Hire Cars – 2012 Ratings

Posted by Canstar Blue January 12th 2012

You are viewing the archived 2012 award for hire cars. Go to the current hire car ratings.
Go to the current hire car ratings.

Careful Kiwis fuss over hire cars paperwork

Most Satisfied Customers - Hire Cars, 2012Our recent survey results have revealed that many New Zealanders play it safe when renting a car by thoroughly examining both the vehicle’s condition and their lease’s terms and conditions.

The vehicle condition report was read through with scrutiny by 74% of New Zealand respondents before they decided to get behind the wheel of their rental.

Customers were similarly fussy regarding the fine print of their contract, with more than three in five ensuring they inspect their car hire terms and conditions.

Wellington residents were more relaxed about studying these details than those from Dunedin – as only 49% of Wellingtonians went through the terms and conditions compared to 70% of Dunedin residents.

Our survey also revealed which hire car brand is best for the eager tourist, the savvy businessman on-the-go or anyone else who is in need of some wheels.

Hertz not only managed to garner five star ratings for overall satisfaction, service, cost and fee transparency, booking process and accessory availability – they also took home our most satisfied customers award for hire cars.

Other brands rated were Budget, Thrifty and Avis.

In other results, Thrifty and Budget both received five stars for value for money, while Avis scored five stars for vehicle availability.

Our survey also found that, despite the close attention some Kiwis paid to the finer points of the contract, more than one in ten drivers were hit by unexpected fees when they returned their hire car. Only seven percent of older drivers felt the sting of surprise hire car costs in comparison to nineteen percent of Generation Y respondents.

Canstar Blue commissions Colmar Brunton Australia to survey 2,500 New Zealand consumers across a range of categories every few months to measure and track customer satisfaction. The outcomes reported are the results from customers of hire car companies within the survey group – in this case, 426 people. To qualify, the customer must have hired a car in the last 12 months. Brands must receive at least 30 responses to be included.

Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands that received three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10.

Overall satisfaction

Hertz customers were most satisfied overall with their hire car company, and received five stars. Budget and Thrifty each received four stars and Avis received three.

Value for money

Both Budget and Thrifty received five stars for value for money. Hertz followed with four stars, and Avis received three.


Hertz were awarded top marks for their customer service, receiving another five stars. Avis, Thrifty and Budget all received four stars.

Vehicle availability

Taking the number one spot for this criteria, Avis received a five star rating for customer satisfaction for vehicle availability. Hertz, Budget and Thrifty all followed close behind with four stars each.

Booking process

Long flights and busy itineraries mean that travellers will hold a hire car company’s smooth booking process in great esteem. Hertz received five stars for having the most satisfied customers for their booking process; while Avis, Budget and Thrifty each received four.

Transparency of cost and fees

Hertz received another five star rating for the transparency of cost and fees, while Budget scored four stars. They were followed by Avis and Thrifty with three stars each.

Accessory availability

Five stars were awarded to Hertz for the availability of the accessories such as GPS devices and phone chargers. Budget followed close behind with four stars, and Thrifty and Avis both received three.