Because Enterprise provides accessible, affordable and sustainable transportation options in thousands of communities of all sizes, we often reach out to organizations – such as the Transportation Sustainability Research Center and the Department of Energy’s Clean Cities initiative – to help broaden discussions and debates about local mobility.
This effort not only underscores the important role the car rental industry plays in the public policy arena, but also helps reframe some challenging issues with a new and different perspective. For example, many consumers rely on mass transit or simply cannot afford to purchase or maintain a vehicle on their own, yet depend on local Virtual Car® rental service, including car sharing, as a supplement during the week, plus on weekends and special occasions.
We also frequently reach out to the media to help vet and communicate some of these key concepts. After last summer’s Hurricane Irene, we issued a press release explaining how the extensive Enterprise Rent-A-Car neighborhood network has become an integral part of many cities’ and towns’ local transportation infrastructure, particularly when natural disasters hit.
During such critical times, our employees intuitively mobilize, quickly moving rental vehicles around the country and into affected areas. Then, once vehicles are in place, we help put utility companies, government agencies, insurance adjusters and CAT (catastrophe) teams on the road so that they can get the recovery and restoration process under way.
More recently, we announced that car rental reservations were up more than 20 percent in our neighborhood “home-city” branches for Christmas week 2011 – almost twice as much as rental reservations at the airport. One might wonder what this seasonal update has to do with corporate sustainability?
The fact is, this kind of growth directly reflects the social, environmental and economic importance of delivering flexible, cost-effective transportation solutions right where people live and work. And with more than 5,000 local offices located within 15 miles of 90 percent of the U.S. population, the Enterprise network is unique in its coast-to-coast neighborhood coverage as well as its ability to support local citizens, businesses and government leaders as they develop long-term transportation plans and advocate a more sustainable future for their hometowns.
Happy New Year!