Car Rental: 75+ Statistics, Facts, and Trends [2022]

car rental statistics, facts, and trends

Car rentals are incredibly convenient.

You pick up a vehicle at the airport, drive to your destination, and drop it off without worrying about maintenance or insurance.

So—

It’s no wonder the car rental industry is booming, generating a full $40.65B annually worldwide.

That’s why, at Passport Photo Online, we’ve put together a data-driven roundup of the most recent and valuable car rental statistics to give you an in-depth look into the car rental sector.

Buckle in.

List of Car Rental Statistics, Facts, and Trends

  1. Top 10 Car Rental Stats and Facts to Know in 2022
  2. Surprising Facts about the Car Rental Industry
  3. Car Rental Agent Demographics and Statistics
  4. Car Rental Market Before COVID-19
  5. The Effect of Coronavirus on the Car Rental Sector
  6. Car Rental After the COVID-19 Crisis 
  7. Car Rental Market Trends for 2022 and beyond
  8. 15 Stats About Car Rental Companies
  9. Car Rental Market: FAQ

Top 10 Car Rental Stats and Facts to Know in 2022

  1. The US car rental market has generated $56.3B in revenue in 2022.
  2. In 2022, the car rental industry had a 9.8% market growth compared to 2021.
  3. The global car rental market could nearly double by 2031, reaching $121.1B.
  4. As of 2022, the luxury car rental market stands at $29.5B globally. By 2028, it’ll almost triple, exceeding $80B and enjoying a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20%.
  5. Over 25% of the car rental sector’s revenue comes from corporate customers.
  6. North America dominates the global car rental market, accounting for over 37% of the total market share before the pandemic.
  7. The car rental industry is growing at above-average levels in the Middle East and Africa.
  8. The COVID-19 pandemic caused the biggest crisis in the history of the car rental market, accounting for a -31.05% drop in revenues and a market size decrease of -37.2%.
  9. Daily car rental prices have increased by 76% on average, reaching 278% in some tourist destinations.
  10. Despite the pandemic’s devastating effects, the US car rental market size increased by an average of 2.8% annually between 2017 and 2022.

Surprising Facts about the Car Rental Industry

  • Over 17K car rental businesses will operate in the US by 2022.
  • Most car rental companies are in California (1,355), Florida (1,050), and Texas (960).
  • More than half of all rental cars in the US (54%) belong to domestic brands.
  • The US car rental market has 2M economy class vehicles.
the US car rental market has 2M economy class vehicles
  • 55% of global car rentals are for leisure travel.
  • Almost half of all luxury car rentals worldwide occur in the US.
  • Underage driver’s license holders can rent a car in New York and Michigan.
  • Drivers under 25 must pay a surcharge to rent a car.
  • People over 70 or 80 aren’t allowed to rent a car in some countries regardless of having a valid driving license.

Car Rental Agent Demographics and Statistics

  • Most car rental agents are female and speak Spanish. 
  • The US car rental sector experienced a 12.1% growth in employees in 2021 and 18.4% in 2022 compared to the COVID-19 pandemic times.
  • Over the past five years, the average car rental worker’s wage has been increasing by 1%.
  • There are ~150K employees in the US car rental industry in 2022.
there are ~150K employees in the US car rental industry in 2022
  • Most car rental agents are female (50.5%). Their average salary is $22,759, which is lower than what men bring home: $25,100.
  • The most popular ethnicities in the car rental sector are Caucasian (57%), Hispanic or Latino (22%), and Afro (12%), with the average age of a car rental worker being 40+. 
  • 36% of car rental workers have a high school diploma.
  • 62.5% of car rental agents speak Spanish.

Car Rental Market Before COVID-19

  • The global car rental market stood at $92.92B in 2019.
  • The year 2019 was pivotal for the car rental world, with record revenues of $32B. 
  • The US car rental industry generated a large part of the above amount, with companies earning a total of $11.8B in revenue as of 2019.
  • As many as 44.5M car rentals took place in 2019 in the US. 
  • A rental car’s average monthly revenue per unit (RPU) was $1,174 in 2019.
  • At the end of 2019, the average daily car rental price was $46.

