Due to the significant disruption in air travel these past few months, ground transportation has been identified as one of the safest ways to meet intra-regional business needs. With that said, ground transportation companies have also experienced major blows to their business and are taking a dramatic view of how to reshape their organizations and service offerings.
Impacts of Covid-19
There have been sharp declines in revenue as large numbers of Americans shelter at home and diminish their travel, which in return reduces economic activity. With the reduction in sales, transportation companies are incurring the additional costs of cleaning of vehicles, protective gear for employees and emergency staffing.
- Hertz Global Holdings recently filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after not being able to negotiate long-term agreements with creditors after revenues plunged. As Paul Stone, Hertz’ new CEO advised the action will not only protect the value of the business, but allow time to service their customers and build a longer term financial foundation.
- Corporate ride sharing has been increasing their market share over the years with significant expectations of public offerings. Due to COVID-19, this share is expected to decrease by as much as 60% with some recovery anticipated in 2021.
What to Expect
Enterprise Holdings consolidated centers due to reduced foot traffic and identified the locations that can service their customers safely while applying their new cleanliness standards. As only one-third of their business is airport traffic, they have ramped up renting potential in the suburban markets and made alterations to age policy to provide easier access to more individuals. With much at stake, Enterprise CEO, Chrissy Taylor, believes cleanliness standards and loyalty are important when considering ground transportation’s revitalization.
“Confidence is key to getting people back on the road and back in the air. When we think about building that confidence, it’s not just about a process. It’s about an ongoing commitment and we have to stand behind it and so we have deemed that the complete clean pledge…cleanliness of the car is incredibly important and we have rigorous standards. It’s also about awareness to the consumer. They need to know and feel confident that we are doing those things.”
With the major blows to the rental car industry, they understand the long term success will be based upon their ability to earn the trust and confidence of their business partners and most major car rental companies are extending their status levels through January 2022.
Uber continues to be proactive with their social media presence actually thanking people for not riding during the pandemic. Although this may seem counter-intuitive, it demonstrates to a large population and substantial millennial demographic who may not own their own cars, that doing the right thing justifies the means. Ride Sharing is also investing by equipping their drivers with the appropriate sanitizer, they are installing devices to measure the body temperature of passengers and developing technology to verify drivers are wearing coverings before they go online and start accepting trips.
With health and safety being a number one priority for all, ground transportation companies are doing everything possible to ensure not only your comfort, but your confidence. This new way of doing business will likely be ingrained in company cultures and the standard for future road travel for many years to come.
TI has consolidated the COVID-19 responses of ground transportation companies on our website. Click here to find out what they are doing to ensure your safety and health.