Top 5 Car Rental Franchises in the UK

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car rental franchise

The car rental industry has grown immensely over the past five years. Car rental firms help keep us on the road when our own vehicles are unavailable, were away for business or pleasure, or we dont wish to buy a car outright. If youre considering starting your own car rental franchise, consider our top picks.


The UK car rental and leasing industry contributes approximately £49 billion per year to the economy (BVRLA). This number takes into account the operations of the rental industry itself, the UK-made vehicles and engines purchased, the activity of UK dealerships and how this influences the used car market. It is also estimated that, in 2018, there were 52,700 people directly employed in the industry and 465,000 people whose jobs were supported by the industry (BVRLA).

According to IBIS World, the sector had an annual growth of 7.4 percent from 2014-2019 to reach a revenue of £16.6 billion. A surge in the demand from businesses and an increase in tourism have contributed to the revenue growth. The fact that the sector is growing can only mean good things when investing - with more and more people renting vehicles in the UK, there is greater scope for car rental franchises to become very lucrative.


Reasons why starting a car rental franchise is a great idea

1. In demand

Each year there are approximately 10.9 million car rental transactions in the UK to meet the need of around 7.8 million Brits who wish to rent a car (BVRLA).

2. Part of a strong business sector

Car rental franchises offer a valuable service to the public. Most of us have rented a car at some point or know someone who has. With the affordable, accessible and flexible nature of car rentals, the British public can make the most of the service when they need it most.

In demand and lucrative The UK car rental and leasing industry contributes approximately £49 billion per year to the economy

3. Would attend to customers needs

Brits can choose whether they would like to rent a small or large vehicle based on the context. For example, someone may wish to rent a big, seven-seater car if they need to drive the whole family to their holiday destination, or they might simply wish to try out different makes, models or even hybrid cars for the fun of it. Customers value companies that can accommodate a range of needs.

4. Benefit from an existing business model

A franchise guarantees a steady flow of customers generated from an existing brand awareness. Franchises also benefit from the business vehicle supply and technological and financial partnerships. Vehicle users are more likely to choose a local car rental branch with a recognised name and a powerful presence in the industry, such as Enterprise, Hertz or Europcar.

Top 5 car rental franchises in the UK

1. Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Enterprise Rent-A-Car is an American vehicle rental company that is headquartered in Missouri, US. On top of providing car rental services, Enterprise oversees commercial fleet management, commercial truck and rental operations and used car sales. Founded in 1957, the business, which is the biggest in the sector, operates in more than 85 countries with over 7,600 locations, hundreds of which are spread across the UK.

  • Becoming an Enterprise Rent-A-Car franchisee: Enterprise welcomes interested franchisees to get in touch. However, it does not offer franchising opportunities in the US and Canada. The brand urges interested entrepreneurs to contact Peter Smith, the Vice President of Global Franchising via globalfranchising@ehi.com.

2. Green Motion

This car and van rental franchise provides businesses and clients alike the opportunity to enjoy a vehicle with lower CO2 emissions at market-leading prices. The brand is the only 100 percent, fully franchised vehicle rental company, with every single location being owned and operated by a savvy entrepreneur.

Founded in the UK in 2007, Green Motions UK network has expanded to over 20 locations and the brand has thrived internationally too, with its vehicle rental services being provided in over 40 countries. This makes Green Motion the sixth largest car and van rental company across the globe.

  • Becoming a Green Motion franchisee: The company is searching for ambitious entrepreneurs to join its UK network as part of its UK expansion strategy. Click here to learn more and sign up.
     
  • How much you need to invest: A minimum investment of £70,00 and a total investment of £140,000 is required, including £39,500 in franchise fees.
     
  • What you get for your investment: Green Motion provides franchisees with comprehensive training and ongoing support, including, but not limited to, creating a unique brand identity, planning the location, customer service, business planning and accounts support. As a franchisee, you will also benefit from your location being displayed across 47 distribution channels, such as the travel brands Expedia and Rentalcars.

green motion

3. Practical Car & Van Rental

As one of the largest vehicle rental businesses in the UK, Practical Car & Van Rental is a brand worth investing in. It offers a large range of cars, vans, trucks and minibuses to individuals.

  • Becoming a Car & Van Rental franchisee: Whether you have an existing business and want to add an extra revenue stream to it, or youre looking to start your own stand-alone business with the ongoing support of the franchise team, this is the franchise for you. To find out more, click here.
     
  • How much you need to invest: The initial franchise fee will range between £7,000 and £10,000. For working capital, youre looking at parting with a minimum of £15,000 for a smaller location and £70,000 for larger, free-standing sites.
     
  • What you get for your investment: Youll receive ongoing support to help grow your business, bespoke management software, competitive insurance packages, signage and more.

4. Eagle Car Rental

  • Becoming an Eagle Car Rental franchisee: This is the perfect opportunity for individuals with a passion for cars who are keen to make their mark in the lucrative car rental industry. Click here to sign up.
     
  • What you get for your investment: As well as being able to operate under a highly successful business model, you can benefit from the industry contacts Eagle Car Rental has established over the years. Youll also have access to training programmes that help get you confident with all aspects of the business.


>> Read more:


5. Driver Hire

While this isnt a traditional car rental opportunity, its certainly worth considering. Logistics is a huge sector, with the vast majority of UK goods being hauled by road. That means haulage and logistics companies are always on the lookout for good drivers. Rather than spending money advertising themselves, they prefer to use dedicated employment agencies to find qualified and experienced drivers for them. Thats where Driver Hire comes in.

With three decades of successful operations behind it and five Franchisor of the Year awards, Driver Hire is a trusted and respected brand that has powerful connections to some of the largest hauliers in the UK.

  • Becoming a Driver Hire franchisee: Franchisees run their own office-based recruitment business, specialising in providing the logistics industry with temporary and permanent drivers, as well as other logistics staff. With a marketplace thats worth over £32 billion and an average annual turnover of £1.18 million per office (compared to the UK franchise average of £378,000), Driver Hire franchises are highly desirable and very profitable. Click here to learn more.
     
  • How much you need to invest: The minimum investment is currently £32,000, whilst the total investment is £40,000. Franchisees can look forward to a revenue of £500,000 after two years.
     
  • What you get for your investment: Franchisees get a six-week training period and ongoing support, including specialist teams to help with everything from HR to PR. No previous experience in the recruitment business is required.

Start a car rental franchise

Statistics have proved the high demand for car rental services inherent in our society. If youre keen to start your own car rental franchise, keep checking back for any new additions to our network here. Or, if you want to view all of our car franchises in one place, simply click here.

>> Read more articles on the Car Rental sector

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