Vehicle rental agent

A vehicle rental agent at an airport


Vehicle rental agents represent businesses involved in renting out vehicles and determine short periods of usage. They document transactions, insurances and payments.

Vehicle rental agents typically do the following:

  • answer questions from customers about prices and which vehicles are available
  • take bookings and explain the terms of rental agreements
  • complete paperwork, update computer records and take payments
  • record a car’s condition and make notes of any existing bumps or scratches
  • explain and demonstrate any special features
  • check mileage and inspect for damage on returned vehicles
  • do customer ‘call-backs’ to check their satisfaction with the service
  • provide ongoing service and sales support to regular business accounts

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to vehicle rental agent:

vehicle booking worker
vehicle hire desk agent
vehicle rental desk agent
vehicle booking desk assistant
vehicle booking assistant
vehicle booking desk supervisor
vehicle rental manager
vehicle booking manager
vehicle hire desk manager
vehicle booking supervisor
vehicle hire desk worker
vehicle rental supervisor
vehicle booking desk clerk
vehicle booking desk agent
vehicle rental desk supervisor
vehicle rental assistant
vehicle booking team leader
vehicle rental desk clerk
vehicle booking desk worker
vehicle rental worker
vehicle rental team leader
vehicle booking desk manager
vehicle hire desk assistant

Working conditions

Vehicle rental agents typically work in fast-paced office environments. They may be required to work long hours, including evenings, weekends, and holidays. Some vehicle rental agents may be required to travel to different locations.

Vehicle rental agents typically work under the supervision of a manager or supervisor.

Minimum qualifications

Vehicle rental agents are typically required to have a high school diploma or equivalent. Some vehicle rental agencies may require a bachelor’s degree in business or a related field. Relevant coursework includes business, finance, accounting, economics and marketing.

Most vehicle rental companies will train new hires in their specific processes and procedures. Training may include shadowing an experienced agent or completing a training course online. Training may last a few days to a few weeks.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Vehicle rental agent is a Skill level 2 occupation.

Vehicle rental agent career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to vehicle rental agent.

rental service representative in cars and light motor vehicles
rental service representative in machinery, equipment and tangible goods
rental service representative in personal and household goods
rental service representative in recreational and sports goods
rental service representative in trucks

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of vehicle rental agent. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of vehicle rental agent with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

aviation data communications manager
purchase planner
import export specialist in china and other glassware
import export specialist in electrical household appliances
import export specialist in household goods

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of vehicle rental agent.

  • Car controls: The functioning of specific car equipment such as how to operate and handle the clutch, throttle, lighting, instrumentation, transmission and the brakes.
  • Types of vehicles: Field of information which distinguishes rental agency classification systems, containing types and classes of vehicles and their functioning and components.
  • Contract law: The field of legal principles that govern written agreements between parties concerning the exchange of goods or services, including contractual obligations and termination.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of vehicle rental agent.

  • Perform multiple tasks at the same time: Execute multiple tasks at the same time, being aware of key priorities.
  • Communicate with customers: Respond to and communicate with customers in the most efficient and appropriate manner to enable them to access the desired products or services, or any other help they may require.
  • Check vehicle damage: Check for vehicle damage including exterior body damage, tire and wheel damage, interior damage, fuel level and mileage at time of rental and return.
  • Handle customer complaints: Administer complaints and negative feedback from customers in order to address concerns and where applicable provide a quick service recovery.
  • Apply numeracy skills: Practise reasoning and apply simple or complex numerical concepts and calculations.
  • Identify customer’s needs: Use appropriate questions and active listening in order to identify customer expectations, desires and requirements according to product and services.
  • Arrange pick‐up: Determine ways for customers to pick-up cars according to their needs and specific location.
  • Handle rental overdues: Identifying rental delays of return and applying the appropriate measures such as additional payment and adjust availability of rentable items.
  • Record customers’ personal data: Gather and record customers’ personal data into the system; obtain all signatures and documents required for rental.
  • Conduct customer identification: Check customer’s ID and drivers licences before renting items.
  • Audit closed vehicle rental contracts: Ensure the accuracy of refuelling charges, applicable taxes for the returned vehicles.
  • Process reservations: Execute customers’ reservations in accordance to their schedules and needs by phone, electronically or in person.
  • Arrange rental car drop-off: Organize the drop-off of cars rented by customers on specific locations.
  • Process payments: Accept payments such as cash, credit cards and debit cards. Handle reimbursement in case of returns or administer vouchers and marketing instruments such as bonus cards or membership cards. Pay attention to safety and the protection of personal data.
  • Achieve sales targets: Reach set sales goals, measured in revenue or sold units. Reach the target within a specific timeframe, prioritise sold products and services accordingly and plan in advance.
  • Have computer literacy: Utilise computers, IT equipment and modern day technology in an efficient way.
  • Provide customers with price information: Provide customers with accurate and up-to-date information about charges and price rates.
  • Review completed contracts: Review content and check accuracy of completed contracts.
  • Process data: Enter information into a data storage and data retrieval system via processes such as scanning, manual keying or electronic data transfer in order to process large amounts of data.
  • Complete transaction procedures for returned vehicles: Finish the transaction procedures for returned vehicles; verify the accuracy of closing calculations.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of vehicle rental agent. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of vehicle rental agent. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Create solutions to problems: Solve problems which arise in planning, prioritising, organising, directing/facilitating action and evaluating performance. Use systematic processes of collecting, analysing, and synthesising information to evaluate current practice and generate new understandings about practice.
  • Operate cash point: Count the money; balance cash drawer at the end of the shift; receive payments and process payment information; use scanning equipment.
  • Speak different languages: Master foreign languages to be able to communicate in one or more foreign languages.
  • Upsell products: Persuade customers to buy additional or more expensive products.
  • Build rapport with people from different cultural backgrounds: Understand and create a link with people from different cultures, countries, and ideologies without judgements or preconceptions.
  • Facilitate official agreement: Facilitate an official agreement between two disputing parties, ensuring that both parties agree on the resolution which has been decided on, as well as writing the necessary documents and ensuring both parties sign it.
  • Deal with pressure from unexpected circumstances: Strive to achieve objectives despite the pressures arising from unexpected factors outside of your control.
  • Use customer relationship management software: Use specialised software to manage company’s interactions with current and future customers. Organise, automate and synchronise sales, marketing, customer service, and technical support, to increase targeted sales.
  • Maintain vehicle service: Monitor the health of vehicles and take measures to optimise service and execute repairs; communicate with service workshop and dealers.
  • Listen actively: Give attention to what other people say, patiently understand points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times; able to listen carefully the needs of customers, clients, passengers, service users or others, and provide solutions accordingly.
  • Tolerate stress: Maintain a temperate mental state and effective performance under pressure or adverse circumstances.
  • Utilise cross-selling: Apply sales techniques to sell additional products or services to current customers.
  • Show diplomacy: Deal with people in a sensitive and tactful way.
  • Manage theft prevention: Apply theft and robbery prevention; monitor security surveillance equipment; enforce security procedures if needed.
  • Work independently in rental services: Perform tasks such as communicating with customers, answering the telephone, renting out products, resolving technical issues without the guidance or support of others, taking decisions autonomously and assuming responsibility for them.

ISCO group and title

5249 – Sales workers not elsewhere classified

  1. Vehicle rental agent – ESCO
  2. Car rental agent | Explore careers – National Careers Service
  3. Car Rental Agent Job Description: Salary, Duties, & More – Climb the Ladder
  4. Featured image: By AutoRentals – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0
Last updated on November 21, 2022

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