The Effect of Coronavirus on the Car Rental Sector

  • The global car rental market was valued at $58.34B in 2020.
  • The total revenues generated in the US during 2020 were the lowest in the last 10 years: $23.22B. The drop in revenues was 27.4% compared to the previous year. 
  • COVID-19 caused ~40,000 car rental workers to lose their jobs.
COVID-19 caused ~40,000 car rental workers to lose their jobs
  • The total number of car rentals in 2020 in the US was 17.3M. That’s only 39% of what was rented in the previous year.
  • The average daily car rental price increased by 76% compared to pre-pandemic times and reached $81, often exceeding $100 in popular tourist destinations. It’s mainly due to the scarcity of rental cars, a problem that persists today.
  • In Bozeman, Montana, the average daily cost of renting a car has jumped to 278% since 2019, reaching as high as $259.

Car Rental After the COVID-19 Crisis 

  • The global car rental market size was $68.84B in 2021.
  • Europe’s and North America’s tourism recovered the best, with more tourist arrivals compared to 2020: +19% and +17%, respectively. Yet, the number of car rentals remained lower than in 2019.
  • In 2021, the US car rental industry had a 21% increase in revenue over 2020, reaching $28.1B. It represents the largest year-over-year increase in history. 
  • In 2021, the number of rental cars available in the US was only 1.8M, far below pre-pandemic times.
  • The number of cars rented in 2021 globally was 29.2M. That’s almost double compared to the previous year. 
  • There’s been a slight drop of -0.9% in the number of US car rental businesses from before the pandemic.
  • Economy cars are the most requested option, followed by executive and luxury cars. In 2021, economy cars accounted for 36.07% of the total number of cars rented. 
  • Between 2021 and 2028, the executive cars market is projected to grow at a CAGR of more than 5.5%.
  • Over 36% of the global car rental market share in the last year was accounted for by North America.
  • Millennials opt for environmentally-friendly options and short-term cost reductions. That’s why the demand for rental cars has skyrocketed, with private car ownership rates dropping by up to 80% in developed countries. 
  • The car rental industry will be worth $144.21B worldwide by 2027.
by 2027, the car rental industry will be worth $144.21B worldwide
  • The global car rental market is expected to experience a CAGR of 6.7% by 2026 and 7.5% by the end of the decade, in part thanks to the increased use of car rental booking apps.
  • In the US, the CAGR of the car rental market is estimated to be 5.27% between 2022 and 2026, generating over $31B in revenue annually. 
  • Asia Pacific is expected to experience the highest CAGR of almost 8%. This is due to the rise in the average citizen’s business travel expenses, government restrictions on buying cars, and the region’s economic expansion.
  • The number of cars rented in the US in 2024 will likely be ~3X higher than in 2020: about 46.8M.
  • Car rental user penetration is expected to reach 7.6% by 2026, up from 5.5% in 2022.
  • There will be 602.2M car rental users by 2026.
there will be 602.2M car rental users by 2026
  • By 2026, sales through online platforms will account for 71% of the whole car rental industry revenue.
  • Global car rental platforms will likely generate over $107B by 2027.
  • The SUV rental market should generate over $13B in revenue by 2027.
  • Airport car rental will experience a 7.2% growth by 2029. It’ll be due to the development of tourism globally, which will result in an increase in air traffic and the opening of new airports. 
  • Local car rental use is forecast to hit a record CAGR of ~6.5% by 2028 due to tourist preference for car rental services over public transportation.

15 Stats About Car Rental Companies

  • Hertz Group, Avis-Budget Group, and Enterprise Holdings make up 94% of the US car rental industry.
  • 42% of Americans who’ve ever rented a car used Enterprise Holdings, the car rental industry leader.
CompanyNumber of Locations Fleet Size
Enterprise Holdings6K1.1M
Hertz3.8K430K
Avis Budget Group3.2K350K
U-Save Auto Rental System1245.5K
Sixt10018.5K
NP Auto Group1007.5K
Rent-A-Wreck of America711.75K
Ace Rent A Car609K
Fox Rent A Car2118.2K
  • The car rental market is more diverse in Europe. Apart from said three conglomerates, the Europcar and Sixt groups get much of the client’s attention.
  • Car rental companies decided to sell most of their fleets in 2020 due to the economic situation caused by COVID-19.
  • Most car rental companies’ fleets haven’t yet recovered. For example, the number of cars purchased in the US in 2021 was 58% less than in 2019. 
  • With 6K locations, Enterprise Holdings is the largest car rental company in the US, earning $14.72M in revenue in 2020 despite the pandemic.
  • Enterprise Holdings’ car rentals typically last 13.2 days as of 2020.
  • Enterprise Holdings have the highest customer satisfaction rate of 861 on a 1,000-point scale. National Car Rental and Alamo are close behind, scoring 852 and 837, respectively.
  • Hertz, one of the global leaders in the car rental market, experienced a 56% decline in revenues compared to the previous year and filed for bankruptcy in May 2020.
  • The negative effect of COVID-19 was also evident in other leading car rental companies during 2020, such as Avis Budget Group and Europe Car. Both had to face a 42% decline in revenues.
  • Avis Budget Group’s revenues fell by 80% due to the pandemic, leading the company to significantly reduce its costs and employees’ pay.
  • Hertz Global Holdings Inc.’s shares fell by 83%, forcing it to lay off up to 10K employees and hire top consultants to prevent bankruptcy and restructure debt. 
  • Across the pond, Europcar requested up to €225M in loans from the French government. Europcar shares lost 63% of their value, with net debt increasing by 32%.

Stacking It All Up

There you have it.

A comprehensive list of car rental statistics, facts, and trends to turbocharge your knowledge.

Let us know in the comments if there are any other stats you’d like to see.

Car Rental Market: FAQ

How did the COVID-19 pandemic affect the car rental industry?

The car rental industry went through its largest crisis in history with COVID-19. In 2020, car rental companies’ revenues dropped by ~27.4% compared to 2019, which made them sell an extensive part of their fleets.

How much was the global car rental industry worth before the COVID-19 pandemic?

The global car rental market was worth $85.79B by 2019. That was right before the COVID-19 pandemic started.

How much was the US car rental market worth in 2019?

The car rental industry in the United States was worth $31.73B in 2019. It’s also worth pointing out that North America dominated the global market, accounting for over 37% of the total market share.

How much is the US car rental market worth in 2022?

The US car rental market is expected to generate $54.2B in revenue by 2022. What’s more, the compound annual growth rate of the US car rental market is estimated to be 5.27% between 2022 and 2026, generating over $31B in revenue annually. 

Is the car rental market growing in 2022?

Yes, the car rental market is booming after COVID-19 receded. It’s expected to grow considerably in the coming years, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of up to 6.7% worldwide between today and 2026.

Which region is seeing the fastest growth in the car rental industry in 2022?

Asia has grown at the highest compound growth rate of 8% in the last several years. That’s due to the increasing number of business trips and citizens’ improved financial well-being.

What are the largest car rental companies in the United States in 2022?

Enterprise Holdings, Hertz Group, and Avis-Budget Group control up to 94% of the US car rental market, with over 13K locations spread across the nation.

Where does the car rental industry rank in terms of the market size in the United States in 2022?

Within the rental and leasing sectors, the car rental industry ranks 8th in the US. In terms of any business sector, it ranks 213th.

What’s the biggest car rental company in 2022?

The largest car rental company worldwide is Enterprise holdings, which comprises many brands, including National Car Rental and Alamo Rent-A-Car. The company has around 6K locations and over 1M cars in service in the US alone. 

What’s expected to be the dominant segment in the global car rental market?

The leading sector within the global car rental market will be executive and luxury cars. This is due to many companies expanding their commercial operations and increasing business trips. This segment is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 5.5% in the next few years.

Is it profitable to start a car rental company in 2022?

Most car rental businesses make an annual profit of $50K to $100K during the first few years. After your company is more established, you may be able to reach ~$150K.

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