TULSA, Okla., June 30 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. (NYSE: DTG) today announced that it is now offering customers its customer-choice rental service at the San Jose International Airport (SJC). San Jose marks the Company's 12th operation to offer this customer-friendly and efficient service, and the Company plans to convert at least another 10 cities by the end of the year.
Dollar Thrifty's well-received customer-choice offering gives customers the ability to reserve a vehicle class and size, and then select their own vehicle from those available on the lot at the time of arrival. This option provides customers with flexibility, while at the same time enhances efficiency by streamlining the rental process. Customer feedback has shown that it is an excellent added value at no additional cost.
"Not only does this service streamline our internal operations, it significantly transforms our customers' car rental experience," said Scott Thompson, president and CEO of Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. "It puts customers in the driver's seat when selecting the vehicle that's right for them in terms of their tastes and needs. They have responded quite favorably to being given more flexibility in the rental process, and we are pleased with the initial results."
The service presently operates in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Oakland, Ontario (Calif.), Las Vegas, Orlando, Phoenix, Denver, Houston Intercontinental, Washington, D.C. (Dulles Airport) and Houston Hobby Airport. Because of overwhelmingly positive customer feedback and its initial success at these locations, the Company plans to rollout out the customer-choice service in a number of major cities including Miami, Cleveland, Dallas Love Field and Baltimore, as well as other new locations that are operationally able to participate. The conversion will take place over the summer months through year end.
To learn more information about the service, receive updates on cities as they offer the customer-choice option, and learn about special promotions, visit the Travel Center on the Company's brands' Web sites at www.thrifty.com and www.dollar.com and click on Travel Tools.
About Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc.
Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. is headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Driven by the mission "Value Every Time," the Company's brands, Dollar Rent A Car and Thrifty Car Rental, serve value-conscious travelers in over 80 countries. Dollar and Thrifty have over 600 corporate and franchised locations in the United States and Canada, operating in virtually all of the top U.S. and Canadian airport markets. The Company's approximately 6,000 employees are located mainly in North America, but global service capabilities exist through an expanding international franchise network. For additional information, visit www.dtag.com or the brand sites at www.dollar.com and www.thrifty.com.
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" about our expectations, plans and performance. These statements use such words as "may," "will," "expect," "believe," "intend," "should," "could," "anticipate," "estimate," "forecast," "project," "plan" and similar expressions. These statements do not guarantee future performance and Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. assumes no obligation to update them. Risks and uncertainties that could materially affect future results include:
- the impact of our pending acquisition by Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. or developments relating to the proposed transaction, including, among other things, diversion of management's attention from day-to-day operations, a loss of key personnel, disruption of our operations, an inability to obtain regulatory and stockholder approvals on the terms and schedule contemplated, and the impact of pending or future litigation relating to the proposed transaction;
- the impact of persistent pricing and demand pressures, particularly in light of the continuing volatility in the global financial and credit markets and concerns about global economic prospects and the timing and strength of a recovery, and whether consumer confidence and spending levels will continue to improve;
- whether ongoing governmental and regulatory initiatives in the United States and elsewhere to stimulate economic growth will be successful;
- the impact of pricing and other actions by competitors, particularly as they increase fleet sizes in anticipation of seasonal activity;
- our ability to manage our fleet mix to match demand and meet our target for vehicle depreciation costs, particularly in light of the significant increase in the level of risk vehicles (i.e., those vehicles not acquired through a guaranteed residual value program) in our fleet and our exposure to the used vehicle market;
- the cost and other terms of acquiring and disposing of automobiles and the impact of conditions in the used vehicle market on our ability to reduce our fleet capacity as and when projected by our plans;
- whether efforts to revitalize the U.S. automotive industry are successful, particularly in light of our dependence on vehicle supply from U.S. automotive manufacturers;
- the effectiveness of actions we take to manage costs and liquidity and whether further reductions in the scope of our operations will be necessary in light of the economic environment;
- our ability to obtain cost-effective financing as needed (including replacement of asset backed notes and other indebtedness as it comes due) without unduly restricting operational flexibility;
- our ability to comply with financial covenants or to obtain necessary amendments or waivers, and the impact of the terms of any required amendments or waivers, such as potential reductions in lender commitments;
- our ability to manage the consequences under our financing agreements of an event of bankruptcy with respect to any of the monoline insurers that provide credit support for our asset backed financing structures, including our ability to obtain any necessary waivers or consents with respect to recent developments involving Ambac;
- the potential for significant cash tax payments in 2010 as a result of the reduction in our fleet size and the resulting impact of our inability to defer gains on the disposition of our vehicles under our like-kind exchange program;
- airline travel patterns, including disruptions or reductions in air travel resulting from airline bankruptcies, industry consolidation, capacity reductions and pricing actions or other events;
- local market conditions where we and our franchisees do business, including whether franchisees will continue to have access to capital as needed;
- volatility in gasoline prices;
- access to reservation distribution channels;
- disruptions in the operation or development of information and communication systems that we rely on, including those relating to methods of payment;
- the cost of regulatory compliance, costs and other effects of potential future initiatives, including those directed at climate change and its effects, and the costs and outcome of pending litigation; and
- the impact of natural catastrophes and terrorism.
Forward-looking statements should be considered in light of information in this press release and other filings we make with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
SOURCE Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc.