Getting car hire back on the road

Cleanliness has always been an important consideration for vehicle hire companies – after all, when you pay good money to pick up a car from the airport, you expect it to be in good condition. 

But before Covid-19, hygiene was more of an aesthetic concern – much more about removing dirty footprints or rubbish, and spraying a generous dose of ‘new car’ fragrance, than it was about disinfecting surfaces.  Customers rarely asked about hygiene protocols and hire companies didn’t need to explain. 

Then a global pandemic hit, and everything changed overnight.  The vast majority of car hire businesses saw demand for their services dwindle to zero almost overnight.  Business travel largely stopped thanks to people started working from home, and holidays – whether abroad or in the UK – were off the table.

Rising demand

But with the UK’s vaccine programme in an advanced stage and lockdowns easing all over the country, the car hire industry is one of many that’s cautiously reopening its doors.  The availability of rapid testing means that international business travel is slowly on the increase and despite complicated, ever-changing guidance about which countries are OK to visit, many UK holidaymakers are still keen to escape to the sun.  All this means that car hire businesses are likely to see rising demand for their services over the coming months – and it’s vital that they’re adequately prepared.

Post-pandemic, customers need to be reassured that their safety is being prioritised and that service providers are taking appropriate steps to prevent the spread of infection.  Service providers also need to safeguard their staff, and minimise the risk to their business from a Covid outbreak among the workforce.  Whichever way you slice it, sanitising hired vehicles is a must.

From steering wheels to gear knobs and petrol caps, the parts of a vehicle we previously paid the least attention to are now a central focus in terms of hygiene.  Hire companies need smart solutions enabling them to quickly and effectively sanitise these touchpoints between uses, without the need for expensive equipment, outside contractors, advanced staff training or lengthy downtime periods.  

What are the common drawbacks of sanitising fleet/hire vehicles?

Sanitising the inside of any vehicle can be tricky simply because there are so many different touchpoints, and because vehicle interiors are full of nooks and crannies – it takes a long time to wipe everything down manually, and the margin for error with this method is significant.  

For this reason, most fleet or vehicle hire companies have gone with spray systems, of which fogging is the most common.  However, it’s not without drawbacks, since after a vehicle is fogged it must be left for a period of several hours before it’s safe to use again.  Fogging systems also require a power supply, which may result in hazardous and awkward trailing leads, or long delays caused by the need to recharge.

Finding the right disinfectant formulation is also an issue for many vehicle hire companies – not all disinfectants have virucidal qualities and many of those that do contain chlorine, which can cause serious damage to upholstery and vinyl or faux leather finishes.

How can Ramsol help?

We believe Ramsol offers a perfect disinfection solution for fleet, hire and other vehicular applications.  With its pressurised delivery system, Ramsol requires no power supply and is 100% portable, which is a huge advantage for these busy, often outdoor locations.  

Ramsol’s optimised 20-micron spray density delivers excellent, rapid surface coverage even in the nooks and crannies, and drops out of suspension quickly, so there’s no need for lengthy elimination times – simply spray the vehicle interior thoroughly and leave to dry.  On average, it takes around 5 minutes to effectively sanitise a family-sized car, and it’s ready for the road again in a further 10 minutes. 

Ramsol is safe, and proven effective against bacteria, fungi and viruses, with all the relevant BS EN certifications for total peace of mind.  Whilst it’s tough on germs, Ramsol is gentle on surfaces so it won’t damage vinyl or upholstery, and it has a pleasant citrus smell which is both inviting and reassuring for customers.

Ramsol also comes in two formats which offers incredible versatility.  The 22-litre canister and spray gun is already popular with vehicle hire companies, since it’s convenient to use and easy to incorporate into existing hygiene routines with no advanced staff training required.  The 500ml individual spray canisters are ideal for smaller fleets, and also for individual use – pop one in the glove box so your customers can sanitise safely on the go.

To find out more about how Ramsol works in vehicles, or to discuss your organisation’s unique requirements, contact us.