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UK Holiday Car Hire market report

“Consumers still want to go on holiday abroad, evident from reports of strong bookings in the first half of 2017. However, many will be cutting back on expenses because of the weak Pound. This will likely mean that people will cut back on car hires. However, rental brands can encourage bookings by investing in mobile technology to encourage spontaneous bookings, and by focusing on the varied range of holiday experiences that a car rental can provide.”
– Fergal McGivney, Travel Analyst

This Report discusses the following key topics:

  • Market size and forecast for holiday car hires 
  • Market share - the most used car hire bands
  • Holiday car hire usage
  • Holiday car booking channels
  • Attitudes and behaviours towards holiday car hires 
  • Launch activity and innovation in the car hire market

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Consumer belt tightening likely to have a negative effect on holiday car rentals
              • Figure 1: Forecast volume of holiday car hires abroad by UK residents, 2012-22
            • Rising inflation means consumers are feeling the pinch
              • Figure 2: UK average weekly earnings (excluding bonuses)* vs CPIH inflation, percentage change year on year, 2012-17
            • The consumer
              • The proportion of holidaymakers renting cars drops
                • Figure 3: Holiday car hire usage, 2014-17
              • Most holiday car rentals are direct bookings
                • Figure 4: How last holiday car hire was booked, May 2017
              • Majority of car hires through airlines/travel agents are in packages
                • Figure 5: Holiday car hire packages, May 2017
              • Consumers want more transparency
                • Road trips that focus on multiple holiday experiences
                  • Figure 6: Holiday car behaviours, May 2017
                • What we think
                • Issues and Insights

                  • Practicality and price are key, but many are open to luxury car hire
                    • The facts
                      • The implications
                        • Consumers have concerns about renting cars
                          • The facts
                            • The implications
                              • Consumers want more transparency
                                • The facts
                                  • The implications
                                  • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                    • A good year for holiday car hire in 2015 and 2016
                                      • A slowdown expected in 2017 and 2018
                                        • Rising inflation will put a squeeze on consumers’ finances
                                          • However, consumers are still relatively confident…
                                            • …but this is heavily skewed towards older generations
                                            • Market Size and Forecast

                                              • Slowdown in growth expected as consumers rein in their spending
                                                • Figure 7: Total overseas car rental volume, 2012-22
                                                • Figure 8: Forecast volume of holiday car hires abroad by UK residents, 2012-22
                                              • Strong growth in overseas trips in 2016 but slowdown expected
                                                • Figure 9: Overseas holiday market volume and value*, 2011-21
                                              • Consumers travelling on holidays by ferry fell in 2016
                                                • Figure 10: Overseas holidays taken by UK residents, by mode of transport, 2015 and 2016
                                              • Forecast methodology
                                              • Market Background

                                                • Inflation hits consumers’ pockets
                                                  • Figure 11: UK average weekly earnings (excluding bonuses)* vs CPIH inflation, percentage change year on year, 2012-17
                                                • The Pound remains low against the euro and the US Dollar
                                                  • Figure 12: US Dollar and euro against the Pound Sterling, May 2016-17
                                                • However, despite the doom and gloom, consumers are still optimistic…
                                                  • Figure 13: Consumer finances, January 2014-April 2017
                                                  • Figure 14: Consumer finances, by age, April 2017
                                                • …but consumers are relatively optimistic about the future
                                                  • Figure 15: Outlook for personal finances for the coming year, January 2009-January 2017
                                                  • Figure 16: Outlook for personal finances for the coming year, by age, April 2017
                                                • Despite tight finances, consumers are still keen on buying holidays
                                                  • Figure 17: Plans to book a holiday in the next three months, June 2012-April 2017
                                                • Growth in package holidays could affect car rentals
                                                  • Figure 18: Forecast of UK overseas volume, package and independent holidays, 2011-21
                                                • A boost for Spain, Italy, Portugal and Greece
                                                  • Figure 19: Top 15 overseas holiday destinations, by number of trips, 2011-16
                                                • Independently booked trips to Spain helped drive car rentals in 2016
                                                  • Figure 20: Top 10 independently booked overseas holiday destinations, by number of trips, 2011-16
                                                • Post Office research reveals cheapest holiday destinations
                                                  • Figure 21: Post Office Holiday Cost Index, 2017
                                                  • Figure 22: Petrol cost per litre in Europe 2016 and change 2015-16
                                                • Good news for holiday car renters; oil prices likely to remain low
                                                  • Figure 23: Europe Brent Spot Price FOB* (Dollars per Barrel), April 2012-April 2017
                                              • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                                                • Usage of Europcar by UK consumers increases
                                                  • MyTripCar aims to make the rental experience more transparent
                                                    • Skurt – An Uber-style car rental app that supplies fleet cars on demand
                                                      • FlightCar shuts down after selling technology to Mercedes
                                                        • Google Maps uses historical data to gauge parking difficulty
                                                          • Dubai set to launch pilotless air-taxis
                                                          • Market Share

