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Vehicle fleet planning in the car rental industry

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Fleet management at car rental companies aims to maximise yield by matching capacity to current and projected demand. This is accomplished via three decision-making phases. The first phase involves the grouping of car rental locations into pools, allowing car rental locations within a pool to share a fleet of vehicles. In the second phase, the types and quantities of vehicles to be acquired and returned to the car manufacturer and the geographical redistribution of vehicles among pools over the long-term planning horizon are defined for each pool. The final phase involves the daily operations in which the deployment of the fleet within each pool among its locations is defined. In this paper, we address all three phases as we encountered them in a major US car rental company. We develop appropriate solution methodologies for all three phases taking into account the hierarchical nature of the decision process. Finally, the application of the entire methodology is exhibited via a case analysis for the state of Florida.Journal of Revenue and Pricing Management (2006) 5, 221–236. doi:10.1057/palgrave.rpm.5160041

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: October 1, 2006

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