How to adopt a digital travel assistant in my car rental company?

Suppliers of digital travel assistants are quite limited, as we are talking about a specific technology with high quality standards.

More details on the features and capabilities of a digital travel assistant can be found in specific information material.

In addition, you can also arrange real product demonstration sessions with dedicated sales teams.

If you have a car rental company, start using a digital travel assistant now as an extra service for your customers. Get a quick and significant ROI by taking advantage of simple and intuitive technological innovation!

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