                                                            • Europcar enjoys an increase in market share
                                                                • Figure 24: Holiday car rental market share, 2014-17
                                                              • A look at the “big three” car rental brands
                                                                • Europcar
                                                                  • Hertz
                                                                    • Avis Budget Group
                                                                      • Figure 25: Holiday car rental market share, 2014-17
                                                                  • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                    • MyTripCar aims to make the rental experience more transparent
                                                                        • Figure 26: MyTripCar website
                                                                      • Skurt – An Uber-style car rental app that supplies fleet cars on demand
                                                                        • Figure 27: Skurt car rental service, May 2017
                                                                      • FlightCar shuts down after selling technology to Mercedes
                                                                        • Google Maps uses historical data to gauge parking difficulty
                                                                          • Dubai set to launch pilotless air-taxis
                                                                            • Figure 28: Driverless air-taxis, 2017
                                                                        • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                          • The proportion of holidaymakers renting cars drops
                                                                            • Most holiday car rentals are direct bookings
                                                                              • Consumers want more transparency
                                                                                • Holidaymakers open to luxury car hire
                                                                                  • Road trips that focus on multiple holiday experiences have appeal
                                                                                    • Expert and consumer review sites are important for renters
                                                                                    • Holiday Car Hire Usage

                                                                                      • The proportion of holidaymakers renting cars drops
                                                                                        • Figure 29: Holiday car hire usage, 2014-17
                                                                                      • Demographic breakdown; who is cutting back?
                                                                                        • Figure 30: Holiday car hire usage, by age, March 2016 and May 2017
                                                                                      • Holiday car renters hire around two cars in a three-year period
                                                                                        • Figure 31: Mean and median of holiday car rentals, May 2017
                                                                                      • Reasons for not hiring a car
                                                                                        • Figure 32: Reasons for not hiring a car, May 2017
                                                                                    • Holiday Car Booking Channels

                                                                                      • Most holiday car rentals are direct bookings
                                                                                        • Figure 33: How last holiday car hire was booked, May 2017
                                                                                      • Majority of car hires through airlines/travel agents are in packages
                                                                                        • Figure 34: Holiday car hire packages, May 2017
                                                                                        • Figure 35: Holiday car hire attitudes, May 2017
                                                                                    • Holiday Car Hire Attitudes

                                                                                      • Consumers want more transparency
                                                                                        • Figure 36: Holiday car hire attitudes, May 2017
                                                                                      • Holidaymakers open to luxury car hire
                                                                                        • Figure 37: Holiday car hire attitudes, May 2017
                                                                                        • Figure 38: Hawaii-based car rental company Envy allows customers to rent sports cars from dealerships
                                                                                    • Holiday Car Hire Behaviours

                                                                                      • Road trips that focus on multiple holiday experiences
                                                                                        • Figure 39: Holiday car hire behaviours, May 2017
                                                                                      • Consumers have concerns about renting cars
                                                                                        • Figure 40: Holiday car hire attitudes, May 2017
                                                                                    • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                        • Abbreviations
                                                                                          • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                          • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                            • Forecast methodology

                                                                                            Companies Covered

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