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Avis uses wireless to slash check-in time

Avis has used wireless technology to cut the time it takes to check in millions of rental cars being returned by customers.

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Avis has used wireless technology to cut the time it takes to check in millions of rental cars being returned by customers.

Avis, which is one of the biggest car rental companies in Europe, has said the number customer complaints over returning rental cars has fallen by about 20% since using the wireless technology which was installed by IT services company Sapient.

Avis staff process vehicle inspections using a handheld device, incorporating Bluetooth technology, to calculate any additional rental charges and print a receipt for the customer.

The device scans the bar code of the vehicle and links to back office systems in the US over a wireless network.

Returned cars can now be signed off in under a minute, compared with 15 minutes under the old system.

Previously Avis employees would have to return to their computer to process the transaction on their computer after checking the mileage, fuel levels and condition of the vehicle.

Avis is currently using the system at 100 locations across Europe. By the end of March the company plans to use the wireless technology across 140 rental office to process 60% of its total returned cars.

"This is a major customer service initiative for use," said Dave Russell, director of group operations at Avis Europe. "The wireless technology will be able to check in about 3.5 million cars per annum."

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