Rental car counters at Logan International Airport. Photo via Wikimedia.
According to data collected and collated by Auto Rental News, the U.S. car rental market is expected to achieve a record total revenue of $26,127 billion in 2014, as reported by corporate, franchise and independent car rental companies for U.S. locations.
The $1.72 billion increase over 2013 represents the largest jump in overall revenue year-over-year since 2010 to 2011, when the industry accelerated coming out of the Recession.
This revenue is achieved with an average of 2,073,311 units in service in the U.S. in 2014, a new record as well; however, the total revenue increase outpaced the increase in fleet size.
Revenue per unit, per month (RPU) averaged $1,050 in 2014. While this is an increase over 2013, it is below the record average RPU achieved in 2011 and 2012 of $1,060.
“This record revenue is remarkable in light of some challenging conditions,” said Chris Brown, executive editor of Auto Rental News. “With the high number of recalls affecting fleet utilization and pricing — coupled with a softening used car market — car rental companies have done a good job in managing fleet and their bottom lines.”